The Exceptional ­Maggie Chowder

Albert Whitman. Oct. 2020. 256p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780807536780.
Gr 4 Up–This is the story of Maggie Chowder, who longs to be just like her favorite superhero, the Exceptional Eagirl. When her best friend leaves for a month in the summer, Maggie assumes nothing new will happen to either of them and cannot wait for her friend to return. Little does she know that both of their worlds are about to shift. This novel is all about change. Readers will empathize with the upheaval of Maggie’s life when her father loses his job and they have to move from their large home to an apartment. While this novel speaks to change, it also spotlights the power of platonic and familial relationships . Maggie must find a way to support her dad in his new job, her brother in his new learning environment, and her best friend in her new life as a professional football coach’s daughter. She must also learn how to bring joy to her life amidst everything going on around her. The addition of the Eagirl comics at the start of each chapter is sure to attract readers of graphic novels, as well as introduce them to new readers.
VERDICT A heartwarming, funny story about family and friends; a worthy addition to middle-grade collections.

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