Lydia and Julie think they have a solid plan for popularity and they shared it in their first book: The Popularity Papers: Research for the Social Improvement and General Betterment of Lydia Goldblatt and Julie Graham-Chang In that book, the girls made it a project to study the popular girls in their elementary school so that they could understand what to do in middle school to be popular. What sports should they play? What color should their hair be? How should they talk? What shows should they watch?
Now, just before the first day of middle school, the girls find out the one thing that could wreck their carefully laid plan…one of them is moving! How can they conquer popularity alone in two different schools…in two different cities…in two different COUNTRIES! It is a popularity crisis of global proportion. Julie will be here and Lydia will be in London for 6 whole months.
Being uber-organized note takers the girls agree to work on their poplularity goals while apart. Julie starts school alone at Hannibal Hamlin Junior High. Her job is to study Della Dawn and the other “Bichons” – a “club that everyone wants to be in but no one ever gets invited to join.” (page 32) By studying them Julie will figure out how to become a “Bichon”.
In London, Lydia figures out who the cool people are, Victoria and Paulina, but doesn’t really like them. Instead, she decides to befriend Delilah and Nabil. Her goal is to use she and Julie’s careful popularity research to teach THEM how to be popular. THEN, when Lydia returns to America in 5 months, she and Julie will know works and can use it together at Hannibal Hamlin to become wildly popular. Sound like a plan? They think so! Author: Amy Ignatow
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Piper and her sisters are always on the move, literally, because their dad is in the Navy. They have learned to adjust to starting new schools a lot and also missing their dad when he is deployed somewhere. This time, the challenge is of a different kind – this time they have to miss their mom too!
Chief has decided that he and Piper’s Mom need a special second honeymoon vacation together in Paris and because of Chief’s crazy Navy schedule they have to go in December – and be gone for Christmas!
No mom OR dad at Christmas? Piper doesn’t really feel like saluting and saying “Aye, aye, Chief,” like she usually does. She just feels kind of sick – even though the plan involves Piper and her sisters staying with their grandparents for 8 whole days.
As usual Piper is a girl that’s always open to adventure. She jumps right into her 8 days in Piney Woods where all four of her Grandparents live. Piper finds a reason to say about each one of her four grandparents, “that’s why he/she is my favorite!” Piper shows how what you don’t know yet can be really fun- you just have to be patient enough to find out what the fun is! Author: Kimberly Willis Holt
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|To find out how The Gypsy Club started and more about Piper Reed, try her other books, or try out other spunky girls, like Clementine and Amber Brown.
Rosalind lives in India in the early 1900s. India at this time is a colony to Britain. (Similar to the time period in A Little Princess.) Rosalind’s mother is emotionally fragile after the death of Roslalind’s little brother and her father is a British officer who is rarely home. This leaves Rosalind with a lot of freedom. She sneaks out to the bazaar and roams the streets, falling in love with her home and its people.
When Rosalind’s Father returns from his deployment things are …tense. Father and daughter bitterly disagree about Indian freedom from British rule.
When Rosalind becomes too involved in the lives of the family’s Indian servents and when she sneaks off with her friend Max to hear a speech by Ghandi, Rosalind’s Dad becomes enraged. What teenager wants to hear this:
“…you are not to involve yourself in any way with what goes on in this country. Those who are older and wiser than you are have things well in hand. Is that understood?” (page 68)
But what if you DON’T think those who are older are wiser, what if you think they are just plain wrong? This headstrong girl who has the moxy to stand up for what she believes in, even to her Dad, was great to read about. The heated debates between father and daughter are some of the best parts. I also loved Rosalind’s relationships with her Indian friends and how she developed her own thoughts about Indian freedom from British rule based on her own experiences and not on what she read or what other people told her. This book reveals the dramatic changes Gandhi inspired that eventually lead to a free India.
I’ll warn you that the story ends when you wish it wouldn’t…and I can’t wait for the next one to find out what happens to Rosalind when she returns to India. (Her Dad gets so mad at her he sends her to England to school!) I’m thinking Max is going to turn up again and Rosy’s Dad is NOT going to be happy about it!
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Big Nate is the Wimpy Kid…only not wimpy. Nate is loud and confident and ready to bend the world HIS way. I really laughed reading Big Nate’s books Big Nate in a Class By Himself and Big Nate Strikes Again.
I knew that Big Nate actually started as a comic strip but I had never read it. Big Nate Out Loud is a compilation of several Big Nate comic strips – he is just as funny one strip at a time. Nate even tries to change school to make it more interesting: ”
Mr. Gavin, this worksheet on photosynthesis really isn’t working for me….We want to stop studying photosynthesis and start studying something GOOD!” (pages 57-58)
When that doesn’t work he tries to get Mr. Gavin to laugh. He cracks jokes, even science jokes, but nothing works until one of Nate’s classmates says,
“Mr. Gavin, Nate thinks he has a good chance to make the honor roll this term. What do YOU think?” (page 62)
That works! Apparently Nate is not exactly honor roll material! He’s too busy trying to impress Jenny to concentrate on his school work. He also likes complaining and pranks and asking a lot of questions to keep the teacher off topic. If you think about it you’ve probably got someone in your class like Nate already…or maybe that someone is YOU!
Big Nate Series:
1: Big Nate in a Class By Himself
2: Big Nate Strikes Again
3: Big Nate On a Roll (Comes Out August 16, 2011)
Help keep Nate dentention free by connecting Big Nate’s Network:
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|If you like Big Nate or Greg Heffley, try some of these:
Jamie is still sure that she’s got life figured out – but if she does, how does she get herself mixed up in such crazy situations? This time it’s her birthday and she’s determined that there will NOT be a repeat of last year when her parents gave her a pogo stick instead of the cute puppy she wanted. That pogo stick DID turn into a puppy…that she describes as a “lumpy, toadish bucket of unpleasantness we know as Stink.” Long story. (In fact, it’s one of Jamie’s other adventures – see list below!) Anyway, Jamie has an all-time favorite band and doesn’t like people copying this like…so she pretends to like a different band to throw them off…which turns into a big Jamie-style mess at her birthday party. More fun from that crazy Jamie and her dumb diary. Author: Jim Benton
Dear Dumb Diary Official Website
Read Chapter One Okay, So Maybe I Do Have Superpowers
Make Your Own Dear Dumb Diary
Jim Benton Official Website
#1 Let’s Pretend This Never Happened
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#2 My Pants are Haunted (When Bad Clothes Happen to Good People)
#3 Am I the Princess or the Frog
#4 Never Do Anything, Ever
#5 Can Adults Become Human?
#6 The Problem with Here is That it’s Where I’m From
#7 Never Underestimate Your Dumbness
#8 It’s Not My Fault I Know Everything
#9 That’s What Friends Aren’t For
#10 The Worst Things in Life are Also Free
#11: Okay, So Maybe I Do Have Superpowers
#12: Me! (Just Like You, Only Better)