From acclaimed author Tricia Springstubb comes a poignant and topical middle grade novel about the effects of an accidental shooting on family, friendship, and community. Perfect for fans of Jennifer L. Holm and Rita Williams-Garcia.
Twelve-year-old Nella Sabatini's life is changing too soon, too fast. Her best friend, Clem, doesn't seem concerned; she's busy figuring out the best way to spend the "leap second"—an extra second about to be added to the world's official clock. The only person who might understand how Nella feels is Angela, but the two of them have gone from being "secret sisters" to not talking at all.
Then Angela's idolized big brother makes a terrible, fatal mistake, one that tears apart their tight-knit community and plunges his family into a whirlwind of harsh publicity and judgment. In the midst of this controversy, Nella is faced with a series of startling revelations about her parents, friends, and neighborhood. As Angela's situation becomes dangerous, Nella must choose whether to stand by or stand up. Her heart tries to tell her what to do, but can you always trust your heart? The clock ticks down, and in that extra second, past and present merge—the future will be up to her.
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"Narrator Arielle DeLisle channels the emotional core of this contemporary coming-of-age story, which explores faith, prejudice, friendship, and family in Little Italy. In the course of a few weeks, the comfortable patterns of 12-year-old Nella Sabatini's life are forever disrupted after she discovers something disturbing about her beloved father, finds out her Catholic school will be closing, and learns that a family friend mistakenly killed a young black man. Using a clipped, bright delivery to start, DeLisle highlights Nella's outwardly breezy personality; later she slows down and softens her voice to signal the young teen's troubled thoughts as she tries to make sense of the world around her. Despite the sometimes too quick pace, DeLisle's expressive performance is sure to engage young listeners. C.B.L. © AudioFile 2016, Portland, Maine"
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