Float by Laura Martin

By Megan Northcote

Get ready for a lot of laughs in this lighthearted summer read, Float, by Laura Martin. Tag along with a cast of lovable, eccentric characters who are forced to spend their summer at Camp Outlier, designed for kids with special needs (but not the kinds you’re thinking of)! Each camper has been diagnosed with a RISK factor (reoccurring incident of the strange kind), including Hank, who spontaneously turns invisible; Gary, whose hands stick to everything he touches; and Zeke, whose x-ray vision is unfortunately unpredictable. At last, 12-year-old Emerson, who must wear a weighted vest and shoes to keep from floating away, has found a place where he fits in.

From silly pranks to “hazing initiatives,” these campers bond in ways familiar to readers with their own summer camp memories. However, when one of the campers, Murphy, at RISK for time traveling, uncovers some unsettling news about his future, the other campers must find a way to keep him and everyone else safe. 

For a fast-paced adventure with a refreshingly original premise and delightfully funny characters, this book is it. Looking for more lighthearted summer reads for 8- to 12-year-olds? Try Lalani of the Distant Sea, by Erin Entrada Kelly; Notorious, by Gordan Korman; and Ice Wolves, by Amie Kaufman—all available through OverDrive.