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Up for Air

4.58  ·  Rating details ·  52 ratings  ·  29 reviews
Thirteen-year-old Annabelle struggles in school, no matter how hard she tries. But as soon as she dives into the pool, she’s unstoppable. She’s the fastest girl on the middle school swim team, and when she’s asked to join the high school team over the summer, everything changes. Suddenly, she’s got new friends, and a high school boy starts treating her like she’s somebody ...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Expected publication: May 7th 2019 by Amulet Books
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4.58  · 
Rating details
 ·  52 ratings  ·  29 reviews

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Kate Olson
Mar 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
(free review copy) MIDDLE SCHOOL PERFECTION. Yup, middle school, not middle grade. This one is about an almost-8th-grader and there is a whole lot of content about romantic feelings and inclusion of some alcohol consumption - I won't be buying this for my elementary library but it's a must-purchase for middle schools. This story brought me back to my own swim team days, my earliest crushes on high school lifeguards and all of the trauma that middle school relationships can be. The setting was id ...more
Thanks to the @KidLitExchange network for the review copy of this book--all opinions are my own.

Up for Air is an exceptional book for middle grade readers who are ready to transition to more mature books but aren't quite ready for YA. Like Annabelle, a rising 8th grader who is joining the high school swim team, readers who feel stuck in the in-between of being a little kid and a teen will relate to this book. Laurie Morrison writes a compelling picture of a girl who is trying to find where she
Nov 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I rarely ask an author for a copy of an ARC, but I really wanted to read Laurie’s upcoming book, UP FOR AIR. I loved EVERY SHINY THING, which she co-wrote with Cordelia Jensen, and I couldn’t wait to read Annabelle’s story because I knew it was about a swimmer, and it was an upper middle grade read.

What I loved about this book: UP FOR AIR addresses a lot of issues very relatable to middle schoolers. Annabelle struggles at school. She and her best friends, Jeremy and Mia, hit new territory in the
Tucker (TuckerTheReader)
This book is totally gonna shatter my heart into a million pieces but I still want it.
Afoma Umesi
Dec 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thanks to the publisher for an e-galley! Annabelle is a fantastic swimmer who happens to have learning difficulties. She’s happy to finally be getting something right when she’s moved up to the high school team in the summer. However, things get a bit complicated when an older boy starts showing her attention and her estranged father seems to want to return to her life.

In UP FOR AIR, Laurie Morrison perfectly captures the issues of competitive female friendships, the desire to be liked and acce
Karen McKenna
Apr 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Although many ages can relate to this book, it is the perfect book for middle school students. There is nothing so mature that I would be concerned about my youngest students reading this book, but Anabelle is in the summer before her 8th grade year, and her longing to be accepted by the high school crowd is a feeling that will appeal to my oldest youngest students.

Embarrassed by accommodations, and frustrated when they don't seem to be enough either, school is a struggle for Anabelle. In the po
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: writer-friends
I was lucky enough to read an advanced copy of UP FOR AIR, and holy bananas, could I relate to poor Annabelle. From her struggles in school, to feeling on the fringes of everyone else's lives, to her friend-troubles and her first real crush, it was so authentic and real. I couldn't recommend it enough!
Jenn Bishop
Nov 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Morrison grabs readers from the very first page with a character that is utterly relatable. Rising eighth grader Annabelle struggles in the classroom. She feels like she doesn't quite fit in with her super-successful mother and stepfather, and as much as her stepfather is there for her, she yearns for a connection with her father, who she hasn't seen in years. The one place Annabelle feels at home is in the pool, where she excels. She's so good, in fact, that this summer she's been asked to swim ...more
Laura Gardner
Dec 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐/5 for UP FOR AIR, which comes out next May. Thanks to author @laurielmorrison for sharing this book with #kidlitexchange! All opinions are my own.
Oh, middle school. All the memories and emotions of my own middle school experience are still very fresh for me. Laurie Morrison has captured the angst and drama of the late middle school years just perfectly in UP FOR AIR, a book about competitive swimmer Annabelle in the summer before 8th grade. For one thing, Annabelle astutely observes tha
Katie Reilley
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to the author and publisher for sharing an ARC of Annabelle’s story with our #bookexpedition group!

Up for Air centers around Annabelle, a seventh grader heading into summer. She’s looking forward to the break from school, which is difficult for her. She’s a fantastic swimmer who’s been asked to compete up with the high school team, and she couldn’t be more excited, especially after Connor, a 15 year old swimmer, starts to show her attention.

As the parent of a daughter the same age as
Feb 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
For Annabelle, school is incredibly difficult for her. When she swims, she is totally in her element and really shines! When she gets asked to swim on the HS team as an 8th grader, it’s a great honor. But being on this team means she must spend time away from her studies and her friends. As she struggles with finding her place on the team and proving she belongs there, she lands herself in some hot water with her family. There are so many important life lessons in this #mglit book about friendsh ...more
Jan 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
I finished this upper middle grade read today and really enjoyed its look at a girl struggling to with the transition between middle and high school. Annabelle seems to want to grow up a little faster than she should, and watching her thinking change as she navigates might be a good window for young readers and a mirror for older readers. 4.5 stars.
Dec 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A perfect book for my middle school classroom library! I loved this book so much, I almost don’t want to share it with the others in my ARC reviewing group! But when this book is officially released in May 2019, I’ll be sure to purchase extra copies for my classroom.

I know my students will want to read all about the main character, Annabelle, as she navigates rough waters both in and out of the swimming pool. Though she faces academic challenges in school, Annabelle is a wiz on her middle schoo
Ms. Yingling
Mar 07, 2019 rated it liked it
E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus

As the last day of school rolls around, Annabelle is stressed because she is doing poorly yet again on a test, and she fears that she will loose her scholarship to the fancy private school she attends. She excels at swimming, and being at the pool helps her handled the other stressors in her life. These includes her mom and step dad, Mitch, who are good about picking her up for rides, supportive of her learning disabilities, and strict about her behavior, but who
Dec 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Adolescence is hard. Seventh grader Annabelle is not a great student. She studies hard, is allowed extra time on tests, and is tutored at lunchtime, but her grades remain C’s. She sees how her friends pity her when tests are given out, and she is afraid of losing her scholarship to the boarding school where she is a day student. But the one place Annabelle does not have to struggle is in the swimming pool where she is the fastest swimmer on the middle grade summer swim team.

When Annabelle is inv
Jan 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
An engaging read about all the Venn diagrams of friendship & family - where we fit, where we don't, and how those perceptions are colored by our own biases. Protagonist Annabelle is pulled in so many directions. She's an island kid at a mostly-resident boarding school. She feels like academically, she's behind everyone else . . . and it does seem from the text that she has some accommodations for learning disabilities, but it's never really clear whether those are actual, or imposed by the r ...more
Laura Sibson
Nov 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I'm so grateful to have read an ARC of Laurie Morrison's solo middle grade debut Up For Air. The story is just right for older middle schoolers, especially those students who love to read, but are too old for typical middle grade books and aren't yet ready to tackle the subject matter of young adult books. Morrison has a talent for writing relatable characters with a touch of humor. In this book in particular, she brings the Cape Cod summer to life with rich detail. It's easy to imagine that you ...more
Feb 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
@kidlitexchange #partner
Thank you to the #kidlitexchange network and publisher @abramskids for the review copy of this book. Any opinions are my own.

UP FOR AIR by Laurie Morrison

Annabelle’s ready for summer. She can’t wait to spend time with her friends Mia and Jeremy, riding bikes, eating ice cream, and lounging at the beach. What she’s really excited for though, is summer swim team.

Annabelle struggles in school, and is embarrassed and frustrated by her learning difficulties. She leaves all of
Michelle Kidwell
Mar 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing

Up for Air
by Laurie Morrison


Amulet Books

Children’s Fiction , Middle Grade

Pub Date 07 May 2019

I am reviewing a copy of Up For Air through Abrahams Kids and Netgalley:

It doesn’t matter how hard Annabelle tries, she still struggles in school. The second she dives into the pool though she is unstoppable. Annabelle is the fastest swimmer on her middle school swim team over the summer she is asked to join the high school swim team changing everything.

Suddenly Annabelle has new friends and
Deanna Holdsworth
Mar 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a great book! Loved it from beginning to end, I think because I could relate to Annabelle.
Trying to figure out life during the summer of her 8th grade year Annabelle isn't sure she will make it through the summer. She has been invited to swim with the High School team for the summer season and enjoys being with the older swimmers. When one High School boy begins to flirt with her she thinks it is more than it is (don't we all at this age). She has heard from her father, who she has not
Mar 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Readers will identify with Annabelle's coming of age middle school story and struggles from the start. She is a likable character who has issues with her academic abilities, but yet shines on the swim team. Most middle schoolers will see themselves in Annabelle as she navigates friend drama, along with attention from a cute high school boy that develops into a crush. She feels inadequate due to the problems she has with school even though she has a supportive, involved mom & step-dad. I thin ...more
Diane Magras
Mar 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This poignant story explores a summer where an incoming 8th grader who struggles with school is dealing with changing friendships as she's invited onto a high school swim team after being a big star on her middle grade one, and finds the friendships there a bit too much. The author beautifully represents the tension of this age, the pull of adulthood versus childhood, and the dangers of growing up too quickly. Beautiful atmosphere of the New England coast, and strong characters make this a power ...more
Jenny Berlin
Jan 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
My first book of 2019 will be hard to beat. I loved Annabelle. She was original, authentic and genuine. This is the perfect book for a middle grade classroom library; topics are all relateable-trying to fit in with an older crowd, seeking attention from a boy, struggling in school, navigating changing friendships.
Michele Knott
Having a competitive swimmer and being a swimmer myself made this book so fun to read. There are not too many books about swimming so loved the little details in this one.
Love the cover, but it does give the appearance that the book leans towards the younger end of middle grade fiction. This is definitely a book got middle school readers.
Bonnie Grover
Feb 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you #BookPosse for the early read! What a great read for middle school students. Annabelle is a swimmer who finds herself in icy water. She has to find the courage to “get back in the pool” and navigate through boys & friends & parents.@LaurieLMorrison @abramskids ...more
Mandy Stallard
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bookposse
I needed a book like this when I was stuck in between wanting to be grown and scared of what being older involved: parties, boys, and bad decisions. Annabelle’s story will strike a chord with tweens. It certainly brought back many angst-filled memories for me. ...more
Remy Lai
Dec 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Annabelle is dealing with changes in her long-time friendship, a romantic crush, studies and her estranged dad. This is such a great book that bridges the gap between MG and YA. Must read!
Dec 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed this tale that I think many readers will be able to relate to as they navigate life’s complexities. Well done! ...more
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Goodreads Librari...: please combine: duplicate edition 4 18 Nov 07, 2018 12:50PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Incorrect cover image 7 20 Nov 06, 2018 03:41PM  
Laurie Morrison lives in Philadelphia, where she writes middle grade novels, reads voraciously, and drinks a lot of iced coffee, even when it isn't really iced coffee weather. She taught middle school English for ten years and has immense respect and affection for middle schoolers' humor, thoughtfulness, and passion for fairness; that's why she loves to write for an older middle grade audience. He ...more
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