Synopsis: After her parents’ divorce, Bea’s life became different in many ways. But she can always look back at the list she keeps in her green notebook to remember the things that will stay the same. The first and most important: Mom and Dad will always love Bea, and each other.

When Dad tells Bea that he and his boyfriend, Jesse, are getting married, Bea is thrilled. Bea loves Jesse, and when he and Dad get married, she’ll finally (finally!) have what she’s always wanted–a sister. Even though she’s never met Jesse’s daughter, Sonia, Bea is sure that they’ll be “just like sisters anywhere.”

As the wedding day approaches, Bea will learn that making a new family brings questions, surprises, and joy.

Release Date: 7th May 2020 (original) 1st April 2021 (Paperback version)

Format Read: Ebook

Genres: Middle Grade, Teen, Coming of Age, Mental Health, LGBT+, Contemporary, Divorce, Family, Friendship

Pages: 224

Thank you so much to Andersen Press and Netgalley for ebook to read and review.

Review: What a heart hitting story, wow was I amazed at this beautiful book. The story is told by Bea our protagonist and is basically her story of her anxiety, her life and how pieces of life change, connect, go wrong, and how your mind deals or doesn’t deal with them. I connected to her and how she was feeling so quickly, it was a beautiful story told in a delicate and beautiful way. 

Bea’s parents divorce and her world instantly changes, her “normal” isn’t so normal anymore being split between worlds. She has her list of things that won’t change, the things she can hold onto and add too when she needs it. Her life only continues to change after that and her anxiety grows and grows and only with help from Miriam her therapist can she find ways to cope. 

It’s rare to find a story that can completely express how your anxiety can make you feel, one that as you are reading makes you think wow that’s exactly how it is for me too. Everyone is different but some parts of anxiety are the same for any that struggle with it. I loved being able to find my connections with Bea and how she dealt with her mental health in a healthier way too. I also have eczema so I could connect to her that way too. 

The story is not just about Bea, but also about her family growing, the world around her changing. Her dad is getting married and she’s so excited about that and cannot wait for a new sister but having her dreams come true doesn’t always make it easy. It takes time, adjustments and hard work to learn how to become a new family. 

I really did adore this story, I connected with it, I felt the pain, the anxiety, the love, the guilt, the itchiness, the want and so much more. I loved the character growth, I loved every part of this book. It was told in such a sweet way, so gently, so wonderfully. I love that part of it had me weeping, that it had me wanting to hug characters, I loved being in this world. 

I don’t think when I started reading this book I really knew what I was in for, I can honestly say though that it was beautiful, it was heartfelt, it had meaning and life lessons and care and so so much more to offer. It’s a great book that deals with mental health, that deals with new family situations and deals with the messiness of life. It’s a beautiful coming of age, of growth story.


Where to buy: Amazon, Wordery, Book Depository, Waterstones

About Author: Rebecca Stead has written six novels for young people: WHEN YOU REACH ME (A bestseller and winner of the Newbery Medal and the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award for Fiction); THE LIST OF THINGS THAT WILL NOT CHANGE (A Time Magazine Top Ten Children’s Book of the Year), LIAR & SPY (Winner of the Guardian Prize for Children’s Fiction and a New York Times Book Review Notable Book for Children); FIRST LIGHT (a Junior Library Guild Selection and a New York Public Library Best Book for Teens); GOODBYE STRANGER (A New York Times Bestseller and New York Times Book Review Notable Book for Children); and BOB (co-written with Wendy Mass). Rebecca lives in New York City with her family.


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