Ways to Grow Love (Ryan Hart Story #2)

by Renée Watson (Author) Nina Mata (Illustrator)

Ways to Grow Love (Ryan Hart Story #2)
Reading Level: 4th – 5th Grade
Series: Ryan Hart Story
Newbery Honor and Coretta Scott King Author Award winner Renée Watson continues her charming young middle grade series starring Ryan Hart, a girl who is pure spirit and sunshine. Ryan Hart and her family are back in another installment of stories about a Black girl finding her way and her voice as she grows through change and challenges. In this book, Ryan finds herself waiting on lots of things -- like for her new sister to be born healthy, for her new recipes to turn out right, for that summer camp trip to go better than she fears! And of course Ryan is facing these new challenges and new experiences in her classic style -- with a bright outlook and plenty of spirit!

More books in the series - See All

School Library Journal

Starred Review

Gr 3-5—This summer is shaping up to be different than any other summer, and Ryan Hart isn't sure how she feels about that. She always looks forward to her summer traditions, like checking out an armful of books from the library with her mom, and her family's annual trip to the Oaks Park amusement park—but nothing is quite the same now that Ryan's mom is expecting a new baby and has to take things easy. Still, there are some exciting things for Ryan to look forward to, like her first chance to go to sleepaway church camp with her two best friends, KiKi and Amanda. And of course Ryan can't wait to meet her new baby sister. Not everything goes as planned, but nevertheless Ryan finds that she is bursting with summer memories by the time school begins in September. This second installment in the "Ryan Hart" series is both relatable and inspirational. A young optimistic Black girl, Watson's irresistible Ryan models how to navigate a changing world with resilience, kindness, and love, all of which are reflected in Mata's delightful illustrations. Readers who are likewise awaiting a new sibling, or who are simply learning to adjust to an ever-changing world, will be heartened by Ryan's openness to making new memories and creating new traditions. VERDICT A fabulous first purchase that celebrates the awesome power of love, kindness, and being true to oneself.—Dana West, Nathan Hale H.S., Seattle

Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

"Watson's heroine is smart and courageous, bringing her optimistic attitude to any challenge she faces. . . . The second installment in this spirited series is a hit." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"Realistic snapshots of love in action are peppered with funny mishaps and small mistakes, all of which add up to an uplifting, reassuring read." —Booklist, starred review

"Relatable and inspirational. A young optimistic Black girl, Watson's irresistible Ryan models how to navigate a changing world with resilience, kindness, and love, all of which are reflected in Mata's delightful illustrations. A fabulous purchase that celebrates the awesome power of love, kindness, and being true to oneself." —School Library Journal, starred review

"Rising fifth-grader Ryan is an engaging heroine, with a creative streak and a take-charge attitude. While new readers will find pleasure here, it'll be Ryan's existing fans who will understand the backstory and revel in watching their girl find her feet in new situations." —BCCB

"Intermittently funny, frustrating, and touching. . . . Allows black readers to see themselves and all readers to find a character they can love. Move over Ramona Quimby, Portland has another neighbor you have to meet!" —Kirkus Reviews, starred review, on WAYS TO MAKE SUNSHINE

"Adroitly captures the uncertainty of growing up amid change through the eyes of an irrepressible black girl." —Publishers Weekly, starred review, on WAYS TO MAKE SUNSHINE

"Ryan Hart approaches challenges in her life with bravery, common sense, and humor. . . . a refreshing character." —Horn Book Magazine on WAYS TO MAKE SUNSHINE

"Middle graders who like realistic fiction will enjoy getting to know this earnest girl and her supportive family." —School Library Connection on WAYS TO MAKE SUNSHINE

"Plenty of charm . . . readers will look forward to Ryan's future adventures." —BCCB on WAYS TO MAKE SUNSHINE

"The theme of loving family and friends even through difficult times will resonate with readers. Cheerful black-and-white illustrations enhance the story and convey Ryan's effervescent personality." —School Library Journal online on WAYS TO MAKE SUNSHINE

"Renée Watson is a gifted storyteller who brings vibrant new meaning to time and place. In this beautiful blend of family, history, and culture, Watson lets us discover that one's true home is rooted in the heart and soul." —Andrea Davis Pinkney, New York Times bestselling author of THE RED PENCIL on SOME PLACES MORE THAN OTHERS

