The Thing About Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin (2015)

Rating: 5 stars24396876

Utterly amazing.

I’ve not read a book so beautiful, so true to the middle school soul, so full of raw beautiful emotion since I read Counting by Sevens. I loved this book so much, in fact I put it on the list for our school book club.

Suzy’s best friend dies in an accident, but Suzy is convinced that its so much more than just a drowning. She cannot understand how something so horrible could happen to someone so close to her, so she attempts to prove her theory. She moves away from the real world and into her own imagination, seeking truth and understanding.

I loved Suzy, I loved the way that she thought, the way that she just spoke so truly and beautifully. Her experiences of growing up at a different pace than her close friends resonated so clearly with me. Some of us are just not ready to mature as quickly as others, and its hard to navigate those uncertain waters.  I had a friend tell me that this was “The best book she’s read all year”, and I really see why. My heart poured out with emotion as I followed Suzy through her journey of self discovery.

I’d not read any of Ali Benjamin’s work before, but I’ll surely follow her now. I can’t wait to see what else she produces.

Recommendations: Grade 4-8. I’ve had many grade 8 students adore this book, but its fully appropriate for a diversity of age groups. Its hard to select someone I wouldn’t recommend it to.

Themes: friendship, loss, growing up, forgiving yourself


About K2Harvey

Reading, and writing about it.
This entry was posted in Four Star+ Books, Literature, YA and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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