Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Give and Take” as Want to Read:
Give and Take
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Give and Take

4.57  ·  Rating details ·  107 ratings  ·  57 reviews
Twelve-year-old Maggie knows her new baby sister who smells like powder isn’t her sister for keeps. Izzie is a foster baby awaiting adoption. So in a day or a week, she’ll go to her forever family and all that sweetness will be gone. Except for those things Maggie’s secretly saving in the cardboard boxes in her closet and under her bed. Baby socks, binkies, and a button fr ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published October 15th 2019 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (Byr)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Give and Take, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Give and Take

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.57  · 
Rating details
 ·  107 ratings  ·  57 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Give and Take
Kate ☀️ Olson
(free review copy) Swartz has given the middle grade market yet another heartfelt story that will resonate with so many readers! In GIVE AND TAKE, 7th grader Maggie is dealing with major anxiety that manifests in hoarding behaviors, along with sadness about the death of her grandmother and uncertainty about her family's new role fostering infants before adoption. She is also on a trap-shooting team and is dealing with changes to her team. There are such strong family dynamics in the story, and I ...more
Victoria Coe
Mar 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If the blue whale has the biggest heart in the entire world, Maggie Hunt has the second biggest. She loves her family, her friends, and her animals so big and so hard, she wants to treasure every memory of the everyday wonderful of every single day. And she's terrified that she won't be able to do that without her treasures.

Maggie's treasures range from gum wrappers to a special necklace and everything in between. But when the treasures begin to get out of control, Maggie finds she's
Oct 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Interest Level: 3-6; Reading Level: 4.2

Do you like to collect things? Baseball cards...Coins...Action Figures? But what about when you start collecting things like gum wrappers, used plates and straws, milk cartons? Maggie is a fun-loving kid who has great friends, a loving family, and is a pro at trapshooting. However, Maggie has a lot of stress in her life. Her family is becoming a foster family for a newborn baby while she is awaiting her forever adopted family. Maggie loves Izzie
Kristin Crouch
May 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to the author for sharing an ARC of Give and Take with Collabookation.
Wowza, Elly Swartz does it again: creates a real (not perfect) family that I'd gladly live next door to. This story centers around Maggie, a big hearted girl who recently lost her grandma to dementia and it's complications. Despite her having so many wonderful things in her life: wonderful parents, a supportive grandpa nearby who knows when it's the right time to just sit together, an adoring little brother, a busy
Sep 23, 2019 rated it really liked it

Huge thank you to Raincoast for this ARC!

I am clearly a huge fan of books featuring turtle pets in them.

All hail Bert the Turtle.


Years ago, I read Elly Swartz's debut novel Finding Perfect, and adored it. Swartz has this amazing ability to tackle tough subjects in middle grade in such a way where it is both gentle and effective. Give & Take looks at twelve-year-old Maggie, who falls in love with a baby her parents are fostering, but is forced to learn that not everything in/>Huge
Oct 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Maggie's beloved grandmother recently died after a bout with dementia. And now her family is fostering a pre-adoption baby, Izzie. Maggie already was dealing with her anxiety by hoarding, but the knowledge that this tiny baby she loves so much is going to leave and won't remember her, is too much for Maggie. Terrified that she will start to forget things as well, her hoarding kicks into overdrive. After a scary day when she screams at her mother for touching a box of her things, her parents brin ...more
Neelam Babul
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A touching and heart warming story.

This is a heartfelt story about Maggie, who is struggling with many changes in her life, including a baby for whom her family is serving as a temporary foster family and the recent death of her beloved grandmother.

Before her death Maggie’s grandma suffering from dementia, forgot Maggie. This created a deep fear in Maggie about forgetting the important people and events in her life. In order to prevent herself from forgetting what she deems important in her li
Cynthia Parkhill
Oct 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
With Give and Take, author Elly Swartz addresses compulsive hoarding. The protagonist, 12-year-old Maggie, suffered a traumatic experience when her beloved grandmother suddenly no longer remembered who Maggie was.

More recently, Maggie faces having to surrender a foster-baby whom her family is caring for, and her trapshooting squad is losing its status as an all "Girl Power" team. One of her friends was transferred to another team and a boy now holds her position. So much upheaval ... and
Jul 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Elly Swartz has again brought a perfectly imperfect heroine to middle grade readers. Maggie, a champion skeet shooter, lives with her parents and brothers in a loving home. Maggie’s parents decide to become short term foster parents for babies who are awaiting their adoptive homes. Maggie and the boys are totally on board. But when Baby Isabelle joins the family, they all bond with her immediately. Maggie, who does not handle goodbyes well, begins to keep small insignificant (to others) items to ...more
Many thanks to EdelweissPlus and the publisher for providing me with an eARC of this title for review. All opinions are my own.

