Simon Sort of Says: Newbery Honor Award Winner (Hardcover)
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NEWBERY HONOR AWARD • LONGLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD • SCHNEIDER FAMILY BOOK AWARD HONOR
“Funny, poignant and—most important—hopeful.” —New York Times
Simon O’Keeffe’s biggest claim to fame should be the time his dad accidentally gave a squirrel a holy sacrament. Or maybe the alpaca disaster that went viral on YouTube. But the story the whole world wants to tell about Simon is the one he’d do anything to forget: the one starring Simon as a famous survivor of gun violence at school.
Two years after the infamous event, twelve-year-old Simon and his family move to the National Quiet Zone—the only place in America where the internet is banned. Instead of talking about Simon, the astronomers who flock to the area are busy listening for signs of life in space. And when Simon makes a friend who’s determined to give the scientists what they’re looking for, he’ll finally have the chance to spin a new story for the world to tell.
Simon Sort of Says, the Newbery Honor-winning novel by Erin Bow, is a breathtaking testament to the lasting echoes of trauma, the redemptive power of humor, and the courage it takes to move forward without forgetting the past.
About the Author
Erin Bow grew up wanting to be an astronomer, trained as a particle physicist . . . and then took a left turn into writing poetry and children's fiction. Her books—which include Stand on the Sky, Plain Kate, Sorrow’s Knot, and the science fiction duology The Scorpion Rules and The Swan Riders—have won a fistful of awards, including a Newbery Honor. Born in Iowa and raised in Nebraska, Erin now writes in a shed in her messy but beloved garden in Ontario, Canada. Visit her online at ErinBow.com and @ErinBowBooks.
A Newbery Honor Winner
Longlisted for the National Book Award
A Schneider Family Book Award Honor Winner
A Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection
An Audie Award Finalist
A January/February 2023 IndieNext List Selection
A National Education Association’s Read Across America Recommendation
A 2024 Texas Lone Star Reading List Selection
A 2024–2025 California Young Reader Medal Award Nominee
A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2023
A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2023
A School Library Journal Best Book of 2023
A Shelf Awareness Best Book of 2023
A Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books Blue Ribbon Book
A Chicago Public Library Kids Best of the Best Book
A 2023–2024 Project LIT Book Club Pick
A 2023 Cybils Awards Finalist
An Amazon Editors’ Pick January 2023
“A perfectly paced, layered novel that never speaks down to its readers and handles difficult situations with remarkable sensitivity. Bow hits all the right chords and delivers a story that is funny, poignant and—most important—hopeful.” —New York Times
"With an abundance of humor, vibrant characters, and a gentle approach to hard truths, Simon Sort of Says strikes a perfect balance of fun and meaning. A remarkable achievement." —Ali Benjamin, New York Times best-selling and National Book Award–nominated author of The Thing About Jellyfish
"Blunt as trauma, delicate as healing, and hilarious and tragic as middle school can be—each piece of Simon Sort of Says snaps together like the most satisfying jigsaw puzzle. This book is as close to everything as one book can be." —Kyle Lukoff, Newbery Honor–winning author of Too Bright to See
"Fast-paced and full of quirky characters, Simon Sort of Says presents a tragedy stitched up with humor, sensitivity, and rare humanity." —Jack Gantos, Newbery Award–winning author of Dead End in Norvelt
“A tribute to the power of friendship and the courage it takes to pursue joy in a world of violence.” —National Book Foundation, National Book Award for Young People’s Literature Longlist
*"An uproarious small-town comedy with a devastating tragedy at its core." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
*"Despite the weighty premise, Bow’s storytelling brims with vitality." —The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, starred review
*"Laugh-out-loud . . . a compassionate and refreshingly hopeful novel." —Publishers Weekly, starred review