Cover Image: Ruby Lost and Found

Ruby Lost and Found

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Member Reviews

This is an exceptional book! I finished it earlier this morning and had tears running down my face as there was so much heart and difficult emotions. I couldn't put it down.

As someone who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, I loved the scavenger hunt aspect (and may use some of Ye-Ye's rhymes to do a scavenger hunt with my own kids). The city was featured beautifully throughout this book. There were so many memories on the streets and it made me so happy to see all of this incorporated in the overall storyline. So this book is not just a heartfelt tale of family, but also a beautiful tribute to a city that has lost so much of its identity and history due to gentrification.

Ruby is incredibly relatable. Some of the things she said, some of the ways she acted, reminded me so much of my own 11 year old daughter. Middle school sucks indeed, and it's hard to lose friends at any age. I also plan to send my kids to their grandparents for a couple of weeks this summer and I could relate to Ruby's parents as well. It was a reminder that I need to pay more attention and be more empathetic too. I adored Ruby's growth and how she grew to love spending time with her Nai-Nai. I loved their relationship, and all the other Chinese aunties at the senior center too.

All in all, a heartfelt story that I treasured. Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for an opportunity to read this galley. I will remember this book for a long time!

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Ruby's story of spending her summer with her Nai-nai is heartwarming and beautifully told. I love the flashbacks to her Ye-ye's scavenger hunts, the old friendships with Mia and Naomi, and the blossoming one with Liam, and Ruby's desire to save the bakery. All this against the backdrop of a family rich with dynamics. So much to savor and cherish in this wonderful novel.

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As summer begins, Ruby is dealing with the changes in her life. One of her best friends has moved away while the other is busy with a soccer group. Her older sister is preparing for college in the fall and her parents are focused on their start up.
When Ruby is sent to sent to spend weekdays with her recently widowed Nai-Nai, memories of her Ye-Ye make it difficult to be there.
Surprising connections will be made with the seniors at the center that her Nai-Nai spends time at along with a budding friendship with a classmate.
A beautiful story.
#RubyLostandFound #NetGalley

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Whenever anyone says that adults shouldn’t read YA/middle grade books, I’m going to rec them Ruby Lost and Found. This book is an incredible story about grief, family, and growing up. I related to Ruby **so** much, despite her being about 5 years younger then me. The message of this story is, at its core, “change is okay,” and though that may seem simple, this book deals with it beautifully and fully. I saw so much of myself in Ruby, from her waning relationship with her friends, to her strained one with her parents, and seeing that on-page was so cathartic.

In short, this book is wonderful; proof that middle grade books can be timeless.

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This is such a heartwarming, nuanced, fully-developed story of family and friendship. I was cheering for Ruby from page one, and her story will mean so much to MG and adult readers alike!

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I really enjoyed reading this story about Ruby. We meet Ruby after the recent loss of her grandfather. He was the one in her family that really saw her. now that she’s gone, Ruby feels as if she’s lost herself. After an issue at school, Ruby is sent to live with her grandma all summer. Together, they find themselves relying more and more on each other to find their way out over the grief they both share.

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A highly-relevant multigenerational story, Christina Li’s wonderful Ruby Lost and Found speaks to the pain of losing a grandparent. In the wake of her beloved grandfather’s death in their hometown of San Francisco, Ruby has had a year of challenges. Her parents are struggling financially, her big sister is focused on college, and her friendships are changing. Amidst the upheaval, Ruby gets caught cutting school. As a punishment, her parents send her to her grandmother’s home for the summer. Ruby and Nai-Nai navigate the shared grief of Ruby’s grandfather’s passing, surrounded by Nai-Nai’s friends at a senior center in Chinatown. Gentrification threatens a local bakery, and Ruby makes a new friend with whom she tries to save the shop. Her biggest challenge, though, comes when she realizes Nai-Nai has dementia.

