Hello, universe / Erin Entrada Kelly.

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  • Additional Information
    • Publication Information:
      First edition.
    • Abstract:
      Summary: Lives of four misfits are intertwined when a bully's prank lands shy Virgil at the bottom of a well and Valencia, Kaori, and Gen band together in an epic quest to find and rescue him.
    • Abstract:
      Summary: Virgil feels out of place in his crazy-about-sports family. Valencia is deaf, smart, and loves everything about nature. Kaori is a self-proclaimed psychic, whose little sister, Gen, is always following her around. And Chet wishes the weird kids would just stop being so different so that he can concentrate on basketball. They aren't friends. But when Chet pulls a prank that traps Virgil and his pet guinea pig at the bottom of a well, Kaori, Gen, and Valencia begin a quest to find the missing Virgil.
    • ISBN:
      9780062414151 (hardback)
      0062414151 (hardback)
    • Accession Number:
    • Accession Number:
    • Accession Number:


Booklist Reviews 2016 December #2

*Starred Review* Four middle-schoolers' fates intertwine one summer in Kelly's (The Land of Forgotten Girls, 2016) touching tale of friendship. Scrawny, taciturn Virgil Salinas can generally be found caring for his guinea pig and avoiding neighborhood bully Chet Bullens. The only people he feels comfortable around are his lola (his Filipino grandmother) and his Japanese American friend Kaori, who fancies herself a psychic. Kaori's quirky self-confidence is a foil to Virgil's insecurities, and when he comes to her for help befriending a girl in his class, Valencia Somerset, she can't wait to consult her star chart. For her own part, Valencia struggles with nightmares after being rejected by her best friend, and the fact that she's deaf hasn't made finding new friends easy. When she spots Kaori's "business card" on a notice board, she makes an appointment to discuss her troubling dreams. That very day, Virgil goes missing, and Valencia joins Kaori's search for the boy. Chapters alternate between the four kids' perspectives, infusing the story with their unique interests, backgrounds, beliefs, and doubts. Lola's hilariously grim Filipino folk stories weave in and out of Virgil's mind, ultimately giving him the courage to stand up for himself; and rather than holding her back, Valencia's deafness heightens her perceptiveness. Readers will be instantly engrossed in this relatable neighborhood adventure and its eclectic cast of misfits. Copyright 2016 Booklist Reviews.

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2017 Fall

Virgil is bullied by classmate Chet, who calls him "retardo." Valencia feels like an outsider because she's deaf. Kaori is a self-proclaimed psychic. When Chet drops Virgil's backpack into an abandoned well, Virgil gets stuck trying to retrieve it; Kaori and Valencia investigate Virgil's whereabouts. Told in alternating perspectives of the three kid-heroes and one villain, the children's inner lives are distinctive. Copyright 2017 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2017 #2

Virgil Salinas is shy and bullied at school. Since he doesn't know his multiplication tables, his nasty classmate Chet Bullens, a.k.a. "the Bull" (your standard-issue middle-school bully), repeatedly calls him "retardo." Valencia Somerset, who goes to the resource room with Virgil, feels like an outsider because she's deaf: "on my tenth birthday, this girl Roberta gave me a book called Famous Deaf People from History. I would have never given Roberta a book called Famous Blond People or Famous People Who Talk Too Much." Kaori Tanaka is a self-proclaimed psychic who provides fortunetelling to other middle schoolers and who counsels Virgil to befriend Valencia ("That's fate! It's like you were meant to be friends!"). Around halfway through the book, Chet drops Virgil's backpack into an abandoned well, and Virgil gets stuck trying to retrieve it. Kaori and Valencia both have a feeling something is off and go to investigate. Told in alternating perspectives of the three kid-heroes and one villain, the story is strongest when dealing with Virgil, whose internal monologue while stuck in the well has him working out how to speak up for himself. While the ending may be a bit too tidy, the children's inner lives are distinctive, and each rings true. sarah hannah gomez Copyright 2017 Horn Book Magazine Reviews.

PW Reviews 2016 December #3

Kelly (The Land of Forgotten Girls) offers up a charming novel about a serendipitous friendship that forms among a trio of sixth graders after a bully's heartless act brings them together. Virgil Salinas, an immensely shy 11-year-old, lives in the shadow of his boisterous family, struggles in school, and wants little more than to hang out with his guinea pig, Gulliver, and friend, Kaori Tanaka, a self-proclaimed psychic. Virgil's classmate Valencia, who is ostracized at school because of her near deafness, longs for a friend for the summer and hopes that Kaori's psychic powers might help her vanquish her recurring nightmares. Instead, Kaori enlists Valencia's help to rescue Virgil after he fails to show up for a scheduled meeting. Kelly rotates among the viewpoints of Kaori, Virgil, Valencia, and neighborhood bully Chet, who contribute their own distinct stories, voices, and challenges. Infused with humor and hope, this book deftly conveys messages of resilience and self-acceptance through simple acts of everyday courage. Readers will be left inspired to tackle life's fears head-on. Ages 8–12. Agent: Sara Crowe, Pippin Properties. (Mar.)

Copyright 2016 Publisher Weekly.