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The Sweetest Sound

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  417 ratings  ·  90 reviews
A story of family, faith, and following your heart

For ten-year-old Cadence Jolly, birthdays are a constant reminder of all that has changed since her mother skipped town with dreams of becoming a star. Cadence inherited that musical soul, she can't deny it, but otherwise she couldn't be more different - she's as shy as can be.

She did make a promise last year that she would
Kindle Edition, 272 pages
Published January 3rd 2017 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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Average rating 3.91  · 
Rating details
 ·  417 ratings  ·  90 reviews

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Jan 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mini Me Rating
Scott Fillner
May 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I highly recommend this book for middle grade readers and teachers for many different reasons. It was an emotional story of a girl Cadence who exhibits internalizing behaviors but has great talents deep within her. On top of that her family struggles with the experience of loss. But what this novel does is show you how a strong community can support and lift each other up, and how learning to be strong doesn't mean changing everything!

Some other things I loved about this book is how Sherri menti
Oct 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is very inspirational. It is a story about a girl struggling to show her true self.
Jodi Booth
Feb 18, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I'm thankful my 4th grader wanted me to read this book after she did. It was a heartwarming tale of learning to love oneself and confidently deal with life's circumstances while realizing there are people around to help. ...more
Ellie Grace
Dec 02, 2018 rated it liked it
This book makes me sad that cadence can't stand up for herself. Buttttttt other than that it's a pretty good book. ...more
Mrs. Schuld
Oct 03, 2018 rated it did not like it
I tried to like this one. I really did. There were just so many things I couldn’t get past, though. I thought some of Cadence’s thoughts were so mature and deep, while others were really childish. I didn’t like the way the story switched. Some of the story was written like a play and as poetry, and I wish it would have remained consistent. I think some of the characters like the Trinity Sisters could have been eliminated altogether, as well as some of the other characters. I really liked how Cad ...more
Dec 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. Although I would of like if there were more challenges.
May 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I am an 11th year old girl that read this book and it was a sweet sound book. The thing about this book that is so amazing is that it is funny and such a sweet thing.I love this book that is about a young girl that is my culture ❤
Jun 02, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: middle-grade, 2016
Cadence lives with her father and half brother — her mother up and left her — and dreams of being a singer. But she has paralyzing shyness... she barely even speaks and everyone calls her Mouse, which she hates. When an opportunity to be featured in the church choir comes up, will Candace finally let her voice shine?

So I picked an ARC up at BEA because I'm looking for more sweet middle grades, and this one has a beautiful cover and diverse (non-white) characters. Unfortunately the writing fell
Brandy Painter
This is a short easy MG read about a girl who is both introverted and shy and needs to learn to find her own voice and shine in her own way. Though not shy, I am an introvert and I laughed out loud several times at Cadence's commentary on the need for the extraverts around her to talk all the time and their desire to "help" her by making her do more with people. The book has the obligatory MG missing parent. Cadence's mother left the day after her 7th birthday to pursue a singing career. It is h ...more
May 08, 2018 rated it it was ok
Based on the cover and title I thought I’d really enjoy this book. I ended up being annoyed throughout most of it. The characters were extremely frustrating and I just could fully get into it because of that. The repetition of the same information or inner dialogue of Cadence was also annoying to me.
Feb 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
10-year-old Candace is still mourning her mother, who left her and her father to make a new life for herself. Candace finds solace in the music of Mariah Cary and her own singing. With the aid of a large community of friends, old and young, Candace grows into her musical strength.
Jillian Heise
Sweet story about a girl finding her voice, strength, and courage. Small town, family story.
Mar 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Cute story. Perfect for 4th and 5th gtaders.
Destiny Henderson
"You know, church is like that. Sometimes the pastor is talking and all you can think about is eating pancakes when he is done. But sometimes he says something and, just like that, it feels like he's talking absolutely, positively to you!" (pg 17)

In The Sweetest Sound by Sherrie Winston (272 pages), Cadence Jolly is tired of adults giving her "motherless child" pity. She's also trying to break out of her perpetual shyness enough to own her beautiful voice. In a fit of frustration and later
Stephanie Croaning
A story that features a main character of color who struggles with confidence and finding her voice.

