Parents' Guide to

All We Know of Heaven

By Stephanie Dunnewind, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Ripped-from-headlines story of mistaken identity.

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A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 1 parent review

age 14+

Thought provoking good read

This was a wonderful read, but I also wouldn't recommend it for tweens.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (2 ):

Readers expecting an after-school special melodrama or a maudlin cautionary tale will instead find a layered, warts-and-all story here. It relates the impact of a car crash not only on its two victims but their families, friends, and whole community. Named an honorary prom princess, even the survivor knows it's just "because this thing happened to me." And with a modern, sick twist, someone posts a picture of her "smiling shyly in her tiara, on top of a gross topless photo on MyPlace."

Mitchard's imagery (purgatory is "sort of heaven's mudroom") and the omniscient narration gives intriguing insight into how events and people are perceived, but it also distances the reader instead of allowing them to get lost in the story. The momentum slows during the recovery, with an on-again, off-again romance woven in as the teens try to deal with the crash's repercussions. But the slower moments help readers develop a connection with sweet Maureen, who kisses a boy because she likes it and says whatever pops in her head because "in the brain, out the mouth."

Book Details

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