I think you’re going to love Meena! She is a super fun girl with a passion for upcycling trash into art! Unfortunately, being diagnosed with a chronic illness is putting a damper on her life. Everything is being affected — from the ways she is feeling, to the relationships with her peers and family. I love that this book takes on the responsibility of such a topic in a way that all children can relate to. Sometimes life is tough, but having support and positive coping mechanisms is key!
Graduates of the Ramona Quimby series will adore Meena Zee as she navigates the triumphs and challenges of family, friendship, and personal secrets in this charming middle grade debut.
Meena’s life is full of color. She wears vibrant clothes, eats every shade of the rainbow, and plucks eye-catching trash from the neighborhood recycling bins.
But when Meena’s best friend, Sofía, stops playing with her at recess and she experiences an unexpected and scary incident at breakfast, nothing can fight off the gray.
That’s when Meena comes up with a plan to create the BEST and most COLORFUL Valentine’s Day Box in the class. With the help of her cousin, Eli, and her stuffed zebra, Raymond, Meena discovers that the best way to break through the blah is to let her true colors shine.
About the Author
At Meena’s age, Karla Manternach was a smudgy kid in tube socks. She once stopped an entire parade by running in front of a fire truck for candy. Karla liked every subject in school but always loved writing best of all. Today, she is a freelance writer who creates books for young readers. Karla lives with her family in small-town Wisconsin. Her favorite color is orange.
"[F]or Junie B. graduates...A likable protagonist helms this appealing school story." — Kirkus Reviews
"Meena’s story will have strong appeal to those who have personal experience with epilepsy and will educate those who know nothing about it." — School Library Connection
"Manternach draws from her knowledge of her own nine-year-old daughter's chronic condition in telling Meena's story, adding a solid foundation to a story about how to grab all the colors in life." — Booklist