Shelter by Christie Matheson
Genre: Middle Grade Contemporary
Publishing Date: October 12, 2021
Perfect for fans of One for the Murphys and Paper Things, this heart-wrenching middle grade debut considers homelessness from one girl’s perspective and explores deep truths about the resounding impact of empathy.
Fifth grade can be tough for anyone. There are cliques and mean kids and homework and surprise math tests. But after tragedy strikes her family, almost-eleven-year-old Maya has a painful secret that makes many days feel nearly impossible.
And today might be Maya’s toughest yet. Her family is on edge, she needs to travel alone across the city, a bully is out to get her, and Maya has to face this winter’s biggest rainstorm without a coat or an umbrella.
But even on the rainiest days, there’s hope that the sun will come out soon.
Emotional and compassionate, Shelter looks at homelessness through one girl’s eyes and explores the power of empathy, friendship, and love.
About the Author:
Christie Matheson is the author and illustrator of many picture books, including Tap the Magic Tree, Touch the Brightest Star, and Bird Watch. Shelter is her first novel. She lives in San Francisco with her family. Find her on Instagram at @christiematheson.
First off I would again like to thank TBR & Beyond Blog Tours for arranging an amazing tour for an amazing book and to the publishers for sending me a Netgalley Arc.
This book is so important I can't put into words how I felt and am feeling still to this day and mainly why I am just reviewing the book now. Christie has written about an important topic of homelessness which is a world wide problem in such a stunning and moving way your heart breaks. I am in the UK there are loads of new housing being built but is way too expensive for a person to actually move and they are being bought people from outside and landlords even renting is expensive too.
Maya was a fantastic main character as she went through her day from leaving the shelter to travelling to school which for a young girl must of been hard and then go through the school day we get to see and hear what happens to her. This style of writing was amazing I felt that I was Maya even though I am and adult. I felt her pain being unable to tell her best friend Abby why she could not have a sleepover and Maya having all her important possessions in her rucksack. For me the rucksack was everything Maya cherished she knew she was loved and we also find out the story behind how Maya and her family came to live at the Shelter and it is heart breaking. What is also scary the book shows the reader that this could happen to anyone at any time. The book also shows us that having everything you want does not make a person happy and Christie shows that through Sloan who is not a very nice person who makes people feel worthless.
I am so glad I read this book and it actually made me think and question a lot of things and would be the perfect book to bring up such important topics as homelessness.
Again Shelter made me cry a lot and made me realise just how important it is to cherish what you already have. There was no doubt in mind at all that Shelter deserves 5 whopping stars.