HarperCollins. May 2024. 288p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9780063045354.
Gr 4-7–This hilarious and heartfelt middle grade novel answers the age-old question: What are boys really thinking?! Protagonist Clara, a Hawaiian tween, is gifted with the answer. After gaining the magical power of listening that has been passed down in her family for generations, Clara is finally able to understand what the boys around her are thinking—she becomes ‘clairboyant.’ Clara gains these powers early on in the novel, giving the story momentum. Despite some funny bumps along the way, Clara learns how to use her powers for good, helping her male friends work through their insecurities while gaining confidence in herself and learning powerful lessons about honesty, vulnerability, and trust. Clara’s roots in her native Hawaiian culture is an equally powerful theme in the novel, as she engages with community elders like her grandma Tūtū and her bus driver Kumu Maka, who is māhū (gender nonconforming), to strengthen her connection to the natural landscape and people on the island she calls home.
VERDICT Providing necessary AANHPI representation, humor, and instant middle school appeal, this novel is a first purchase.

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