Monday, January 9, 2023

Book Review: Positively Izzy, by Terri Libenson

Guest review by: Becki Bayley


Ash and I arrive home. The apartment feels like a sauna. I can’t believe it’s March. I assume my mom is still at work since she’s not around. Dani, who came home at the same time we did, cranks up the window unit and we huddle around it like a campfire.

The front door opens. Mom.

She throws me a look. Uh-oh.

“Izzy, could you come in the kitchen, please?”

Not sure what’s going on, but I don’t like it. My mom, who’s normally pretty chill, looks like she’s trying to keep from wringing my neck.

The stories of Izzy and Brianna are told in parallel. Both girls have a connection to the school’s talent show, but their priorities about it all are very different.

Official synopsis:
Book Review: Positively Izzy, by Terri Libenson
Middle school is all about labels.

Izzy is the dreamer. There’s nothing Izzy loves more than acting in skits and making up funny stories. 

The downside? She can never quite focus enough to get her schoolwork done.

Bri is the brain. But she wants people to see there’s more to her than just a report card full of A's. At the same time, she wishes her mom would accept her the way she is and stop bugging her to “break out of her shell” and join drama club.

The girls’ lives converge in unexpected ways on the day of a school talent show, which turns out to be even more dramatic than either Bri or Izzy could have imagined.

This middle grade graphic novel is the second in a series of four books about characters who could know each other, but aren’t necessarily close. There were a few mentions of Emmie in this book, who was the main character in the first book. This read fine as a stand-alone, though.

Brianna has a reputation for her good grades and being smart. Her mom is the drama teacher, who she feels she has very little in common with, which may surprise people when they find out they’re related. 

Izzy could probably get better grades, if she cared about something at school besides drama. She sees her sisters getting better grades, and knows she’s probably smarter than her report card shows, but as everyone tells her, she just doesn’t focus on the rest of school.

Overall, this was a nice story with a good lesson. It was 3 out of 5 stars for this reader. The whole series is probably good for getting kids to read more, and the alternating style for the storylines in this book had comparatively more text than some graphic novels.

{click here to purchase}

Becki Bayley enjoys BBQ chips, appetizers for dinner, Cherry Coke, and occasionally sharing pictures on Instagram as PoshBecki.


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