By Dar Williams
Gr. 5-8. "In many ways, I'd grown up with 5 parents," says 11-year-old Amalee, who spends each Friday night along with her unmarried dad and his 4 "big, goofy friends" from university. Amalee has struggled to navigate a middle-school social scene that's ruled through suggest ladies, and whilst her father contracts a life-threatening ailment, she unearths her insecurities ballooning uncontrolled. It's her father's family members of buddies who carry every thing jointly and aid Amalee observe her personal energy, forgive the imperfections in herself and her kin, and shape real friendships. Williams, most sensible often called a singer and songwriter, writes a poignant, humorous debut jam-packed with absolutely endearing characters. Amalee's attractive first-person voice sounds a piece too clever in areas, yet Williams writes a few preteen's emotional existence with piercing honesty, relatively the paralyzing worry a parent's affliction brings and the discomfort and guilt of errors. Readers might be charmed via Williams' eccentric, cute characters and her sharp observations concerning the global of either middle-schoolers and adults. -Gillian Engberg
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