Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus

Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 3 - 7Grades 3 - 5n/a4.6n/a
“Aven is a perky, hilarious, and inspiring protagonist whose attitude and humor will linger even after the last page has turned.” —School Library Journal (Starred review)

Chosen for the Autumn 2017 Kids’ Indie Next List!

Aven Green loves to tell people that she lost her arms in an alligator wrestling match, or a wildfire in Tanzania, but the truth is she was born without them. And when her parents take a job running Stagecoach Pass, a rundown western theme park in Arizona, Aven moves with them across the country knowing that she’ll have to answer the question over and over again.

Her new life takes an unexpected turn when she bonds with Connor, a classmate who also feels isolated because of his own disability, and they discover a room at Stagecoach Pass that holds bigger secrets than Aven ever could have imagined. It’s hard to solve a mystery, help a friend, and face your worst fears. But Aven’s about to discover she can do it all . . . even without arms.
Paperback, 288 pages
Published on March 5, 2019 by Sterling Children's Books
ISBN-10: 1454932996
ISBN-13: 9781454932994
11 Book Reviews
  • ilove2read
    ilove2read24 days55 starsFeatured
    This book is awesome! It is about 13 year old Aven Green. She was born without arms, and she was very happy at her school. Then her parents take a job working at a theme park in hot, dusty Arizona. She had friends at her old school, and no one looked twice when she would pick up a pencil with her toes. But now, she needs to make friends all over again, and deal with the staring from other kids. Then she, and 2 kids she meets discover some big secrets at the theme park. I love this book!
    • satwikagejara
      satwikagejaraabout 2 months55 starsFeatured
      Aven Green was born without arms, but, at age 13, that hasn’t stopped her from doing almost anything. Then her parents take a job running Stagecoach Pass, a rundown Western theme park in Arizona, and Aven has to leave everything she knows behind. She struggles to make friends at her new school because kids cannot see past her missing arms. But she bonds with Zion, a classmate who is insecure about his weight, and Connor, a classmate with Tourette syndrome. Then they discover a room at the park that holds bigger secrets than Aven ever could have imagined. Aven is such an inspirational character. She is able to do anything a regular person could do despite her disability. The other characters in the book are also realistic and touch the heart of the reader with their genuine nature. This book is a great way to help children learn to accept disabilities and to treat people with kindness.
      • pudgyjeon
        pudgyjeonabout 2 months55 starsFeatured
        I absolutely adore the book called Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus and everything in it. I liked it because I feel like the book was really unique, because the plot was different from any other book I have read. Here is a short summary of the book: Aven was just another kid at middle school, except for the fact that she was the only one without arms. Aven had never felt out of place, but when her dad gets an offer to manage Stagecoach Pass (An amusement park probably as old as your grandpa), she has to leave behind the tornadoes, chilly winters, and not to mention ALL of her friends. When Aven gets there she realizes that the amusement park is not at all like Disneyland. At her new school in Arizona, Aven feels like an alien. Then, one day she meets a guy named Connor who has Tourettes, which is where you get tics; She also meets and befriends a kid named Zion. Aven, Zion, and Connor all try to figure out who exactly is running the park, like their own mystery! Though armless, Aven is the kind of protagonist, (along with her best friends), are the type of characters every book needs.
        • huynht
          huynhtabout 1 year55 stars
          This is the best book that I ever have read it . It about Aven , she had no arm and she had no friend at her new. This book is totally amazing and awesome.
          • awesomekitten
            awesomekittenover 1 year55 stars
            This book is so funny and awesome. I’ve read it about three times.Aven the stories are super cool. I think everybody should read this book!!!!!
            • teolove
              teolovealmost 2 years55 stars
              I LOVE this book! It is totally on my top 10 favorite books that I've read! I think everyone should read this book because it's so amazing!
              • wolfy_blue
                wolfy_bluealmost 2 years44 stars
                so far i love this book,its about this girl who has no arms and its basiclly about her life, she made a friends named connor who has tics and a kinda fat person zion. U should read it!
                • potterhead84 over 2 years
                  BEST BOOK EVER, well besides Harry Potter.
                  • shinebright
                    shinebrightover 2 years55 stars
                    Inspiring, humorous... Aven has no arms, but is capable of anything she puts her mind to.
                    • hv2009
                      hv2009almost 3 years55 stars
                      I think you should definetly read this book because its a book that would definetly make you understand that you can do anything. Aven, the main character has no arms but does so many things and like I said, this is inspirational. Just read it to find out!