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Twain Nominees 5th & 6th Grade
The Unsung Hero of Birdsong, USA by
Publication Date: 2019-01-08
On Gabriel's twelfth birthday, he gets a new bike--and is so excited that he accidentally rides it right into the path of a car. Fortunately, a Black man named Meriwether pushes him out of the way just in time, and fixes his damaged bike. As a thank you, Gabriel gets him a job at his dad's auto shop. Gabriel's dad hires him with some hesitation, however, anticipating trouble with the other mechanic, who makes no secret of his racist opinions. Gabriel and Meriwether become friends, and Gabriel learns that Meriwether drove a tank in the Army's all-Black 761st Tank Battalion in WWII. Meriwether is proud of his service, but has to keep it a secret because talking about it could be dangerous. Sadly, danger finds Meriwether, anyway, when his family receives a frightening threat. The South being the way it is, there's no guarantee that the police will help--and Gabriel doesn't know what will happen if Meriwether feels forced to take the law into his own hands.
Pay Attention, Carter Jones by
Publication Date: 2019-02-05
Bestselling author Gary D. Schmidt tells a coming-of-age story with the light touch ofThe Wednesday Wars,the heart ofOkay for Now,and the unique presence of a wise and witty butler. Carter Jones is astonished early one morning when he finds a real English butler, bowler hat and all, on the doorstep--one who stays to help the Jones family, which is a little bit broken. In addition to figuring out middle school, Carter has to adjust to the unwelcome presence of this new know-it-all adult in his life and navigate the butler's notions of decorum. And ultimately, when his burden of grief and anger from the past can no longer be ignored, Carter learns that a burden becomes lighter when it is shared. Sparkling with humor, this insightful and compassionate story will resonate with readers who have confronted secrets of their own.
The Memory Keeper by
Publication Date: 2019-10-15
"A heartfelt tale of an exceptional girl." --BCCB "Poignant...heartwarming." --School Library Journal Fish in a Tree meets The Thing About Jellyfish in this heartfelt middle grade debut about long-buried secrets, the power of memory, and the bond between a girl and her grandmother. All Lulu Carter wants is to be seen. But her parents are lost in their own worlds, and Lulu has learned the hard way that having something as rare as HSAM--the ability to remember almost every single moment in her life--won't make you popular in school. At least Lulu has Gram, who knows the truth about Lulu's memory and loves her all the more for it. But Gram has started becoming absentminded, and the more lost she gets, the more she depends on Lulu...until Lulu realizes her memory holds the very key to fixing Gram's forgetfulness. Once Lulu learns that trauma can cause amnesia, all she needs to do to cure Gram is hunt down that painful moment in Gram's life. With her friends Olivia and Max, Lulu digs into Gram's mysterious past. But they soon realize some secrets should stay buried, and Lulu wonders if she ever knew Gram at all. It's up to Lulu to uncover the truth before the only person who truly sees her slips away.
New Kid by
Publication Date: 2019-02-05
Winner of the Newbery Medal, Coretta Scott King Author Award, and Kirkus Prize for Young Readers' Literature! Perfect for fans of Raina Telgemeier and Gene Luen Yang, New Kid is a timely, honest graphic novel about starting over at a new school where diversity is low and the struggle to fit in is real, from award-winning author-illustrator Jerry Craft. Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is one of the few kids of color in his entire grade. As he makes the daily trip from his Washington Heights apartment to the upscale Riverdale Academy Day School, Jordan soon finds himself torn between two worlds--and not really fitting into either one. Can Jordan learn to navigate his new school culture while keeping his neighborhood friends and staying true to himself? This middle grade graphic novel is an excellent choice for tween readers, including for summer reading. New Kid is a selection of the Schomburg Center's Black Liberation Reading List. Plus don't miss Jerry Craft's Class Act!
Publication Date: 2019-11-05
"Inspirational, commonsensical, and a whole lot of fun." --James Patterson Everyone deserves to shine in this sparkling new book from the New York Times bestselling author of Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library, Chris Grabenstein, and coauthor J.J. Grabenstein--just right for fans of Word of Mouse and The Fourteenth Goldfish. "Who do you want to be?" asks Mr. Van Deusen. "And not when you grow up. Right here, right now." Shine on! might be the catchphrase of twelve-year-old Piper's hero--astronaut, astronomer, and television host Nellie Dumont Frisse--but Piper knows the truth: some people are born to shine, and she's just not one of them. That fact has never been clearer than now, since her dad's new job has landed them both at Chumley Prep, a posh private school where everyone seems to be the best at something and where Piper definitely doesn't fit in. Bursting with humor, heart, science, possibilities, and big questions, Shine! is a story about finding your place in the universe--a story about figuring out who you are and who you want to be.
