Monday, June 18, 2018

The Key to Every Thing by Pat Schmatz - ADVISABLE

The Key to Every Thing by Pat Schmatz, 208 pages.  Candlewick, 2018.  $17.
Content: G (3 swears, 0 ‘f’).



Tasha, 12, is off to summer camp, but she is not happy about it and she makes sure everybody knows. Her Uncle Kevin, who she has lived with since she was five and their neighbor Cap’n Jackie, who has also cared for and loved Tasha, are her targets.  When Tasha returns from camp she is remorseful, but she she runs next door to see Cap’n Jackie, she’s not there.  Where is she? Cap’n Jackie fell and broke her hip and she is laid up in a rehab facility. When Tasha goes to apologize and check on her friend, Cap’n Jackie is unresponsive and silent.  What is going on with Cap’n Jackie?

Schmatz look at love and loss is heartfelt and tender.  It is nice to see a book about a 12-year-old girl who is not neurotic.  The cover, however, is not very enticing, so you will have to hand sell this to readers, or perhaps convince a teacher to read it aloud.

Cindy, Middle School Librarian

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