Ten-year-old Cadence Jolly has a secret. A secret that drives her every day to overcome her immense shyness, but also a secret that she fears may never be seen.

 

You see, her secret is that Cadence can sing, like really sing.

 

When no one is around, Cadence opens her heart and lets the music just overtake her. Cadence yearns to share her voice with the world. However, with a nickname like Mouse, she hides her secret talent under her deep, deep layer of fear.

 

Change occurs for Cadence when a new choir teacher takes over at her church. Cadence dreams of making the older choir but knows an audition tape stands between her and her dream. In an effort to share her talent with the new choir director, Cadence disguises herself and creates a video of herself singing. It is her hope that this tape could serve as her audition into the choir of her dreams. 

 

Cadence sends the video of her hidden self to the choir director only to be horrified in church the next Sunday when he shares her video to the entire congregation. Cadence didn’t just send the video to her new choir director. Instead, she accidentally published it. Now, the whole world can see this secret “gospel girl!”

 

The video of “Gospel Girl” soon explodes all over the Internet. Everyone wants to know who is the mysterious person behind that amazing voice. Cadence wishes to step out in the spotlight and tell the world that she is the voice behind Gospel Girl; however, she doesn’t seem to be able to even just take the first step.

 

A step towards the girl she wishes she could be. But a step she doesn’t seem to be about to take because she fears never being able to overcome the immense shyness holding her back.

 

The Sweetest Sound, by Sherri Winston, is a great novel for middle- level readers. It packs a great message of trusting yourself and being proud of the person that you were born to be.

 

My heart cheered on Cadence as she continually pushed herself to become closer and closer to the spotlight that she has only dreamed about. Cadence has sung her way into my heart, and I know that she will sing her ways into yours as well. 

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