|Shape of thunder
Author: Warga, Jasmine
The story of how magical thinking helps two girls, Cora and Quinn, to heal after they are affected by gun violence and loss due to Quinn's brother shooting Cora's sister to death in a school shooting.
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|Accelerated Reader Information:
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.20
Points: 8.0 Quiz: 512590
Kirkus Reviews (03/15/21)
School Library Journal (+) (06/01/21)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/05/21)
The Hornbook (00/05/21)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 04/01/2021 Gun violence isn’t a topic that has made its way into many middle-grade novels, though it is a reality that too many American children have had to face, if not directly then nonetheless intrusively when enduring lockdown drills. Warga, in her first book since her Newbery Honor–winning Other Words for Home (2018), wades into the trauma left by a high-school shooting. Seventh graders Cora Hamed and Quinn McCauley had been best friends since they were toddlers, but they haven’t spoken since Cora’s sister, Mabel, died. Quinn understands—it’s her brother Parker’s fault that Mabel’s gone—but Quinn has an idea that can fix everything: time travel. The catch is she and Cora will have to work together to make it happen. Chapters alternate between Quinn and Cora’s perspectives, gradually revealing the details of what happened the day of the shooting, as well as the complex and messy emotional process of grieving in a healthy way. Warga also touches upon hate crimes, white nationalism, and Cora’s struggles with her Lebanese American identity. This will spark meaningful discussions. - Copyright 2021 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 06/01/2021 Gr 4–8—Twelve-year-old Cora's older sister, Mabel, was killed in a school shooting; Cora's best friend Quinn's older brother was the shooter. Told in alternating perspectives, this novel chronicles Cora and Quinn's desperate attempt to unlock the secret of time travel and undo the event that shattered their friendship. The novel confronts readers with devastating questions about school shootings, access to firearms, Islamophobia, and the radicalization of white teenage boys via web forums. Quinn, who is white, is plagued with persistent guilt at the signs she noticed, like Parker calling her a "stupid female" and Cora's father a "nasty foreigner." Cora, whose father is a Lebanese immigrant, wants to learn more about her heritage but fears the way that being Muslim made Mabel a target. Warga's characters are full, complex figures who deal with Quiz Bowl practice and first crushes alongside therapy sessions and panic attacks during lockdown drills. This sensitive title holds space for the grief and pain of all of the characters, whether they are related to the shooter or his victims. VERDICT With taut pacing, nuanced characters, and compassionate depictions of grief and trauma, Warga's novel is both timely and transcendent; a must-purchase for all collections.—Molly Saunders, Manatee County P.L., Bradenton, FL - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.