Cover Image: The Song of Us

The Song of Us

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Member Reviews

I really connected with both of the characters in this book and enjoyed getting to learn about them. I always enjoy a novel told in verse because I find that you can connect in various ways. I also like that you see that these characters have multiple things happening for them that they are navigating and how messy middle school can be.
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This book is truly so special. The writing is gorgeous and it manages to be written in such a way that it feels like it will connect with young readers without talking down to them or making itself feel too young if that makes sense. I want all of the young people in my life to read queer stories like this one.
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This book is a retelling of the famous Greek myth, Orpheus and Eurydice. I was wondering how it can be a more updated retelling. However, I thought the author did an excellent job! The story was very well written! I recommend this for fans of Greek myths!
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A gorgeously written novel in verse about powerful middle grade feelings. This story blends the emotional depth of middle school and beautiful writing. Thank you so much to the publisher and author for a masterpiece of a novel!!
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My first reaction to this story is that both Olivia and Eden need a big hug. I felt so sad for them both, dealing with so much outside of school, all while trying to fit in and cope with their feelings for one another as well. It’s a beautiful story but a sad one.

It’s a prime example of how just a few words can push someone away, and how our own shame can become a barrier. Both did something wrong, both wanted to do better… neither knew how to go about it. At first.

As someone who used to write a lot of poetry, I always enjoy novel-in-verse as it’s something I really aspired to when I was writing. I respected both the author for her creation, and also the Poetry Club for their abilities to write so many individual poems for people under the circumstances they were dealing with, especially the time restraints. It made me think back to the nights where I would write for hours and hours, and had me itching to pick up a pen.
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- thank you to netgalley and the publisher for an arc to review!

- this book stole my heart. a middle grade in-verse debut with characters who were passionate and kind, and a story about love and what those will do for it, platonic or not. a queer book for people of all ages, with a message full of love and acceptance.
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*Thank you to NetGalley, HarperCollins Children's Books, Katherine Tegen Books, and TBRAndBeyond Tour for providing me with this arc in exchange for an honest review.*

This was a really cute story with cute characters. Olivia and Eden were a little juvenile for my taste but other than that I loved the story. Since it was a middle age story, it was really good. I loved it overall.
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I liked The Song of Us enough. I thought it was beautiful and I enjoyed our two main characters, Olivia and Eden. I am not the target audience for middle grade though, no matter how beautiful the poetry is. Speaking of poetry, I learned through this book that I am not a fan of novels in verse! I don’t really understand the Orpheus and Eurydice reference in the synopsis. It seemed like a fairly standard forbidden lovers story to me. I think this would be incredible for the right reader.
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This was unlike any middle grade novel I’ve read before. It is beautifully told in verse, and follows Eden and Olivia, two seventh grader who fall in love in poetry club. They break up, and Olivia spends the rest of the book trying to win Eden back. It is the angtiest middle grade novel I have ever read. Both girls are struggling with their personal lives and Eden has an emotionally abusive father. This is well balanced with the hijinks they get up to as middle school students. It all felt so realistic and I really connected with their stories, even as an adult. Overall, this is well done, but very heavy. It may not be for all middle grade readers but I think LGBT+ will really connect with this.
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This was a really beautiful, lyrical middle grade book that doesn’t shy away from some tough stuff (unsupportive parents, depression, alcoholism) while still being a beautiful love story between two 13-year old girls.
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Very cute middle grade, perfect for families to read together. I really enjoyed the mental health rep I thought it was written very appropriately for this age group and opens the floor for a deeper conversation.
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Middle grade novel in verse that goes back and forth between two main characters thoughts and actions. Queer first love and complicated family dynamics.
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I loved the concept, but because the author chose to make the characters middle schoolers it fell extremely flat. Seventh graders don't think nor talk like this. the book would've been 100 times better if the characters were teens.
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Thank you NetGalley for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review!

This was a quick middle grade novel-in-verse with the perfect amount of cute and serious. I was surprised by the content of the book (in a good way!), as it was a lot less sanitized than I'm used to in middle grade. I've definitely read LGBT+ books for younger audiences before, but this has to be one of the first middle grade books I've read that actively mentions younger kids drinking underage, vaping, slut shaming, etc. Hey, we probably shouldn't promote that to middle schoolers as I'm sure at least one angry parent will suggest this book is doing, but I think The Song of Us does a good job of reflecting the reality that some middle schoolers have without screaming "hey kids, wanna hop in this suspicious white van and smoke some weed????" I knew I was going to like this book, but I was pleasantly surprised with the direction it took and its narration style!
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The Song of Us is a beautiful novel written in verse that follows two young girls as they struggle to find their place in their school and in their lives, and to figure out who they are. Because it was written in verse, this one may not be for everyone, but for those who enjoy this kind of story, you'll definitely like The Song of Us. 

