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Everywhere Blue

4.65  ·  Rating details ·  48 ratings  ·  17 reviews
A brother's disappearance turns one family upside down, revealing painful secrets that threaten the life they've always known.

After twelve-year-old Maddie's older brother vanishes from his college campus, her carefully ordered world falls apart. Nothing will fill the void of her beloved oldest sibling. When her parents fly out to Strum's college to search for answers,
Published June 2021 by Holiday House (first published 2021)
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Average rating 4.65  · 
Rating details
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Jul 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Lyrical, musical, and heart-wrenching, EVERYWHERE BLUE is a moving portrait of a family coming apart after a loss, and a 12yo girl's quest to keep her heart together.

This beautiful novel in verse begins when Maddie's older brother, Strum-- and her closest ally in the family-- goes missing. With her parents fully consumed by the search and her older sister finding refuge in a rebellion of her own, Maddie is largely left to her own devices to work through her sense of loss, and to try to hold on
Mar 16, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Madrigal “Maddie” Lovato’s well-ordered and carefully routinized world is shattered when her older brother disappears, leaving her to handle her own despair alone as her parents become consumed with the search, and her sister retreats into late nights with friends. Coping through both music and climate crisis advocacy with her peers, Maddie begins to make painful but necessary realizations about her family, and about her own need for help.

Joanne Rossmassler Fritz’s EVERYWHERE BLUE quite literal
Sam Subity
Apr 04, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This novel-in-verse powerfully explores family, belonging, and loss when the main character's older brother simply disappears one day without a trace. I particularly loved how Madrigal's emotions played out as an orchestra in her head as she struggles to deal with ensuing events, using music to attempt to cling to some semblance of order as she feels her life and family coming apart. Part mystery, part coming-of-age, and all heart, I know readers will race through the pages like I did as the sto ...more
Thank you Holiday House, Edelweiss, and Joanne Rossmassler Fritz for sharing this book with me for a review! I chose this book for two reasons-I kept hearing about it on Twitter and it's a book in verse. This book will grab you in IMMEDIATELY and you won't be able to put it down. Honestly, coming up with only three things about this book is really hard because there is so much. There is grief, family, siblings, friendships, music, climate change, young activists, and more. But, I here we go.
3 th
Dara Yoder
May 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Perfect book for me! Novel in verse, family, friendships! Maddie’s quest to find her missing brother and teen life in general! Loved it - can’t wait to book talk it up in the fall to my sixth graders!
Laura Melchor
May 21, 2021 rated it it was amazing
What a gripping book! I finished it in one day because I could not put it down. Maddie's story instantly draws readers in with the mystery of her older brother's disappearance and the way it cracks her family apart.

But over the course of the novel, Maddie peels back the layers of her family and we learn the cracks were already there. In many ways, Strum's disappearance forces the family to confront their differences and learn to accept each other for who they are.

In addition to the gorgeous, i
Chad Lucas
May 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I didn't want to put down this lyrical novel in verse about 12-year-old Maddie and her family's struggles after her big brother walks away from his college campus and disappears. The characters are so well-developed and human, and the family's fault lines feel so relatable and heartbreaking. Music fills every page of this book. Everywhere Blue will stick with me for a long time. ...more
Mar 27, 2021 rated it really liked it
Thank you to Edelweiss+ and the publisher for an eARC of this book.

This character-driven novel in verse filled with musical references is the story of a girl whose older brother goes missing and leaves his family disconnected and out of tune with each other. Each family member reacts Strum’s disappearance differently, but 12-year-old Maddie is closest to him and feels his absence intensely. Maddie also has to deal with her older sister’s estrangement, who reacts to Strum’s disappearance with lat
Jessica Vitalis
Jul 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is a lovely novel in verse that begins when Maddie's older brother walks away from his college campus, leaving his family without any clue to his whereabouts. Maddie is a wonderfully earnest main character who clings to even numbers and her oboe to feel safe. As the story progresses, we see her struggle to process her pain without letting it destroy her friendships or her family, although there may not be anything she can to do fix her broken relationship with her older sister, whose anger ...more
Eric Fritz
Jun 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
An amazing debut novel, and I'm not just saying that because I share a last name with the author. The poetry is moving and Maddie's story is both intense and heartwarming. ...more
Cliff Burke
May 22, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Within the first few pages I was immediately transported to autumn evenings practicing the saxophone, cracking a reed, and hoping I had another one so I didn’t have to coax my grandma into buying another box.

This is an often sad, incredibly real story of a shy, anxious 7th grader who wishes she was better at the oboe, closer to her siblings, and able to control the many changes her family undergoes in the year of the story.

It touches on environmental anxiety, the pain of watching older brother a
Halli Gomez
May 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I was thrilled to get an early copy of this beautiful middle grade novel. This story gripped me from the cover, which brings out all parts of the story in haunting detail. From the instruments to the butterflies, and solitary figures, it is intriguing and will get the attention of both kids and adults.

The story itself is beautifully written in verse and flows lyrically, like the music that is woven throughout. Maddie’s family is a musical family, from their names to their activities, and is a p
Ms. Yingling
Apr 04, 2021 rated it liked it
E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus

Maddie (aka Madrigal) lives in a musical family; her mother is a voice coach, and her father is a piano tuner and composer. Older sister Aria is in high school, and older brother Strum is away at college, which is why Maddie takes care of Strum's dog, Gizmo. She also takes oboe lessons, and is a whiz at math, going over to the high school for classes there. It's been a stressful few years for the family; Grandma Lovato died of cancer three years previously, and tw
Ellen Ramsey
Jun 13, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Word Music!
This lyrical novel in verse pulls you in from the opening chords, sustains you as Maddie struggles with brother’s disappearance, her older sister’s indifference, and her parents’ abandonment. The story ends with the perfect finale for a novel about the power of music, friendship, and love, and about the ability of a fractured family to reunite. Maddie’s story is one I will always carry in my heart.
Terry Jennings
Jun 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Everywhere Blue, by Joanne, Rossmassler Fritz, is a novel in verse which takes the reader along in a journey that starts before dusk. before she learns the truth about her brother. Coming from a musical family, and named, like her two siblings after musical terms, Maddi, short for Madrigal, is a seventh grader, the youngest of the three siblings. She was already alone, once her brother Strum went off to college and her high school sister Aria refused to acknowledge her. Still, she talked to Stru ...more
Mar 19, 2021 rated it liked it
I received an e-ARC of this title from the publisher, through Edelweiss+.

The story of Maddie's missing brother is heartbreaking, but the telling fell a little flat for me. I loved the musical theme woven throughout the story, but the story felt long (it was a quick read, though), and the ending felt a little abrupt.
Afoma (Reading Middle Grade)
May 18, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Everywhere Blue is a poignant, moving middle grade verse novel about family, mental health, music, and caring for the environment. This debut novel is excellently written, suspense-filled, and highly engaging. While the topic of a missing teen sibling may be triggering for some, the author handles the theme sensitively, focusing on Maddie’s challenges and the changes in her family. If you enjoy verse novels or books about music, you will adore this novel!

Read my full review on my blog.

Many thank
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Joanne Rossmassler Fritz was lucky enough to grow up in the Philadelphia suburbs, surrounded by books and classical music She has worked as an editorial assistant, a high school librarian and a Children's Bookseller. Joanne started writing in school, but didn't get serious about it until she survived her first brain aneurysm rupture in 2005. She joined SCBWI and kept writing. Her second brain aneu ...more

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