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Most 8th grade boys spend their time thinking about girls, homework, friends and music.  Steven used to do that too, until his little brother was diagnosed with leukemia.  Now, his annoying little brother could die, and Steven doesn’t know what to do.

Sonnenblick clearly remembers what it was like to be in middle school.  Steven’s worries are real (Will he make a fool of himself in front of the prettiest girl?  Will he embarrass himself playing his drum solo?  Will his family make him look dumb?  How can he think about homework when his life is falling apart?) and middle schoolers will easily be able to relate.  The adults in Steven’s life are real too.  They’re far from perfect, but in general, they do their best for Steven.  I’m eager to read the sequel, After Ever After, available this spring.