It's a little bit of a mystery.
Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett is pretty mysterious and amazing, because not only is it an adult book with a child protagonist, it's an adult book that reads amazingly like a middle grade novel. In fact, it's very similar to the kind of middle grade novel that wins the Newbery Medal.
- You've got a ten-year-old girl protagonist. (The kind of middle grade book I'm thinking about almost always has a girl protagonist.)
- You've got a dead mom.
- You've got a grieving father.
- You've got a troubled older sister.
- You've got a dog.
- You've got a cast of slightly off-kilter secondary characters in a small town. That guidance counselor is a gem.
- You've got people with unique interests--the main character wants to finish writing her mother's book about animals with sleep issues, and the older sister is at work baking 1,000 rabbit cakes so she can get into the Guinness Book of Records.
- You've got a this-is-how-we-deal-with-death theme.