Shouting at the Rain by
Publication Date: 2020-05-05
Delsie loves tracking the weather-lately, though, it seems the squalls are in her own life. She's always lived with her kindhearted Grammy, but now she's looking at their life with new eyes and wishing she could have a "regular family." Delsie observes other changes in the air, too-the most painful being a friend who's outgrown her. Luckily, she has neighbors with strong shoulders to support her, and Ronan, a new friend who is caring and courageous but also troubled by the losses he's endured. As Ronan and Delsie traipse around Cape Cod on their adventures, they both learn what it means to be angry versus sad, broken versus whole, and abandoned versus loved. And that, together, they can weather any storm.
Song for a Whale by
Publication Date: 2019-12-31
In the spirit of modern-day classics like Fish in a Tree and Counting by 7s comes the Schneider Family Book Award-winning story of a deaf girl's connection to a whale whose song can't be heard by his species, and the journey she takes to help him. From fixing the class computer to repairing old radios, twelve-year-old Iris is a tech genius. But she's the only deaf person in her school, so people often treat her like she's not very smart. If you've ever felt like no one was listening to you, then you know how hard that can be. When she learns about Blue 55, a real whale who is unable to speak to other whales, Iris understands how he must feel. Then she has an idea: she should invent a way to "sing" to him! But he's three thousand miles away. How will she play her song for him? Full of heart and poignancy, this affecting story by sign language interpreter Lynne Kelly shows how a little determination can make big waves. "Fascinating, brave, and tender...a triumph." --Katherine Applegate, Newbery Award-winning author of The One and Only Ivan
Bernice Buttman, Model Citizen by
Publication Date: 2021-01-26
Bernice Buttman is tough, crass, and hilarious, and she just might teach you a thing or two about empathy in this novel for fans of The Great Gilly Hopkins. When you're a Buttman, the label "bully" comes with the territory, and Bernice lives up to her name. But life as a bully is lonely, and if there's one thing Bernice really wants (even more than becoming a Hollywood stuntwoman), it's a true friend. After her mom skedaddles and leaves her in a new town with her aunt (who is also a real live nun), Bernice decides to mend her ways and become a model citizen. If her plan works, she just might be able to get herself to Hollywood Hills Stunt Camp! But it's hard to be kind when no one shows you kindness, so a few cheesy pranks may still be up her sleeve. . . . Get ready to laugh out loud--and maybe even shed a tear--with this fantastic new middle-grade voice!
The Bridge Home by
Publication Date: 2019-02-05
When Viji and her sister, Rukku, whose developmental disability makes her overly trusting and vulnerable to the perils of the world, run away to live on their own, the situation could not be more grim. Life on the streets of the teeming city of Chennai is harsh for girls considered outcasts, but the sisters manage to find shelter on an abandoned bridge. There they befriend Muthi and Arul, two boys in a similar predicament, and the four children bond together and form a family of sorts. Viji starts working with the boys scavenging in trash heaps while Rukku makes bead necklaces, and they buy food with what little money they earn. They are often hungry and scared but they have each other-and Kutti, the best dog ever. When the kids are forced from their safe haven on the bridge, they take shelter in a graveyard. But it is now the rainy season and they are plagued by mosquitos, and Rukku and Muthu fall ill. As their symptoms worsen, Viji and Arul must decide whether to risk going for help-when most adults in their lives have proven themselves untrustworthy-or to continue holding on to their fragile, hard-fought freedom.
