Cover Image: Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet

Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet

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I’ve never read a book about eco-anxiety before, but I could definitely empathize with Haven Jacobs and her true anxiety over the state of our planet. I loved that the book gave tangible things that could be done in a community and also looks at global issues. Additionally, like all of Barbara Dee’s books, she does a great job balancing teaching (about science and climate change) and storytelling.
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BOOK REVIEW:  Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet by Barbara Dee
2022 Publication Date:  September 27

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Small actions add up to big changes... So pick your actions carefully... They are adding up...

Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet by Barbara Dee is a must-read for middle-grade readers and adults alike. With a relatable protagonist and an inspiring story, this book will leave you feeling hopeful about the future of our planet.

In her latest novel, Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet, Barbara Dee tackles the weighty issue of climate change with sensitivity and humor. Through the eyes of twelve-year-old Haven Jacobs, readers are taken on a journey of self-discovery as Haven learns to channel her anxiety about the planet into taking action in her community.

Not only is Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet an important book in best children's books for raising awareness about the environment, but it's also a fun and engaging read. Middle-grade readers and young kids will easily relate to Haven's struggles with anxiety and feelings of helplessness. And they will cheer her on as she learns to use her voice to make a difference.

•  The Power of Storytelling in Raising Awareness about Climate Change
One of the things that I loved most about Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet was the way that Barbara Dee used storytelling to raise awareness about climate change.

As a children's author, Dee has a deep understanding of how to use children's fiction and kids' books to educate and inform readers about important issues. And she does so in a way that is neither didactic nor preachy. Rather, she allows readers to come to their conclusions about the characters' motivations and the choices they make. This makes for a much more enjoyable and thought-provoking reading experience and will certainly win over a reluctant reader.

•  The Importance of Hope and Optimism in Times of Crisis
Another theme that I loved exploring in Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet was the importance of hope and optimism in times of crisis. Haven is initially paralyzed by her anxiety about the state of the planet and what she perceives as adults' complacency in the face of environmental catastrophe. But as she begins to take action in her community, she starts to feel hopeful again. And that hope fuels her efforts to make even more positive changes.

I think this is an important message for kids (and adults!) to hear right now. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed by all that is happening in the world today — from climate change to political divisions — but it's important to remember that every individual has the power to make a difference. A valuable lesson filled with opportunities for audience insights. As Haven shows us, even small acts can have a big impact when we work together towards a common goal.

Perfect for readers (and school teachers) looking for a beautifully written book that is both entertaining and informative... And will appeal to both young readers and adults alike.

A middle-grade novel that follows twelve-year-old Haven as she channels her anxiety about climate change into taking action in her community. It's an important book within the best children's books and children's literature to introduce children to raising awareness about environmental issues, and it's sure to inspire young readers to start making positive changes in their own lives.

So pick up a copy today and join Haven on her mission to save the planet!...

And, I'll meet you at the river, folks...✨😎✨
Pages:  302
Genre:  Children's Books
Sub-Genre:  Environment | Middle Grade  
Reading Age:  9 - 13 years

Book:  Library Girl: How Nancy Pearl Became America's Most Celebrated Librarian by Karen Henry Clark
Movie:  A Beautiful Planet  

Climate change is a hot topic these days, and it's only getting hotter... pun intended!

As the world around us burns, it can be hard to feel like there's anything we can do to make a difference. But hope is not lost! People are fighting for our planet every day, and kids are often leading the charge.

One such kid is Haven Jacobs, the twelve-year-old protagonist of Barbara Dee's middle-grade novel, Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet. Haven is just like any other kid her age — dealing with friendships, school, and boys. But she's also contending with something that most adults struggle with: anxiety about the climate crisis.

As her anxiety begins to interfere with her everyday life, Haven decides to channel her energy into something positive and rallies her community to save a local river as the annual school project by the science teacher starts to show some surprising results. Along the way, she learns that one person really can make a difference.

This book is perfect for middle-grade readers who are looking for the best children's books with a relatable protagonist and an inspiring story. It's also a great pick for adults who need a reminder that it's never too late to fight for what's right.

So pick up a copy of Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet today and introduce kids to how one young girl (or young boy) really can change the world!

If you love the emotional exploration of reading popular children's books such as Charlotte's Web or Where The Wild Things Are but without the magical world or magical land theme, you may find this to be a potential classic story to add to your bookshelf of must-read chapter books for younger readers.

•  It's never too late to make a difference.
•  Small actions can have a big impact when we work together towards a common goal.
•  Hope is essential in times of crisis.

"Balls were rolling... Wheels were turning... Just because I couldn't see those balls and wheels didn't mean things weren't happening... Good things..." — Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet by Barbara Dee


All my book reviews can be seen at This Is My Everybody | Simple Living | Denise Wilbanks at  

♡ Thank you to NetGalley for this ARC. I voluntarily chose to review it and the opinions contained within are my own.
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Kids will relate to the anxieties that the climate crisis contributes to their everyday lives, and their desire to want to help.
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Eco-Anxiety. It was a word I never heard of before I read this book. It is the problem the main character of this book, twelve year old Haven Jacobs, is suffering from. Because it is not going well with the climate and it is rightfully so that people are worried about the(ir) future. How will the state of the planet be then? But Haven's eco anxiety is getting a little out of hand. It is influencing her daily life at home, school, sleep and friendships so much that it's not healthy anymore. She wonders why not everyone is so worried about it like her, and why no one seems to do something about the climate crisis.

