Daisy Woodworm Changes the World
by Melissa Hart
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Pub Date 08 Nov 2022 | Archive Date 22 Nov 2022
Flux, Jolly Fish Press
Thirteen-year-old Daisy Woodward loves insects, running track, and hanging out with her older brother, Sorrel, who has Down syndrome and adores men’s fashion.
When her social studies teacher assigns each student a project to change the world for the better along with an oral report, Daisy fears the class bully—who calls her Woodworm— will make fun of her lisp. Still, she decides to help Sorrel fulfill his dream of becoming a YouTube fashion celebrity despite their parents’ refusal to allow him on social media.
With the help of her best friend Poppy, and Miguel—the most popular boy in school and her former enemy—Daisy launches Sorrel’s publicity campaign. But catastrophe strikes when her parents discover him online along with hateful comments from a cyberbully.
If Daisy has any hope of changing the world, she’ll have to regain her family’s trust and face her fears of public speaking to find her own unique and powerful voice.
“Hart, who has a lisp and a brother with Down syndrome herself, sensitively explores topics such as bullying, economic hardship, and forgiveness....An uplifting story of family, community, and friendship.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Hart highlights the importance of disability representation and self-advocacy with thoughtful realism, and explores Daisy and Squirrel’s sibling bond with nuance.” —Publishers Weekly
“What a wonderful story about the power of determination! This novel expertly weaves a tale of inclusion, acceptance, and confidence. Everyone needs to learn this valuable lesson. Never let someone else’s low expectations limit our success!” —Abigail Adams, Down syndrome advocate, and father Steve Adams
“As the sister of a Special Olympics athlete, author Melissa Hart knows firsthand that so-called differences in intellectual abilities add to the tapestry of human development and dignity. Daisy Woodworm Changes the World is a great read for all young people and their families who understand that we all have challenges of one sort or another.” —Jacqueline Jodl, PhD, Chief of Global Youth & Education, Special Olympics
“Melissa Hart writes with knowledge and empathy while still managing to be entertaining; that’s quite a feat given her potentially heavy subject matter. Why didn’t this book exist when I was a kid? I would have been a much different person.” —Amy Silverman, author of My Heart Can’t Even Believe It: A Story of Science, Love, and Down Syndrome
“Daisy Woodworm Changes the World is a funny, moving novel with a serious question at its heart: if you love someone with a disability, how do you help them flourish? I loved this book for its twists and turns, for its diverse, finely drawn characters, and for the rare nuance Melissa Hart brings to her depiction of intellectual disability.” —George Estreich, author of The Shape of the Eye: A Memoir
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