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Tough! (Weird! #3)

4.39  ·  Rating Details ·  87 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
Sam is concerned about keeping things orderly and "cool" at school. She thinks people need to have a tough skin in order to fit in and withstand others’ meanness and lack of cooperation. Sam teases her free-spirited classmate Luisa and enlists a friend, Jayla, to help. But when Sam is confronted by a concerned teacher about her bullying, and Jayla turns on Sam and befriend ...more
Hardcover, 48 pages
Published July 27th 2012 by Free Spirit Publishing (first published January 1st 2012)
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Feb 28, 2017 Nicole added it
This book is about a girl is who "tough" in her eyes, but a bully in others eyes. Throughout the book Sam, the main character, learns that being kind to someone doesn't mean you can't still be tough. Being tough is different than being mean and a bully to people. This book also shows the other side of the situation. Sometimes when children are bullied at home, like Sam was from her older brother, they take it out on others to help make themselves feel better. This book gave me a good perspective ...more
Feb 22, 2017 Celia rated it really liked it
This book tackles the tough issue of bullying, and is a part of a series of books about the bullier, the bullied, and the bystander. No one is vilified, and the author walks the line between making no excuses for the bully and showing how this young girl is thinking about her role in school. She demonstrates remorse and the story does have a happy ending without making anyone into the "bad guy."
I read this book with a few 3rd grade girls today, and they really were engaged with this story. I ask
Aug 23, 2014 Tami rated it liked it
The WEIRD! series relates a common bullying situation from three different perspectives: WEIRD! is from the viewpoint of the bully's target(Luisa); DARE! is from that of the bystander(Jayla); and TOUGH! is from the perspective of the bully, herself(Sam).

The bully situation, itself, is absolutely believable. Sam continually calls Jayla names and puts down how she dresses and the things she likes. When Sam switches her attention to Luisa, calling her "Weird!," and making snide comments about her p
Sep 27, 2013 Sarah rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
These books are a great resource for any school. There are many books about bullying available but what sets these apart from similar stories are the multiple viewpoints comprehensive and detailed section of activities and suggestions at the end of each story. My reviewers (aged 8 and 5) thought that this was great and wanted to try them all out.

The books work well individually but are perhaps best read as a set. The multiple viewpoints provide a valuable perspective on the different backgrounds
Sep 01, 2012 Kristina rated it really liked it
*** I received Weird! for free through Goodreads First Reads ***
(They kindly sent this and the second book in the series as well.)
** The Giveaway was Listed By Elena (of Free Spirit) **
* I received my copy on Sat, Sept 01 2012 *


Third book in the Weird Trilogy for kids, this picture book is told from the point of view of a bully. It goes through why she feels like she has to bully others, how she is treated by others away from school, how other kids react
Sep 21, 2013 Suz rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-kid-lit, netgalley
This story shows how bullying from the bully's perspective. We see in the illustrations that Sam is picked on at home by her brother, and seems to be acting the same way toward classmates. She particularly focuses on Luisa because "she has it easy. Always getting the right answer. Always with her friends. Always smiling." Jealousy plays a big part in her choice of victim. From what she says, it also makes her feel in control to be the one belittling others or forcing them to go along with her.

R. C.
Mar 26, 2014 R. C. rated it it was amazing
My only complaint with this otherwise great series is that the bully's resolution reads as forced. We have been through a book from the bystander's POV, then one from the bullying victim's POV, and each time come to understanding about how they feel, why they are making the choices they are, how they determine to change, and how things feel for them after that. This book from the bully's POV starts out fantastic, as the bully explains that she is not trying to be mean, she just wants to keep thi ...more
Destiny Dawn Long
Full review is available at my blog:


