Novel Society: Adults Read Teen Lit
We'll be discussing Merci Suarez Changes Gears by Meg Medina.
Thoughtful, strong-willed sixth-grader Merci Suarez navigates difficult changes with friends, family, and everyone in between in a resonant new novel from Meg Medina.
Merci Suarez knew that sixth grade would be different, but she had no idea just how different. For starters, Merci has never been like the other kids at her private school in Florida, because she and her older brother, Roli, are scholarship students. They don’t have a big house or a fancy boat, and they have to do extra community service to make up for their free tuition. So when bossy Edna Santos sets her sights on the new boy who happens to be Merci’s school-assigned Sunshine Buddy, Merci becomes the target of Edna’s jealousy. Things aren't going well at home, either: Merci’s grandfather and most trusted ally, Lolo, has been acting strangely lately — forgetting important things, falling from his bike, and getting angry over nothing. No one in her family will tell Merci what's going on, so she’s left to her own worries, while also feeling all on her own at school. In a coming-of-age tale full of humor and wisdom, award-winning author Meg Medina gets to the heart of the confusion and constant change that defines middle school — and the steadfast connection that defines family.
Society members will receive a 20% discount on titles chosen for discussion and ocassional access to pre-publication previews of new books from well-known as well as up-and-coming authors. Other surprises may also be in store – remember, this is Hicklebee’s…
Call the store (408) 292-8880 or email Renee if you are interested in joining.
Novel Society facilitator, Renee Ting was the President and Publisher of Shen’s Books, a small press specializing in multicultural children’s literature. As a publisher, she has been reading, evaluating, producing, and marketing children’s content for over ten years. Prior to heading Shen’s Books, Renee worked at several children’s book and music stores, including Linden Tree and Storyopolis. She is a graduate of Harvard University with a BA in music, and is the author of The Prince’s Diary.
Medina’s breathtaking coming-of-age story features a strong, deeply honest protagonist whose insights will make readers laugh, as well as dynamic secondary characters that reveal glimmers of profound depth. Medina capably gets to the heart of middle school experiences in this engrossing story of a kid growing into herself. A must read.
—Booklist (starred review)