Reviews From a Young Reader’s Perspective: Counting by 7s

Count By 7s
By Holly Goldberg Sloan

The book that I’m about to tell you about is called Counting By 7s written by Holly Goldberg Sloan. The main character of Counting by 7’s is Willow Chance who was adopted by a really nice couple that loved her very much. Willow is also a genius which makes you think that she would have had a great life, but really she is an outsider. Maybe it was because she was obsessed with learning more about plants and health. Although Willow finds middle school too easy for her she still has to attend so she decides not to try in any of her classes. A few weeks into the school year she has a test that is supposed to be hard but instead gets every single question correct which raises suspicion among her teachers. The teachers assume she cheated (which obviously she didn’t); however, one day an accident changes everything.  


Willow Chance, her new friend Mai, Mai’s brother Quang-ha, Pattie, and their school counselor Dell Duke. Willow, a middle schooler, is a genius and an outsider. Mai is in high school. She is very persistent and pretty much always gets her way, which she probably got from her mom, Pattie. Pattie is the mother of two kids, Mai and Quang-ha, and owns a nail salon. Quang-ha, on the other hand, doesn’t usually try in school or follow the rules. He is, however, a great artist. The other important person in this book is Dell Duke. Dell is their school counselor. When you first imagine him you would probably expect someone who is in shape, takes care of his things, is organized, and maybe lives in his own house. If you thought any of those things, you would be wrong. Before he met Willow he didn’t take care of his things, he was not in shape and he had a closet full of underwear (gross right). Also, his hobbies were drinking beer or wine, eating, or sleeping. He even had a lawn chair with wheels as his everyday chair so it will be easy to clean and move it easily.

Favorite Character(s):

My favorite characters were Mai because she was brave and a leader; and Willow because she is very smart and unique.  


This book is fiction and the sub-genre is realistic fiction. 

Favorite Part:

My favorite part of the book was when Mai, Quang-ha, Dell, Willow, and some other people fixed up the courtyard at Dell’s apartment. 

Saddest Part:

One of the saddest parts of the story is when the accident happened and the effects of that accident.

Pace Of The Book:

The book has a lot of twists and turns and can be very emotional for some people. It has a quick pace and I never wanted to put the book down. 


Photo credit Davene Turner Photography

Mahogany Young is a fun loving 6th grader that enjoys math, reading, D.I.Y. projects, and ice skating with her friends. Mahogany has a strong passion for reading and takes pride in reading at least 20 books a year. The enjoyment she receives from reading comes from the sense of adventure each book provides as well as imagining the stories in her head. Mahogany aspires to be either an educator or an engineer; her proudest moment is being a member of the first team to win a robotics tournament at her elementary school.

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