School Visits
Discussion Guides
Very nice things very nice people have said:
"Vernick's writing is beautiful, her characters well-rounded and believable, and the coming of age situations and emotions are spot on."
-Kathryn Erskine, author of the National Book Award winner Mockingbird
"One of those rare books that reaches inside and changes you."
- Lauren Myracle, New York Times bestelling-author of ttyl and ttfn

"Tender and true, anchored by heartbreak and buoyed by love, Water Balloon is a sweet summertime celebration of the unforgettable moments that change everything. "
-Cynthia Leitich Smith, New York Times bestselling-author of Tantalize, Eternal, and Blessed
"A funny, poignant, beautifully written story about family, first love, and the joy and pain of girls' friendships, reminiscent of Lynne Rae Perkins' All Alone in the Universe. I was really caught up in the world Vernick created; in Marley's own words, 'it is amazingly, fantastically real.' I thoroughly enjoyed reading it!"
-Joanne Rocklin, author of One Day and One Amazing Morning on Orange Street
"Tweens will relate to this heartfelt story of a girl who is struggling to navigate the many changes in her life that seem to greet her at every turn."
-Lisa Schroeder, author of It's Raining Cupcakes
"Marley Baird is a lovely protagonist with an engaging voice, and readers will wish they could be her best friend and help her cope with all of life's uncertainty, aggravation, and heartache.  They will recognize their own struggles in Marley's and cheer her on as she finds her way."
-Gina Willner-Pardo, author of The Hard Kind of Promise
"Water Balloon is breathtakingly luminous. From the start, readers will root for Marley, an unforgettable and authentic heroine; we *know* this girl, our heart breaks with hers, we laugh with her, and we want to be her friend for life. Vernick's lyrical and astonishingly perceptive prose tells this captivating story of friendship, love, and resilience with honesty, grace, and power. This book is the real thing-I want to hug it daily!"
-Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich, author of 8th Grade Superzero
"Put this book on your "must-have" list. It won't stay on the shelves long."
--School Library Journal (starred review)

"Vernick resembles Frances O'Roark Dowell and Rachel Vail in her ability to bring keen understanding and tender sympathy to the ordinary. (Marley's) thinning relationship with her friends is portrayed with awful authenticity. Kids struggling with the challenges of identifying what changes are necessary and paying the price for those thrust upon them will be glad to see an author who gets it."
-Bulletin for the Center of Children's Books (starred review)

"Vernick makes a very auspicious fiction debut here with her breezy, briskly paced tale, well-portrayed characters, authentic relationships and keen ear for realistic dialogue. The sweet, swoony young romance doesn't hurt either, and preteen female readers will eat this up... a harbinger of more good novels to come from this author."
-Kirkus Reviews