May/June 2021 Kids Indie Next List
“THE SHAPE OF THUNDER is sure to leave its mark on readers of all ages. Jasmine Warga delicately explores the many versions of grief and does not shy away from the big and heart-heavy questions young readers might have. This novel is utterly important for the world we currently live in. Jasmine Warga has created something special with Cora and Quinn's friendship, and even though so much sadness is found within these pages, there is ultimately hope as well. THE SHAPE OF THUNDER should be required reading.”
— Brad Sells, Parnassus Books, Nashville, TN
An extraordinary new novel from Jasmine Warga, Newbery Honor–winning author of Other Words for Home, about loss and healing—and how friendship can be magical.
Cora hasn’t spoken to her best friend, Quinn, in a year.
Despite living next door to each other, they exist in separate worlds of grief. Cora is still grappling with the death of her beloved sister in a school shooting, and Quinn is carrying the guilt of what her brother did.
On the day of Cora’s twelfth birthday, Quinn leaves a box on her doorstep with a note. She has decided that the only way to fix things is to go back in time to the moment before her brother changed all their lives forever—and stop him.
In spite of herself, Cora wants to believe. And so the two former friends begin working together to open a wormhole in the fabric of the universe. But as they attempt to unravel the mysteries of time travel to save their siblings, they learn that the magic of their friendship may actually be the key to saving themselves.
The Shape of Thunder is a deeply moving story, told with exceptional grace, about friendship and loss—and how believing in impossible things can help us heal.
About the Author
Jasmine Warga's debut middle grade book, Other Words for Home, is a Newbery Honor Book. She is the author of the novels for teens My Heart and Other Black Holes, which has been translated into over twenty languages, and Here We Are Now. She lives and writes in Cincinnati, Ohio. You can visit Jasmine online at www.jasminewarga.com.
“With taut pacing, nuanced characters, and compassionate depictions of grief and trauma, Warga’s novel is both timely and transcendent; a must-purchase for all collections.”
— School Library Journal (starred review)
“The story builds steadily toward a moving conclusion; Warga’s lyrical language and credible rendering of both middle school life and of the tensions of two families coping differently with personal devastation make for a perceptive, sensitively told novel about the effects of gun violence.”
— Publishers Weekly
“[Cora and Quinn] are well developed, and Warga skillfully handles both their delicate, emotional friendship and larger subjects of grief and gun violence. Powerful and emotionally complex.”
— Kirkus Reviews
“This will spark meaningful discussions.”
— ALA Booklist
“Warga skillfully develops unique voices for her narrators, and the novel’s alternating-perspective structure works well. Emotions run high throughout the book without dragging down the plot, and the portrayal of middle-school life is utterly authentic.”
— Horn Book Magazine
“Warga limns a tale that downplays sensationalism while acknowledging the deep fear that many readers may carry regarding school shootings.”
— Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books