The Underneath by Kathi Appelt
Right off the bat I want to say that if you have not read this book, READ IT - not only for the fabulous storyline but also to study Kathi Appelt's mastery of craft.
I chose The Underneath for my first MG review because it is sadly under-appreciated. This book should be hailed as a don't miss, must read, future classic. I kid you not.
I don't know anyone who has read The Kite Runner or A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini and not marveled at the beauty of the language and the cadence of the sentences. The Underneath is the MG equivalent of The Kite Runner. Seriously. Within the first chapter, I was captivated by the originality and beauty of the writing. I fell under the spell of the sentences and the words and the rhythm of this book. I did not want it to end.
In addition to the magic of the individual sentences and language choices, Kathi weaves together three seemingly unrelated storylines. She gets and holds our attention while shifting between characters and their stories, and then expertly brings them together for a stunning conclusion.
I can't explain the overall beauty of this book. When I think of it or share it with someone, I'm never sure whether I love it more for the story or for the beautiful way the story is written. It is a masterful example of craft.
*** Giveaway ***Because I believe so passionately that everyone should read this book, especially other writers, I am going to give away one paperback copy and it's open internationally. And I'm going to make it easy for you ('cause I'm cool like that).
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What is one book you're willing to beg people to read?