The story flashes back to a scavenger hunt Ruby’s grandfather created for her around the city. Ample meals and sweets enjoyed by Ruby, friends and family provide extra warmth. The story moves lovingly through the ups and downs of Ruby’s summer and is full of well drawn, flawed, and relatable characters who bring real depth to the book. It’s a memorable and absorbing read, full of young people’s and adult’s emotions—a truly human story.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an ARC.

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RUBY LOST AND FOUND is a beautiful and very loving tribute not only to the bond between grandparents and grandchildren, but also to that tenuous moment in the middle-grade years when everything is changing.
In the summer before 7th grade Ruby Chu is surrounded by loss. Following the sudden and heartbreaking loss of her beloved Ye-Ye, Ruby's friendships are changing or disappearing, and she's even about to lose her oldr sister -- to college in the fall. Ruby is at sea. But when she tries to find a small silver of happiness for herself by sneaking out of school to have lunch in the park, she finds herself in a lot of trouble. Her parents ground her for the summer and send her to spend the weekdays with her Nai-Nai, her recently widowed grandmother.
What follows is a tender blossoming of connections across generations, a surprisingly fun friendship, and an attempt to save a bakery, and the true flavor of the neighborhood.
Christina Li writes with incredible true authentic ease, generosity, and heart. The neighborhood and its elder citizens are brought to life in technicolor, and Ruby's struggles to cope with change are pitch-perfect.
This is a story to savor and get lost in.

Thank you to Netgalley and QuillTree for the pleasure of reading this e-arc.

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Everything has gone from bad to worse for Ruby Chu—starting with the day Ye-Ye passed away. Her best friend ghosts her, her older sister ignores her, and even her nai-nai doesn’t have much to say to her.

At 13, Ruby knows the city of San Francisco, thanks to her beloved ye-ye and his scavenger hunts. When she gets in trouble at the end of the school year, her parents overreact and decide Ruby needs a babysitter because they need to work. Rudy doesn’t want to spend weekdays with Nai-Nai and endure long hours at the senior center with elderly strangers. This will be the worst summer ever.

When Liam, a boy from school, shows up at the senior center with his grandma, Ruby feels even worse. But when the owner of Ye-Ye’s favorite Chinese bakery announces they’ll have to close their business, Rudy finds an ally in Liam. With each passing day, Ruby realizes things aren’t as bad as expected. Mostly. Nai-nai seems forgetful and scattered, and Rudy doesn’t know what to do about it.

Back at home, nothing seems to improve. In a family full of go-getters, Ruby feels lost. Will life ever feel normal again?

What I Loved About This Book

Li paints a tender, beautiful coming-of-age story in San Francisco’s Chinatown. Young (and old) readers will identify with Ruby’s angst as she transitions from 7th to 8th grade, loses old friends and makes new ones, copes with losing a loved one, and tries to live up to family expectations.

Without fanfare, Li dispels the myth that all Asians are the same. The interactions between Ruby, her nai-nai, and the other regulars at the senior center highlight how different generations can form meaningful relationships. Librarians and teachers will want to make this own voices novel a part of their libraries and curriculum.

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Much like Li’s first novel, this story is a moving tale that authentically highlights emotions young readers often experience. Beautifully written and honest, I highly recommend this book!

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A suggestion: don't read this book while you're sick like I did. The amount of crying you'll do is just going to worsen your congestion. Christina Li has truly worked some magic in her writing; Ruby's story made me feel so many things. Give a big hug to your elders.

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Ruby + San Francisco + Chinatown + Food Descriptions + MG + Own Voice

This deals with many topics a 4th/5th grader might be dealing with including: grief, family, emotions, finding your place in the world, balancing everything

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Thank you to Harper Collins and Quill tree books for sending me an advanced copy of this in exchange for an honest review.

Such a heart warming story about grief and family. I finished in one sitting.

