How to build a heart

Maria Padian

Book - 2020

Izzy Crawford's family has been selected for a new home by Habitat for Humanity, near where the very attractive Sam lives, but just when her neighbor and best friend needs her most.

Saved in:

Young Adult Area Show me where

1 / 1 copies available
Location Call Number   Status
Young Adult Area YOUNG ADULT FICTION/Padian Maria Checked In
Chapel Hill, North Carolina : Algonquin 2020.
Physical Description
343 pages ; 22 cm
Main Author
Maria Padian (author)
Review by Booklist Review

Padian takes a familiar theme a girl hiding her background from others and makes it fresh with her protagonist, Izzy Crawford. Izzy, her widowed Mami, and little brother, Jack, are just getting by in their trailer park home, and Izzy's desire to keep it to herself is mostly out of pride rather than shame. When her family gets picked to help build their own Habitat for Humanity house, the game changes, and it changes again when Izzy catches the eye of Sam Shackleton, a popular boy from the public high school. Izzy walks a tightrope as subplots concerning friends and family swirl around her. Tying it all together is Izzy's first-person narrative. She is frank and thoughtful, with an agile wit and a strong sense of responsibility. Padian deftly uses flashbacks to Izzy's earlier life to show how her character has developed and the impact her father made on her while he was alive. The characters around her are well-defined and support Izzy and the plot well. Throughout the novel, Izzy's strength, candor, and humanity shine through.--Donna Scanlon Copyright 2019 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission. Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 8 Up--Izzy Crawford is a girl of many secrets. Her wealthy Catholic school friends don't know that she's a scholarship kid from a nearby trailer park. Her mom doesn't know that she and her best friend Roz spend their afternoons stalking Roz's crush, Sam Shackleton, and when Sam's sister joins Izzy's a cappella group, Izzy keeps it a secret from Roz. But when Izzy's family is selected to receive a house from Habitat for Humanity, each element of Izzy's carefully distanced world starts to collide, and the weight of her secrets threatens to overwhelm her. As in Wrecked, Padian creates a compelling world with relatable characters and deals with serious issues without feeling heavy-handed. Izzy navigates issues of racism, classism, and cyberbullying, even within her own family. Her family frequently helps Roz to escape her abusive home life, and Izzy also helps Aubrey Shackleton overcome depression following a cyberbullying incident. This may seem like a lot of topics to tackle in one story, but they're handled organically and with care, each given the weight that it deserves. If the Shackletons feel a bit too perfect and the ending a bit too pat, readers won't mind because they're hard-earned by the struggles that Izzy and her family overcome. VERDICT An excellent classroom or book discussion starter. Hand this to readers who are ready to tackle these issues with a lighter touch.--Mimi Powell, Library Systems and Services, Kissimmee, FL

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. Review by Kirkus Book Review

High school junior Izzy discovers that some secrets can't stay hidden.Isabella "Izzy" Crawford is caught in between worlds, from her interracial and interreligious family to her friendships with wealthy classmates at school and her outspoken, socially conscious best friend, Roz. Izzy describes herself as being able to pass for white like her deceased father; her Puerto Rican mother, Rita, and younger brother, Jack, cannot. New doors open for Izzy as she befriends Aubrey, the new girl in her a cappella group and sister of Hot Sam, a wealthy basketball player Roz obsesses over. As Izzy tries to figure out where she belongs, she is trapped in a whirlwind of secrets as her worlds inevitably collide. Padian (Wrecked, 2016, etc.) masterfully portrays the internal struggles Izzy goes through in her Catholic faith. While navigating the remnants of her Methodist father's legacy and her mother's deeply rooted Catholicism, Izzy must also explore her relationship with both sides of her family. While her mother, who "always doles out her wisdomand warningsin Spanish," works on their application for a Habitat for Humanity house in an attempt to move from the mobile home park, Izzy begins to understand there is more to her deceased father's family than she first imagined.An absolutely enthralling depiction of family and self-discovery. (Fiction. 12-18) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.