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Fighting Words by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
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Fighting Words

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Fighting Words by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
Paperback $8.99
Aug 10, 2021 | ISBN 9781984815705

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  • $8.99

    Aug 10, 2021 | ISBN 9781984815705 | Middle Grade (10 and up)

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  • $17.99

    Aug 11, 2020 | ISBN 9781984815682 | Middle Grade (10 and up)

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  • Aug 11, 2020 | ISBN 9781984815699 | Middle Grade (10 and up)

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  • Aug 11, 2020 | ISBN 9780593208601 | Middle Grade (10 and up)

    392 Minutes

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  • $50.00

    Aug 11, 2020 | ISBN 9780593214992 | Middle Grade (10 and up)

    390 Minutes

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Product Details


“Della’s matter-of-fact narration manages to be as funny and charming as it is devastatingly sad. . . . This is a novel about trauma [but] more than that, it’s a book about resilience, strength and healing. For every young reader who decides to wait and read it when they’re a little older, there will be others for whom this is the exact book they need right now.” New York Times Book Review

“Believable and immensely appealing, Suki, Francine, and especially Della light up [the] story . . . Readers will root for these sisters along every step of their daunting journey. Refusing to soft-pedal hard issues, the novel speaks with an astringent honesty, at once heartbreaking and hopeful.” —Kirkus (starred review)

Perfectly balances pathos and humor [while] also showcasing the astonishing strength and resilience of children to confront, and eventually heal from, trauma and sexual abuse. . . . Unforgettable.” The Horn Book (starred review)

“Always an engaging and smooth writer, Bradley here unfurls a tale that initially recalls Paterson’s classic Great Gilly Hopkins but then adds layers of complexity . . . It’s a sensitive exploration of the way people can suffer in different ways and need different things, and characterization is deft and vivid . . . Stirring . . . Satisfying . . . Rewarding.” BCCB (starred review)

“Despite the horrors the sisters have endured, there is humor and warmth in this multifaceted, brave novel. Bradley creates fully developed, believable characters that readers will root for. . . . Raw and honest, this ultimately empowering novel is an important book for readers of all ages.” SLJ (starred review)

“This story, no PSA, is an honest slice of a difficult life—unvarnished, painful, and raw, [and] Della is a powerhouse of a protagonist . . . Prepare to read furiously.” Booklist (starred review)

“Della’s tough, straightforward narration pulls no punches as she learns the power of using her ‘big mouth’ and inspires others to tell their stories when and how they are able. Sharp characterizations by Newbery Honoree Brubaker Bradley create an essential, powerful mirror and window for any reader.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Bradley handles these tough subjects in ways that are enlightening, empowering and—yes—uplifting . . . Fighting Words is a story readers will draw strength from, and Della is a heroine they’ll be unlikely to forget.” BookPage

“Gripping. Life-changing. Essential. Fighting Words is a testament to the power we have when we stand up, speak up, and stick together. Kimberly Brubaker Bradley’s talent is extraordinary. I am awe-struck.” —Donna Gephart, award-winning author of Lily and Dunkin

“One of the best books I’ve ever read. It will go down as one of the best books, one of the most important books, ever written for kids.” —Colby Sharp of Nerdy Book Club

“The remarkable thing about this book is how infinitely enjoyable it is, in spite of some of the terrible and terrifying content. I picked it up and simply found myself unable to put it down. The VOICE on its 10-year-old narrator Della is one for the history books. One of the best of the year.” —Betsy Bird for A Fuse #8 Production/SLJ
Fighting Words extend[s] the legacy of [Laurie Halse Anderson’s] Speak [and] meets the criteria of great children’s literature that manages to resonate with adults too. [Readers] will learn about mental health, poverty, addiction, the foster-care system, the importance of consent, and, finally, the importance of destigmatizing these all-too-common stories. The importance and value of speaking.” —Bitch Media

“Rather than shielding her readers, Kimberly Brubaker Bradley arms them with Fighting Words, a compassionate, truthful, and beautiful story about the trauma of sexual abuse and the remarkable power of sisterhood.” —Elana K. Arnold, Printz Honor-winning author of Damsel
“I am blown away. This is a powerful, necessary book about a difficult subject, written with honesty, tenderness, and consummate craft. Della’s story will burrow deep into your heart. Fighting Words may be Kimberly Brubaker Bradley’s best work yet.” —Barbara Dee, award-winning author of Maybe He Just Likes You

“I wish all children were lucky enough that the first time they encountered dark and difficult things, it was not through a swift and sudden rift in their real lives, but within the safe pages of a story. This beautiful, heartbreaking, and hopeful book is a place where readers can build strength and resilience, page by page, with the gift of opening, closing, and discussing in their own time and at their own pace. And for those who have, till now, felt alone in their hurtful past, this is a book that lets them know they have never been alone. And never will be.” —Kat Yeh, award-winning author of The Truth About Twinkie Pie

“Absolutely magnificent. The voice on this girl—I cannot get Della out of my head or my heart. Fighting Words is raw, it is real, it is necessary, a must-read for children and their adults—a total triumph in all ways.” —Holly Goldberg Sloan, New York Times bestselling author of Counting by 7s


Newbery Honor Book WINNER

California Young Reader Medal NOMINEE

Iowa Teen Book Award NOMINEE

Kansas William Allen White Children’s Book Award NOMINEE

Maryland Black-Eyed Susan Award NOMINEE

Michigan Reading Association Great Lakes Book Award NOMINEE

Nebraska Golden Sower Award NOMINEE

New Hampshire Great Stone Face Children’s Book Award NOMINEE

South Carolina Junior Book Award NOMINEE

Tennessee Volunteer State Book Award NOMINEE

ALSC Notable Children’s Books SELECTION

Booklist Top of the List SELECTION

Boston Globe Best Book of the Year SELECTION

Capitol Choices Noteworthy Book for Children’s and Teens SELECTION

Chicago Public Library Best Books SELECTION

Cooperative Children’s Book Center Choices SELECTION

Horn Book Fanfare SELECTION

Junior Library Guild Selection SELECTION

Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year SELECTION

Oklahoma Sequoyah Children’s Book Master List SELECTION

School Library Journal Best Book of the Year SELECTION

Georgia Children’s Book Award FINALIST

Kirkus Prize for Young Readers’ Literature FINALIST

Boston Globe-Horn Book Award HONOR

Golden Kite Award for Fiction HONOR

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