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I just finished reading an ARC of #RubyLostAndFound by Christina Li and it is so full of heart. I absolutely adored this book. We follow thirteen-year-old Ruby as she's sent to live with her grandmother for the summer. Ruby is very much still struggling with the grief of losing her grandfather, her changing family dynamics and shifting friendships, and trying to navigate it all on her own. On top of all that, Chinatown is changing & Ruby just wants everything to stay the same. Hasn't enough changed already? And then her grandmother starts forgetting things... #RubyLostAndFound is relatable & poignant & the characters are all so fully developed. It deals with grief and pain and love, letting people in and adjusting to change while you just want everything to stay the same! Absolutely gorgeous!

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Full review to come on Goodreads and Amazon. Thank you to the publisher, author, and NetGalley for a review copy.

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Ruby's summer starts off not great. She has to spend time with Nai-Nai who takes her to the senior center everyday. She no longer has her Ye-Ye or her best friends. She is dealing with grief and loss and learning how to let go.
This is a beautiful story dealing with grief and loss, but also learning to fight for things that are important to you.

Thanks NetGalley for this ARC!

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Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher Harper Collins, and the author Christina Li for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. I have nothing but good praise for Li's work. Li writes a well-crafted middle-grade/YA story. This book is perfect for the demographic and for Chinese/Asian Americans and represents San Francisco's Chinatown as an ethnography. Li places details of the city, such as the characters using public transportation through busses and the geographic areas of SF Chinatown. Li creates a well-rounded narrative of grief, the impact of losing a loved one, and how grief can cause misbehavior, such as Devi's character in Never Have I Ever (on Netflix by Mindy Kaling). This is also one of the few middle-grade/YA stories, including a 3rd/4th (depending on how you define it) Chinese or Asian American. I appreciate Ruby grew as a person and found her responses to her circumstances to be true and relatable. I also appreciate Li for keeping Ruby and Liam's relationship strictly platonic as friends matter too. Often friendship matters more than romance does. The lack of closure or resolve between Ruby's old friends is an element I enjoyed as well.

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The thing we have to learn in life is when to let things go and when to fight like hell for the things that are important to us.

In this middle grade level story of Ruby, she has lost her grandfather, her Ye-Ye, and now just has her grandmother, her Nai-Nai.

It was hard to lose her Ye-Ye, but she also lost her two best friends. One moved away to the East Coast, and the other got more involved in her soccer group. We don’t find out until later what Ruby did next, but she gets grounded, and has to spend her summer with her Nai-Nai, and hang out at the senior center, in the heart of San Francisco’s Chinatown.

She thinks it will be the worst summer ever, but gradually gets to know the other seniors, including May, the owner of her favorite bakery, where she used to go with her Ye-Ye. Chinatown is being gentrified, and May’s bakery will probably close, because of it.

That is the last straw for Ruby. She wasn’t able to save her Ye-Ye, but perhaps she can save the bakery.

There is so much going on in this story. There are friendships. There is loss, and there is realizing that some things you just can’t fix. That is the hardest thing of all.

Thanks to Netgalley for making this book available for an honest review.

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In a summer that should be filled with friends, middle school student Ruby gets grounded by her parents. Not only grounded, but told she will be spending the summer with her Nai-Nai (grandmother) at the senior citizens center. Dumped by her former friend, Naomi and feeling abandoned by bff Mia, whose family has moved across the country to New York and ignored by her older sister Viv, Ruby feels as if she has been cast adrift from her family since the death of her beloved Ye-Ye (grandfather). She can't seem to do anything right and her parent's frustrations with growing their fledgling business spill over into angry, hurtful words making Ruby feel unwanted and unloved. As the summer progresses, Ruby begins to realize that the death of her Ye-Ye has also affected her grandmother who is beginning to show signs of early dementia. Christina Li has woven a tale of a painful middle school year, filled with family, friends and enduring memories. Through Ruby we learn that changes are inevitable and how you react to those changes can determine your own happiness.

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I cannot wait to share this title with my middle grade readers! Clues to the Universe, Christina Li's previous novel, is well loved in my library and I predict Ruby Lost and Found will be as well. This is a sweet story about friendship, fighting for what you believe in, and finding your place.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an eARC.

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