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It All Begins with Jelly Beans

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Two girls form an unlikely friendship during their shared time in the school nurse’s office in this heartfelt middle grade novel for fans of Save Me a Seat and Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus.

Meg spends her days hoping no one thinks too hard about why she wears the same t-shirt and slippers to school every day. Luckily, the nurse’s office provides a welcome escape from classmates who don’t understand…and snacks when food runs out at home.

Riley knows fitting in at her new school would be a lot easier if her friends were more understanding of her type 1 diabetes. So she keeps her testing under wraps…and an emergency bag of jelly beans on hand.

When Meg and Riley end up together in the nurse’s office one day, both girls think they’ve worked each other out, but what if they’ve got it all wrong? On the brink of moving on to junior high, Riley and Meg must find the courage to discover who they really want to be. And maybe a bag of shared jelly beans will provide all the help they need.

Nova Weetman lives in Melbourne with her partner and two children. She has written for film and TV, including the children’s series Backyard ScienceH2O, and Pixel Pinkie. Nova is also the author of several children’s books, including middle grade books in the Choose Your Own Ever After series; young adult novel Everything Is Changed; and the middle grade novels It All Begins with Jelly Beans and The Secrets We Keep, which received several accolades including being shortlisted for the Readings Children’s Book Prize. For more information and reviews, visit her at NovaWeetman.com.au.

“An accessible and poignant snapshot of two middle girls who find unlikely friendship while navigating social troubles and their own complicated home lives.”

—Kate P., Editor, on It All Begins with Jelly Beans

"An emotionally honest portrayal that is empowering to those seen as different."

– Kirkus Reviews

"It All Begins with Jelly Beans is a sweet and heartfelt friendship story that reminds us to be kind."

– Christina Collins, author of After Zero