A Ceiling Made of Eggshells

Loma tells all her fears and worries, how she finds solace in counting, her plans and dreams, and her deep love for her family as well as her hurt and anger as she faces grave dangers and loss. Heart pounding and heart wrenching in equal measure.
 Kirkus Reviews

Infusing her title with historical details about costume, food, and customs, Newbery Honoree Levine (Ella Enchanted) deftly conveys the obstacles facing the Jewish community under King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella.... Loma memorably navigates tumult and danger, bravely taking control of her destiny.
Publishers Weekly

Levine skillfully juxtaposes the larger religious battles taking place in Spain with Loma’s dreams for her future.
 School Library Journal

Inspired by family history, Levine’s latest novel offers a fascinating portrayal of Loma as a shy, conciliatory, intelligent child whose unusual upbringing leads to broad understanding and insights into power. The first-person narrative uses details of daily life to bring the period more sharply into focus for readers, while the appended author’s note offers further information. A well-researched historical novel from an accomplished storyteller.
Carolyn Phelan, Booklist

Young readers will learn a great deal about the origins of racial antisemitism in Spain — where even conversion did not bring about equality between “old” and “new” Christians, who were still separated by the concept of “blood purity.” Integrated into the book as an unexpected gift are verses that Levine based on actual works from Spain’s Jewish Golden Age of Hebrew poetry. It also includes an exceptionally informative introduction, author’s note, glossary, and recipe for Sephardic eggs. Loma’s engrossing story is not a history lesson, but important historical understanding emerges naturally from this accessible work of fiction.
Jewish Book Council

I believe this book definitely falls into the character-building end of the spectrum. Yes, Loma, who is seven-years-old at the beginning of the book, often is frightened and bewildered by her environment. But she also is extremely intelligent and creative and loves her family and her people. Her determination to help her fellow Jews is unwavering...This is a well-written, fast-paced book. If a parent needs to read it as part of the vetting process before giving it to his or her child, it will not be an unpleasant task.
The Jerusalem Post

The last section of the novel was very suspenseful, but to reveal why would spoil the surprise. Parents and tweens may want to read this work together and discuss the decisions that Loma and her family make.
The Reporter