White Bird: a Wonder Story by
Publication Date: 2019-10-01
Inspired by her blockbuster phenomenon Wonder, R. J. Palacio makes her graphic novel debut with an unforgettable, Sydney Taylor Book Award-winning story of the power of kindness and unrelenting courage in a time of war. "I was captivated by White Bird. It tells the hardest truths with honesty and calm (so that young readers can hear them). R.J. Palacio brings to life the nature of heroism and the real risks we face today." --Meg Medina, Newbery award-winning author of Mercy Suarez Changes Gears In R. J. Palacio's bestselling collection of stories Auggie & Me, which expands on characters in Wonder, readers were introduced to Julian's grandmother, Grandmère. Here, Palacio makes her graphic novel debut with Grandmère's heartrending story: how she, a young Jewish girl, was hidden by a family in a Nazi-occupied French village during World War II; how the boy she and her classmates once shunned became her savior and best friend. Sara's harrowing experience movingly demonstrates the power of kindness to change hearts, build bridges, and even save lives. As Grandmère tells Julian, "It always takes courage to be kind, but in those days, such kindness could cost you everything." With poignant symbolism and gorgeous artwork that brings Sara's story out of the past and cements it firmly in this moment in history, White Bird is sure to captivate anyone who was moved by the book Wonder or the blockbuster movie adaptation and its message. Praise for Wonder: #1 New York Times bestseller USA Today bestseller Time Magazine's 100 Best Young Adult Books of All Time "In a wonder of a debut, Palacio has written a crackling page-turner filled with characters you can't help but root for." --Entertainment Weekly "Rich and memorable." --The New York Times "A beautiful, funny and sometimes sob-making story of quiet transformation." --The Wall Street Journal
Charlie Thorne and the Last Equation by
Publication Date: 2019-09-17
"Fast-paced, smart, and action-packed...a real page-burner." --Chris Grabenstein, #1 New York Times bestelling author of the Mr. Lemoncello's Library series A 2020 Texas Lone Star Reading List Pick From New York Times bestselling author Stuart Gibbs comes the first novel in a thrilling new series about the world's youngest and smartest genius who's forced to use her unbelievable code-breaking skills to outsmart Einstein. Charlie Thorne is a genius. Charlie Thorne is a thief. Charlie Thorne isn't old enough to drive. And now it's up to her to save the world... Decades ago, Albert Einstein devised an equation that could benefit all life on earth--or destroy it. Fearing what would happen if the equation fell into the wrong hands, he hid it. But now, a diabolical group known as the Furies are closing in on its location. In desperation, a team of CIA agents drags Charlie into the hunt, needing her brilliance to find it first--even though this means placing her life in grave danger. In a breakneck adventure that spans the globe, Charlie must crack a complex code created by Einstein himself, struggle to survive in a world where no one can be trusted, and fight to keep the last equation safe once and for all.
Me and Sam-Sam Handle the Apocalypse by
Publication Date: 2019-05-14
"Edgar-winning Vaught, a neuropsychologist, has both personal and professional experience to draw on in crafting a narrator who is admirably smart and resilient despite an 'itchy' brain and a compulsion to count things." --Booklist (starred review) "Deeply smart and considerate." --BCCB "An absorbing mystery." --Kirkus Reviews "A strong addition to help diversify realistic fiction collections to include neuroatypical characters and heroines." --School Library Journal In this Edgar Award-winning novel by mystery superstar Susan Vaught, Jesse is on the case when money goes missing from the library and her dad is looking like the #1 suspect. I could see the big inside of my Sam-Sam. I had been training him for 252 days with mini tennis balls and pieces of bacon, just to prove to Dad and Mom and Aunt Gus and the whole world that a tiny, fluffy dog could do big things if he wanted to. I think my little dog always knew he could be a hero. I just wonder if he knew about me. When the cops show up at Jesse's house and arrest her dad, she figures out in a hurry that he's the #1 suspect in the missing library fund money case. With the help of her (first and only) friend Springer, she rounds up suspects (leading to a nasty confrontation with three notorious school bullies) and asks a lot of questions. But she can't shake the feeling that she isn't exactly cut out for being a crime-solving hero. Jesse has a neuro-processing disorder, which means that she's "on the spectrum or whatever." As she explains it, "I get stuck on lots of stuff, like words and phrases and numbers and smells and pictures and song lines and what time stuff is supposed to happen." But when a tornado strikes her small town, Jesse is given the opportunity to show what she's really made of--and help her dad. Told with the true-as-life voice Susan Vaught is known for, this mystery will have you rooting for Jesse and her trusty Pomeranian, Sam-Sam.
