Hello, Universe

Hello, Universe

Book - 2017 | First edition.
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Winner of the Newbery Medal

"A charming, intriguingly plotted novel."--Washington Post

Newbery Medalist Erin Entrada Kelly's Hello, Universe is a funny and poignant neighborhood story about unexpected friendships.

Told from four intertwining points of view--two boys and two girls--the novel celebrates bravery, being different, and finding your inner bayani (hero). "Readers will be instantly engrossed in this relatable neighborhood adventure and its eclectic cast of misfits."--Booklist

In one day, four lives weave together in unexpected ways. Virgil Salinas is shy and kindhearted and feels out of place in his crazy-about-sports family. Valencia Somerset, who is deaf, is smart, brave, and secretly lonely, and she loves everything about nature. Kaori Tanaka is a self-proclaimed psychic, whose little sister, Gen, is always following her around. And Chet Bullens wishes the weird kids would just stop being so different so he can concentrate on basketball.

They aren't friends, at least not until Chet pulls a prank that traps Virgil and his pet guinea pig at the bottom of a well. This disaster leads Kaori, Gen, and Valencia on an epic quest to find missing Virgil. Through luck, smarts, bravery, and a little help from the universe, a rescue is performed, a bully is put in his place, and friendship blooms.

The acclaimed and award-winning author of Blackbird Fly and The Land of Forgotten Girls writes with an authentic, humorous, and irresistible tween voice that will appeal to fans of Thanhha Lai and Rita Williams-Garcia.

"Readers across the board will flock to this book that has something for nearly everyone--humor, bullying, self-acceptance, cross-generational relationships, and a smartly fateful ending."--School Library Journal

Publisher: New York, NY : Greenwillow Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, [2017]
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9780062414151
Branch Call Number: J FIC Kelly
Characteristics: 313 pages ; 22 cm


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2018 Newbery Medal Winner

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plymc_lindsAy Jul 17, 2018

"There are no coincidences"...such a simple theme, and yet such a cool read! Valencia reminded me so much of Melody from Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper. She's witty and perceptive. Definitely check this one out!

Jul 02, 2018

I read this book to my 8 year old and it only took about five hours (a few chapters at a time). We both really enjoyed it, there were some intense scenes when Virgil is stuck down in the well, and it allowed my son and I to discuss some philosophy and also practical safety matters, like what choices would you make in that situation? It was neat to have two protagonists and different tenses, and to see how their paths would finally meet. I liked all the names of the characters... Virgil being Dante's companion in his descent into hell... and the theme of the guinea pigs named after gullivers travels. I liked the changes that Virgil went through, and found a lot of humor in his relationship with his grandma.

Jun 21, 2018

Hello Universe is a amazing book! I couldn't put it down!!

Jun 13, 2018

This book is a very unique book. Most books only have one point of view, but in this book, there is four. The main characters, Virgil Salinas, Kaori Tanaka, Valencia Somerset, and Chet Bullens, all experienced coincidences. I read most of the other comments about this book, and most of it is about coincidences. But what could the author do? Life is full of coincidences, which only makes it better. I would recommend this book for 5th graders and middle schoolers, because the vocabulary seems to be just right. The only part that I do not like about this book is the strange actions. For example, one of the characters mentioned a Spirit thing, and this just made very weird. Overall, this book is one of the greatest books that I have ever read. I recommend this book to you. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the book! :)

kirstd31 Apr 02, 2018

I am not a fan of this book. The story line was very slow. It was also confusing at time with 4 different characters telling the story.

pstc Mar 27, 2018

A well told story about four middle school students who become unexpected friends. The story is told from the perspective of four friends and deftly conveys how taking the time to know someone can lead to a blossoming friendship. The author, Erin Estrada Kelly, unwinds the story in its four parts to reveal four unique characters whose strengths shine when the universe conspires to create a situation where they need each other.

Mar 23, 2018

Apparently I did not love this book as much as the Newbery Committee. The diverse characters were a plus: a small Philippino boy, a deaf girl, a wannabe fortune-teller and a bully. I did appreciate the way the plot brought these characters together in the woods and also gave each of them some resolution to their particular problem. Although the universe is credited with the random events that bring them together, I prefer to give that credit to our Creator. The plot line with a boy stuck in the well also added suspense. What I did not love was a preteen girl casting herself as a fortune-teller, drawing other kids in as her customers and inventing ceremonies. Religious rites should be given their due respect and are not to be used for profit.

mko123 Mar 07, 2018

Is life just random? Or does everything happen for a reason? That is what 11-year-old Kaori, the neighborhood psychic, believes. So when her classmate and client Virgil does not show up for his 3:00 session, she knows something is amiss. Kaori recruits new new client, 11-year-old Valencia (who wears a hearing aid but is very nature-smart) to help her look for Virgil and his pet guinea pig. The paths of four oddball middle-school kids cross in the woods. Was this meant to be?

I enjoyed the wide-eyed openness to the synchronicities in life of this book. Four young people learn to find inner strength and friendship in the delightful twists of fate.

Feb 21, 2018

I enjoyed this book but I'm a little surprised it won the Newbery. I thought there were too many coincidences for everything to come together the way it did. The whole "there are no coincidences" thing is a bit hokey, too. But I do think children would enjoy the story, so maybe it is deserving. Lola and her stories were my favorite part, by far. The ending was kind of anticlimactic, too.

JCLChrisK Jan 24, 2018

A lovely tale of friendship and connection and the obstacles that stand in their way. Excellent, appealing characters.

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Jul 02, 2018

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Feb 12, 2018

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