When the World Turned Upside Down

When the World Turned Upside Down
Author(s)
Age Range
8+
Release Date
February 01, 2022
ISBN
978-1338746266
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What do you do when the world shuts down? A heartwarming story of friendship and overcoming adversity in a time of COVID, When the World Turns Upside Down is about community, giving back, and understanding the world around us through the power of generosity from debut middle grade author K. Ibura.

Nobody expected a tiny little virus to change the whole world in such a big way, especially not Shayla, Liam, Ai, and Ben. But when school closes to keep everyone safe, their lives turn upside down. It is one thing to learn that the outside world isn’t safe, but why does it seem that the virus is causing trouble inside their homes too?

As they each struggle to adjust to life in quarantine, they discover they are not alone: their apartment building is full of people who need their help. Working together, they begin to see that there is power in numbers. When they cooperate, they can ease each other’s challenges and help their neighbors through tough times. It’s a lesson they’ll need when protests explode in the streets. Soon, each friend has to decide what it means to be part of a community―and how much they’re willing to do to make this world safer for everyone.

Set against the onset of COVID, When the World Turned Upside Down navigates issues of race and social justice in a heartwarming story of generosity, friendship, and the power of youth.

Editor review

1 review
Connections
Overall rating
 
4.0
Plot
 
4.0
Characters
 
4.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
‘When the World Turned Upside Down’ by K. Ibura asks the question that happened to be on everyone’s mind when the pandemic began: What do you do when the world shuts down? Just like the readers who are delving into this book, each of the characters has to learn to adjust to life in quarantine. In doing so, they realize that they have something in common with others, some whom they may not have realized, and they find that they have to work together to help each other through it all.

The story does a nice job incorporating people of different backgrounds who all have to deal with the COVID-19 lockdown at the same time, in the same place, living in an apartment building. There are four kids—Shayla, Ai, Ben, and Liam. Despite their differences, they work together to make things easier for one another and for others, including helping people in their building with everything from groceries to recycling, and more.

While it was certainly apparent at the onset of the pandemic that kids would have a difficult time, at the very least because they were not able to be in school in person, so much time tends to be given to adults and how they’re coping. This book does a nice job of showing the pandemic from a child’s perspective, as they learn to deal with everything that comes along with the world shutting down around them.

Children and adults alike can find something worthwhile in this book. It transcends age as it focuses on issues of race, culture, empathy, and even creativity when times get tough. There is something to be learned from times like the ones we are in now, and K. Ibura has done a nice job of giving readers a chance to learn more from these characters who strive to find connection as they work together during a difficult and seemingly never-ending time in their lives.
Good Points
Children and adults alike can find something worthwhile in this book. It transcends age as it focuses on issues of race, culture, empathy, and even creativity when times get tough.
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