The Healing Bowl: A Harley & Friends Adventure
by Anita Fisk
ReadersMagnet, LLC

"'That’s okay,' accepted T.J. 'It’s just that something is going on, and I can’t figure it out.'"

Frisk’s innovative novel follows the adventures of long-time friends who must undertake a quest in order to save a very special student at their school. Harley Delosian, a seventh-grader at JFK Middle School, discovers that his best friend T.J. is concerned about one of their classes. T.J. notices that at the end of Ms. Clio’s class he feels “fuzzy headed.” At first, Harley dismisses T.J.’s concerns, but when their fellow classmate, Sammy Crabtree, is injured playing baseball, Harley quickly learns that there is indeed something strange going on with Ms. Clio. As they discover, there is something very unusual about their teacher, and as their friend Sammy lies unconscious in the hospital, they learn that Ms. Clio may hold the key to his recovery. The boys and their friends undertake a magical journey on their quest to find the cure that will heal Sammy, learning just what friendship entails as well as what it means to live up to the class motto: “Lend a Helping Hand – Make a Friend.”

This novel is a fascinating blend of Greek mythology and the adventures of middle schoolers in a work that explores friendship. Young readers will relate to the characters and their navigation through 7th grade. One of the most interesting aspects of this book is the way in which mythology is integrated within the plot. Readers will not only learn about the many gods and goddesses of Greek mythology but will also follow an adventure utilizing these stories in this offering of magical realism. The information about mythology is exhaustive, making this a good book to use in conjuncture with the teaching of Greek myths. This fast-paced, young-adult novel captures the imagination in a story of friendship and adventure.

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