The Magical Imperfect

Feiwel & Friends. Jun. 2021. 336p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781250767820.
Gr 3-7–The whole town eagerly watches the 1989 baseball playoffs, but Etan is unable to fully engage. Since his mother left, Etan has neither the energy nor the will to speak. He spends most of his time with his grandfather in his jewelry shop on Main Street and with the shopkeepers who are accepting of his silence. Delivering a package to a house outside of town, Etan encounters Malia, known by kids as “the Creature” because of the eczema that covers her body. She invites him in to meet her grandmother, a refugee from the Philippines who befriended Etan’s Jewish grandparents when they were escaping the horrors of the war in 1940. As this new friendship grows, Etan wants to help Malia’s eczema get better with his grandfather’s special clay, and to help her gain the confidence to sing at the local talent show. An earthquake that hits that day shakes everything up, but ultimately leads to Etan finding his voice, and Malia using hers to share her story.
VERDICT Written in first person, this lyrical novel-in-verse invites readers into Etan’s world, who will be drawn in by his very silence and how friendship relies on listening just as much as speaking.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing