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Welcome to my blog! My name is Kim and I write young adult paranormal, mysteries, and thrillers. This blog enables me to share the two things I love: Books and the craft of writing.

Ask the Girl is my debut novel. Murdered in 1925, Kate must seek the help of Lila and her sister to save her from her demon prison.

Book "Ask the Girl" by Kim Bartosch

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Middle-grade Drama Mystery: "Not the Worst Friend in the World" Book Review

Today, I'm happy to share with you a new middle-grade coming-of-age novel, "Not the Worst Friend in the World", by Anne Rellihan, published by Holiday House on February 6, 2024. Rockstar Book Tours provided this book, and unfortunately, I couldn't make my tour stop in February because of some unexpected family issues, so I'm sharing my review today. Learn more about this wonderful middle-grade drama mystery below!



My Review


"Not the Worst Friend in the World" by Anne Rellihan is a captivating middle-grade novel that skillfully weaves drama, friendship struggles, and valuable life lessons into an interesting narrative. Published by Holiday House, this debut novel offers a modern-day twist on the classic theme of friendship, reminiscent of Harriet the Spy, with emotional depth and high stakes that will resonate with readers of all ages.

The story unfolds in the halls of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic School in Missouri, introducing us to eleven-year-old Lou Bennett on the thirty-fourth day of sixth grade. Lou is desperately seeking a way to mend her fractured friendship with Francie, her once-best friend, after a regrettable falling out. Enter Cece Clark-Duncan, the new girl, who hands Lou a mysterious note claiming she was kidnapped. This unexpected turn of events propels Lou into a mission to prove she's not the worst friend in the world.

Lou's observant and relatable voice propelled the narrative, making her a protagonist readers can easily connect with. The page-turning mystery of Cece's situation adds an intriguing layer to the story, keeping readers engaged as they unravel the complex truth about Cece's family. Rellihan masterfully navigates the delicate balance between friendship, secrets, and the consequences of one's actions, creating a story that is both heartwarming and emotionally resonant.

The book also explores the challenges of middle school friendships, showcasing their ability to both break and heal young hearts. The lessons embedded in the narrative are poignant and relevant, making "Not the Worst Friend in the World" a valuable addition to any library or classroom. Teachers and media specialists, in particular, will find this novel a valuable resource for addressing themes of empathy, forgiveness, and the importance of understanding others.

In conclusion, Anne Rellihan's debut novel is a triumph, offering readers a compelling and relatable story that navigates the complexities of friendship and self-discovery. "Not the Worst Friend in the World" is a must-read for middle-grade readers, parents, educators, and anyone who appreciates a well-crafted tale that tugs at the heartstrings while delivering important life lessons.


Below find some more great reviews of this book:


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