Sunday, March 21, 2010
Book Review: When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
Age Group: Young Adult
Genre: Ummmm…maybe mystery?
Length: 208 pages
Four mysterious letters change Miranda's world forever.
By sixth grade, Miranda and her best friend, Sal, know how to navigate their New York City neighborhood. They know where it's safe to go, like the local grocery store, and they know whom to avoid, like the crazy guy on the corner.
But things start to unravel. Sal gets punched by a new kid for what seems like no reason, and he shuts Miranda out of his life. The apartment key that Miranda's mom keeps hidden for emergencies is stolen. And then Miranda finds a mysterious note scrawled on a tiny slip of paper:
I am coming to save your friend’s life, and my own.
I must ask two favors. First, you must write me a letter.
The notes keep coming, and Miranda slowly realizes that whoever is leaving them knows all about her, including things that have not even happened yet. Each message brings her closer to believing that only she can prevent a tragic death. Until the final note makes her think she's too late.
When You Reach Me is a very sweet book. The main character and her friends are wonderfully written and they all feel different—the way they talk, the way they act, and the way they interact with other people in the story. And even though they’re younger than most of the characters I read about, I connected with them.
The ending of this book is amazing, too. I don’t want to give anything away, so suffice to say it made me want to reread the book. Everything came together in the end masterfully.
The pacing was a little bit slow at the very beginning, but other than that this was a fun, very quick read—I finished it in one sitting—that I really enjoyed with a beautifully woven together plot.