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Review ~ When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead

Submitted by on March 10, 2011 – 3:08 pmNo Comment

When You Reach Me
By Rebecca Stead
Publisher: Wendy Lamb Books; 1 edition (July 14 2009)

REVIEW BY ELLEN DOBBS

Miranda thinks she has a pretty normal life living with her mom in New York City. She has a best friend, Sal, who lives just below her in their apartment building, and they do everything together. But everything changes the day Sal gets punched by some random kid when he and Miranda are walking home. Afterwards, Sal no longer wants to be friends with Miranda, and she doesn’t know why. Then things get even more confusing when she finds a mysterious note inside her apartment, where no one should be able to leave it without her knowing. It does not say who it’s from, and tells her that she must write the sender a letter in order to save a friend’s life, and the sender’s. She receives more notes, and soon Miranda is pulled into something strange and complex that involves everyone around her, from her new friends to the crazy man on her street corner. Each clue she uncovers is significant, each person involved is important, and nothing is quite what it seems.

When You Reach Me is written in quite a simple, straightforward way, as it’s from the view of sixth-grade Miranda. But as you get farther along in the story you begin to realize that there’s something more complex going on throughout the story. Once you realize this, you can’t help yourself from making little connections and guessing at clues. The way the book is laid out might be a little confusing at first because it begins after everything is over, and Miranda is talking to you like you are the sender of the letters. Then it carries on like Miranda is remembering, and you start to get the story. Every few chapters Mirada will come in again and talk to you, adding to the story, and your questions. This book was really interesting, and has a rather surprising end when all the clues come together.

Ellen’s Rating: (4.5 stars)

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