As you may know, Kate Messner's The Brilliant Fall of Gianna Z won the EB White Read Aloud Award this past week at BEA. So of course, I must profile Gianna Z this week as one of my girl athletes! Gianna Z is a middle grade novel - great for grades 5-8 and beyond.
I had the pleasure of meeting Kate at the New England SCBWI last week, and she is a lovely and talented person. I'm thrilled her wonderful book has been honored. Ok, I'll stop gushing. :)
Summary from Kate Messner's website.
Gianna Zales is a star runner with one more hurdle to jump before she goes to cross-country sectionals – a monster leaf collection project. To get it done, she’ll have to survive a rival who desperately wants to take her place at sectionals, a grandmother who leaves her false teeth in the refrigerator, and a best friend whose feelings about her are changing like the leaves. Gianna Z needs a stroke of brilliance to make it work!
The book isn't necessarily about Gianna being a track star, it's about her relationships with her friends and family and coming to terms with her grandmother's health, but she is a track star. It's part of her -- and that's what I like about this book. It's not an unusual thing for Gianna to run - it's just what she does.
I'm anxiously awaiting Kate's next book - Sugar and Ice. Visit Kate's website for more information.