Review: What Happens Next by Claire Swinarski

What Happens Next by Claire Swinarski

What Happens Next
Claire Swinarski
Published May 19, 2020

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indiebound | Goodreads

About What Happens Next

In this heartfelt and accessible middle grade novel perfect for fans of THE THING ABOUT JELLYFISH, a young girl throws herself into solving a local mystery to keep from missing her older sister, who has been sent to an eating disorder treatment facility.

Astronomy-obsessed Abby McCourt should be thrilled about the solar eclipse her small town of Moose Junction is about to witness, but she’s not. After her older sister Blair was sent away for an eating disorder, Abby has been in a funk.

Desperate to dull the pain her sister’s absence has left, she teams up with a visiting astronomer to help track down his long-lost telescope. Though this is supposed to take Abby’s mind off the distance between her and Blair, what she finds may bring her closer to her sister than she ever thought possible.

What Happens Next on Goodreads

My Review

This book celebrates some amazing things: the bonds of sisterhood, small towns, and the study of astronomy. Abby has two sisters, and complex relationships with each of them. She feels like she’s losing them for different reasons.

As she tells her story in two different timelines, we learn what her relationships with her sisters looked like before, and how they’ve changed. One timeline follows the present, where Abby’s sister is at a rehab facility and Abby is working toward helping a famous astronomer find his telescope. We also get scenes moving further into the past that show Abby’s sister’s downward spiral and hint at what led the astronomer to her small town in the Northwoods.

I loved the story of Abby and her sisters and her plans to fix everything through finding the telescope. Abby is sweet and strong and quietly grieving for her relationships with her sisters. She drew me in right away and I couldn’t help rooting for her through every page of this story.

Readers who enjoyed THE SPACE BETWEEN LOST AND FOUND by Sandy Stark-McGinnis or THE QUEEN BEE AND ME by Gillian McDunn need to check this one out!

What Happens Next on Amazon

Content Notes

Recommended for Ages 8 to 12.

All the main characters are white.

Profanity/Crude Language Content

Romance/Sexual Content

Spiritual Content

Violent Content

Drug Content

Note: I received a free copy of WHAT HAPPENS NEXT in exchange for my honest review. This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support the costs of running this blog.

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About Kasey

Reads things. Writes things. Fluent in sarcasm. Willful optimist. Cat companion, chocolate connoisseur, coffee drinker. There are some who call me Mom.

2 Responses to Review: What Happens Next by Claire Swinarski

  1. Dave says:

    Great review, thanks for sharing, looks like a really interesting book!