I read this one really quickly, and I finished it with a bittersweet smile. The entire story was messy, it was raw, it was imperfect, and it was real. The two MCs feel immediately connected, and while at first I felt like their attraction to each other was rushed, I remembered that it was accurate for their age. At that point in life, everything happens so fast, and every emotion feels so big. This is all perfectly exhibited in the story through Olivia and Eden's actions and feelings. 

Another interesting part of The Song of Us is the fact that it's a retelling of Orpheus and Eurydice. There are a few references to the original myth that fans of Greek mythology will have a fun time pointing out. But even though it's a retelling, anyone could go into this story without any of that context and have it completely stand on its own. However, knowing the origins of this story makes every choice made even deeper and profound. 

For anyone who's hesitant to pick up a middle grade, I encourage you to pick up this book! It's a great story for all ages and will teach everyone something different. It's a reminder of how difficult growing up and finding our place is, but that the world is also not without hope. It's a book about identity and love, and most of all, it's a book about words and their power.

I enjoyed this one a lot, and I hope you all will too!
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I had been anxiously awaiting the release of this book since meeting the author and it without a doubt lived up to my expectations. Olivia and Eden are the characters so many young girls will be able to see themselves in for often the first time. This story gave me a really good cry and I cannot wait to help get it into the hands of Young Readers.
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This story just healed a huge portion of my queer heart. It’s so accurate for how deep our emotions and love can run in middle school, how dismissed that love can be, and how messy it is to navigate that first love.

Olivia is a poet and falls for the new girl, Eden. Both have home lives that are hard to deal with and find solace in the written word. Eden is an aspiring musician and the poetry club brings them together. But their words quickly hurt each other, leading to a super sweet grand gesture. Along the way we find each character discovering theirselves while navigating school, friendships, and their home lives.

I loved the alternating POV through prose and felt like this book truly hits you in the heart and leaves a lasting impact. Will absolutely be buying this for my home library!
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Rating: 5 stars or 9.23/10


The characters in this book really pull on your heartstrings. Olivia and Eden were so sweet, and each had a distinct personality, making the story work. I felt like Eden and Olivia had a way of interacting; as characters, they balanced each other out really well. Lexi and the poetry club members, plus Eden’s friends, added to the story with their interactions.


This was a very mature story for Middle-Grade. For me, it rode the line between Middle-Grade and YA. I’m new to novels in verse, but they’re such an exciting way to tell a story. Eden and Olivia have a story that was so sweet, and I loved the way they interacted with each other. The reason I said this story rides the line is because of some of the mature themes, like growing up and finding yourself over the course of the book. This was also a mature middle grade because romance played a large role in the plot. I loved the other elements of the story, like the girl’s individual journeys, and how they could come together at the end of the story.


Kate Fussner does a great job of telling the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice as if they were young pre-teen girls. The writing style used in The Song of Us was a novel in verse, which worked well for this story considering the original myth would be told in a style similar. The poetry flowed well and worked well to tell the story. Kate Fussner wrote The Song of Us in a way that captivated me and kept me hooked from start to finish..

Enjoyment- 10

I loved this book! The story was both fun and heartwarming, talking about tough topics in a way that young readers understand. Eden and Olivia were great characters, and their story was so sweet.
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Title: The Song of Us
Author: Kate Fussner
Release Date: May 30, 2023

Olivia is a poet and Eden is a musician. The attraction between the two is mutual and instantaneous. The problem is that Eden isn’t out, so their relationship has to stay between the two of them. That means distance at school, separate friend groups, and texts instead of phone calls. Both girls make mistakes resulting in what seems to be an irreversible divide between them. 

This middle grade novel-in-verse is a moving story about first love, friendship, family, and more. Olivia and Eden each face distinct challenges in their relationship with each other, but they both also face their own challenges with friends and family. This book is packed with so many emotional moments that it’s one I will be thinking about for a long while.

I would recommend this book to ages 11-14, particularly to those readers that prefer contemporary fiction and/or novels-in-verse.
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A lot of people don't believe in love at first sight but for 7th Graders Eden & Olivia who fall for each other so hard and so fast they know that they are meant to be together.

Through beautiful verse Kate tells a captivating story of pure utter love and then the other side after something happens.

Throughout the story Kate tackles certain issues such as peer pressure, mental illness, abandonment by a parent,  homophobia so well.  This made me care for Olivia and Eden and I was routing for them.

For all the above reasons I am giving The Song of Us 4 stars.
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