Cody and the Rules of Life by Tricia Springstubb, illustrated by Eliza Wheeler


        Cody and the Rules of Life (Cody, #3) by Tricia Springstubb, illustrated by Eliza Wheeler. Candlewick, 2017. 9780763679200

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

Genre:  Realistic fiction

What did you like about the book? Cody’s family has rules, her teacher has rules, and there a rules everyone knows about, like being “trusty,” and not stealing other people’s stuff. But sometimes these rules are broken, and Cody has to figure out which ones can reasonably be fixed. I love the variety of characters, so affectionately drawn, from kids to adults, each with their own peccadilloes. Cody’s relationship with her moody teen-aged brother is precious, and her truck driver dad is in and out of the scene but a constant source of love. There is a classmate who bullies, but who we learn is not beyond redemption. Cody’s inner and public lives are funny and realistic, and the action has an organic day-to-day feel. Black and white ink and watercolor illustrations are numerous and endearing. A winning middle grade offering.

To whom would you recommend this book?  This short middle-grade novel will appeal to kids age 8-12 who liked Coven’s Heidi Heckelbeck and Barrows’ Ivy and Bean, and are ready to move on to slightly longer books.

Who should buy this book? Elementary school and public libraries

Where would you shelve it ? Fiction

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA

Date of review: May 4, 2017

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