Project Description

Nina Soni Former Best Friend
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Nina Soni, Former Best Friend

by Kashmira Sheth
illustrated by Jenn Kocsmiersky

Meet Nina Soni!

An #OwnVoices chapter book series starring a lovable, distractible Indian-American girl and her family and friends. Great STEAM-themed read aloud.

“A sweet and entertaining series opener about family and friendship.” —Kirkus Reviews

Nina tried as hard as she could but still somehow forgot about her school project. Fortunately, a class lesson about Alexander Fleming suggests how she might make a great discovery—and thus a great project! But with little sister Kavita’s birthday party right around the corner, and her longtime friendship with Jay on the rocks, Nina has a lot to keep track of.

Readers are sure to relate to author Kashmira Sheth’s endearing Nina Soni and her slightly scatter-brained efforts to manage her life with lists, definitions, and real-life math problems.

Also available:
Nina Soni, Sister Fixer

Best Children’s Books of the Year / Bank Street College of Education
Outstanding Achievement Awards / Wisconsin Library Association
Rhode Island Children’s Book Award (nominee) / Rhode Island IRA Chapter, RILA, REIMA
Parents’ Choice Recommended Award / Parents’ Choice Foundation

Format: Hardcover
Price: $15.95
ISBN: 978-1-68263-057-0
Publication Date: 10/1/2019
Page Count: 152
Size: 5-1/2″ x 7-1/2″
Age Range: 7 – 10
Language: English
Format: Paperback
Price: $7.99
ISBN: 978-1-68263-205-5
Publication Date: 10/1/2020
Page Count: 148
Size: 5-1/2″ x 7-1/2″
Age Range: 7 – 10
Language: English
Format: eBook
ISBN: 978-1-68263-179-9
Age Range: 7 – 10
Language: English

Purchase this eBook through the following vendors:

Barnes & Noble

AR Level: 4.0
F&P: Q, Gr 4, Genre RF
Lexile: 590L
Themes: Family, Friendship, Problem Solving, School
BISAC 1: JUV039060 JUVENILE FICTION / Social Themes / Friendship
BISAC 2: JUV013000 JUVENILE FICTION / Family / General
BISAC 3: JUV014000 JUVENILE FICTION / Girls & Women


“Sheth’s language is poetic in its simplicity, and her narratorial voice is a pleasure to read…. A sweet and entertaining series opener about family and friendship.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Attractive illustrations and the use of dialogue, lists, and definition boxes (showing terms as defined by Nina) within the narrative make this chapter book accessible to somewhat younger readers than most middle-grade fiction. Science will evidently be an ongoing theme in the new Nina Soni series, which features a flawed but refreshing and very likable protagonist as well as well-drawn home and school settings. A promising start for the series.” —Booklist

“The illustrations are realistic, detailed, and eye-catching, and the characters are easy to relate to and likable. The fonts and layout used are fairly dyslexic- and reluctant reader–friendly. The notebook-style lists and vocabulary definitions add to the book without overwhelming the action.… A simple but engaging story. A perfect fit for readers who enjoy realistic fiction about friendship and self-discovery.” —School Library Journal


Best Children’s Books of the Year ―Bank Street College of Education, 2020

Outstanding Books of the Year ―Wisconsin Library Association, 2020

Rhode Island Children’s Book Award (Nominee) ―Rhode Island IRA Chapter, RILA, REIMA, 2020-2021

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Meet the Author

Kashmira Sheth

Kashmira Sheth was born in India and came to the US when she was seventeen to attend Iowa State University, where she received a BS in microbiology. She is the author of several picture books,  middle grade, and young adult novels. She lives in Wisconsin. You can visit  her website here.

Meet the Illustrator

Jenn Kocsmiersky

Jenn Kocsmierksy is a watercolor artist and picture book illustrator. She was adopted from Seoul, South Korea and grew up in rural New Hampshire. Now, as a mom and artist, Jenn hopes to promote relatable childhood experiences featuring diverse characters. She was the recipient of the 2018 We Need Diverse Books Mentorship for Illustration and the 2016–2017 Walter Dean Meyers Grant. She lives in New York with her two children and a ginormous goldfish named Joey. You can visit her website here.