Truman Nominees 6th, 7th & 8th Grade
Genesis Begins Again by
Publication Date: 2019-01-15
A Newbery Honor Book Winner of the Correta Scott King - John Steptoe for New Talent Author Award A Morris Award Finalist An NPR Favorite Book of 2019 A School Library Journal Best Middle Grade Book of 2019 A Kirkus Reviews Best Middle Grade Book of 2019 This deeply sensitive and powerful debut novel tells the story of a thirteen-year-old who must overcome internalized racism and a verbally abusive family to finally learn to love herself. There are ninety-six things Genesis hates about herself. She knows the exact number because she keeps a list. Like #95: Because her skin is so dark, people call her charcoal and eggplant--even her own family. And #61: Because her family is always being put out of their house, belongings laid out on the sidewalk for the world to see. When your dad is a gambling addict and loses the rent money every month, eviction is a regular occurrence. What's not so regular is that this time they all don't have a place to crash, so Genesis and her mom have to stay with her grandma. It's not that Genesis doesn't like her grandma, but she and Mom always fight--Grandma haranguing Mom to leave Dad, that she should have gone back to school, that if she'd married a lighter skinned man none of this would be happening, and on and on and on. But things aren't all bad. Genesis actually likes her new school; she's made a couple friends, her choir teacher says she has real talent, and she even encourages Genesis to join the talent show. But how can Genesis believe anything her teacher says when her dad tells her the exact opposite? How can she stand up in front of all those people with her dark, dark skin knowing even her own family thinks lesser of her because of it? Why, why, why won't the lemon or yogurt or fancy creams lighten her skin like they're supposed to? And when Genesis reaches #100 on the list of things she hates about herself, will she continue on, or can she find the strength to begin again?
Tiger Queen by
Publication Date: 2019-09-10
"TIGER QUEEN is a gorgeous, lush YA fiction...Highly recommend for anyone looking for a beautifully crafted stand-alone book." (YA and Kids Book Central) Two doors. Two choices. Life or death. Kateri, an arrogant warrior princess, has to fight in the arena against her suitors to win her right to rule, and she is desperate to prove to her father that she is strong enough to take over his throne and rule the kingdom. But when she finds out her final opponent, she knows she cannot win. Kateri flees to the desert to train under the enemy she hates the most and the only one who might be able to give her a shot at winning. But what Kateri discovers in the desert twists her world--and her heart--upside down. There in the sand, away from the comforts of the palace, Kateri's perception of her father is challenged and she discovers the truth about his treatment of her people. When she returns to the kingdom, the fate of the one she loves lies behind two doors in the arena--one door leads to happiness, and the other door releases the tiger. Secrets, suitors, thieves, and a fierce princess await readers in this YA fantasy re-telling. Tiger Queen: Is a fantasy re-telling of Frank Stockton's famous short story, "The Lady, or the Tiger?" Features a slow-burn romance wrapped in fast-paced adventure Is set in a fantastical world wrought by fascism, classism, and climate crisis
The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise by
Publication Date: 2019-01-08
Five years.That's how long twelve-year-old Coyote and her dad, River, have lived on the road in an old school bus, criss-crossing the nation.It's also how long ago Coyote lost her mom and two sisters.Coyote hasn't been home in all that time, but when she learns that the park in her old neighborhood is being demolished--the very same park where she, her mom, and her sisters buried a treasured memory box--she devises an elaborate plan to get her dad to drive 3,600 miles back to Washington state . . . without him realizing it.On the way, they'll pick up an eclectic group of folks. Lester has a lady love to meet. Salvador and his mom are looking to start over. Val needs a safe place to be herself. Coyote will learn that going home can sometimes be the hardest journey of all, but that with friends, she just might be able to turn her 'once upon a time' into a 'happily ever after.'
The Bone Houses by
Publication Date: 2019-09-24
Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Sky in the Deep in this bewitching historical horror novel, perfect for fans of Holly Black and V.E. Schwab. Seventeen-year-old Aderyn ("Ryn") only cares about two things: her family and her family's graveyard. And right now, both are in dire straits. Since the death of their parents, Ryn and her siblings have been scraping together a meager existence as gravediggers in the remote village of Colbren, which sits at the foot of a harsh and deadly mountain range that was once home to the fae. The problem with being a gravedigger in Colbren, though, is that the dead don't always stay dead. The risen corpses are known as "bone houses," and legend says that they're the result of a decades-old curse. When Ellis, an apprentice mapmaker with a mysterious past, arrives in town, the bone houses attack with new ferocity. What is it that draws them near? And more importantly, how can they be stopped for good? Together, Ellis and Ryn embark on a journey that will take them into the heart of the mountains, where they will have to face both the curse and the deeply-buried truths about themselves. Equal parts classic horror novel and original fairy tale, The Bone Houses will have you spellbound from the very first page. An instant IndieBound bestseller!
