Sarah Rettger

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Review of The Mona Lisa Vanishes: A Legendary Painter, a Shocking Heist, and the Birth of a Global Celebrity

The Mona Lisa Vanishes: A Legendary Painter, a Shocking Heist, and the Birth of a Global Celebrity by Nicholas Day; illus. by Brett Helquist Intermediate, Middle School    Random House Studio/Random    288 pp. 9/23    9780593643846    $19.99 Library ed.  9780593643853    $22.99 e-book ed.  9780593643860    $11.99 The Mona Lisa wasn’t the world’s most...

Review of West of the Sea

West of the Sea by Stephanie WillingIntermediate    Viking    352 pp.8/23    9780593465578    $18.99e-book ed.  9780593465592    $10.99Haven West doesn’t understand why her mother is always disappearing—either outside or into the ­bathroom—or why she herself sees prehistoric creatures in the Texas desert that surrounds her home, but no one else can. She’s also...

Review of Vivian Lantz’s Second Chances

Vivian Lantz’s Second Chances by Kathryn OrmsbeeMiddle School    Harper/HarperCollins    320 pp.6/23    9780063060043    $19.99e-book ed.  9780063060067    $10.99Vivian Lantz is determined to break her streak of terrible first days of school. She decides on a new style, writes out a plan in the notebook her best friend gave her before moving away,...

Review of The Islands of Elsewhere

The Islands of Elsewhere by Heather FawcettIntermediate    Rocky Pond/Penguin    224 pp.6/23    9780593530528    $17.99e-book ed.  9780593530542    $10.99The three Snolly sisters, their infant brother, and their mother are spending the summer at the coastal home of their grandfather, whose dementia is worsening. Artistic sister Hattie, science-y Bee, and costume-loving Plum explore the...

Review of Half Moon Summer

Half Moon Summer by Elaine VickersIntermediate, Middle School    Peachtree    288 pp.6/23    9781682635391    $17.99e-book ed.  9781682635544    $10.99Drew and Mia met as infants—born on the same day in the same hospital, they stopped crying only when nurses put them in the same bassinet—but grew up in different areas of California, meeting again...

Review of The In-Between

The In-Between by Katie Van HeidrichMiddle School    Aladdin/Simon    304 pp.1/23    9781665920124    $18.99e-book ed.  9781665920148    $10.99In this memoir in verse, Van Heidrich recalls the time when her family, whose housing situation had always been precarious, experienced homelessness. Her mother moves thirteen-year-old Katie and her two younger siblings into a hotel, where...

Review of The Secret Letters

The Secret Letters [Mysteries of Trash & Treasure]by Margaret Peterson HaddixIntermediate     Tegen/HarperCollins    400 pp.9/22    9780062838520    $17.99e-book ed.  978006283854    $12.99Colin, an only child, and Nevaeh, the youngest of five, are both reluctantly working at their families’ businesses for the summer. At Possession Curation, Colin is tempted to rescue items his ultra-minimalist...

Review of Breda’s Island

Breda’s Island by Jessie Ann FoleyIntermediate, Middle School    Quill Tree/HarperCollins    256 pp.   g7/22    978-0-06-320772-1    $16.99e-book ed.  978-0-06-320775-2    $10.99Breda didn’t believe her single mother would really send her from Chicago to Ireland’s Dingle Peninsula for the summer if she got caught stealing again, but her theft of a classmate’s gym...

Review of A Perfect Mistake

A Perfect Mistake by Melanie ConklinIntermediate    Little, Brown    288 pp.   g7/22    978-0-316-66858-3    $16.99e-book ed.  978-0-316-66860-6    $9.99Max is not in a good place at the beginning of sixth grade: his ADHD makes school a challenge; a recent growth spurt causes people to think he’s an adult instead of an eleven-year-old;...

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