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A Good Kind of Trouble

4.50  ·  Rating details ·  86 ratings  ·  37 reviews
From debut author Lisa Moore Ramée comes this funny and big-hearted debut middle grade novel about friendship, family, and standing up for what’s right, perfect for fans of Angie Thomas’s The Hate U Give and the novels of Renée Watson and Jason Reynolds.

Twelve-year-old Shayla is allergic to trouble. All she wants to do is to follow the rules. (Oh, and she’d also like to ma
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published March 12th 2019 by Balzer + Bray
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Lisa Ramee I love the main character, Shayla. But a strong second would be Bernard.
Lisa Ramee The main inspiration was my experiences in junior high and how those were mirrored so hard when my daughter started junior high. It seems like the…moreThe main inspiration was my experiences in junior high and how those were mirrored so hard when my daughter started junior high. It seems like the time in many people's lives where race starts to matter. (less)

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4.50  · 
Rating details
 ·  86 ratings  ·  37 reviews

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Adriana (SaltyBadgerBooks)
Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, arc
I couldn't put this book down, and was so excited to be able to read it! I cannot wait for it to be released and to own a physical copy! It was a great coming of age middle grade novel! There were so many layers to it and you should all already have this preordered!
Mar 05, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: review-books
A Good Kind of Trouble attempted to do what The Hate U Give did for the YA audience—explore race issues, and race tensions but for an even younger audience.

But, like, THUG, it barely scratched the surface. Unlike, THUG, however, it being tamer made sense, considering the age of the intended audience.

Twelve-year-old Shayla has always been on the outskirts of her blackness—not unaware, but she hasn’t yet come into the understanding of what it means to be black in today’s America.

Then, another bl
Mar 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really cool way of showing how younger teens can engage in social justice (and how adults are always trying to tell them to be nice and also ignore their voices). Loved Shayla’s parents - encouraging her to use her voice.
Ms. Yingling
Jan 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

Shayla is a good kid who doesn't like to be in trouble. Her older sister, Hana, is outspoken and interested in protests, but not Shayla. She's the kind of kid who will pick up a desk that has been knocked over by someone else so the her teacher doesn't get upset with the class. She likes hanging out with her friends Julia and Isabella, and doesn't understand why other people think it's weird that they are Japanese American and Latinx and not black. There's a lot of frien
Natasha Diaz
Oct 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a multiracial girl who grew up feeling like I wasn't enough of anything, I wish I had this book to know I wasn't alone. As Shayla navigates her existence as a young Black woman in America, she is forced to come to terms with the inherent racism ingrained in the US school systems, prejudices within communities of color about befriending people from other races, and the unfair expectations placed on young Black men all over the world. But when she decides to put herself on the line to speak out ...more
Aug 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, kids
Quick to read, hard to put down, and I can already tell that it will stay with me forever. I loved the story so much. Shayla (and her friends & family) are wonderful characters. The writing is honest and perfectly true-to-life, and also very funny at times. I consider it a MUST READ, both for its frank discussion of Black Lives Matter and for its on-the-nose portrayal of Shayla growing up and learning to think "out loud." Highly recommended. I loved it!
Kelly Hager
Feb 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this middlegrade so much! Shayla reminds me a lot of me as a kid: quiet, almost desperate not to get in trouble and sticking close to a group of friends. But, like a lot of us learn, she starts to see that maybe there are things that are worse than getting in trouble. It's important to care about things and to talk about things that matter, even if they make people uncomfortable.

This is about social justice but it's also about starting to navigate a new school with new people and having f
Adiba Jaigirdar
Aug 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arcs, mg
This book wasn't quite what I was expecting it to be but I really enjoyed it!

It's a pretty quiet book about a young black girl who is learning to navigate the world around her and understanding that blackness can come with its own set of burdens that other people don't have to deal with.

