Hello! Today I am bringing you a very late review and some movie and TV reccs to go along with this amazing book. I had an unexpected family death and was gone all week, hence why this going up so late. But anyway! Thank you to HOV and the publisher for sharing a copy of this book with me!
Publisher: Little Brown and Co. Books for Young Readers
Release Date: April 6, 2021
Genre: Middle Grade Fiction
Camp is in session in this cheer-tastic middle-grade novel about making new friends, finding your place, and learning to embrace your inner Magic.
Magic Olive Poindexter has big shoes to fill. Her mother was a professional cheerleader, her father is a retired NBA legend, her big sister is the new face of the oh-so-glamorous Laker Girls, and her grandmother was the first black cheerleader ever on Valentine Middle School’s HoneyBee cheer squad. Magic wants nothing more than to follow in their footsteps. But first, she has to survive Planet Pom Poms, the summer cheer camp where she’ll audition for a spot on the HoneyBee squad. But with zero athletic ability and a group of mean girls who have her number, Tragic Magic is a long way from becoming the toe-touching cheerleader heroine she dreams of being.
Things start to look up when her best friend Cappie joins her at camp–until Cappie gets bitten by the popularity bug, that is. To make matters worse, Magic’s crushing hard on football star Dallas Chase. Luckily, Magic’s not alone: with the help of a new crew of fabulous fellow misfits and her Grammy Mae’s vintage pom poms by her side, Tragic Magic might just survive–and even thrive–at cheer camp.
This is one of the best middle grade books I have enjoyed in a long time. It was so funny and sweet. I could not put it down once I started. Magic is a such a fun protaganist, and it was great to see her excel and do her best when she was trying to become a HoneyBee.
Although I am an adult, this book is very on point about how hard it is to be in middle school. Especially when you are trying new things and experiences. Magic has had the same best friend her whole life, but she does not feel connected with her during camp. She finds new friends that support her, and she wonders what her place is in the world is. Although this is just about cheer camp and growing up, it can relate to anyone who has ever felt out of place.
Seeing Magic grow and make new friends is such a great experience. I would love to give this book to anyone from grades 4-7, especially since the book has a BIPOC protagonist and she is on the cover. This is definitely one I would add to my own library and to one I hope to work at someday.
This is a well written middle grade I cannot suggest enough.
Movie and TV Reccs:
Zombies from Disney – A musical with cheer squad and two main characters who are fighting against the grain to be unique and show it is okay to not fit in.
Cheer – A Netflix series about Cheer and how intense it is
Bring It On – A classic movie about cheer
Zombies 2 – Yet another musical with cheer and fighting against the grain and normalcy. Also just super fun.
Erika J. Kendrick is an acclaimed author, national speaker, and mental fitness junkie. She earned a psychology degree from Stanford University and an MBA in marketing and international business from the University of Illinois. Erika was an NBA cheerleader for the Chicago Bulls before writing her novel, Confessions of a Rookie Cheerleader (Random House, 2007). She penned Appetite (Random House, 2009), and The Accidental Escort (Cleis Press, 2010) shortly after. The celebrated author is currently finishing her memoir and touring nationally.