Elena is Novel Novice’s new Middle Grade reviewer. Elena is 11 years old (Just like Melody! 🙂 ) and she is in 5th grade. She LOVES to read and adores her pet guinea pig and gerbil. She also draws and paints a lot.
Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper is an amazing book about a very smart 11-year-old girl named Melody, but she can’t show anyone how smart she is because she has Cerebral Palsy. Because of her disability, she can’t walk or talk.
This book could win the Newberry Award for a lot of reasons, but here are three of mine …
First, the details were very specific and clear. For example, when Melody was doing her test at school, I was nervous for her. When little sister Penny got hurt, I wanted to help her feel better, and when Melody’s team left her behind, it made me angry. As I was reading all of this I could see a movie in my head.
My second reason is that it made me stop and think a lot, which is something I rarely do! It made me realize how lucky I am and made me feel glad my family is happy and healthy.
Finally, I think Out of My Mind should win because the author made it realistic.
The characters are made up, but Cerebral Palsy is real, Medi-Talkers are real, and bullies like Molly and Claire are real.
There is enough happiness in the book so that you don’t feel super sad, but enough sadness so that you appreciate what you have.