There's a theme of police violence that mostly exists in the background. There was a shooting of an unarmed black man and an ongoing trial for almost the length of the book. Even though it's not always the most
Quinn Sosna-Spear
“For as long as I wanted to write a novel, I wanted to write one about race and how we deal about it at a young age (. . .) All we are saying, are still saying, is we matter. Too. Also. We do.”

A GOOD KIND OF TROUBLE is a beautifully-written, authentic, important, and, perhaps most of all, enjoyable read.

Ramée has constructed a very effective structure that utilizes first-person narrative and clever journal entries. The story starts with strong action and conflict that resolves in the end in a v
Suzanne Morrone
Sep 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone.
This is a wonderful book about a girl who doesn’t want to get in trouble. She is black and her best friends are Japanese and Puerto Rican. They call themselves The United Nations. But set against the backdrop of Black Lives Matter, and the discussion of race stereotyping, of why black people may have a harder time than other POC along with all the MG angst that really rings true, just starting to learn how to navigate all the social skills needed to be a teenager, Shayla learns sometimes there a ...more
I remember meeting this author for a brief moment as she was buying Tyler Johnson Was Here, and with her book only a few days away from its launch party (which I will sadly have to miss due to commitments at my other job), I was very happy to see an ARC available in a box in the office at work. So I've taken it for a quick weekend read and review, and let me tell you, though MG isn't quite my bread and butter like YA, this is already one of the best books of the year right here.

Not unlike Tyler
Shayla is just starting middle school and along with her best friends, hopes she'll have a smooth and painless year. She likes to ride the middle, being a good kid and staying away from any trouble. But she soon finds her friends pulling away from her, and, little by little, she begins to wonder what it was she's done to see the friendships fracturing and changing.

Shayla's big sister is involved in local activism and specifically, the Black Lives Matter movement. Shayla's never wanted to get in
I just finished reading A GOOD KIND OF TROUBLE by @leeseray, and this story is going to stick with me for a long time. This is a very special middle grade debut, and I’m grateful I got to read the ARC that the author shared with #collabookation . I can’t wait for this book to be out in March so everyone can read it! I absolutely loved it and will be recommending it widely!
This is an enlightening, heartbreaking, important look at the impact it has on a twelve-year-old black girl to grow up seei
Kristin Crouch
Jan 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to the author for providing Collabookation an ARC for review.
A Good Kind of Trouble is the story of Shayla, a seventh grader who is seeing her world change before her eyes. Her tightest friendships are shifting, and she's left to wonder if they really are the United Nations they've always called themselves. Her crush isn't reciprocating, she's been paired with the worst lab partner she can imagine, and track is proving much harder than she had anticipated.
Every one of these storylines
Kathy Ellen Davis
Shayla is happy with where things stand at school. She’s got not one but TWO best friends. Okay, she’d rather have that cute boy in her class as a lab partner, but at least she’s still got class with him. And she’s doing track this year too. So 7th grade is pretty much set.

Except one of her friends starts to drift away, and several times Shay wants to stand up and say something but doesn’t want to cause trouble. Plus she’s pretty sure this boy likes her that she has no interest in. And she start
Kristin Thorsness
In A GOOD KIND OF TROUBLE, rule-following Shayla learns that things change in middle school. Friendships she thought were rock solid begin to drift apart, crushes (both reciprocated and not) complicate things, and she’s forced to confront her own assumptions about the people around her and to decide whether it’s OK to break rules in order to stand up for what she knows is right.

