Marshmallow & Jordan by Alina Chau was such a fun read. I am loving middle grade graphic novels lately and for a good reason. This was a 4 star read for me with beautiful artwork, a parplegic female athlete main character, and insight into life in Indonesia and Hindu folklore.

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The summary, from Amazon:

Jordan’s days as star player for her school’s basketball team ended when an accident left her paralyzed from the waist down. Now, she’s still the team captain, but her competition days seem to be behind her…until an encounter with a mysterious elephant, who she names Marshmallow, helps Jordan discover a brand new sport.

Will water polo be the way for Jordan to continue her athletic dreams–or will it just come between Jordan and her best friends on the basketball team? And with the big tournament right around the corner, what secret is Marshmallow hiding?

Buy Marshmallow & Jordan here.

Marshmallow & Jordan by Alina Chau has such kid appeal! With beautiful illustrations, a cute elephant, and lots of basketball references, what is there not to love about this charming graphic novel? Right from the get-go I was pulled in by Jordan’s story and the hilarity of meeting Marshmallow, and elephant everyone in the family welcomes to casually while Jordan’s veterinarian mother has a more logical – and shocked – outlook.

I really enjoyed the fact that Marshmallow & Jordan is based in Indonesia and features Hindu folklore. To be honest, I am not really familiar with what life is like in Indonesia and enjoyed this aspect, especially when it came to the backmatter with a dictionary, notes on the foods mentioned in the story, and facts about Indonesia. (That’s just a taste of the backmatter. There’s plenty more great information.) I also loved that Jordan is a paraplegic athlete and the character development of Kemala, the captain of the water polo team. There are some lovely portrayals of friendships between girls in this book.

While the plot in this one was imperfect for me, it didn’t really matter. The art and character development shined so much, and I could see kids really jumping to read this one. This was a solid 4 star read for me and I really loved it.



Find out more about how I rate books here.

Marshmallow & JordanMarshmallow & Jordan by Alina Chau
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a fun read with beautiful art and a paraplegic female athlete MC! Marshmallow is so cute and I liked that this one takes place in Indonesia and includes Hindu folklore. While the plot was imperfect for me the kid appeal is strong and the character development and art really shine.

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Book Club Questions

  1. Did you know there was anything special about Marshmallow? What clues did the author give us?
  2. Why is Kemala unkind to Jordan initially?
  3. How are water polo and basketball similar? How are they different? What skills did Jordan already have that indicated she might excel at water polo?


Interested? Buy Marshmallow & Jordan.
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peacefully reading