BLOG TOUR REVIEW: Pieces of Why by K. L. Going (Giveaway + Favorite Quotes)

Pieces of Why Book Cover Pieces of Why
K. L. Going
Middle Grade, Contemporary
Kathy Dawson Books
September 8, 2015

From the award winning author of Fat Kid Rules the World andThe Liberation of Gabriel King comes a lyrical, middle grade gem that asks all the hard questions and hits all the right notes--perfect for fans of Cynthia Rylant and Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine.


Tia lives with her mom in a high-risk neighborhood in New Orleans and loves singing gospel in the Rainbow Choir with Keisha, her boisterous and assertive best friend. Tia's dream is to change the world with her voice; and by all accounts, she might be talented enough. But when a shooting happens in her neighborhood and she learns the truth about the crime that sent her father to prison years ago, Tia finds she can't sing anymore. The loss prompts her to start asking the people in her community hard questions--questions everyone has always been too afraid to ask.


Full of humanity, Pieces of Why is a timely story that addresses grief, healing, and forgiveness, told through the eyes of a gifted girl who hears rhythm and song everywhere in her life.


Thank you to Penguin Random House for sending me an ARC of this book. This does not affect my review in any way.

After a thousand years, I have finally read another middle grade book! Pieces of Why by K.L. Going is beautifully written and is such a thought provoking book I wish this was published when I was in my middle grade age. (I said middle grade age because we didn’t have middle grade here)

Firstly, I can say that the title really suits the story well. Here, we have Tia a 12 year old girl who’s experiencing some major changes not just with her body, feelings but also with the realization of what really happened to her family years ago. For a 12 year old girl, I can say that Tia is a little mature. It felt like I’m not reading a Middle Grade book so I’m pretty sure avid YA readers will adore this book. Seriously, she’s better than most female protagonists from YA!

The side characters are also interesting. Keisha, Tia’s best friend is what every girl needs for a bestie. She’s spunky but also a very good friend to Tia. I can’t help but compare their friendship with my own when I was in their age. They’re so adorable and they bring out the best in each other. I also adore Keisha’s parents as they are really helpful to Tia’s mom and Tia’s development throughout the novel. Tia’s mom is meh although I can see where she is coming from. Of course, there is some cute romance here!

Often times, when violence happen our thoughts immediately go out with the victim and their families and of course, that’s totally reasonable. But in Pieces of Why, it showed the other victims of the violence. It showed what the family of the person who did the bad thing are feeling. It’s such a thought provoking novel and since it’s a Middle Grade book, I never expected it to be that good. And yes, I shed a few tears towards the ending.

I recommend this book to all Middle Grade readers because this is a book you surely wouldn’t want to miss. If you also want to try MG fiction then start with this book!

Here are some of my favorite quotes from the book!

Certain days ought to come with warning notices. WARNING: This day will be hazardous to your health. Instead, most days start out normal. Maybe even better than normal.

Which is so much worse.

This is the first paragraph from the book and it has such a strong opening line, that you will just read it page after page to find out what is going to happen. Also, can I just say how true is that statement?

I’d open my mouth and sing so loud, I’d blow this whole rotten neighborhood away.

Can I pretty please hear Tia sing? I love how very driven she is with reaching her dreams.

Trouble was like a hurricane. If you were in its path, it would barrel down on top of you, no matter how hard you tried to shore things up.

Like it or not, life goes on, Tia Rose.

That’s what Ma always said. But even that was a lie.

For some people…it didn’t.

Note: These are taken from the ARC.

There are many more beautiful quotes from the book that you have to read it for yourself!


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KL Going is the award winning author of books for children and teens. Her first novel, Fat Kid Rules the World was named a Michael Printz honor book by the American Library Association, as well as one of the Best Books for Young Adults from the past decade. Her books have been Booksense picks, Scholastic Book Club choices, Junior Library Guild selections, winners of state book awards, and featured by Publishers

Weekly, School Library Journal, and Children’s Book Council as Best Books. Her work has been published in Korea, Italy, Japan and the UK.


KL began her career working at one of the oldest literary agencies in New York City. She used this inner knowledge of publishing to write Writing and Selling the Young Adult Novel — a how-to book for aspiring writers, published by Writer’s Digest. She has also written short stories for several anthologies and currently has two picture books under contract for future release. She currently lives in Glen Spey, NY where she both writes and runs a business critiquing manuscripts. To visit KL on-line go to

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook

Thank you to FFBC Tours for letting me be a part of this tour! To follow the tour, go here!


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