The Wonder of Us

Kim Culbertson. Point, $17.99 (338p) ISBN 978-0-545-73151-5
Best friends Abby and Riya shared everything until Riya’s family moved to Berlin and Abby stayed behind in California. Abby has been miserable ever since Riya left—she’s lonely, and her parents have gone through a terrible divorce. In an effort to repair their friendship and console Abby, Riya surprises her with an all-expenses-paid European trip, a gift from Riya’s grandmother, Bharti Nani. Through Abby and Riya’s alternating points of view, Culbertson (The Possibility of Now) takes readers on a whirlwind tour of Florence, Zurich, Berlin, Edinburgh, and London, with ample space in the girls’ narration dedicated to chronicling the famous sites they visit. Despite the girls’ adventures, their friendship has frequent ups and downs as they struggle with the many ways in which they have grown apart—namely how Riya’s life has changed so dramatically while Abby’s has stayed the same. Friendship troubles aside, Culbertson’s story is a giddy travelogue with occasional romantic interludes for both girls. It’s an airy and largely predictable story, but also one that should please any reader nursing dreams of European getaways. Ages 12–up. Agent: Melissa Sarver White, Folio Literary Management. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 02/13/2017
Release date: 04/25/2017
Genre: Children's
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