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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
So, you think your family’s not perfect. Have you ever thought that you should seek out another family to call your own? Perhaps you’re adopted and you’re concerned that your adopted family no longer wanted you. Or, perhaps you didn’t know you were adopted and you just felt like you didn’t belong. Things were starting to get strange for Frank. Christmas was approaching; his father was out of work and there were no presents under the tree. A science nerd, he buried his fears and concerns in his quest for more knowledge, taking refuge in a secret place that he called his Aurora Shell. That’s where he discovered a wormhole to an alternate dimension; to another boy in another time and space, but still in Frank’s house. To another world where children are frequently abused. When Frank learns he’s adopted, he sets out to find his real family, only to discover that perhaps the grass on the other side of the fence really isn’t greener. And the friend in this alternate dimension really does have it worse than he does.
Ece Gurler’s middle-grade novel, Frank, is an excellent coming of age story for young readers. Following the quest of one eleven-year-old science genius, Frank, readers will share experiences and sentiments that might mirror some of their own. The plot is full of unexpected twists and turns as the two main characters, Frank and his alternate dimension counterpart, Andy, discover new realities in worlds full of chances and dreams, both lost and real. This science fiction story will introduce young readers to the wide world of fascinating discoveries, like penicillin and electricity, and how much fun learning about science can be (as well as being useful). This is a compassionate story full of adventure, lasting friendships, and the power of family love, as well as the need to feel a sense of belonging. An exciting read full of hope, promise, and, of course, science.