By J. H. Diehl
Chronicle Books, 2018. Juvenile fiction. 352p.
Twelve-year-old Alice is determined to get her name on her swim team’s record board. Swimming is what keeps Alice grounded during this difficult summer as her father moves out of the house, her mother deals with depression and disability, and her little brothers go to live with her aunt.
As Alice adjusts to the new complexities of her family life, she begins to babysit Piper, the little girl next door who doesn’t speak. When Alice hears Piper say a word one night, no one believes her, especially Piper’s parents. With the help of Piper’s half-brother and Harriet – a precociously intelligent but slightly eccentric new girl from swim team – Alice sets out to prove that Piper can speak and that miracles can happen.
A well-written middle grade novel that deals with the difficulties of family tragedy, the joys of true friends, and the power in understanding what we can and cannot change.