Review: Honestly Elliott

Elliott has been struggling since starting middle school, when his ADHD spiraled and his best friend moved away. He’s not too sure where he fits in with his own family, either, especially since his newly remarried dad and stepmom are expecting a baby. Especially when he already feels like his dad just doesn’t get him – or his passion for cooking. In the kitchen, it’s actually a good thing to have a brain that goes in six different directions at once.

When he’s paired with the popular and supersmart Maribel for a school-wide project, Elliott worries they won’t see eye to eye. But Maribel is also looking for a way to show others her true self, and this project could be the chance they’ve both been waiting for.

Sometimes the least likely friends help you see a new side to things… and sometimes you have to make a few mistakes before you figure out what’s right.

This was such a cute middle-grade novel, and one that I’ll highly recommend to anyone looking for a heartwarming read. Elliott is the most adorable character I’ve had the pleasure of reading in a middle-grade book, and his ADHD just makes him that much more loveable.

Elliott’s narration of his tale was cute to follow. There were those moment where he went off on a tangent, but eventually circled back. He was open and honest with his feelings, and I just felt so bad for him as he worried about his incoming baby brother and trying not to disappoint his dad anymore than he had. Which, really, I thought his dad was being too hard on him… Elliott is only eleven and has ADHD for crying out loud, that’s not his fault. 

“Never underestimate the power of one person believing in you.”

While I didn’t like Elliott’s dad at first, he does have a redemption arc and realizes he needs to be more understanding with Elliott, while also making sure Elliott grows up doing the right things. So by the end, they definitely have a better understanding, and even Elliott’s relationship with his step-mother is better than when the book starts out.

I also loved the friendship between Elliott and Maribel. They got off to a rocky start at first, especially when Elliott says bad things about Maribel having to live a gluten-free lifestyle. But he realizes his mistake when he learns that her celiac disease is something she can’t help, much like his ADHD is something he can’t help. Their friendship grows into one that is very sweet and what made me really wish there had been more to this book.

“I’ve decided that recipes can be a good thing. Life is confusing enough, so sometimes it’s good to get actual instructions when you can.”

Still, the story is adorable, Elliott is adorable… it’s just an adorable book and again, if you’re looking for something sweet to read, I’d say go with this book!

Rating: 4/5 stars

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