Second Sleep

Quill Tree/HarperCollins/. Nov. 2021. 288p. Tr ISBN 9780062658036.
Gr 5-7–Max and Rosie’s life was typical, even boring, until one day their mother suddenly disappeared. Their dad doesn’t have much to say about it, and no one else seems to be very worried, until the day that Max finds her cell phone hidden in a drawer in their home, and the reason for her absence becomes even more mysterious. After this discovery, the strange message she left comes to light, and Max begins to fear in earnest. When Grandma Mozelle suggests that they get out of the city, away from the questions about their mother, and visit her rustic family cabin before its sale to a developer is finalized, even stranger things begin to happen. Max and Rosie discover that there is no electricity at the cabin and get into the habit of sleeping twice through the night. During this “second sleep” is where they begin to dream of a group of kids who do not exist in the here and now. This magical realism story hooks readers from the beginning. The mystery surrounding Max’s mother’s disappearance, Mozelle’s explanation of what a second sleep is, and the dream world where readers meet Lila will keep them wanting more.
VERDICT Purchase for collections where realistic fiction with a fantastic twist, such as The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer Holm, is popular.

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