Middle Grade Spotlight/Excerpt: Spin with Me by Ami Polonsky…plus a giveaway!

From the author of the critically acclaimed Gracefully Grayson comes a thoughtful and sensitive middle-grade novel about non-binary identity and first love, Ami Polonsky’s Spin with Me.

Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Be sure to enter the giveaway at the bottom of the post 🙂 


About the Book:


Author: Ami Polonsky

Pub. Date: February 16, 2021

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (Byr)

Pages: 224

Formats: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook

In this elegant dual narrative, Essie is a thirteen-year-old girl feeling glum about starting a new school after her professor dad takes a temporary teaching position in a different town. She has 110 days here and can’t wait for them to end. Then she meets Ollie, who is nonbinary. Ollie has beautiful blue eyes and a confident smile. Soon, Essie isn’t counting down the days until she can leave so much as she’s dreading when her time with Ollie will come to an end.

Meanwhile, Ollie is experiencing a crush of their own . . . on Essie. As Ollie struggles to balance their passion for queer advocacy with their other interests, they slowly find themselves falling for a girl whose stay is about to come to an end. Can the two unwind their merry-go-round of feelings before it’s too late?


Day 1

Everything— everything changed when I saw her.

I’d been walking to my locker, psyching myself up with a you’re going to kill it with your mad combination-lock-opening skills pep talk when I’d glanced to my left . . . and spotted her. The new girl. Whoever had been behind me bumped into my back and my inner Ollie rolled their eyes at me. But I couldn’t move; I was powerless in her presence.

She was looking nervously from her schedule to the locker numbers, and it dawned on me: She’s probably Esther Rosenberg, the girl Mom had told me to introduce myself to.

But I didn’t. I couldn’t. All I could do was visualize this show Dad and I had watched on the science channel the night before. Lightning storms in space. Storm chasers in the ionosphere. I felt the blood pumping in and out of my heart in electromagnetic pulses, exploding like space lightning in bursts of blue and red.

Day 2

“Spill it,” Lucy said, waving her hand in front of my face to get my attention.

“What?” I asked, turning to her and Savannah. They both burst out laughing.

Savannah packed her empty Tupperware into her lunch bag and turned around to see what I’d been staring at (who I’d been staring at) throughout lunch. “The new girl?” she asked, smiling.

Lucy looked over her shoulder. “Wait, you let her eat all by herself ?” she asked. Esther was getting up from the back table to throw out her garbage.

“I didn’t . . .  I mean, I couldn’t— ”

“She’s nice,” Savannah interrupted, saving me from trying to explain this thing that I had no words for. “I met her in class yesterday. I’ll ask her to eat with us tomorrow, you wimp,” she joked. “Her name’s Essie.”

Day 3


“Hey, did you have a chance to introduce yourself to Esther?” Mom asked after school, poking her head into the living room, spatula in hand, as I fed a handful of pellets to Froggy who (a) still elicited bad memories, and (b) definitely wasn’t a dog.

“She goes by Essie, Mom,” I told her, more emphatically than I’d meant to.

“I’ll take that as a yes,” she said, looking at me curiously, before disappearing back into the kitchen to flip the fried tofu. (Really, Mom? Tofu again?)

I thought back to art and science. And to lunch. I’d watched from the doorway as Savannah had called Essie over, and she and Lucy had proceeded to introduce her to the world. They’d told her the name of each person sitting at our lunch table as I’d stared, starstruck.

About Ami Polonsky:

Ami Polonsky is the author of the
critically-acclaimed Gracefully Grayson and Threads. She is a
middle school English teacher and a parent of two kids, one of whom exists
happily beneath the 
trans umbrella.

Website | Twitter | Instagram | Amazon







Giveaway Details:

3 winners will receive a signed finished copy of SPIN WITH ME, US Only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:


For The Love Of Kidlit









Forever Blog



Becky on Books


Week Two:


Fictional Oasis



Two Points of






Eli to the nth





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