From School Library Journal
Grade 4–7—After her brother is injured in a devastating car accident, 12-year-old Skye's life is turned upside down. She is sent from Albuquerque, NM, to live with her grandmother in Sierra Madre, CA, while Scott rehabilitates at home. Skye intends to remain as invisible as possible as she starts middle school in a new city, reminding herself that the move is only temporary and that she will be back with her family and friends in a few months. Chronicling her experiences and emotions in her sketchbook/journal, Skye relies on her art as an outlet for her frustration and feelings of helplessness. Her life improves as she makes friends with other art students and as her emails with her brother become more than just part of his physical therapy, reconnecting the siblings in a relationship they hadn't had since well before the accident. Problems arise at school in the form of a few football players who tease and bully the art students. Skye's idea to get back at the jocks and the boys' subsequent revenge make up the climax of the novel. The third-person narrative is accompanied by drawings, thoughts, and lists from Skye's sketchbook. Her emotions and reactions are believable and the closeness she gradually develops with her brother is gratifying. A solid selection that incorporates themes of creative expression, friendship, and self-discovery.—Amanda Raklovits, Champaign Public Library, IL
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After her older brother suffers a head injury in an automobile accident, 12-year-old artist Skye is sent by her harried parents to live “temporarily” with her sweet, kooky grandmother in California. Even though she is determined to remain unnoticed, Skye soon finds a place with the sixth-grade self-dubbed “art jerks.” She struggles to connect via e-mail with her brother, whose personality has completely changed; to be patient with a classmate who has Asperger’s syndrome; and to define right and wrong when she breaks the rules in order to teach some eighth-grade football bullies a lesson. Her salvation is her notebook, where Skye’s sketches and lists help her manage her fears and doubts. Middle-school readers will identify with Skye’s realistic worries over starting a new school, making friends, and witnessing the effect of her brother’s injury on her parents’ already strained marriage. The text, accompanied by the author’s charming, humorous illustrations, will appeal to fans of Cynthia Lord’s Rules (2006). Grades 5-7. --Jennifer Hubert