Mibs is turning thirteen and is about to discover her magical power - her savvy.
           -Quote of the Book


Ingrid Law


Puffin Books

Publication Date

May 1st, 2008

Number of Pages


</u>Savvy is a 2008 children's fantasy novel by Ingrid Law aimed at children aged nine to twelve years. The American Library Association named Savvy a 2009 Newbery Honor Book.


"For generations, the Beaumont family has harbored a magical secret. They each possess a "savvy"-- a special supernatural power that strikes when they turn thirteen. Grandpa Bomba moves mountains, her older brothers create hurricanes and spark electricity... and now it's the eve of Mibs's big day.

"As if waiting weren't hard enough, the family gets scary news two days before Mibs's birthday: Poppa has been in a terrible accident. Mibs develops the singular mission to get to the hospital and prove that her new power can saver her dad. So she sneaks onto a salesman's bus... only to find the bus heading in the opposite direction. Suddenly Mibs finds herself in an unforgettable odyssey that will force her to make sense of growing up-- and of other people, who might have a few secrets hidden just beneath the skin."


On their thirteenth birthday, every member of the Beaumont family receives a savvy, or an abnormal power. However, two days before Mississippi ("Mibs") Beaumont's birthday, just as she is looking forward to receiving a savvy of her own, her father is badly injured in a car crash and left comatose. Her mother and her oldest brother leave to the Salina Hope Hospital to look after her father, and her mother calls Miss Rosemary, the preacher's wife and mother of Roberta "Bobbi" and Will Junior, who decides to throw a birthday party for her. On the morning of the party, Mibs mysteriously manages to wake her sister Gypsy and her brother Samson's pet turtle, and she decides that her savvy is waking people. When the party begins to go badly, and Mibs begins hearing voices which seem to be the thoughts of those around her, she decides to leave for Salina, hoping that her savvy will wake her father. She finds a converted pink school bus which is being driven by a Bible delivery salesman based in Salina and decides to stow away, although Bobbi, Will Junior and her brother Fish insist on coming with her. Shortly after the bus leaves, they discover Samson had been hiding in the back.

The children are horrified to realize that the bus is delivering to several more stops before returning to Salina, and when Fish, in a moment of anger, accidentally uses his savvy to cause wind in the bus, he attracts the attention of the driver as well as terrifying Bobbi and Will Junior. Although initially annoyed, the driver eventually allows the children to stay on the bus, introducing himself as Lester. At the next stop, Will Junior asks Mibs about Fish's savvy, but she distracts him by asking in return why he is called Will Junior since his father is not called William. Will grins and tells Mibs that she may not be the only one with a secret. Mibs then draws a sun on his hand to test the pen he gave her for her birthday. This allows Mibs to hear his thoughts, and she instantly understands her savvy. She panics and runs away from him shouting. Fish, knowing that Mibs is acting strange due to her savvy, forcibly wipes the sun off of Will Junior's hand, leading to more ill-feeling between the two families.

Lester stops to pick up a woman whose car is broken down. Her name is Lill and she asks for a lift to the diner where she works. Everyone goes into the diner to eat, but Lill is fired for showing up late and publicly humiliated by her boss, who is stopped by Samson biting him on the leg. The group flee, and decide to spend the night in a motel. When they turn on the TV, they are shocked to find that they have been reported as missing to the police, and each of the channels show pictures of the 5 of them. Before they leave, Bobbi and Will Junior confront Fish and Mibs about their unusual abilities; during the confrontation, Fish manages to gain control of - 'scumble' - his savvy for the first time, but in doing so clearly reveals his control over the weather. At the motel, the children pretend to ring home at Lill's insistence, and then play in the pool together. In the pool, Will Junior kisses Mibs, after which she talks to Bobbi, understanding her better with the help of the knowledge she gained from hearing her thoughts earlier, although she is no longer able to now that Bobbi's temporary tattoo has washed off.

The next day, Lester successfully delivers the last of his Bibles, and after doing so jubilantly kisses Lill. Seeing this, Mibs tells Will Junior that although she likes him, she does not feel ready to kiss him again, and he tells her by drawing on his hand that he will wait until she is ready. The group make their final stop to see Carlene— Lester's now ex-girlfriend— and repay the money he owes her. Spiteful, she reports the missing children to the police and traps Samson in her house after he asks to use the bathroom. Using her savvy, Mibs is able to find Samson and release him, but the police arrive before the group can leave. Fortunately, Bobbi's brother, who turns out to be Will's real father, arrives and takes the Beaumont children to Salina to visit their father. Mibs uses her savvy on her father's tattoo to tell him what he needs to hear in order to wake up. The book's epilogue takes place a year later, with Mibs turning fourteen, Fish about to start high school and Rocket leaving for his uncle's house to have more room to control his own savvy. It is hinted that Momma is pregnant which Mibs finds out with her savvy.