Extraordinary by Miriam Spitzer Franklin


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Today, I am excited to share my thoughts on Extraordinary, a middle-grade contemporary novel about a girl on a path to becoming Extraordinary, and learning how to  move on from her best friends tragedy.

Here’s a little bit about the book —

I received this book for free from The Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Extraordinary by Miriam Spitzer FranklinExtraordinary by Miriam Spitzer Franklin
Published by Sky Pony Press on May 5th, 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Middle Grade, Realistic Fiction
Format: eBook
Source: The Publisher
Buy on Amazon

Last spring, Pansy chickened out on going to spring break camp, even though she’d promised her best friend, Anna, she’d go. It was just like when they went to get their hair cut for Locks of Love; only one of them walked out with a new hairstyle, and it wasn’t Pansy. But Pansy never got the chance to make it up to Anna. While at camp, Anna contracted meningitis and a dangerously high fever, and she hasn’t been the same since. Now all Pansy wants is her best friend back—not the silent girl in the wheelchair who has to go to a special school and who can’t do all the things Pansy used to chicken out of doing. So when Pansy discovers that Anna is getting a surgery that might cure her, Pansy realizes this is her chance—she’ll become the friend she always should have been. She’ll become the best friend Anna’s ever had—even if it means taking risks, trying new things (like those scary roller skates), and running herself ragged in the process.

Pansy’s chasing extraordinary, hoping she reaches it in time for her friend’s triumphant return. But what lies at the end of Pansy’s journey might not be exactly what she had expected—or wanted.

My Thoughts

Why did I pick it up?

I was asked to review and feature Extraordinary for its one year book birthday! I was actually looking for a contemporary middle grade and loved the sound of Extraordinary.

What’s it about?

Extraordinary is the story about a girl looking for fulfill her promises to her best friend, and to become Extraordinary. After having a fight with her best friend before she left for camp, Anna gets sick and has some brain damage due to the illness. Pansy soon finds out that Anna isn’t the same person she used to be.

It’s a lot more to it than that – you have a girl who is dealing with losing her best friend and the sad yet wishful thinking of things returning to normal, and then her trying to move on. Even though her friend is alive, there is a loss there. It’s about being honest with yourself and your friends, and best of all, it’s about finding yourself.

Describe the book in 5 words

Sad. Uplifting. BFFs. Growth. Extraordinary!

Who was your favorite character, and why?

There aren’t many characters in Extraordinary. You have Pansy, the main character whose POV we get in the story. Anna, her best friend. Andy, who is Anna’s twin brother and friend of Pansy as well. And, other friends that Pansy meets along the way. Besides Pansy, I adored Andy. He’s a great friend to Pansy, and you can tell that he is having a hard time of it too. I honestly wish we would have gotten a few of his scenes because it would be beneficial to a young reader to know what HE is going through.

Who would LOVE Extraordinary?

Anyone looking for a book with serious themes, but is light and fun at the same time. Ms. Miriam did a great job keeping parts light because lets to real, things could have turned out pretty depressing! I think it’s an important story for a young reader.

Are there Illustrations?

No, there isn’t.

Overall thoughts

I really liked Extraordinary! There was one part towards that end that had me crying happy tears! It’s an uplifting story, one that even I as an adult took from. I highly recommend it for home and classroom!




Tell me your thoughts

  • Have you read Extraordinary? If so , what did you think? If not, does it sound like something you’d enjoy?

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One thought on “Extraordinary by Miriam Spitzer Franklin

  1. Kathleen

    I enjoyed your post. I was lucky to win an ARC of EXTRAORDINARY before it published last year. EXTRAORDINARY’s main character, Pansy made me laugh and I too cried happy tears. A heartfelt, endearing story about a truly extraordinary friendship found in the midst of ordinary people doing ordinary things with love.

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