Eb & Flow

Listening Library. Mar. 2023. 305p. $34. ISBN 9780593666753.
Gr 3-7–Abbott-Pratt and Goodson dexterously channel seventh graders Eb and Flow, respectively, whose brawl over sullied sneakers results in a 10-day suspension. Abbott-Pratt is energetic Eb, rebellious enough to get her eighth suspension yet wistfully vulnerable trying to understand why her mother chose to make a home with someone else’s kids over her own. Her steadfast grandmother—who seems to be raising all her grands—is Eb’s only consistent adult. Goodson is thoughtful Flow, shocked his “I don’t hit girls”-insistence didn’t stop the cameras from showing something very different, especially remembering what his usually absent father did to his always-there mother. Meanwhile, missing school means enduring Uncle Reggie’s tough love. Eb and Flow take turns having their say; by suspension’s end, Abbott-Pratt and Goodson’s narration overlaps, embodying the tweens’ growing understanding of one another—and themselves.
VERDICT A dynamic duo aurally transforms Baptist’s dueling enemies into free-versing, could-be-might-be friends.

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