Bound To Stay Bound

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 Field guide to getting lost
 Author: McCullough, Joy

 Publisher:  Atheneum Books for Young Readers (2020)

 Classification: Fiction
 Physical Description: 213 p.,  21 cm

 BTSB No: 622331 ISBN: 9781534438491
 Ages: 8-12 Grades: 3-7

 Dating (Social customs) -- Fiction
 Single-parent families -- Fiction
 Father-daughter relationship -- Fiction
 Mother-son relationship -- Fiction

Price: $22.08

Told from two viewpoints, STEM-oriented Sutton and imaginative, artistic Luis, ages nine and ten, must find some common ground when her father and his mother start dating seriously.

Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: MG
   Reading Level: 5.00
   Points: 5.0   Quiz: 508098
Reading Counts Information:
   Interest Level: 3-5
   Reading Level: 4.60
   Points: 10.0   Quiz: 78052

   Kirkus Reviews (01/15/20)
   School Library Journal (03/01/20)
   Booklist (02/01/20)
 The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/05/20)
 The Hornbook (00/09/20)

Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 02/01/2020 McCullough, author of Blood Water Paint (2018), shows she is unafraid to forge new paths in her middle-grade debut. Nine-year-old Sutton is a fan of coding, where rules and logic govern an action’s outcome, unlike in life. Case in point: her father is getting serious about his girlfriend, Liz, and pushing joint family outings with Liz and her allergic-to-everything son, Luis. This is how Sutton, a proud indoor kid, has ended up on a group hike. When Sutton and Luis get separated from their parents, they work together to make their way to the meeting point, learning that they have a lot in common in the process. McCullough’s contemporary novel offers a realistic snapshot of modern families and the challenges that arise when trying to blend them. The motif of programming a robot through a maze (Sutton’s project) is a touchstone throughout, as Sutton learns to adapt, collaborate, and allow for alternate routes in all aspects of her life. The likable cast and relatable premise will resonate with readers grappling with the uncertainty of change. - Copyright 2020 Booklist.

School Library Journal - 03/01/2020 Gr 3–6—McCullough's (Blood Water Paint) fantastic middle grade debut centers on two kids who could not be more different—or so they think. Sutton's mom is off studying penguins, and she's gotten used to her quiet homeschooled life with her dad. Luis longs for adventure, but his allergies often leave him stuck inside with his mom. Once their parents start dating, however, both of them have to adjust. When a hiking mishap leaves the kids by themselves, they must work together to push each other out of their comfort zones and get home safely. This title reads like the younger sibling of Susin Nielsen's We Are All Made of Molecules. What further sets this title apart from others is that we see the kids meeting for the first time, and going on outings together. This is unlike similar titles that begin with kids being forced to become stepsiblings. The secondary plots (of Sutton being a computer programmer and Luis being allergic to just about everything) help to keep things interesting but do not take away from the main plot. VERDICT McCullough is off to a strong start for middle grade readers. This title is enjoyable and covers topics many children will relate to. Recommended first purchase for all libraries serving children.—Elizabeth Portillo, Finkelstein Memorial Library, Spring Valley, NY - Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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