Today I present the third book in my quest to provide support to past titles. I call it The Nurturing of Middle Grade Books. The last time I saw this book featured was last February on Suzanne Warr’s blog.

Cadence has a beautiful voice that will for sure wow audiences and send her onto a professional career. One slight problem: Her shyness hides this gift and she’s terror stricken whenever attention comes her way. Life with a father and older half brother has its challenges, too.  With a nickname like “Mouse” and mother who disappeared many years ago, Cadence has the whole town pitying her plight. Little do they know this little girl can sing like none other.

A quiet story for sure, but with a rhythm of familiarity to all those kids wanting to come out of their shell. The gospel choir background gives it a perfect setting for Cadence to shine. Her choice as to how to do so is unexpected but not unrealistic. Give this one to a quiet kid and they too may be transformed.


THE PLOT (from Amazon)

For ten-year-old Cadence Jolly, birthdays are a constant reminder of all that has changed since her mother skipped town with dreams of becoming a singing star. Cadence inherited that musical soul, she can’t deny it, but otherwise she couldn’t be more different – she’s as shy as can be.

She did make a promise last year that she would try to break out of her shell, just a little. And she prayed that she’d get the courage to do it. As her eleventh birthday draws near, she realizes time is running out. And when a secret recording of her singing leaks and catches the attention of her whole church, she needs to decide what’s better: deceiving everyone by pretending it belongs to someone else, or finally stepping into the spotlight.


by Sherri Winston

  1. Cadence also wants to be an author. Frequent references to authors and books was an enjoyable sidelight.
  2. I liked Junior, her older athletic half brother. He’s already a shining football star, but adults are making decisions for him that he’s not so sure he wants. A very lifelike occurrence.
  3. Though a small part, Jones has a character arc many young people will appreciate.
  4. References to Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston and many talented gospel singers will supply familiarity to music loving readers.
  5. It was a nice surprise to read about a black family and not have it be about race. A different tune indeed, and one that shows so much more about getting along.


…Living with Daddy and Junior, I’d learned that almost anything could be settled between men with football. And the right snacks.


Sherri Winston not only can write but she makes a mean bowl of tomato soup. Check out her recipe here!


Coming up next week is another…
If you would like to join in the MMGM fun, all you have to do is blog about a middle grade book on a Monday (contests, author interviews and whatnot also count–but are most definitely not required) and email me the title of the book you’re featuring and a link to your blog at gpcolo (at) gmail (dot) com
 (Make sure you put MMGM or Marvelous Middle Grade Monday in the subject line so it gets sorted accurately–and please don’t forget to say what book you’re featuring) You MUST email me your link by Sunday evening (11 PM Eastern Time) in order to be included in the list of links for the coming Monday.
Thanks for spreading the middle grade love and for being a part of this awesome tradition begun by Shannon Messenger and carried on here at ALWAYS in the MIDDLE! (CLICK HERE FOR PAST MMGM POSTS)
*Please note: these posts are not a reflection of my own opinions on the books featured. Each blogger is responsible for their own MMGM content and I do not pre-screen reviews ahead of time, nor do I control what books they choose. I simply assemble the list based on the links that are emailed to me.

About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...always striving to reach the next peak in my life and career.
This entry was posted in Middle Grade Book Reviews, Reviews and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Bibi Belford says:

    I know just the kid who needs to read this book! Ordering a copy!

  2. This book sounds wonderful! I remember reading about it on Suzanne Warr’s blog, but now that I know that two people liked it, I may have to buy it! Thanks so much for the review!

  3. Jill the OWL says:

    This book sounds wonderful! Thank you for sharing it!

  4. I have seen this book and have wanted to read/review it. So glad to see you giving it a little more book love. I love the theme and how Cadence overcomes her shyness. Love her name too! Great review comments.

  5. Thank you so much for the lovely review. Like tomato soup, it is quiet and familiar. But with just enough red pepper flakes and my secret ingredient (nutmeg) that it has some zing. I truly am grateful for the acknowledgment of my little book.

  6. Andrea Mack says:

    Thanks for the recommendation! I just read this book and really enjoyed it!!

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