cover image Things You Can’t Say

Things You Can’t Say

Jenn Bishop. Aladdin, $17.99 (336p) ISBN 978-1-5344-4097-5

The children’s room in the library is 12-year-old Drew’s happy place, where he does puppet shows for younger kids without any peers around to make fun—until new kid Audrey, also 12, shows up and takes over the room. If that’s not enough to ruin his summer, his best friend, Felipe, has grown distant, and Phil, an old friend of Drew’s mother, suddenly arrives for a visit. It’s been three years since Drew’s father committed suicide, and Phil’s arrival raises a lot of questions. Drew worries that he’s headed in the same direction as his father, who seemed happy until his death, and he wonders if Phil could be his real father (he certainly knows a lot about Drew’s family). As Audrey and Drew become friendly, she helps him find information, but knowing more doesn’t make anything less confusing. In a story about the aftermath of parental suicide, former children’s librarian Bishop (14 Hollow Road) tells a touching and believable story about the ways worries feed on each other, the difference that honesty makes to kids, and how much emotional growth a child Drew’s age can experience in just a few weeks. Ages 8–12. [em]Agent: Katie Grimm, Don Congdon Assoc. (Mar.) [/em]