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Posts by Molly W

The things you can do when you're invisible

Cover of Invisible
A review of Invisible by Christina Diaz Gonzalez
Gabriela Epstein

This middle grade graphic novel starts out with five Conrad Middle School students assigned to work in the cafeteria during the first period of the day to complete their yearly community service hours.  George, Sara, Dayara, Nico and Miguel have nothing in common.  All five are flying under the radar for different reasons and want to get their time cleaning up leftover school breakfasts and throwing out morning garbage over with as quickly and anonymously as possible.

Jun 14, 2024

Listen to the whispers

Cover of The Whispers: A Novel
A review of The Whispers: A Novel by Ashley Audrain

The "whispers" refer to the voices you hear urging you to follow your gut instinct. Sometimes it's large scale. Should I take that job? Move to that city? Buy a house? Have a child? Sometimes it's smaller. Should I go to that party? Trust that person? Walk down that dark road?  

Jun 6, 2024

What do you call a dog, a seagull, a squirrel, some bison and a couple of raccoons?

Cover of The Eyes and the Impossibl
A review of The Eyes and the Impossible by Dave Eggers
Shawn Harris

I call them winners! 

No joke, this book is sensational and worthy of all the accolades. Recipient of the 2024 Newbery Award given to the author of the most distinguished children's book of the previous year, The Eyes and the Impossible is funny, smart and unusual. I loved it.

May 28, 2024

Extreme discipline is what it takes

Cover of Promise Boys
A review of Promise Boys by Nick Brooks

The students at Urban Promise Prep School must follow the "Principal Moore Method" for conduct and behavior at all times. Principal Moore is strict, but his method saves lives, or so the boys are told time and time again. Infractions include not walking on a line painted on the school floor, talking in the hallway or having unauthorized food in a locker or backpack. The infractions result in demerits that never get recouped. After a certain number of demerits, the students find themselves in detention, or even worse, expelled.

May 13, 2024

Dream or memory?

Cover of The Berry Pickers: A Novel
A review of The Berry Pickers: A Novel by Amanda Peters

A Mi'kmaq family travels from Novia Scotia to Maine to pick blueberries every summer. They arrive seasonally and live near the fields in a warm and inviting cabin. One summer, their four-year-old daughter May goes missing in broad daylight sending the family into a decades-long cycle of heartbreak and trauma that changes the family dynamic forever. 

Apr 17, 2024

Middle school truth

Cover of Picture Day
A review of Picture Day by Sarah Sax

It's school picture day at Brinkley Middle School and Viv decides to shake things up by giving herself a haircut. In the bathroom. While waiting for her turn to have her photo taken. This is brave, bold, and possibly regrettable. But Viv embraces the change. When her mom schedules an emergency appointment at a salon to have her hair "fixed," Viv shares her vision with the stylist and ends up with a cool angled bob. She becomes famous for being true to herself, even though the road was a little bumpy at first.

Apr 8, 2024

I wouldn't trust any of the teachers at this school

Cover of The Teacher
A review of The Teacher by Frieda McFadden

I felt like shrieking more than a few times while reading The Teacher. Here's the deal: there's a student at Caseham High who was involved with a teacher last year in a way that drew suspicion from parents, other teachers, and administrators at the school. Nobody seems to know what happened, but the teacher resigned in disgrace and the student, Addie, earned a reputation for being troubled. It's not clear if Addie is truly troubled or if she's a victim of circumstance. What is clear is that she's a school pariah and being bullied by mean girls.

Mar 28, 2024

The people who complete you

Cover of I'm Not Done with You Yet
A review of I'm Not Done with You Yet by Jesse Q. Sutanto

Jane's world changes the instant she meets Thalia. Both young women are waiting in line for a bus that will take them to their prestigious Oxford Creative Writing program and for Jane, the experience is heady and intoxicating. Thalia is beautiful and confident. She's smart and talented. She's wealthy and knows how to act. She has everything going for her and is beloved by all. Jane is plain and socially awkward. She's barely scraping by financially and in all aspects of her life.

Mar 18, 2024

Tribute to the women whose lives were cut short

Cover of Bright Young Women
A review of Bright Young Women by Jessica Knoll

On a Saturday night in 1978, a man enters a Florida sorority house and systematically attacks women from room to room, leaving them for dead. He flees the sorority down the main staircase and out the front door as the sorority president Pamela Schumacher stands in the shadows, frozen in fear. She sees the killer's face and haunted by that night and the aftermath of the attack, she's determined to find justice. She's obsessed with finding the killer and eventually earns a law degree with the intention of facing him in court one day.

Mar 5, 2024