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  • Little, Brown Young Readers US
  • Little, Brown Young Readers US

Ivy Aberdeen's Letter to the World

Ashley Herring Blake

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General fiction (Children's / Teenage)

For fans of The Thing About Jellyfish, this is a stunning, tender novel about emerging identity as one girl begins to develop feelings for another in the wake of a destructive tornado--now available in paperback!

When a tornado rips through town, twelve-year-old Ivy Aberdeen's house is destroyed and her family of five is displaced. Ivy feels invisible and ignored in the aftermath of the storm--and what's worse, her notebook filled with secret drawings of girls holding hands with girls has gone missing.

Mysteriously, Ivy's drawings begin to reappear in her locker with notes from someone telling her to speak openly about her identity. Ivy thinks--and hopes--that this someone might be her classmate, another girl for whom Ivy has begun to develop feelings.

Spoiler: In the end, the drawings and messages are being sent by Ivy's best friend, Taryn, and unfortunately the girl Ivy has feelings for doesn't return them--but the novel ends on a tone of hope for Ivy and her identity.

Titles featuring prominent LGBTQ characters have been gradually finding their way to the young adult shelves--but even rarer are middle grade books featuring LGBTQ protagonists. The fact that middle grade books such as George, Gracefully Grayson, and Better Nate Than Ever have main characters who are LGBTQ has gained each title widespread attention; and Ivy Aberdeen's Letter to the World helps to fill an even rarer category still: lesbian characters in middle grade. Ivy Aberdeen has the potential to be positioned as one of the few LGBTQ middle grade books pushing for more diversity on the shelves.

This sweet, tender novel has a strong voice in the vein of The Thing About Jellyfish, strong potential for the School & Library market, and is an award contender.

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