As a former 5th and 6th grade teacher, I would strongly encourage educators to get this funny, heartbreaking, and ultim
Erika Kraus
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I won this book in the first reads giveaway! What an inspiring read for young women, especially those interested in advocating for African-American rights. My niece and I read this together and adored the story.
Jess Redman
Dec 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A GOOD KIND OF TROUBLE is a book that needs to be read in schools NOW. This smart, sharp, so-relatable story follows Shayla, a seventh grader who's allergic to trouble. But middle school is inherently trouble-filled, and Shay finds herself facing friendship shifts, new crushes, and a growing awareness of what it means to be black in America. As she learns more and more about the injustices she sees around her and about her own identity, Shay has to decide whether she's going to use her voice and ...more
Dec 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I received an ARC copy from a Goodreads giveaway.
This was an amazing and beautifully written book. It is very realistic and touching. It was very enjoyable and difficult to put down.
Taylor B.
Aug 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was fortunate enough to read an earlier draft of this book. This book is a must read. Seriously. The story, the voice, the characters--I loved it all. This book tackles difficult issues related to race and friendship with such authenticity. It felt real and timely. I learned a lot from watching Shayla's journey to try to understand what is happening at her school, with her friends, and in her community. It is so hard to make sense of what is happening right now with all the shootings, the hatr ...more
Casey Jo
Oct 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
YES YES YES! A book of a kid finding her place in Black Lives Matter and activism, and how it's important to know when to break the rules. Inspiring and hopeful, but also clear that you need to DO something if you ever hope for things to change.

(view spoiler)
Christine Stamper
Sep 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade
A beautiful debut novel in the vein of The Hate U Give and All American Boys, but with a younger audience in mind. Shayla's entrance to middle school is not smooth; she misses the constant companionship of her best friends, and racial tensions are coming to a boil around the trial of a police shooting of an unarmed woman. The text skillfully weaves these elements together, showing that activism and day-to-day drama are both important and impactful.
Joshua Levy
Oct 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I’m so grateful that I got to read A GOOD KIND OF TROUBLE. Instructive, grounded, and all-around warm-hearted, this book is sure to capture the attention of kids of all backgrounds. A focused story, in our particular moment, it also perfectly reflects universal themes and struggles of middle-grade readers: challenges of friendship, finding a unique voice, doing what’s right in the face of real pressure. Read it!
Matthew Archibald
I really enjoyed this book. It seemed like a pretty realistic depiction of how everything seems so much worse to a middle school girl than it does to us well-adjusted adults. The treatment of race was ubiquitous enough to be a bit jarring to my white-privileged sensibilities.
Sep 26, 2018 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, kids
Angie Thomas was asked if she'd ever do a young-readers edition of The Hate U Give. She said no, but suggested this book for middle-grade readers.
Dec 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: diverse
Feb 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arcs
Edelweiss+ provided me a DRC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

At first I was a little put off by the simplistic language in this one, and I felt that nothing was explored in enough depth...but I enjoyed the story more and more as it went on. I think the simplistic nature and short chapters will appeal to struggling readers--and middle school students in general. Shayla struggles with a lot of things that most middle school students do: crushes, conflicts with friends, judging people
Feb 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really loved Shay’s story - she is so real, so relatable as a 7th grade girl “coming of age” in a world in which she feels both pride and confusion about being Black. While her family and community watches to see the outcome of a police shooting case, Shay herself questions the “rules” she should follow, both stated and unsaid.
This is such an important book for young people to read and consider what would push them to stand up and make a statement, even if it got them in trouble. The BLM move
Feb 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
A Good Kind of Trouble is a compelling MG novel for young readers. Readers who enjoy this book may someday look to read The Hate You Give. Author, Lisa Moore Ramee, crafts a narrative that explores multiple perspectives of the Black Lives Matter movement through Shayla's evolving relationships with her two best friends, her family, and other students at her middle school. This book may be a first glimpse for some readers into issues that schools and families often shelter them from. While it exp ...more
Feb 18, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I agree with the author of this book. All lives matter and it is important for all kids to feel represented in the literature they read. From the author's letter at the beginning of the book, her intention is clear and from the reviews that have already been posted it is evident that many agree with the execution of her plan. From my vantage point as the wife of a police sergeant with 30 years of experience I must add an additional dimension to the dialogue. There is a trend in juvenile literatu ...more
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