Still processing this book... it's middle grade, but it's incredible intense. Everyone who recommended it said to go in blind, and I 100% agree. It's hard to describe any part of the plot without spoiling it or watering it down. I can say it's a heartbreaking journey about grief done in a REALLY unique way!
Upon reflection, I really don't have many more words to express my opinion. It's rare to find an "experimental" book in the middle grade age band, but that is what this is. The writing is well done, the lesson is strong, and the perspective is incredibly unique. I honestly can't say that I 'liked' this book, but I respect the story and can agree it was very well done.
Thank you to NetGalley for the ARC! This one is available now.
A wonderful, heart-rending story😣
Child or adult, this story cannot help but move the reader as it did me. Kemi, the young girl main character, has to deal with a horror beyond imagining as her life is upended on a typical evening at home with her sister and parents. It's the end of the world as she knows it and she needs to store up the memories of her loved ones in less than a week so they will not be forgotten.
Kemi's care at helping her family members identify the things they most love to be remembered by, and her touching interactions with her extended family and friend Dia, are full of moving moments and heart-rending reminiscence. Despite the sad prospect of their obliteration by an asteroid direct strike, I just could not stop reading as the hours until Doomsday ticked away. A young person reading the story may find it difficult, but I would still recommend it for a tween or middle grader because it's such a strong tribute to the value of family and friends.
This poignant story mad me sad, mad and yet hopeful that somehow, some way, the end that Kemi is dreading will be averted. When the gigantic twist about her father came, I was not prepared. And it made the tale even sadder because it brought it closer to home and the world that we experience through the news and, sometimes, tragically, right in our neighborhoods. Kemi's scientific, statistics-filled mind cannot comprehend the events actually unfolding as they are too emotional, too raw, so she wraps herself in her scientific curiosity and takes action to divert the pain. The story's original, well written and one to be shared. It's not just a children's book as it digs deep into the experience of loss and handling grief.
Thanks to HarperCollins Children's Books/Clarion and NetGalley for sharing a complimentary advance copy of the book; this is my voluntary and honest opinion.
This book was recommended to me with the advice to not read anything about the book because that would give it away. I am so glad I took that advice. It was a great middle grade read and I look forward to putting it in the hands of students.
Eleven year old Kemi loves probability & science. After learning an asteroid will collide with the Earth in a mere four days, her family hunkers down together at her aunt's home. Kemi can't understand how for others, life is going on as normal with the unavoidable catastrophe looming overhead. As Kemi wrestles with how to come to terms with the impending end of the world, she decides to create a time capsule that includes items representing the members of her family in hopes that the capsule will be found at some point in the future and know that her family existed. As she collects various important items from her family and hears the stories behind each item, we learn about Kemi and her family, including her mom, dad, sisters Lo and yet to be born baby Z, aunt, uncle, and cousins, and how each is dealing with the situation in their own way.
While tension built throughout the story as the countdown to impact continued, I didn't see the ending to this one coming and it hit me hard! Powerful, emotional, and heart-breaking book.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with a digital ARC to read and review.
This book is unlike any I've ever read before. It is absolutely breathtaking. I don't want to give anything away, since this is best experienced without knowing anything prior to reading. Just be sure to have the tissues handy!
I can't really book talk this book because I don't want to give a second of it away. So this is one where you just need to trust me.
It will suck you in from the very first page and make you feel all the feelings throughout. It will make you book talk it to anyone you meet even if you don't have a physical copy. It will make you want to expand your book clubs, change your read-aloud plans, and also ponder out loud how you can get others to read it.
It's unexpected. It's powerful. It's storytelling at its finest. And it is out now. Don't go another day without reading it.
Believe these reviews and read this book because it was absolutely amazing. It's not just a book about the end of the world, it focuses on deeper themes of grief and loss. This was so beautiful.
With the end of the world looming, Kemi and her family join her aunt's family to wait for the massive asteroid to hit earth, just like they always do for major events. Food and visitors are a constant during the four day countdown, but Kemi is focused on a time capsule which will contain one item to memorialize the uniqueness of each family member. Oddly, school still in session, the diner is open, dad can't decide what to contribute, and people keep lamenting she will not turn twelve. Throughout the book, mathematical wizard Kemi calculates the statistical probability of everything and diligently researches her facts. This is an incredible plot involving the use of defense mechanisms when the events are simply too much to bear. I could not stop reading this one, and never saw the twist coming. Very contemporary topic and excellent choice for discussion groups. #TheProbabilityofEverything #bookaday
Thank you to Clarion Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Children's Books, and NetGalley for the digital arc.
Kemi is a math and science fanatic who thrives on facts and knowing the probability of events. Knowing the probability of something happening helps her feel safe and helps her cope with unknowns in her world. As the news breaks of asteroid coming toward Earth, her works and life come crashing down. Her family gathers at her aunt’s home surrounded by extended family to deal with the impending doom.
Powerful. Shocking. Heart-Wrenching.
