A beautiful lesson in Michelle Kadarusman‘s The Theory of Hummingbirds ($11.95, Pajama Press).

The Theory of Hummingbirds tells the story of Alba and Cleo, the name Alba has given to her left foot, which was twisted in the wrong direction (club foot) when Alba was born and as such has undergone multiple surgeries, braces and casts. With her final cast coming off, and her foot looking “normal”, Alba plans to run in her school’s cross-country race.

“Unfortunately, Alba’s best friend Levi thinks there’s no way she can pull it off,” says the book’s synopsis. “And she thinks there’s no way he’s right about the school librarian hiding a wormhole in her office. Tempers flare. Sharp words fly faster than hummingbirds. And soon it looks like both friends will be stuck proving their theories on their own.”

Alba and Levi seem like great characters and true friends – brought together by their differences from their classmates, but friends because of their similarities including their love of all things hummingbirds, which we learn a lot about in this book.

I particularly love the lesson – and the way it’s told – about understanding your differences, embracing them and doing what you can to make life as you want it.

A copy of this book was provided by Pajama Press for an honest review. The opinions are my own.