I started reading this novel on a Friday night. A few chapters in I did a little investigation and discovered that Amy Sarig King also writes as A.S. King and I have read and enjoyed some of her YA novels. The bar was set pretty high for this book.
Me and Marvin Gardens is a great tween book that explores a lot of really important topics.
Obe's family has lost their farmland to a new housing development that is being built. As new kids arrive in the neighborhood, Obe's best friend Tommy deserts Obe for the new kids.
Obe spends time wandering around by the creek near his home, only to discover one day that there is a strange animal he can't identify living there.
This animal looks a little like a dog, a little like a pig, yet is slimy and eats plastic. Obe decides to name this animal Marvin Gardens and looks forward to seeing him every day.
However, he is aware that others might not be so kind to Marvin Gardens. And keeping this animal a secret might not be the best decision for Marvin.
King brings up issues of bullying, environmental issues with animals, and the idea of how one feels such ties and love for their land and way of life.
This is a great tween read with plenty of talking points and things to think about. I have this one on my fourth grader's nightstand in hopes that we can read this together soon.