Reading/Interest Level: Intermediate, Young Adult
Author: Michelle Kadarusman
Publisher: Pajama Press
Sixth-grader Alba was born with a foot that points inwards, and has never felt like she fits in. She spends her time on the side of the track timing the runners and wishing she could be one of them. On top of her physical handicap, she struggles to handle all the other craziness that sixth grade entails. When she receives her final surgery, she sees it as a chance to finally be able to race in the school’s cross-country meet. Her doctor, her mom, and her best friend are all hesitant if Alba will be ready to run in the race. But Alba is determined to do it, with or without her support team.
Michelle Kadarusman uses her own personal experience to weave a beautiful story about change, friendship, acceptance, and finding your place in the world. The characters develop naturally throughout the story and the emotions are described in a way that helps the reader relate to the book and stay engaged and absorbed in the story. The Theory of Hummingbirds would be great for any student in upper elementary, middle school and high school. The book doesn’t contain any language or sensitive material, making it a great book for anyone young or old. The way that Alba deals with her differences and life struggles is inspiring and will change the life of anyone who reads her story.