The Unteachables by
Publication Date: 2019-01-08
A hilarious new middle grade novel from beloved and bestselling author Gordon Korman about what happens when the worst class of kids in school is paired with the worst teacher--perfect for fans of Ms. Bixby's Last Day. A good choice for summer reading or anytime! The Unteachables are a notorious class of misfits, delinquents, and academic train wrecks. Like Aldo, with anger management issues; Parker, who can't read; Kiana, who doesn't even belong in the class--or any class; and Elaine (rhymes with pain). The Unteachables have been removed from the student body and isolated in room 117. Their teacher is Mr. Zachary Kermit, the most burned-out teacher in all of Greenwich. He was once a rising star, but his career was shattered by a cheating scandal that still haunts him. After years of phoning it in, he is finally one year away from early retirement. But the superintendent has his own plans to torpedo that idea--and it involves assigning Mr. Kermit to the Unteachables. The Unteachables never thought they'd find a teacher who had a worse attitude than they did. And Mr. Kermit never thought he would actually care about teaching again. Over the course of a school year, though, room 117 will experience mayhem, destruction--and maybe even a shot at redemption. This middle grade novel is an excellent choice for tween readers in grades 4 to 6, in the classroom or for homeschooling.
Other Words for Home by
Publication Date: 2019-05-28
New York Times bestseller and Newbery Honor Book! A gorgeously written, hopeful middle grade novel in verse about a young girl who must leave Syria to move to the United States, perfect for fans of Jason Reynolds and Aisha Saeed. Jude never thought she'd be leaving her beloved older brother and father behind, all the way across the ocean in Syria. But when things in her hometown start becoming volatile, Jude and her mother are sent to live in Cincinnati with relatives. At first, everything in America seems too fast and too loud. The American movies that Jude has always loved haven't quite prepared her for starting school in the US--and her new label of "Middle Eastern," an identity she's never known before. But this life also brings unexpected surprises--there are new friends, a whole new family, and a school musical that Jude might just try out for. Maybe America, too, is a place where Jude can be seen as she really is. This lyrical, life-affirming story is about losing and finding home and, most importantly, finding yourself.
Publication Date: 2019-09-24
"Wow! Shades of Fahrenheit 451 and Orwell's 1984. Painfully real and urgent. Read this book." --Michael Grant, New York Times bestselling author of the Gone series Bestselling author Joelle Charbonneau's eerily timely, high-stakes page-turner is destined to start important conversations at this particular moment in our history. Meri Beckley lives in a world without lies. When she looks at the peaceful Chicago streets, she feels pride in the era of unprecedented hope and prosperity over which the governor presides. But when Meri's mother is killed, Meri suddenly has questions that no one else seems to be asking. And when she tries to uncover her mother's state of mind in her last weeks, she finds herself drawn into a secret world with a history she didn't know existed. Suddenly, Meri is faced with a choice between accepting the "truth" or embracing a world the government doesn't want anyone to see--a world where words have the power to change the course of a country and where the wrong ones can get Meri killed.
The Line Tender by
Publication Date: 2019-04-16
Wherever the sharks led, Lucy Everhart's marine-biologist mother was sure to follow. In fact, she was on a boat far off the coast of Massachusetts, collecting shark data when she died suddenly. Lucy was seven. Since then Lucy and her father have kept their heads above water-thanks in large part to a few close friends and neighbors. But June of her twelfth summer brings more than the end of school and a heat wave to sleepy Rockport. On one steamy day, the tide brings a great white-and then another tragedy, cutting short a friendship everyone insists was 'meaningful' but no one can tell Lucy what it all meant. To survive the fresh wave of grief, Lucy must grab the line that connects her depressed father, a stubborn fisherman, and a curious old widower to her mother's unfinished research on the Great White's return to Cape Cod. If Lucy can find a way to help this unlikely quartet follow the sharks her mother loved, she'll finally be able to look beyond what she's lost and toward what's left to be discovered. Funny, poignant, and deeply moving, The Line Tender is a story of nature's enduring mystery and the people willing to seek meaning and connection within it.
