Cody and the Heart of a Champion
April 10, 2018
In Cody’s life, some people keep her on her toes — just like Mother Nature, who is warm one day and snowy the next. Or like Cody’s brother, Wyatt, who has started wearing collared shirts because his girlfriend likes them. Meanwhile, Pearl has begun playing soccer and it’s all she can talk about. Spencer is busy creating a mysterious museum underneath GG’s house and he's never around to play. And Spencer’s mom doesn’t look any different. . . . Could she really have a baby growing inside her? Maybe the baby is like Cody’s beloved ants, waiting patiently inside the earth for spring to arrive. It seems like everything around Cody is changing — from seasons to friendships — but if she can just navigate it all with her trademark enthusiasm and charm, maybe the most important things will stay the same.
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
Springstubb does a fantastic job of identifying things that are difficult for elementary school students, but which adults may have forgotten. Yes, we know that friends moving away if difficult, but it's easy to forget the pain of having to give up that favorite piece of clothing. I understood completely the attachment that Cody had to her jacket, but would never have thought about it so thoroughly!
The accompanying illustrations are charming and hit a sweet spot between elementary and early middle school, which makes it easy to hand this to children who only want to read graphic novels. The cover doesn't look too "babyish", and the small trim size makes this seem cozy and easy!
As Cody gets older, we don't see as much of her family. This is realistic, but I do so enjoy them! I adore Wyatt, her older brother, and it's fun to hear Cody's impressions of his girlfriend, whom she calls P.U. (Her name is Payton Underwood.) Sibling relationships are so important for young readers, and I can always use more books centering around them.
Cody's new interest in soccer is well-done, because it is not easy for her. As she is spending less time with her family, it makes sense that she is branching out into different actitivies. Cody is a great series to give to readers who like Meyerhoff's The Friendshp Garden, Haywood's classic B is for Betsy, or who aren't quite ready for Morgan's Soccer Sisters because they themselves just started playing!
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