"Renée Watson's storytelling mastery is on full display in Some Places More Than Others, which is so thematically vibrant and emotionally rich as to defy description. A magnificent book." —Mike Jung, author of UNIDENTIFIED SUBURBAN OBJECT on SOME PLACES MORE THAN OTHERS

"A beautiful novel about family and forgiveness, about the memories we carry with us wherever we go, and the places our hearts call home." —Kate Messner, award-winning author of BREAKOUT on SOME PLACES MORE THAN OTHERS

"A meaningful opportunity for students—particularly those in underrepresented communities—to celebrate themselves and their identities." —School Library Connection, starred review, on SOME PLACES MORE THAN OTHERS

"Watson is a master of structure and character development. . . . Amara's search for her roots is tender and empowering." —School Library Journal, starred review, on SOME PLACES MORE THAN OTHERS

"A much-needed novel about the importance of roots and family connections." —Foreword Reviews, starred review, on SOME PLACES MORE THAN OTHERS

"Captures a young person's growing enlightenment as she experiences one of the world's most culturally rich neighborhoods. . . . Very relatable. . . . Quietly powerful.
" —The New York Times Book Review on SOME PLACES MORE THAN OTHERS

"Timely and timeless." —Jacqueline Woodson, National Book Award winning author of BROWN GIRL DREAMING on PIECING ME TOGETHER

"Watson, with rhythm and style, somehow gets at . . . the life-changing power of voice and opportunity, all wrapped up in Jade." —Jason Reynolds, author of ALL AMERICAN BOYS on PIECING ME TOGETHER

"An important and deeply moving novel." —John Green, bestselling and award-winning author of THE FAULT IN OUR STARS on PIECING ME TOGETHER

"Teeming with compassion and insight." —Publishers Weekly, starred review, on PIECING ME TOGETHER

"A timely, nuanced, and unforgettable story." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review, on PIECING ME TOGETHER

"A nuanced meditation on race, privilege, and intersectionality." —SLJ, starred review, on PIECING ME TOGETHER

"Will resonate with many readers." —BCCB, starred review, on PIECING ME TOGETHER

Renée Watson
Renée Watson (reneewatson.net) is a New York Times bestselling author, educator, and activist. Her young adult novel Piecing Me Together received a Coretta Scott King Award and Newbery Honor. She is the author of several books for young readers, including Ways to Make Sunshine, Some Places More Than Others, and Harlem's Little Blackbird: The Story of Florence Mills. Her work has received international recognition and an NAACP Image Award nomination in children's literature. She has given readings and lectures on the role of art in social justice at many renowned places, including the United Nations Headquarters, the Library of Congress, and the U.S. Embassies in Japan, Korea, and New Zealand. Renée grew up in Portland, Oregon, and currently lives in New York City. Follow her on Twitter @reneewauthor and on Instagram @harlemportland.

Chelsea Clinton is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World; She Persisted Around the World: 13 Women Who Changed History; She Persisted in Sports: American Olympians Who Changed the Game; Don't Let Them Disappear: 12 Endangered Species Across the Globe; It's Your World: Get Informed, Get Inspired & Get Going!; Start Now!: You Can Make a Difference; with Hillary Clinton, Grandma's Gardens and Gutsy Women; and, with Devi Sridhar, Governing Global Health: Who Runs the World and Why? She is also the Vice Chair of the Clinton Foundation, where she works on many initiatives, including those that help empower the next generation of leaders. She lives in New York City with her husband, Marc, their children and their dog, Soren. You can follow Chelsea Clinton on Twitter @ChelseaClinton or on Facebook at facebook.com/chelseaclinton.

Gillian Flint (gillianflint.com) is an illustrator who has a passion for painting in watercolors. She has been drawing and creating characters for as long as she can remember. Her work has been published in the USA, the UK and Australia. In her spare time she enjoys reading and gardening at her home in the UK. You can follow her on Instagram @gillianflint_illustration.

Alexandra Boiger (alexandraboiger.com) has illustrated nearly twenty picture books, including the She Persisted series by by Chelsea Clinton; the popular Tallulah series by Marilyn Singer; and the Max and Marla books, which she also wrote. Originally from Munich, Germany, she now lives outside of San Francisco, California, with her husband, Andrea; daughter, Vanessa; and two cats, Luiso and Winter. You can follow Alexandra on Instagram @alexandra_boiger.

Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Publication date
April 20, 2021
Ryan Hart Story

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