Nominated by: Flowering Minds
Finalist blurb: Abby Spencer is, almost, your typical 13 year old. She has great friends, plays the violin, and rolls her eyes when her friend flirts with the older boy at the yogurt hut. Abby is raised by her single mom in Houston, Texas. Abby knows that her father returned to India, but she really wants her father. After a severe allergic reaction Abby’s mom seeks out her father to see if there are other medical issues. It is then that Abby and her mother discover that Abby’s father never knew that her mom was pregnant. They, also, discover that Abby’s father is a huge Bollywood actor. Thus the adventure begins when Abby travels to Mumbai to meet her dad. Abby Spencer Goes to Bollywood by Varsha Bajaj is a delightful middle grade novel. Ms. Bajaj includes the magic of a famous Bollywood actor and the harsh reality of the poverty of Mumbai. The reader has the opportunity to see that Abby is a carefree girl, but struggles with learning how to adapt to different cultures, both Hindi and that of a wealthy father she has never met.
— Kyle Kimmal, The Boy Reader