As someone who struggles with anxiety herself, this book hit REALLY close to home. While I couldn't relate to the hoarding issues that Maggie dealt with in the story, her fears about causing bad things to happen with her thoughts, her worries about forgetting important and happy memories, her struggles with letting go of things, all of that felt achingly real
Brittany Bays
Aug 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing

This. Book. Is. Sunshine. That's the best word of how this book made me feel. Maggie was such a lovable character from start to finish - possibly my favorite middle grade character I've ever read.

My favorite thing about this book is the tough topics it covers, so effortlessly. Death of a grandparent, seeing a therapist, short-term fostering, having compulsions/hoarding issues, tough
Sep 30, 2019 added it
This is another touching story, about a girl who is not perfect, but has a big heart, from Elly Swartz. Maggie is dealing with anxiety, sadness, and the fear of letting go, but with support of friends and family works through her challenges.
Laura Gardner
Jun 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Give and Take by @ellyswartzbooks (thanks for the free book for #kidlitexchange via @kate.olson.reads!) is a classic #mglit problem book about a young girl who is struggling with anxiety. Issues addressed include childhood hoarding, foster care, adoption, friendship problems and more. 4/5; recommended for grades 3+. Definitely recommend to readers who loved Finding Perfect!
Sarah Aronson
Mar 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Just woke up extra early to finish Elly Swartz's newest novel, GIVE AND TAKE. (I couldn't put it down!!!) I was so lucky to receive an early ARC through #booksojourn and Elly.

This book is overflowing with heart and yearning and the real fears kids experience when it comes to the confusing and painful nature of loss. It's also about friendship and family--and real and tough choices. And big emotions. Maggie and her family are interesting and will give young readers much to think about.
Apr 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I have been excited to read this book since I first heard about it! Elly writes about complex emotional struggles in children with such tenderness and understanding. In Give and Take, bighearted Maggie loves to save things - hurt or lost animals, the feelings of friends. When dementia causes her beloved grandmother to forget Maggie, she tries to save her own memories by hiding away a growing collection of objects. During this time, her family also begins to foster a newborn, whom Maggie instantl ...more
Mar 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Elly Swartz is a master storyteller who has a unique way with words. Her books are filled with heart and soul. Give and Take is no different. This powerful story of twelve year old Maggie’s journey will quickly become a favorite for middle grade readers whether they be children or adults.
Olga Barnes
May 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I cannot praise this book enough! It is so touching, so emotional, so very reflective of our kids' inner worlds! Up to now, I have not seen a lot of books that would include the complex dynamics of fostering a child - not from the standpoint of that child, but from the standpoint of other family members. This book is a first for me! It reflects the relationships between different generations within a family (those grandparents are SO important!), between siblings, friends, members of a team, hum ...more
Michelle Simpson
This is a heartfelt story about Maggie, who is struggling with the many changes in her life, including a baby for whom they are serving as a foster family. Before her death Maggie’s grandma (who suffered with dementia) forgot Maggie. This created a fear in Maggie about forgetting the important people and events in her life. She begins keeping all kinds of objects, including trash, to assure herself that she will remember what is important to her. She becomes obsessive and territorial about her c ...more
J. S.
Mar 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this incredibly engaging book and the heart-warming way Maggie navigates the hurtles she faces. Give and Take is a beautifully written, touching story that tackles important issues. Elly Swartz seamlessly weaves together each chapter so the reader is completely immersed in the plot twists and Maggie’s emotional growth. From the first to last page, I was pulled into Maggie’s world!
“Truth is, life’s filled with give and take. Details fade. Or even erase entirely. But love never leaves. It carves into your heart. It’s a forever thing.”

Maggie and her family have been through a very tragic experience. Maggie calls it the Forgot-me Day. It was the day her Nana no longer remembered her name or who she was. Maggie is devastated by this and the thought of something like that happening to her terrifies her, though she doesn’t tell anyone ... not even her best friend, Ava,
Katie Reilley
May 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to the author for sharing an ARC with our #bookexpedition group!

Twelve year old Maggie is going through changes in her life. Before she died, her grandma had dementia which caused her to forget Maggie. Maggie’s all-girl trapshooting team is being reconfigured and now includes a boy. Her parents have decided to foster a baby girl that Maggie fears will have to leave them soon.

