By August 13, 2009 2 Comments Read More →

When You Reach Me

My colleague, Linda, who also writes children’s books, is convinced that Rebecca Stead’s When You Reach Me will be a Newbery contender, and with good reason.

When You Reach Me is the kind of children’s book that sneaks up on you. Set in New York City circa 1979, it tells the story of Miranda, a sixth-grader who lives in a small apartment with her single mother, whose best friend, Sal, grew up in the same building with her. When the book begins Miranda and Sal have suddenly stopped hanging out together after Sal gets punched in the face by a neighborhood boy, a fact that Miranda feels confused and unresolved about. Miranda is hurt to lose her best friend, but is also concerned about not having someone to walk home with, a buffer against the weird homeless guy who sleeps under a mailbox near her building.

Miranda is also obsessed with Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time, while at the same time she helps her mother prep to appear on the TV show “The $20,000 Pyramid.” But when Miranda starts receiving mysterious messages telling her that her life and the life of a friend may be in danger, notes that portend the future, her worries go beyond that of the normal sixth-grader. Who is sending these notes, and will she be able to unravel the mystery in time?

When You Reach Me has a stunner of a conclusion–the kind of ending that will bring tears to your eyes, that will make you want to race back to page one to start all over. This would make a great mother-daughter book group selection. But it’s also just a fantastic read for anyone who appreciates a skillful writer for any age.



About the Author:

Misha Stone is a readers' advisory librarian with The Seattle Public Library. Follow her on Twitter at @ahsimlibrarian.

2 Comments on "When You Reach Me"

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  1.' Ellen Brazer says:

    My name is Ellen Brazer and I am an award-winning author who lives in Florida. My new book, Clouds Across the Sun will be available in September. he e-book is available on I would like to offer a free book or a free download so that you can read the novel. Coupon Code: QL87W don’t put in credit card info. I hope you enjoy the read.

    Summary: Hitler charged his most trusted comrades with a mission: educate your progeny, elevate them to power-rule the world. This is the story of just one of these children. Deceit, murder, intrigue, love and enlightenment occur as the plot to take over the U.S. government is revealed.
    I would be so honored if you choose to select the book for your club. You can see the summary and the reviews at I look forward to hearing from you.
    All the best,
    Ellen Brazer Author of Clouds Across the Sun
    Sample or purchase the book at:
    Web site:
    September, coming in paperback to

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