Rebecca Behrens books
Rebecca Behrens books
Rebecca Behrens books

Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday is hosted every Monday by Shannon Messenger. Today I want to talk about Joanne Levy’s great MG, Small Medium at Large.

From the publisher (Bloomsbury):
After she’s hit by
lightning at a wedding, twelve-year-old Lilah Bloom develops a new
talent: she can hear dead people. Among them, there’s her
overopinionated Bubby Dora; a prissy fashion designer; and an
approval-seeking clown who livens up a séance. With Bubby Dora leading
the way, these and other sweetly imperfect ghosts haunt Lilah through
seventh grade, and help her face her one big fear: talking to—and
possibly going to the seventh-grade dance with—her crush, Andrew Finkel.

Possibly my favorite type of middle-grade book blends realistic characters, settings, and experiences with just a touch of something magical–an element beyond suspension of disbelief (like a main character who becomes world-famous for bird calls) but less than true magical realism or fantasy (like a main character who discovers she can fly). Ghosts and light paranormal often hit this imagination sweet spot–or in the case of Small Medium at Large, a lightning-strike-induced ability to hear dead people.

Small Medium at Large
is sweetly funny and highly relatable (ghostly voices aside). Who wouldn’t want to imagine a world in which those who have passed surround and support us through–particularly through the trials and tribulations of the seventh grade? From the clever title to poignant interactions with a variety of ghosts to Lilah’s witty voice, this was an absolutely charming book. Now that I’m done with it, I kind of want to dust off my Ouija board. 🙂

What MG have you read lately?