Maggie has one of the biggest hearts I’ve ever read. After her grandma’s dementia, anxiety sets in, and she’s
Aug 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
About Give and Take: Maggie is a caring 12-year-old who loves her family and friends. Her daily life includes trapshooting with her friends at school (with her dad as the coach) and helping to care for Isabella, the family's foster baby. Maggie has 2 brothers, as well, who give her a run for her money. Maggie would love to call Izzy her sister, but mom and dad made it clear that this is a temporary arrangement.
"Temporary" haunts Maggie -- her grandmother recently passed, and didn't remem
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Maggie has a huge heart and loves so deeply that when she experiences loss, she suffers a “giant missing” inside. In Elly Swartz’s touching third novel, GIVE AND TAKE (set to release on October 15) you’ll fall in love with Maggie who is dealing with tremendous grief because of the second worst day of her life: her grandmother’s funeral last year. She is so worried that she’ll forget her precious memories of her friends and family because of the first worst day of her life: when her grandmother f ...more
Mandy Stallard
Jun 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: bookposse
Maggie keeps things that are sentimental to her and stores them in boxes in her room. She doesn't want to forget anyone or any experience like her grandmother forgot her. Everybody keeps mementos, but Maggie keeps items that most people throw away: gum wrappers, sticks, and empty milk cartons to name a few. If anyone in her family dares to get close to her boxes and find out her secret, she gets enraged. Maggie wants to hold onto everything and everyone she loves, so she is having an especially ...more
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
“My insides are filled with a missing that can’t be fixed with words.” (85) Twelve-year-old Maggie’s world seems to be filled with good-byes. It all began on the first worst day of her life—"Forgot Me Day,” the day her Nana forgot who Maggie was, and then the second worst day, the day Nana died. Maggie becomes anxious that she will forget what is special in her life, and she starts collecting mementoes of small moments. She hides boxes under her bed and in her closet, boxes filled with gifts but ...more
Oct 20, 2019 added it
Shelves: book-a-day
We cling to happy (and not so happy) memories of special places, events and people. We tuck them into the sacred corners of our mind to inspire and educate us, to rekindle passionate pursuits, and to keep the sparks of love and hope ignited. Collectively these moments comprise the story of our lives. They are how we connect to each other.

Many of us, at any age, can be forgetful but when you see an elderly person struggle and search for words during a conversation, you realize how dis
Sep 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received an electronic ARC from Macmillan Children's Publishing Group through NetGalley.
Swartz brings awareness to grief, fear and childhood hoarding. Maggie has struggled with her fear of forgetting ever since her grandmother's dementia caused her to forget Maggie. This anxiety causes her to save something from each memory so she won't forget too. She saves a variety of items that most regard as trash.
Her parents discover her stash of boxes and seek help for her. Readers see her time i
Elly Swartz has written another compelling and compassionate middle grade novel that opens minds and hearts to some of the fierce challenges our children face. In Give and Take we meet 12 year old Maggie whose grandmother recently passed away from dementia, whose family is temporarily fostering a newborn about to be adopted, and whose friend is bumped from their all-girl trap shooting team. Seems like Maggie is has had to say goodbye so much that she finds she can't let go of things and saving m ...more
Haley Shaffer
I’ve struggled with anxiety for my whole life, so when my four year old began chewing his shirt, having meltdowns when our plans would change, and started asking lots of what if questions I knew he needed help. And I knew it was okay even though people told me he’d grow out of it or he needed to toughen up.

This book spoke to my heart because I saw so much of myself and my child in it.

Maggie collects pieces of her life so she can remember moments, both big and small. But when she finds her mom
N. Moss
Jun 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I got to read an ARC of this book, and honestly, I didn't plan to read the whole thing. The cover is sort of BLAH which should not have anything to do with whether or not I read the book, but it didn't enchant me. Well, I read the first chapter and I was ENCHANTED. Maggie is the sweetest, most loving big sister (12 years old) but she is fearful, after having suffered some loss. Her family decides to embark on very short term fostering of newborns awaiting adoption papers, and Maggie is incredibl ...more
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Maybe He Just Likes You
  • Some Places More Than Others
  • My Jasper June
  • The Miraculous
  • Look Both Ways
  • The Tornado
  • More to the Story
  • All the Impossible Things
  • Count Me In
  • Roll with It
  • My Papi Has a Motorcycle
  • Allies
  • For Black Girls Like Me
  • Beverly, Right Here
  • Momentous Events in the Life of a Cactus
  • Song for a Whale
  • Shouting at the Rain
  • Other Words for Home
See similar books…
Elly Swartz loves writing for kids, Twizzlers, and anything with her family. Her debut novel, FINDING PERFECT (FSG 2016) is about twelve-year-old Molly, friendship, family, OCD, and a slam poetry competition that will determine everything. In her second book, SMART COOKIE (Scholastic, 2018), you meet the spunky and big-hearted Frankie. Frankie’s all about family with a dash of mischief and mystery ...more
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »