Monday, November 4, 2013

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday - Losing It

Today's pick was fun and inspiring to read. My middle grader read it before me and absolutely loved it. Once again, if it wasn't for the Cybils, we probably wouldn't have come across it! 

by: Erin Fry
Amazon Children's Publishing 2012

From Goodreads:
Bennett Robinson loves baseball, especially watching Dodgers’ games with his dad while munching on burgers and fries—the perfect “game food.” Baseball even helped Bennett and his dad get over his mom’s death from cancer. But there’s no way Bennett could ever play baseball. Bennett is fat, the kind of fat that gives you belly button sweat stains and makes it tough to get off a saggy couch.

But on one perfect, baseball-watching day, everything changes. Bennett’s dad is taken away on a stretcher, and Bennett doesn’t know if he will live or die.

Now Bennett has to move in with know-it-all Aunt Laura, his mom’s sister, who hates Bennett’s dad. And Aunt Laura is making it her personal mission to Get Bennett Healthy. Bennett knows that Aunt Laura will take over his entire life if he lets her.

It’s time for Bennett to step up to the plate. Because maybe there are some things a fat boy can do

Why kids will love it - Bennett is a great protagonist. He's a normal boy who has the same feelings and wishes that other kids do. What Bennett has to deal with is being overweight and not ending up like his dad. He also has to deal with friendship issues, the cute girl who actually LIKES him :), and living with his aunt and her family and making some life changes. These situations many middle-graders also work through and they can be tough. Reading how Bennett survives the changes and readjusts to a new way of living is so inspiring. A very positive book!

What I learned as a writer - Being honest and not sugar-coating situations is the way to go. Erin Fry really keeps things realistic and doesn't try to add too much to make the story sell. It feels very in touch with this age group.

I hope you have a great week.  I must get back to my reading! :)