Repairing the World

repairing the world linda epstein

When you have a best friend, a friend who really "gets" you and loves who you are, the world is a very special place.  Daisy has that special friend, Ruby.  The two girls are very different.  Ruby is always ready to try something new, to risk, and to see the magic and believe in the magic in the world around her.  Daisy is more hesitant and afraid.  She needs Ruby by her side to be willing to reach beyond her fears and when she does she is so glad.  Magic happens.

So, knowing this about Daisy, imagine the moment when she learns that her best friend, Ruby, has been killed in an accident.

This is a story about how hard it is when life shocks you and takes away something precious and priceless.  This is also a story about a boy who is fighting a difficult battle in his own life.  This is the story of how friendship can come and find you again.

Throughout the journey back to trusting life again, Daisy has the support of her family and she also has the support of her Jewish faith and all of its traditions and rituals.  Interesting to see how her faith becomes real in her life at a time she needs it the most.

Recommended by:  Barb Langridge,


A young girl grapples with her grief over a tragic loss with the help of a new perspective from Hebrew school and supportive new friends in this heartfelt middle grade novel about learning to look forward.

Twelve-year-old Daisy and Ruby are totally inseparable. They’ve grown up together, and Daisy has always counted on having Ruby there to pave the way, encourage her to try new things, and to see the magic in the world. Then Ruby is killed in a tragic accident while on vacation, and Daisy’s life is shattered.

Now Daisy finds herself having to face the big things in her life—like starting middle school and becoming a big sister—without her best friend. It’s hard when you feel sad all the time. But thanks to new friends, new insights, and supportive family members, Daisy is able to see what life after Ruby can look like. And as she reaches beyond that to help repair the world around her, she is reminded that friendship is eternal, and that magic can be found in the presence of anyone who chooses to embrace it.---from the publisher

352 pages                                        978-1534498556                             Ages 9-12

Keywords:  grief, loss, death and dying, friends, friendship, transformation, resilience, healing, girls and women, Judaism, Hebrew school, Jewish fiction, religion, acceptance,  9 year old, 10 year old, 11 year old, 12 year old, diversity, diverse books


One day Daisy is risking and adventuring and sharing with her best friend Ruby and the next day Ruby is gone, killed in a car accident. What does a girl do when her best friend, the person who understood her and accepted her, is gone?

As Daisy starts back to school after Ruby dies, it's tough. She doesn't want to talk to anyone about her loss - she doesn't want to feel the pain again and again. At the same time, her parents are sending her to the Jewish religious school and it's there that she meets a new boy whose mother is very sick with breast cancer.

At home Daisy's mom is days away from delivering her baby. Daisy's aunt has supposedly come to help out but she seems to be always off doing her own thing. All Daisy wants to do is crawl up into her mother's lap and have her tell her everything will be okay. But right now, there isn't any room in that lap.

So, how do you open your heart to a new friend, to a new relationship, to the possibility of you going on to get your new phone, and go to high school, knowing your best friend never will?

The customs and traditions of the Jewish faith run through this story and her religion will open her eyes to new ways of living and new opportunities.

Recommended by: Barb Langridge,

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