I remember we were forced to read this book as a class in 2nd grade (a little more than 9 years ago). But within the first chapter, I remember falling in love with it. At first, I was excited when I saw that it was written by Barbara Parks (one of my favorite authors of all times). But I quickly realized that this was no Junie B. Jones novel. This story is very heart-wrenching and melancholy, and it introduces the importance of helmets to children in a very straightforward and dramatic way. But despite the heavy atmosphere, the writing and narration is done very beautifully. Don't read this if you're wanting something cheerful, funny, and/or upbeat. But DO read this because it consists of beautiful prose, discusses an important topic that is often overlooked, and because overall it is a gorgeous novel.

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