Source: From Netgalley and Candlewick Press in exchange for an honest review. This in no way alters my opinion or review.
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Publication Date: May 8, 2018
For eleven-year-old Tash, Cap'n Jackie isn't just the elderly next-door neighbor — she's family. When she disappears, only Tash holds the key that might bring her back.
Tash didn't want to go to camp, didn't want to spend the summer with a bunch of strangers, didn't want to be separated from the only two people she has ever been able to count on: her uncle Kevin, who saved her from foster care, and Cap'n Jackie, who lives next door. Camp turns out to be pretty fun, actually, but when Tash returns home, Cap'n Jackie is gone. And Tash needs her — the made-up stories of dolphin-dragons, the warm cookies that made everything all right after a fight, the key Cap'n Jackie always insisted had magic in it. The Captain always said all Tash had to do was hold it tight and the magic would come. Was it true? Could the key bring Cap'n Jackie back? In a heartfelt and stunningly written story, Pat Schmatz introduces readers to a tenacious, fiercely loyal girl struggling to let go of the fantasies and fears of her childhood . . . and say yes to everything that lies ahead.
The Key to Everything is a bout a young girl who is sent off to camp, when she returns her life is turned upside down when her neighbor Jackie is gone. There is so much more to this book though... and I don't want to spoil it.
It took me a few days to digest this book after reading it. It follows a girl named Tash who is still young and right now she is bitter about having to go to camp for the summer. The book is about 200 pages and it is a middle grade read so it was a quick one but it was also a very emotional one. It will bring back feelings of being a misunderstood 11 year old and hating everything or if you are 11 and reading it - you will completely understand where Tash is coming from. It is also sad. Tash is troubled to begin with but she has Jackie, their elderly neighbor, who stays with her during the day and they come up with these elaborate stories and magical worlds together. It sounds pretty great for Tash but not so good when something happens to Jackie.
I really really don't want to go into too much detail about this plot because I think it adds to it not to know what is going to happen. Tash is learning to grow up in this book and sometimes it takes some hard-knocks to get there.
If you are looking for a contemporary read this was a good read, it is emotional though, so be prepared. I also think that all ages would do well reading this book it was beautiful.