Kemi Carter is a scientist. She loves scientific facts, specifically probability. It's how she understands the world and how she fits in it.
But everything Kemi thought she knew about the world changes when an asteroid has an 84.7% chance of colliding with earth in four days, and with that collision, Kemi’s and her family's lives will end. Kemi decides to put together a time capsule that will capture her family’s legacies, so that the next earthly beings may find it.
I both do and don't want to tell you more than that. Go in blind. I promise you won't regret it. I devoured this story, and I'm sure children will, too.
This middle grade novel had been popping up in my Instagram feed so I downloaded it from Netgalley and read it during my vacation. I ended up loving it but a couple of my trusted librarian friends on this app had deeply different opinions – which is great, because it leads to interesting conversation.
Here’s what you need to know: statistics-loving Kemi is 11 and the world is ending -- literally. An asteroid is on track to collide with earth and there's a 84.7% chance of total destruction. Kemi is desperate to find a way to preserve her family’s memories and starts collecting special items to put into a time capsule. And then a huge plot twist near the end turns the book upside down. As a reader, you’ll know something is coming, but I didn’t figure it out and literally gasped at the reveal.
My thoughts: This book might seem like an end-of-the-world story, but it is really a novel about grief and loss. It touches on racism and BLM as well, but I mostly found it a very unique perspective on grief. This novel broke my heart right open and Kemi’s story is one I’ll be thinking about for quite awhile.
This book was absolutely phenomenal! It took a turn I had no idea was coming, since I read this based on the recommendation of a friend. He said to just read it, don’t read the description and I’m so glad I didn’t. I think it would have ruined what I was expecting or give too much information. The Probability of Everything features a strong family relationship that is rare in children’s books today. I was vested in every character, and didn’t want the book to end. I cannot wait to share this book with my students.
Brilliant, powerful, impactful!
The author sets up the plot in such an innovative way, so the reader is set up.
A book everyone must read- without any spoilers!
Will open the floor for rich, meaningful conversation.
Wow...this was a book like no other. The premise is attention-grabbing--an asteroid is heading toward earth and there are only 4 days before impact. The main character is a girl who loves probability and in her 4 days she decides to make a time capsule to remember all of the things that were loved by her friends and family. Kids would love this book if that's all it was but... SPOILER ALERT... it's not really what this book is about. I'm not going to say what's really going on, but I will say that it has to do with racism and gun violence and grief and family and friendship and love. There is a LOT to talk about here and I think the ending is going to be controversial for the kids who read this book expecting something else. All this to say, this book is going to have people talking and kids reading, and that's a great thing.
Eleven year old Kemi is a budding scientist. She has a loving nuclear family and a diverse and generous extended family. Obsessed with probability, Kemi faces challenges through research, facts, and number crunching. When faced with the end of the world as she knows it, Kemi bravely forges forward undeterred by the demise of everything she has ever known or loved. Explaining more of the plot would ruin the ending for readers, but be assured it is fresh, unexpected, and thoroughly thought provoking.
This middle grade debut novel has a truly incredible surprise twist at the end. Well written, beautifully crafted, and careful never to give away the ending, this coming-of-age story touches on many current relevant topics including race, mental health, friendship, family, and grief. A powerful exploration of the powers of the mind.
Thank you to Net Galley and the publisher for allowing me to read this advance copy. I went into this book not knowing what it was about. Doing so made the story that much more intense and impactful. You MUST read this book, but don’t learn too much about it before you read it. This one is going to sit in my brain and my heart for a long time to come.
Two very trusted reviewers said this was an incredible book, but that you need to read it without knowing anything about it as you go into it. So I did. And I'm super glad that I did. So I'm not going to tell you what it is about. You just need to read it. It is incredibly well written. I couldn't put it down. Kemi will have your heart as she sheds some important light on our world today. Highly recommended for grades 5 & up.
This book is geared towards the middle school reader and while I noticed that as I read it, I still enjoyed it and was surprised by the powerful ending. Told from the point of view of an young black girl who loves statistics, we learn that there is an asteroid that will hit the earth in 4 days, thus ending life as she knows it. She decides to put together a time capsule with her family so they are remembered. It was a wonderful story of love, family, grief and racism and might even be worth a second read. 4/5 !
A heartbreaking novel that left me literally crying. In Probability of Everything, we meet eleven-year-old Kemi, who loves science and probabilities. Kemi’s life changes when there’s a catastrophic asteroid set to collide with Earth in four days. With her days numbered, Kemi set to put together a time capsule to capture her family.
This book was heavy.. I did not see the twist coming, and oh, man, it broke my heart. I loved the book format; the story was essentially a countdown to the asteroid.I loved the science peppered throughout the book.
Looking forward to reading more novels by Sarah Everett.
The asteroid metaphor gave me goosebumps that I could see on my skin. But the subject matter ... it is so, so relevant, but I can't help but wonder if it's too heavy for middle-grade readers. This entire story is brutally, agonizingly sad. Maybe that's why it SHOULD be widely read!