For any kid struggling with the challenges of starting a new school year, dealing with bullies, or just growing up in general, Eight Keys by Suzanne LaFleur is a great book.  Elise is at that precarious age between play-fighting as knights with her life-long friend, Franklin, and fitting into middle school with all the drama that entails.  Is she too babyish? Is she stupid or just lazy? Does everyone at school have it out for her?  Although Elise is surrounded by people who love her, she feels lost.  When she discovers a key with her name on it above Uncle Hugh’s workbench, she starts to unlock the doors that will help her find her way in the world.

Eight Keys is a lovely little book with just the right amount of drama, intrigue, and discovery to keep you turning the pages and feeling sad when it’s over.

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