Chapter book, fiction
by Sherri Winston
Little, Brown and Company, 2017
YHBA nominee, 2019
3 out of 5 stars

Cadence is a 10-year-old who is extremely shy and afraid to speak in front of people. Her mother is a singer who left the family to pursue her career, leaving Cadence behind with an over-protective father and an older brother. Cadence is conflicted because she loves to sing in the choir, but dre
Ten-year-old Cadence Jolly spends much of her time hiding in her small town of Harmony, Pennsylvania. She's a bit reserved and has chosen to hide her beautiful voice from the world. In fact, her father even calls her Mouse because of her shyness. After her mother abandoned her to follow a musical career, Cadence keeps hoping that she'll return or at the very least, stay in touch. But her mother is something of a traveler, and she's never one place for very long. When Cadence's church gets a new ...more
Mar 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: art
Cadence is introverted (and defends that as Perfectly Fine, as she ought) and very shy (in a way that is holding her back), and a major arc of the book is her overcoming her shyness to do what she loves and use the gifts she has.

A lot of different relationships here needed resolutions, and I was glad that they all got them! Cadence and Faith, Cadence and her father and Junior all together, Sophie and Mei-Mei, Cadence and her mom, Cadence and the town of Harmony at large. I didn't expect the kind
Ten year old Cadence has a beautiful singing voice. The trouble is, she is struggling to find her voice so to speak. She is shy, and because of this, some folks call her mouse. Cadence struggles to figure out why her mother left them a few years ago to pursue her own dream to become a singer. Cadence says her mother "always wanted (her) to be a singer. Like her. But I don't think she believed it would happen. I was always too shy. Was that why she left us?" (12).

The whole town has practically a
Sandy Brehl
This is a delight to read, with a charming central character, Cadence(Mouse), who is surrounded by loving (smothering) adults. Her natural love of and talent for music is a seldom-explored theme, especially as relates to Gospel music and the cultural patterns of a small southern church-centered community. So many elements are natural winners- the adorable pup, a missing-in-action mom, a sidebar struggle between older brother and dad, shifting peer drama and worries. Cadence is, by nature and pat ...more
Oct 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 30, 2019 rated it liked it
This is a very sweet story about a little girl and a community, a best friend or two or three, a dad and brother, a mom gone, gospel music, good food, good books, singing, church, promises, betrayals, fear, forgiveness, listening, God, love, life...

about learning how to not be a "Mouse" anymore when you have a lot of awesomeness inside just begging to overflow a bit...

about how to speak up for yourself, how to bloom, how to trust, how to be true to yourself.

I love the musical terminology applied
Suzanne Warr
Feb 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It's a rare thing to find a book that does such a superb job of showing the heart of a musician! This story is the tale of a sweet young girl called Mouse and how she grows into herself through the musical challenge to share her talent that she's set herself. It has a timeless feel without losing its contemporary edge, and was a delightful read! For the full spotlight--plus the cat's two cents--check stop by my blog, and happy reading! ...more
Kendi Rachow
May 07, 2018 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Overall this book was pretty great. I liked the growth of the characters throughout the book.
Even though the main story focused on Cadence's journey, we also saw how her brother, her friends, and her family grew as well.
Sometimes the pacing felt a little slow and sluggish.
Despite that I did enjoy the plot of the story and the way it progressed and I would recommend it to kids.
Cadence Jolly dream is to have a solo in the choir and become a singer. She is a little afraid of performing in front of people. She loves to learn and talk about grammar and astronomy People discover her voice in a recording not know it is her. Will she reveal her true singing identity in this angst-filled and culturally diverse story?
Tricia Price
I liked parts of this book--the depiction of the Black church was interesting, and the friendships seemed realistic for this age. But I had a hard time buying the premise that a girl who had sung in church choir her whole life would never have sung loud enough for anyone to notice that she had a good voice. I was pretty painfully shy when I was a kid, but I'm pretty sure the person next to me in the choir could hear my voice. ...more
Sara (lyrical.reads)
Jan 09, 2021 rated it really liked it
[ 3.5🌟]

Content Warnings: abandonment by parent

This story was very cute, and Cadence (the MC) had such a distinct voice that I loved reading. However, there were moments in the story that felt very disconnected, and while I enjoyed reading for the plot, I was more connected to Cadence, her shyness, and her strength.
Sep 18, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: cin
This is a great example of a book that would have benefited from enhanced e-publishing. Imagine reading this and then having the music play! Unfortunately, without that I think as time goes by this book will become dated.
Sara Truog
Nov 27, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: juvenile
Cute story about a shy girl who loves to sing. When a recording she makes gets anonymously leaked to her entire church, she has to decide if she wants to let someone else take the credit, or step into the spotlight herself.
I enjoyed this book and would happily recommend it!
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Sherri Winston has eight published works of fiction, and lives in Orlando, FL.

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