Great Illustrated Books

When You Reach Me

By Rebecca Stead

Wendy Lamb Books, 2009
Pages : 208
Suggested Ages: 9 and Up
ISBN: 0385737424

Things That Are Normal: Sixth grader, Miranda, lives on the Upper West Side with her single parent mom, a paralegal. She and Mom's boyfriend, Richard, AKA Mr. Perfect, are helping Mom practice for her appearance in three weeks (on April 27, 1979) on the TV game show "The $20,000 Pyramid," hosted by Dick Clark. Miranda's favorite book is A Wrinkle in Time, which she reads over and over. There's a crazy old guy who hangs out on the corner of Amsterdam Avenue, yelling, laughing, doing sudden kicks, and sleeping with his head under the mailbox. Back in October, her best friend, Sal, got punched in the gut by another boy on the way home from school. Since then, he hasn't wanted to be best friends, so she's been palling around with other kids.

Things That Are Not Normal: Miranda is telling this story of everything that happened to her this past year to an unidentified and mysterious someone who has sent her notes that have correctly predicted some of those events, including the date her Mom will be appearing on that TV show, before anyone could have known about them. One note reads, "I am coming to save the life of your friend and my own." Miranda ponders a central point in A Wrinkle in Time: is time travel possible?

Reviewed by : JF.


If you love this book, then try:

Corbett, Sue. 12 Again. Dutton, 2002.

Fitzhugh, Louise. Harriet the Spy. HarperCollins, 1964.

Hahn, Mary Downing. Time for Andrew: A Ghost Story. Clarion, 1994.

Konigsburg, E. L. From the From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. Atheneum, 1967.

L'Engle, Madeleine. A Wrinkle in Time. Farrar, 1962.

Lindbergh, Anne. Travel Far, Pay No Fare. HarperCollins, 1992.

Mass, Wendy. 11 Birthdays. Scholastic, 2009.

Pearce, Philippa. Tom's Midnight Garden. HarperCollins, 1958.

Pearson, Kit. Awake and Dreaming. Viking, 1997.

Potter, Ellen. Slob. Philomel, 2009.

Raskin, Ellen. The Westing Game. Dutton, 1978.

Slepian, Jan. Back to Before. Philomel, 1993.

Critics have said

The setting is consistently strong. The stores and even the streets���in Miranda's neighborhood act as physical entities and impact the plot in tangible ways. This unusual, thought-provoking mystery will appeal to several types of readers.
School Library Journal