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When You Reach Me

by Rebecca Stead

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,8864901,559 (4.15)262
As her mother prepares to be a contestant on the 1970s television game show, "The $20,000 Pyramid," a twelve-year-old New York City girl tries to make sense of a series of mysterious notes received from an anonymous source that seems to defy the laws of time and space.

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» See also 262 mentions

English (485)  Dutch (2)  Swedish (1)  All languages (488)
Showing 1-5 of 485 (next | show all)
This book is entirely lovely. I like the characters and how they interact. I like that this is a book about time travel but actually it's a book about friends and some kid's lives. It worked well because Stead's writing is sensitive and wonderful. ( )
  katebrarian | Jul 28, 2020 |
this is a fantastic book. It's very clever. LUV IT!! ( )
  angelgay | Jul 1, 2020 |
This story just blows my mind. The time travel component is there but subtle and intriguing how it lets us think for ourselves. Every time I've done reading a good middle-grade, I know that's why I'm more willing to read middle-grade than adult books. This is one of those books which packed subtle lessons in a heart-warming concept written beautifully. ( )
  KLHtet | Jun 17, 2020 |
Having never read A WRINKLE IN TIME, I didn't get the connection. It felt like the author was maxing out her word count then threw everything together in the couple of chapters. I appreciated the nostalgia, though. I picked it solely for the Newbury taped to the cover and was left feeling gipped. ( )
  amandanan | Jun 6, 2020 |
When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead is a short chapter book that takes readers in on a mysterious journey of a young girl Miranda. She wants to help her win money from what is known as, “The $20,000 Pyramid”. The first chapter appears a little hard to get through, but after I did not want to put the book down. The elements of the story have readers purposefully confused at moments, only at the end understanding what it all means. Letters that do not seem to make sense appear throughout the story, almost making readers feel they are a part of a puzzle. Stead uses descriptive imagery that makes it easy for readers to understand the setting and events that happen in the book. Each character is unique and well developed, which makes them feel like real people who are going through this mysterious journey. Miranda particularly likes the book A Wrinkle in Time, which is a detail that makes readers want to know more about this book. Overall When You Reach Me is a great first book for readers looking to get more familiar with the Science Fiction genre. ( )
  Bstapl1 | May 5, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 485 (next | show all)
This book has a very nice climax when given. Exciting and has much significance to it. Symbolic and wonderful.
added by GraceDaniels | editNew York Times, Grace Daniels (Feb 14, 2014)
...a story in which characters really come alive during those few months we spend with them, when their lives are shaped for ever.
In this taut novel, every word, every sentence, has meaning and substance. A hybrid of genres, it is a complex mystery, a work of historical fiction, a school story and one of friendship, with a leitmotif of time travel running through it. Most of all the novel is a thrilling puzzle. Stead piles up clues on the way to a moment of intense drama, after which it is pretty much impossible to stop reading until the last page.
Eventually and improbably, these strands converge to form a thought-provoking whole. Stead ('First Light') accomplishes this by making every detail count, including Mirandas name, her hobby of knot tying and her favorite book, Madeleine LEngles 'A Wrinkle in Time'. Its easy to imagine readers studying Mirandas story as many times as shes read LEngles, and spending hours pondering the provocative questions it raises.
added by sduff222 | editPublishers Weekly (Jun 22, 2009)
Stead's novel is as much about character as story. Miranda's voice rings true with its faltering attempts at maturity and observation. The story builds slowly, emerging naturally from a sturdy premise. As Miranda reminisces, the time sequencing is somewhat challenging, but in an intriguing way. The setting is consistently strong. The stores and even the streets–in Miranda's neighborhood act as physical entities and impact the plot in tangible ways. This unusual, thought-provoking mystery will appeal to several types of readers.
added by khuggard | editSchool Library Journal, Caitlan Augusta

» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Rebecca Steadprimary authorall editionscalculated
Blackall, SophieCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Holloway, CynthiaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious.

-- Albert Einstein

The World As I See It (1931)
To Sean, Jack, and Eli,

champions of inappropriate laughter, fierce love,

and extremely deep questions
First words
So Mom got a postcard today.
"It's the jumping, from one diamond to the next, that we call time, but like I said, time doesn't really exist. Like that girl just said, a diamond is a moment, and all the diamonds on the ring are happening at the same time. It's like having a drawer full of pictures."
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Book description
This remarkable novel holds a fantastic puzzle at its heart.
By sixth grade, Miranda and her best friend, Sal, know how to navigate their New York City neighborhood. They know where it's safe to go, and they know who to avoid. Like the crazy guy on the corner.

But things start to unravel. Sal gets punched by a kid on the street for what seems like no reason, and he shuts Miranda out of his life. The apartment key that Miranda's mom keeps hidden for emergencies is stolen. And then a mysterious note arrives, scrawled on a tiny slip of paper. The notes keep coming, and Miranda slowly realizes that whoever is leaving them knows things no one should know. Each message brings her closer to believing that only she can prevent a tragic death. Until the final note makes her think she's too late.
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Average: (4.15)
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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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