The Crossover (Graphic Novel) by
Publication Date: 2019-09-24
Kwame Alexander'sNew York Timesbestseller and Newbery Medal-winningThe Crossover is vividly brought to life as a graphic novel with stunning illustrations by star talent Dawud Anyabwile. New York Times Bestseller · Newbery Medal Winner · Coretta Scott King Honor Award · 2015 YALSA Top Ten Best Fiction for Young Adults · 2015 YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers ·Publishers Weekly Best Book ·School Library Journal Best Book ·KirkusReviewsBest Book "A beautifully measured novel of life and line." --New York Times Book Review The Crossoveris now a graphic novel! "With a bolt of lightning on my kicks . . . The court is SIZZLING. My sweat is DRIZZLING. Stop all that quivering. 'Cuz tonight I'm delivering," raps twelve-year-old Josh Bell. Thanks to their dad, he and his twin brother, Jordan, are kings on the court. But Josh has more than basketball in his blood--he's got mad beats, too, which help him find his rhythm when it's all on the line. See the Bell family in a whole new light through Dawud Anyabwile's dynamic illustrations as the brothers' winning season unfolds, and the world as they know it begins to change.
Right As Rain by
Publication Date: 2019-02-12
A Kirkus Best Book of 2019! From the critically acclaimed author of Just Like Jackie comes a strikingly tender novel about one family's heartbreak and the compassion that carries them through, perfect for fans of Sara Pennypacker, Lisa Graff, and Ann M. Martin. This middle grade novel is an excellent choice for tween readers in grades 5 to 6, especially during homeschooling. It's a fun way to keep your child entertained and engaged while not in the classroom. It's been almost a year since Rain's brother Guthrie died, and her parents still don't know it was all Rain's fault. In fact, no one does--Rain buried her secret deep, no matter how heavy it weighs on her heart. So when her mom suggests moving the family from Vermont to New York City, Rain agrees. But life in the big city is different. She's never seen so many people in one place--or felt more like an outsider. With her parents fighting more than ever and the anniversary of Guthrie's death approaching, Rain is determined to keep her big secret close to her heart. But even she knows that when you bury things deep, they grow up twice as tall. Readers will fall in love with the pluck and warmth of Stoddard's latest heroine and the strength that even a small heart can lend.
It's the End of the World As I Know It by
Publication Date: 2019-09-24
Ever since his mother was killed in the line of duty in Iraq, Derrick has been absolutely certain that the apocalypse is coming. And he's prepared- he's got plenty of canned goods, he's fully outfitted with HAZMAT suits, and he's building himself a sturdy fallout shelter. When his neighbor Misty insists on helping with the shelter, Derrick doesn't think it's such a good idea. Misty's just had a kidney transplant, and her reaction to her brush with death is the opposite of Derrick's- where Derrick wants to hide, Misty wants to see and do everything. But as confident as Misty is, Derrick's doomsday fears just keep getting worse. And Derrick's promised apocalypse day begins with a very strange disaster, Derrick and Misty have to figure out a way to survive--especially when the end of the world as they know it looks nothing like they expected.
Free Lunch by
Publication Date: 2019-09-10
Instead of giving him lunch money, Rex's mom has signed him up for free meals. As a poor kid in a wealthy school district, better-off kids crowd impatiently behind him as he tries to explain to the cashier that he's on the free meal program. The lunch lady is hard of hearing, so Rex has to shout.Free Lunch is the story of Rex's efforts to navigate his first semester of sixth grade--who to sit with, not being able to join the football team, Halloween in a handmade costume, classmates and a teacher who take one look at him and decide he's trouble--all while wearing secondhand clothes and being hungry. His mom and her boyfriend are out of work, and life at home is punctuated by outbursts of violence. Halfway through the semester, his family is evicted and ends up in government-subsidized housing in view of the school. Rex lingers at the end of last period every day until the buses have left, so no one will see where he lives.Unsparing and realistic, Free Lunch is a story of hardship threaded with hope and moments of grace. Rex's voice is compelling and authentic, and Free Lunch is a true, timely, and essential work that illuminates the lived experience of poverty in America.