For fans of Rebecca Stead and Jennifer L. Holm, this is the perfect middle grade summer beach read.
Twelve-year-old Shayne Whittaker has always spent summers on the Maine coast, visiting her grandmother Bea and playing with her BFF Poppy. Both Shayne and Bea are collectors, in their own ways: Shayne revels in golden memories of searching for sea glass and weaving friendship bracelets with Poppy, while Bea scours flea markets for valuable finds, much of which she adds to a growing pile in her house that Shayne jokingly calls Junk Mountain.
This summer, though, everything has changed. Poppy would rather talk about boys than bracelets, and Bea's collecting mania has morphed into hoarding. Only Linc, the weird Civil War-obsessed kid next door, pays attention to her. Turns out Linc's collected a secret of his own, one that could enrage the meanest lobsterman on the planet, his grandpa. What begins as the worst summer of Shayne's life becomes the most meaningful, as she wages an all-out battle to save her friendships, rescue her grandmother, and protect the memories she loves the most.
About the Author
Lauren Abbey Greenberg is a graduate of the Institute of Children's Literature and has been published in Highlights for Children and Knowonder! magazine. She was a freelance writer/producer for many years and worked on a ton of cool projects such as TV spots for Discovery Kids, educational videos for National Geographic, and a film for Mount Rushmore National Memorial. She lives in Maryland with her husband, children, and fluffy dog, and has spent summers in Maine for the past twenty years. The Battle of Junk Mountain is her debut novel.
"This absorbing middle-grade read gently but unflinchingly considers the common ground of growing up and growing old."—-Kirkus Reviews
Told in the voice of a spunky, hopeful 12-year-old, this story explores not only the importance of family but the reality that some people grow apart. Realistic descriptions detail what it's like to live with a hoarder and the reluctance to let go of sentimental treasures. This beautiful story reminds readers that there's much more to life than material objects.—-Booklist
"Themes on intergenerational relationships, grief, and evolving friendships elevate this above the standard summer vacation story. A solid purchase, especially where realistic coming-of-age middle grade is needed."—-School Library Journal
This coming of age story is a great book for middle grade[rs] . . . who enjoy realistic fiction."—School Library Connection
"Loved it! Shayne's sharp wit combined with her can-do compassion grabs us from the get-go. Her summer of trials and unexpected friendships shines a brilliant light on the power of holding on . . . and letting go. I didn't want this sweet, heartrending story to end!"—-Jennifer Richard Jacobson, author of Small as an Elephant
"The Battle Of Junk Mountain is a warm, fresh tale that will have readers smelling the salty air of the New England coast as they explore the heavy burden-and joy-of toting around the past. Anyone lucky enough to have a summer friend will instantly relate to Shayne as she navigates honoring old traditions and fostering new paths."—-Beth Vrabel, author of Caleb and Kit and the Pack of Dorks series