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The List of Things That Will Not Change

Written by Rebecca Stead

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The List of Things That Will Not Change Review

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Sensitive, thoughtful story of growing up

Longlisted for the UKLA Book Awards 2021

Newbery Medal winner Rebecca Stead writes books that are rich with ideas and acknowledge her readers’ intelligence and intuition.  Eight-year-old Bea is the central character in her latest novel, and, typically, there’s lots going on in her life. She divides her time between her mother’s and father’s homes following their divorce and visits a therapist who helps with her anxieties. The story culminates in her father’s wedding to his new partner, Jesse. As ever, we move back and forth in time, and discover much about Bea’s inner life as well as her daily routine in New York. Relationships with family and friends propel the story and there are some real shocks and surprises for readers, plus a gradual understanding of the things that will never change for Bea. It’s beautifully written, a thoughtful, sensitive account of growing up and growing resilience and trust. 

Fans of Rebecca Stead will also enjoy Kate DiCamillo’s books and Susin Nielsen’s.

Andrea Reece

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The List of Things That Will Not Change Synopsis

Sonia and I have a lot in common. Our parents are divorced. Our dads are gay. We both love barbecue potato chips. But she is different from me in at least one way: you can't tell how she's feeling just by looking at her. At all.

When Bea's dad and his wonderful partner, Jess, decide to marry, it looks as if Bea's biggest wish is coming true: she's finally (finally!) going to have a sister. They're both ten. They're both in fifth grade. Though they've never met, Bea knows that she and Sonia will be perfect sisters. Just like sisters anywhere, Bea thinks. But as the wedding day approaches, Bea makes discoveries that lead her to a possibly disastrous choice.

Making a new family brings questions, surprises, and joy in this brilliant modern classic by Newbery Medalist Rebecca Stead.

The List of Things That Will Not Change Press Reviews

I have been a huge fan of Rebecca's writing since When You Reach Me, so it's no surprise that her newest book is an absolute original; marvelous, lovely, a story that kids will love. - R. J. Palacio, bestselling author of Wonder

No author writing today observes young lives with more clarity, tenderness, and grace than the one and only Rebecca Stead. - Katherine Applegate, Newbery Medalist and New York Times bestselling author

This is a story of love that enlarges, even though it is not always easy. We cheer for and are cheered by Bea's quiet triumphs because they are triumphs of the heart. - Gary D. Schmidt

Stead is one of my very favourite writers, capturing that moment on the cusp between childhood and adolescence with great clarity. -- Fiona Noble - The Bookseller

Rebecca Stead's writing is always infused with the tender minutiae of being alive, with the price we have to pay to be human. This book, along with its perfect title, is 'Typical Rebecca Stead.' And that's a heartfelt compliment. - Christopher Paul Curtis

From the moon, the wedding, and the cake, to Bea's mind, Rebecca has captured everything so completely, so beautifully. Truly a wonderful work. - Patricia Reilly Giff

My love for this book is something that will never change. Bea, with all her flaws and charms, will find her way into readers' hearts, just as she did mine. Stead truly understands the inner life of kids, very much like Judy Blume-which I consider the highest compliment. - Erin Entrada Kelly

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781839130458
Publication date: 01/04/2021
Publisher: Andersen Press
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781783449378
Publication date: 07/05/2020
Publisher: Andersen Press Ltd
Format: Hardback

About Rebecca Stead

Rebecca Stead is an American author who writes books for children and young adults. She won the 2010 Newbery Medal for the most distinguished contribution to children's literature for her second novel, When You Reach Me.Stead enjoyed writing as a child, but as she grew older she felt it was 'impractical' and became a lawyer instead. After years as a public defender she returned to writing after the birth of her two children. On her website she credits her son with inspiring her to write a children's novel, but not in the way one would expect. For years she had ...

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