Review: Repairing the World

Repairing the World

by Linda Epstein

Aladdin (imprint of Simon & Schuster), 2022

Category: Middle Grade
Reviewer: Bridget Hodder

...maybe there really was magic here, things that were beyond what she thought, beyond what she already knew about the world.

Daisy and Ruby are such close friends, they might as well be sisters. And like the best of sisters, they give and take from each other's strengths. Ruby's daring spirit and magical way of seeing the world give Daisy courage and inspiration. But when Ruby is suddenly torn from Daisy's life by a car accident, Daisy loses that courage and inspiration just when she needs it the most.
All the magic seems to have gone out of the world. Daisy will never regain what she has lost. But in the spirit of tikkun olam, she discovers that healing can spring from finding community in the wider world. Working together with new friends, she rekindles the magic for others that Ruby was so good at discovering for herself.

This book takes readers on a tender yet unflinching journey through loss and grief that leads ultimately to realistic healing, hope, and understanding. It's a beautiful story with many levels of meaning for discussion at home and at schools. Daisy's identity and practice, and the beautiful theme of "Repairing the World," thoughtfully and Jewishly underpin the growth that readers experience along with the protagonist.
Highly recommended.

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Reviewer Bridget Hodder is the Middle Grade author of THE RAT PRINCE (Macmillan/ Farrar, Straus & Giroux) and co-author of THE BUTTON BOX (Lerner Books/ Kar-Ben) with Sydney Taylor Silver Medalist Fawzia Gilani, which has earned a Kirkus star. Her first picture book, THE PROMISE, a tale of enduring friendship and loss in 20th century Morocco, is also co-authored with Fawzia Gilani, and will be released from Lerner/ Kar-Ben in August 2023.