Her dad works at a new local  glass factory, Gemba. Gemba is a huge contributor and sponsor to a lot of local things.
In her 7th grade science class they are doing a study on  a local river, and they find out that the local river is polluted, and probably by a local factory. But who? Haven knows to set her anxiety into action, and researches and investigates who is behind the pollution..

I have read several previous books by Barbara Dee before, and everytime they suprise me. Barbara Dee knows just exactly how to put different and difficult topics into middle grade books. Without making the difficulties too difficult for young readers, but in a way that make them think about the topic and to think outside the box. And this truly also counts for this amazing new book. Eco anxiety is something that many young kids can relate too, as many kids, tweens and teens are eco-aware. Haven is just the girl they can relate too, as she could be you or someone you know. I loved how she turned her eco anxiety that somewhat annoyed her family and friends, into full on eco-action and got everyone involved into the action.
Beautifully written and full of action, and besides Haven, a lively cast of friends and family. I absolutely love this new book by Barbara Dee!! Recommend it
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I love all of Barbara Dee's books. This is another great read about a girl who's overwhelmed with the state of the world and is having trouble getting the point of some subjects at school. I love that she's able to take action with other members of her community.
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4.5 Stars

If you’ve ever read anything by Barbara Dee (Violets Are Blue, My Life in a Fish Tank) then you know how well she dials into her audience. And Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet is no different. In particular, Dee’s exploration of anxiety has a truthful weight to it that readers will immediately understand and relate to.

That doesn’t mean Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet is a heavy read. Dee doesn’t just explore anxiety but how to deal with it on smaller and larger scales. Additional themes of science, problem solving and friendship make this novel well-rounded.

Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet is a strong read that will especially appeal to kids who are concerned about climate change.
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Haven Jacobs is a girl in a small town called Belmont in the United States of America. She lives with her parents and brother, Carter.  Her mum runs a preschool and dad works in the new glass factory in town, he had been out of work because the previous one closed, but now Gemba has taken over the site. 
Haven is vegan, she is appalled by the idea of killing the fish they catch, she cooks her own food a lot so her family can eat differently, sometimes tough they all eat the same thing. Carter is a typical teasing brother, he calls her Lentil which she doesn't like. He teases her about being too sensitive.
This sensitivity comes to the fore when the science teacher, Mr Hendricks, shows them a video of penguins in the Artic. Haven runs to the toilet, but then starts "doomscrolling" - googling climate change details. 
Gemba is run by the father of a new boy at school, Kenji Stillman.  Kenji is, according to Haven's best friend Riley, so cute! But Kenji seems to take no notice of all the nonsense, he wants to be with the smart kids not the "in-crowd. Gemba donate to the town a lot and have given the school lots of equipment to use in their river project. But that equipment makes them confused.  Even Carter says the river didn't have those readings and did have different macros (insects larvae) when he'd done it two years before.  And frogs lots of them. But there are only macros that don't care about water quality and no frogs - none at all!  Mr Hendricks calls in a friend who is a marine biologist.  She is equally alarmed by their findings and takes her own. In addition she tells Haven she should only pay attention to websites written by scientists.  
Haven organises a River Festival with help from her friends and teachers. Carter gets his friends to come from the high school. They clean the river, discuss results they found and talk about the lack of frogs. But really don't achieve anything. Oh yes, and Haven is interviewed by a journalist, but she has a weird feeling about it. And she is right to.  
The interviewer casts Haven as eco-anxious and suggests she blames Gemba - although actually the journalist did!   Haven is mortified.  She organises a protest at the river, but no-one really takes any notice this time. Then the results are back and Haven is vindicated.  The results go to the town and an investigation begins.  But how long does it take?  What happens next?
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Barbara Dee's books are always welcomed into upper elementary and middle school classroom, and "Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet" will be no different. This wonderful book about climate change is timely and the feeling of uncertainty of climate future is a reality most youth struggle with. An excellent read to explore not only literature, but our own feelings and power to make an impactful change.
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Barbara Dee is  a master of tackling big important issues for tweens and wrapping them up in a delightful reading experience. In Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet, Dee addresses both climate change and anxiety (specifically eco-anxiety caused by climate change). The story is not all depressing, though, as Haven learns to deal with her anxiety and work in small ways to help protect our planet. I can't wait to add this one to my library.
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Once again Barbara Dee has written a timely book with her expert middle school voice. Haven feels helpless about climate change and wants to do something that matters. When her teacher does his annual River Project of studying the river’s health, her team finds acid in the water. Is this why frogs and macros have disappeared?  When she gets people to help put on a festival to focus on the river so they see they need to protect it before it’s too late, she finds it doesn’t do enough. She has another plan which ends up with Haven speaking to the mayor and the town board. Does the mayor understand the impact of what’s happening?
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This is a great book! I really enjoyed the characters and the plot. Haven is a great character and I loved how she tackled the problems around her. This is a great book!
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This was such an amazing read and we wouldn't expect any less from Barbara Dee. Haven was so accurately portrayed as a young girl attempting to learn, battling a very real anxiety, and wanting to do her best while with very little power.  Must read and a must buy for any library out there.
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Haven Jacobs Saves the Planet tells the story of  a seventh grade climate change activist who is struggling with anxiety about our world’s future and problems with her friends. During their local river exploration, Haven’s science class discovers some potentially bad issues with the river. Could the new glass factory along the river be causing problems? 
Kids who love books about science, problem solving, and friendships will thoroughly enjoy Barbara Dee’s latest novel!
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