To me, great middle grade fiction captures the feeling of being a kid and also being deeply uncomfortable, confronting change, and having the most basic ideas about how things work but not enough ego to think you know everything (YA is opposite for me). When learning something new that is uncomfortable, I'm brought right back to that time. So for me, this was an incredible book. It's easy to look back at junior high and just cringe and move on, but this had so many great happy moments too. I got through it through good moments too. I'm an adult but what Shayla goes through by the end is honestly something I'd never felt and understood.
This is just really a fantastic story and I think it's worth checking out even if you're not around junior high age.