News & Views


Title: Focused Author: Alyson Gerber Publisher: Scholastic Press Reviewer: Yolanda Ridge ISBN: 978-1338185973 Clea really tries to do well in middle school and meet her parent’s expectations by being organized and on time. Trouble is, she’s constantly distracted. Pretty much the only thing she’s able to focus on is chess. But her position on the chess […]

My Life as a Diamond

Title: My Life as a Diamond Author: Jenny Manzer Publisher: Orca Book Publishers Reviewer: Yolanda Ridge ISBN: 9781459818316 The start of My Life as a Diamond provides a brief glimpse into ten-year-old Caspar Cadman’s life “before” in a scene where he (still going by the name “Cassie”) decides to cut his hair. The story really […]


Title: Mascot Author: Anthony John Publisher: Harper Collins Reviewer: Yolanda Ridge ISBN: 9780062835628 I’m a little late reviewing (and reading) this 2018 title. Not sure how I missed it, especially since I’ve been focused on recently published middle grade books about baseball. Thank goodness for holiday libraries! Mascot introduces readers to Noah Savino five months […]

Merci Suárez Changes Gears

Title: Merci Suárez Changes Gears Author: Meg Medina Publisher: Penguin Random House Reviewer: Yolanda Ridge ISBN: 9780763690496 Not only is this book a Newbery Award winner, the author is represented by my dream agent. To say I had high expectations would be an understatement. It took me a few chapters to get into it but […]

Nikki on the Line

Title: Nikki on the line Author: Barbara Carroll Roberts Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Reviewer: Yolanda Ridge ISBN: 978-0316521901 If you liked Inside Hudson Pickle, you’re going to like Nikki on the Line. And for those of you who wished Hudson was more about basketball and less about genetics (I’ve heard from a few […]

Mya’s Strategy to Save the World

Title: Mya’s Strategy to Save the World Author: Tanya Lloyd Kyi Publisher: Puffin Canada Reviewer: Yolanda Ridge ISBN: 978-0735265257 I bought this book because I’m a big fan of Tanya Lloyd Kyi and because I thought it might be a Authors for Earth Day Eco-Book of the Month selection. It turns out I was right about […]

Award Season

June is award season! Unfortunately, Inside Hudson Pickle didn’t win the awards it was nominated for but I want to congratulate From Ant to Eagle by Alex Lyttle for winning the Red Cedar Book Award and The Bonaventure Adventures by Rachelle Delaney for winning the Chocolate Lily Award in the novel category. It was such an […]

To Night Owl From Dogfish

Title: To Night Owl From Dogfish Author: Holly Goldberg Sloan & Meg Wolitzer Publisher: Penguin Random House Reviewer: Yolanda Ridge ISBN: 9780525553236 I have always liked books told through correspondence. Once of my favorite books of all time is The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. (Yes, the movie is good but the book is much, […]