book reviews

Middle Grade Mini Reviews!

Bhai for Now by Maleeha Siddiqui

This parent trap inspired book was just so cute and so fun! I love books with interesting family relationships and this one gave me everything I wanted! Not only did we get a cute long lost brothers relationship, we got some complicated mother-son and father-son relationships! Of course, I also just loved the friendships and the way the two boys grew and learned to love different parts of themselves and love their culture and religion! I especially loved the mosque scenes and when the brothers just had heart to hearts! I will always recommend Maleeha’s books!

Team Chu and the Battle of Blackwood Arena by Julie C Dao

This was such a fun jumanji/legend of the hidden temple-esque book! I loved the sibling dynamic so much, especially since this was a middle grade book and we don’t tend to get insight into somewhat complicated sibling relationships ESPECIALLY in asian households too often. I thought the sibling rivalry was done so well, especially because you could see they just wanted each other’s approval.

Obviously, the family relationships were my favorite part of the book, especially when it came to having to deal with parental expectations and deeply implanted gender roles and having to navigate and unlearn that. It was really well done in this book even though the primary focus was the video game plot.

The plot itself was really fun and fast paced. I loved the laser tag setting a lot! I don’t think there was any huge plot twist, but I enjoyed the little bits of mystery and drama that kept the plot fast paced and fun. Overall, I really enjoyed this and would definitely recommend it!

12 to 22: POV You Wake Up in the Future! by Jen Calonita

I’m a huge fan of 13 going on 30 and when I heard about this book I was immediately excited! This was a really cute middle grade and it had the perfect vibes for someone who loves taylor swift and the movie!

Although it was a little weird reading about a more recent social media platform, I thought it was fun and definitely relevant! I especially loved the use of the tiktok filter to have her be transported into the future!

Of course, my favorite part was the character growth. It was so great to see this little girl grow up (literally and figuratively) and realize how much the people around you can influence what you become. The friendships and sibling relationships were wonderful to read and I think Jen always does a great job writing interesting sibling relationships, especially!

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1 thought on “Middle Grade Mini Reviews!”

  1. This is really cool!! Love it! Another really good middle school read that I’ve read is “Ahmed Aziz’s Epic Year”! It’s so good to see Muslim representation in middle school books and I really enjoyed and made me wistful for it when I was that age..!

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