Frankel’s voice is a breath of fresh air. She is able to get inside the heads of each girl and narrates in voices that feel fresh, honest, and real. At the same time, she doesn’t sacrifice literary style–the language is thoughtful and has a natural, easy flow. I was also impressed that each of her main characters are cool and likable in their own way–there are no pathetic outcast whiners or giant ignorant oafs i
Would have liked the book to shoe more of the exclusionary behavior and bullying that happens within cliques. Still, this was valuable for showing one perspective of why a bully engages in this behavior. Even though adults interacted with Sam to redirect her behavior, it does not match experiences I have observed in which the bully laughs at the adult and goes out of her way to avoid being caught by the watchful adult who tries to hold the bully accountable. The resolution occurred much to quick ...more
Apr 14, 2014 Courtney rated it it was amazing
Shelves: edutl-2368
Frankel, E. Tough. MN: Free Spirit publishing (2012).
Illustrated by Paula Heaphy

This is a story that is part of the Weird! series, and Tough follows a girl named Sam who is a bully. The situation is viewed from her perspective and why she is bullying, and why she needs to feel tough. The reading level for this book is ages 8-12 and appeals mostly to girls. Students will find this book interesting because of the different perspective, and they will gain insight to a bully's mind.
Nov 19, 2012 Laura5 rated it it was amazing
This whole series (Weird!, Dare!, & Tough!) should be in every elementary school!
Erika Gentry
Oct 08, 2016 Erika Gentry rated it it was amazing
This is one book of three books focused on 3 perspectives of bullying for elementary students. Tough focuses on the bully's perspective. It gives really good insightful details as well as suggestions for those students who are bullies. Good for students in second or third grade through fifth grade. Every media center in an elementary school should own this series.
Maggie Burgess
Sep 26, 2015 Maggie Burgess rated it liked it
Would love to add this one to my classroom library! Here is a bully who thinks she needs to play it tough (and explains why), but learns that it can be cool to be kind. A little forced at times, but I enjoyed the resources for teachers/adults in the back. Definitely some things I could try in my classroom.
Sunnyvale Librarian
The three-part series (Weird!, Dare! and Tough!) paints a picture of school-age bullying from the perspectives of the bully, the bullied, and the bystander. Each child learns to face her unique challenges with the help of friends and caring adults. This insightful series helps parents and kids
identify bullying behavior and provides tools for breaking the cycle of cruelty.
Sep 02, 2012 Kowanda rated it really liked it
The Tough!, Dare! and Weird! books should be in every classroom and home. I like the conversational way the books are written. I like even more the notes at the end of the book by each of the girls and the activities that parents and teachers can do with their kids.
Donald Armfield
Aug 05, 2013 Donald Armfield rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens
Part of the "Weird Series" The bully strikes again. This time Daring another student to do her dirty work. By picking on the same girl from previous book, "Weird"

Very strong message all kids should receive so they are not the target of bullying.
May 03, 2016 Nathan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013, non-fiction
I'm so glad I read this after I read Weird!. It's a relief to see Sam's side of the story and understand that there was some redirecting by teachers. I love this series of books. Just the idea of it makes me happy. A book about the exact same story, from every side.
The books in this series deal with bullying and tall the stories from each character's point of view.
Aug 07, 2014 Borchers rated it really liked it
This a book we will definitely be getting for the school. Shows good perspective while not going over the top.
Great book (third in a series, the "Weird" series), from Free Spirit Press, publisher of Words are Not for Hurting and Hands are Not for Hitting. This series is about bullying. Well done.
ARC supplied by publisher via NetGalley
Michelle's Book
Nov 25, 2013 Michelle's Book rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is another good book. Great book!

I was given an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion. This book cover is on my Pinterest board and my blog, Michelle Dragalin’s Journey.
Miss Laurie Found a Story
Miss Laurie Found a Story rated it it was amazing
Nov 14, 2012
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Oct 02, 2016
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Aug 17, 2016
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Feb 20, 2015
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May 19, 2017
Rachel rated it it was amazing
Aug 06, 2014
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Other Books in the Series

Weird! (3 books)
  • Weird!
  • Dare!

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