As soon as I read the jacket blurb, I knew I had to read All the Answers by Kate Messner.
Jacket blurb:When Ava Anderson finds an old blue pencil , it doesn’t seem like anything special. But then she writes a question in the margin of her math quiz, and something very strange happens. She hears a voice loud and clear – one that nobody else can hear – and it tells her the answer!
With the help of her friend Sophie, Ava sees that having a magic pencil in middles school can be very handy. But as Ava’s reliance on the pencil grows, the truths it reveals about herself and her family lead Ava on an adventure she never expected to take.
In a story as heartfelt as it is magical, Kate Messner gives readers a glimpse at the biggest fantasy: a magic pencil that helps you through the ups and downs of middle school.
I really liked All the Answers because it wasn’t quite the book I thought it was going to be. I expected Ava to use the pencil for schoolwork, which she does. But she quickly discovers it knows about things beyond school and asks it questions about family members. Ava is a worrier and the pencil is a comfort to her, until it gives her an answer that causes her to worry more, But it also helps her mature and learn to deal with things beyond her control.
Although Ava is in middle school, the book leans towards a younger demographic. Fourth & fifth graders will love this glimpse into the world of middle school and sixth graders may find some comfort in knowing that they are not alone in worrying. Heck, even this ld teacher, who is returning to middle school in September, found some comfort and wishes she could have a magic pencil to help her navigate a new world.