Funny and poignant, You Go First by 2018 Newbery Medalist Erin Entrada Kelly is an engaging exploration of family, spelling, art, bullying, and the ever-complicated world of middle school friendships. Erin Entrada Kellys perfectly pitched tween voice will resonate with fans of Kate DiCamillos Raymie Nightingale and Thanhha Lais Inside Out and Back Again.Twelve-year-old Charlotte Lockard and eleven-year-old Ben Boxer are separated by more than a thousand miles. On the surface, their lives seem vastly differentCharlotte lives near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, while Ben is in the small town of Lanester, Louisiana. Charlotte wants to be a geologist and keeps a rock collection in her room. Ben is obsessed with Harry Potter, presidential history, and recycling. But the two have more in common than they think. Theyre both highly gifted. Theyre both experiencing family turmoil. And they both sit alone at lunch.Over the course of a week, Charlotte and Benonline friends connected only by a Scrabble gamewill intersect in unexpected ways as they struggle to navigate the turmoil of middle school. You Go First reminds us that no matter how hard it is to keep our heads above troubled water, we never struggle alone.The acclaimed author of Blackbird Fly, The Land of Forgotten Girls, and Hello, Universe writes with an authentic, humorous, and irresistible voice. This engaging and character-driven story about growing up and finding your place in the world will appeal to fans of Rebecca Stead and Rita Williams-Garcia....
|Title||:||You Go First|
|Number of Pages||:||304 pages|
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You Go First Reviews
Ahhh this book got me in the feels! Erin Entrada Kelly is a master of that particular ache that middle school brings. These amazing characters will stick with you. Hand this one to kids also feeling the ache of middle school or readers who live for character-driven stories (like meeee).
Tugs at the heart!
Both eleven-year-old Ben and twelve-year-old Charlotte lead complicated lives. Ben is surprised and devastated when he learns that his father is leaving his mother. Charlotte's father is extremely ill, staying in the hospital, AND her best friend has found another replacement for her. Both Ben and Charlotte are brilliant but spend most of their time alone. They do have one another, they are friends through an online Scrabble game. As the year goes by, these friends call one another and chat. The ...more
Richie’s Picks: YOU GO FIRST by Erin Entrada Kelly, Greenwillow, April 2018, 304p., ISBN: 978-0-06-241-418-2
“A gas” -- 1960s slang for having a lot of fun
“Ain’t it good to know that you’ve got a friend
When people can be so cold?
They’ll hurt you and desert you”
--Carole King” (1971)
“Charlotte wasn’t sure what happened, but suddenly there were other things to do. There was too much to worry about. Middle school infected her life like a virus. She started hiding her dolls, even though she still want ...more
I had such high expectations for this book, because I've really loved her previous books, but this one just - fell short of the mark. Charlotte and Ben never really connected with each other, preferring to share trivialities instead of actual meaningful interactions like the premise suggests. I liked that they each made friends outside of each other but the implication that Charlotte and Ben would drift apart now that they had 'real' friends was one I didn't appreciate. As someone who has formed ...more
Charlotte’s dad has a heart attack. Ben’s parents are divorcing. Charlotte may lose her best friend. Ben may run for student council. How does an online scrabble game connect them? Read to find out!
Erin Entrada Kelly is a masterful writer with succinct pacing, inventive ways into a story, and wonderful multi-character voice. Plus, she has such a gift for giving voice and life to characters who feel isolated yet yearn to connect and, lucky for readers, eventually do.
"Someday, I'll be digging for specimens in Egyptian pyramids and none of this will matter."
Over the course of six days two preteens engaged in an online Scrabble game both undergo major life changes. Both Charlotte and Ben are sans friends IRL (that's in real life for the uninitiated.) Both are bright and inquisitive youngsters, sticking out like sore thumbs in a land populated by homogenous middle schoolers. Alternating chapters focus on the scenarios in each child's life.
Charlotte's father has been hospitalized following a heart attack. Her once best friend now thinks of her as a p ...more