Review Detail

Kids Fiction 266
Concern about family
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Hazel lives on a farm with her two mothers and her older brother Rowan. They have a heard of goats that her Mom milks for her business of making soaps and other products, and Mimi is a lawyer in town. Because of a change in the train schedule, Hazel has to go to another middle school, leaving her friend Becca behind for 8th grade. Since a girl at her old school, Kristen, was always very mean, calling Hazel "goat girl" and making fun of her for crying, Hazel wants to make sure she flew under everyone's radar. This is rather lonely, but she eventually finds a table in the cafeteria where she can sit with Yosh, an outspoken boy with a colorful Mohawk who is in a wheelchair, and Carina. Carina went to Hazel's old school, but presented as a boy then. Hazel gets along well with her, and the two slowly become friends. When a school family tree project is assigned, Hazel struggles. She wants to include Lena and Miles, babies that Mimi had who both died before they were born, but doesn't want people to make fun of her. This is an especially sensitive topic because Mimi is pregnant again, and Hazel is beside herself with fear. Even Rowan, who just graduated from high school, took a gap year before going to college because he was concerned about his family coping. When there is a Health and Human Development project to carry around a bag of flour and treat it as if it were an infant, Hazel's concern deepens. It doesn't help that Becca has become a cheerleader, hangs out with Kristen, and doesn't often contact Hazel. When Mimi goes into premature labor, she must reach out to Becca's family for help, and she realizes that she has more support from all of her friends than she realized.
Good Points
It was interesting to see a character working on a small farm-- there is not much of that in literature. I also enjoyed Rowan as a supportive older brother. The friend drama with Becca was very true to life, and Hazel's general anxiety is on trend. It's nice to see Carina as a supporting character whose role is to be Hazel's friend and whose gender is not all that relevant. We need literature that shows all manner of characters, and Bigelow does a good job at this.

I think it is hard to understand but important for people not involved in the community to realize that LGBTQIA+ people sometimes surround themselves with other individuals in similar circumstances. There was an interview with Lisa Bunker that pointed this out, which was good for me to read because my feeling about her books was that there were a LOT of characters my students may never have met, and it might be confusing to them to have so many. This interview made me understand books with characters who might feel more comfortable with others like themselves. Is Hazel more accepting of Carina given her family background? Perhaps.
Report this review Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

Comments

Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

The Secret Key (Agatha Oddly)
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Meet thirteen-year-old Agatha Oddly – a bold, determined heroine, and...
Skipping Forward
 
3.8
 
0.0 (0)
What if you could skip forward in time, but...
The Hand on the Wall (Truly Devious, #3)
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
New York Times bestselling author Maureen Johnson delivers the...
Finding Mr. Better-Than-You
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
A heartbroken teen, with the help of her best...
Golden Chains
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Never fall in love with the enemy. If only...
Wardens of Eternity
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
Magic and magical creatures. Immortal gods and goddesses. History...
Tweet Cute
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Meet Pepper, swim team captain, chronic overachiever, and all-around...
Jack Kerouac is Dead to Me
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Fifteen-year-old JL Markham's life used to be filled with carnival...
The Lost Legends
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
All her life, Princess Adalina heard tales of the legendary,...
We Are All His Creatures: Tales of P. T. Barnum, the Greatest Showman
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
In a series of interwoven fictionalized stories, Deborah Noyes gives...
In the Hall with the Knife
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
A murderer could be around every corner in this thrilling...
Birthday
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Boyhood meets The Sun Is Also a Star in this...
A Betrayal Exposed (Not Every Girl Book 3)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Olivia Davenport’s life is finally going smoothly, until if falls...
Freaky in Fresno
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
Influencers. Movie nerds. Beauty queens. And one pink convertible. Have...
The Hunt
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Death marked her from her very first breath. ...
Only Mostly Devastated
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Will Tavares is the dream summer fling―he's fun, affectionate, kind―but...

Latest Member Reviews

Our Year in Love and Parties
 
4.0
"What I loved: The story was told through the unique lens of four specific events with..."
Jack Kerouac is Dead to Me
 
4.3
"JACK KEROUAC IS DEAD TO ME is Gae Polisner’s most recent YA Contemporary novel. Like in her other books, she..."
Woven in Moonlight
 
5.0
"Woven in Moonlight is a beautiful and lush fantasy, based on the culture and history of Bolivia. It is set..."
We Are All His Creatures: Tales of P. T. Barnum, the Greatest Showman
 
3.0
"WE ARE ALL HIS CREATURES by Deborah Noyes is a series of eleven short stories about the beloved showman, P.T...."
Jane Anonymous: A Novel
 
4.7
"JANE ANONYMOUS follows two timelines: one while Jane was captured for 7 months and one after she is back home...."
Finding Mr. Better-Than-You
 
4.3
"FINDING MR. BETTER-THAN-YOU starts off like a cheesy romantic comedy, but ends up being a lot more fulfilling light-hearted YA..."
Freaky in Fresno
 
3.7
"FREAKY IN FRESNO is a spin on the old novel, FREAKY FRIDAY. Ricki (nickname for Lyric) had a falling out..."
Only Mostly Devastated
 
4.3
"ONLY MOSTLY DEVASTATED is a charming YA contemporary romance that follows Ollie. Ollie had lived in California, until this year..."
Neffatira's First Challenge
 
5.0
"The descriptions are very beautiful and you can perceive the feelings of the characters to the point of empathy. ..."
Ink in the Blood (Ink in the Blood Duology #1)
 
4.3
"INK IN THE BLOOD is an engaging and atmospheric YA fantasy. Celia Sand was delighted when she was chosen to..."
What I Want You to See
 
4.0
"WHAT I WANT YOU TO SEE is an interesting book that discusses homelessness, choices and their intersection with privilege, as..."
The 47 People You'll Meet in Middle School
 
4.7
"'The 47 People You'll Meet in Middle School' by Kristin Mahoney is an endearing look at an often hard time..."
 
4.0
"The insatiable oasis will hunt down the thieves of this book and tear them apart, limb by limb, devouring their..."
All the Stars and Teeth (All the Stars and Teeth, #1)
 
5.0
"ALL THE STARS AND TEETH is an imaginative and lush YA fantasy that transports the reader to a fascinating new..."
Wardens of Eternity
 
3.0
"WARDENS OF ETERNITY follows Ziva, a young woman who was abandoned as a toddler, became a ward of the state,..."
The Hand on the Wall (Truly Devious, #3)
 
4.3
"THE HAND ON THE WALL is a thrilling conclusion to the TRULY DEVIOUS series. Here, the students are at Ellingham,..."
His Hideous Heart
 
3.7
"WHAT I LOVED: I read various poems and short stories written by Edgar Allen Poe as early..."
The Vanishing Stair
 
4.0
"THE VANISHING STAIR continues the TRULY DEVIOUS plot as Stevie returns to the enigmatic private school, Ellingham. Stevie becomes more..."
Truly Devious
 
3.3
"TRULY DEVIOUS is a YA mystery that takes place at an enigmatic high school. Ellingham was founded by a very..."
Shadowscent
 
3.7
"Rakel wants nothing more than to get a well-paying job since she's so skilled with scents. Her father his what's..."