I liked the story fine. There were a lot of qualities that I liked in the book: science, environment awareness, coming-of-age story and friendships. The story line was unique; whereas, I haven’t read a book like this before, but for some of it, it was just plain weird. Mainly, it is the description of the animal who Obe names Marvin Gardens that doesn’t sound cute whatsoever. Whenever Obe said he was petting his slimy belly, I thought, “Yuck!” On one part, I liked how the author described the sadness of a once large piece of land being stripped into parts just to make into suburban housing developments and the environmental tidbits the school Obe went to announced each school day, but then other parts of the environmental awareness of the story sounded just a little too preachy.
Do I think it is a 2018 Newbery Contender?: No
Is it a contender as a read aloud to my 2017-2018 class?: No–I looking for outstanding books. This is just a good read.