Friday, June 4, 2010

When You Reach Me

Of course, I knew When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead would be fabulous - it did win the Newbery.  And then I read it.

Four mysterious letters change Miranda’s world forever.


By sixth grade, Miranda and her best friend, Sal, know how to navigate their New York City neighborhood. They know where it’s safe to go, like the local grocery store, and they know whom to avoid, like the crazy guy on the corner.


But things start to unravel. Sal gets punched by a new kid for what seems like no reason, and he shuts Miranda out of his life. The apartment key that Miranda’s mom keeps hidden for emergencies is stolen. And then Miranda finds a mysterious note scrawled on a tiny slip of paper:


I am coming to save your friend’s life, and my own.
I must ask two favors. First, you must write me a letter.


The notes keep coming, and Miranda slowly realizes that whoever is leaving them knows all about her, including things that have not even happened yet. Each message brings her closer to believing that only she can prevent a tragic death. Until the final note makes her think she’s too late.


I'm not going to give anything about the story away.  Just know that it's fabulous.  When You Reach Me is now an instant favorite of mine.  I think it's even my favorite Middle Grade novel of all time now.

14 comments:

Remilda Graystone said...

Ooh, this sounds really interesting and then I can pass down to my siblings to read. I will definitely have to check it out.

Lisa and Laura said...

I LOVED this book. I thought it was so unique and different and somehow true. It really captured what it's like to be 11 or 12-years-old. That in between age. And I just loved how it all came together in the end. One of those books I never could have written myself, but fell in love with on the spot.

T.V and Book Addict said...

Yay you loved it too!! It's also one of my all time favorite middle grade reads. I ended up buying it for a few friends of mine who love it too :)

Shannon Whitney Messenger said...

I'll admit, I've been nervous to read this because I write MG and I knew it would make me want to throw rocks at my draft. But it sounds like I'm missing out. I'll have to pick it up the next time I'm out.

Thanks for the rec!

Lisa Desrochers said...

When You Reach Me is a great book, and I went back and read A Wrinkle in Time after, which was fun.

Kristin Miller said...

I love this book. It really is fabulous. The twist (even when I thought I'd guessed everything) was great and I LOVED the way Stead drips little mentions of the . . . world. I was intrigued the whole way through.

readingkidsbooks said...

It's one of books I just bought. I guess I'd better move it up in the pile!

Amanda J. said...

I received an audio copy of this from Ginger Clark, and I'm hesitant to start it simply because I don't think it's going to be recorded fast enough for me. Which means I'll probably start it and then just run out and find a hard copy. :)

Ruth Donnelly said...

I'm a big fan of When You Reach Me. It kept me raptly engaged from beginning to end, and I love how it pays homage to one of my all-time favorite writers.

Natalie Aguirre said...

I so agree with you. I loved this book. The setting was great and it was amazing how she weaved Miranda's favorite book into the story.

Jill of The O.W.L. said...

LOVE this book! Very well done :)

Krista V. said...

Ditto:) I recommended this book on my blog a few months ago.

hannah said...

I keep meaning to read this one.

Marjorie said...

Although I retired from teaching in 2002, I am still in touch with many active NYC teachers. The learning model now in place implements a leveled library with books grouped by genre. I will recommend this book! It looks terrific.

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Five Random Things About Suzie

1. I drink so much orange soda, it's probably running through my veins. I've been known to go through a twelve pack of diet sunkist in a day.

2. I'm legitimately nocturnal (or a vampire). I will be so exhausted at two pm that I'm falling asleep standing up - it has happened before, at Six Flags no less - but as soon as the sun goes down I'm wide awake.

3. I have a gorgeous unused $6000 Reem Acra wedding dress hanging in my closet, and it showed up on my doorstep the same day my (now ex) fiance broke up with me. And thank God for that. I wouldn't have wanted to waste that dress on him.

4. Social anxiety plagues me daily. I write a script and practice in front of the mirror when I have to make a phone call, but most people who interact with me have no idea how nervous I am (or perhaps they lie) because I've worked so hard to try to overcome it.

5. I'm actually worried that I will never love my children (when I do have them in the far off future) as much as I love my dogs. I just like animals better than people - they're sweet and innocent and soft and furry - is that so wrong?