TOP 10: The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker

TOP 10! This is one of my favorite reads of the year. In fact, I had to revisit my past blog posts because I was shocked I hadn’t written about it earlier! So here goes, better late than never:

9780812992977_custom-5ce76f203feaa575f22d11023f49056e14fc46a1-s400-c85What it’s about: The Age of Miracles is narrated by Julia, a sixth grader who unexpectedly experiences two major events: the first is that she begins to fall in love with a boy down the street, and the second is that the world inexplicably begins to slow its rotation. Crops die, days and nights stretch, and ‘normal’ human behavior is challenged. (That’s because of the earth slowing down, not because of her cute neighbor.)

At the same time, Julia experiences the nearly earth-shaking events that a normal sixth grader experiences: bullying, diverging friendships, confusion about her body, problems in her parents’ marriage. Julia’s coming of age experiences are incredibly relatable, even when set against the background of the impossible.

Why I liked it: The Age of Miracles is one of the best and most elegant books I’ve read this year. Walker’s treatment of the end of the world is made relatable and heartfelt because of the sincerity of her narrator.

This book also blew me away with its expert and authentic child narrator. Her character, an uncomfortable sixth grader at the end of the world, isn’t comical or exaggerated, she just is. The insightful approach to that awful tween age (that so few of us are willing to revisit, much less write about) made every page ring true.

Audience: 13+

Read if you liked:

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

 

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