Billie Standish Was Here
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Billie Standish Was Here

4.17 of 5 stars 4.17  ·  rating details  ·  160 ratings  ·  40 reviews
CAN ONE UNLIKELY FRIENDSHIP SAVE A LIFE?

Billie Standish has pretty much no one. Her parents are too caught up in their own lives, and the only two girls in town her age want nothing to do with her. When it looks like a nearby levee might break, and Billie's elderly neighbor, Miss Lydia, is the only other person besides her family to stick around, a friendship is born out...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published June 5th 2007 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
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Lisa
I loved the narrative voice of the protagonist, Billie Marie, which immediately drew me into the story. Although, at times, she definitely spoke with a voice beyond her years. In some cases this was warranted based on her experiences, but in others it seemed a little forced. Billie's age at the beginning of the novel is unclear. And when the dramatic events of the novel begin to unfold they are made doubly horrific when the reader discovers her true age. The novel spans five years of Billie's li...more
M.C.
Jun 13, 2008 M.C. rated it 4 of 5 stars Recommends it for: Anyone over 14
First off, let me set the record straight. I'm not a Young Adult. Though my wife might argue that point. I'm also not a girl. Again, my wife might argue. But guess what? I loved Billie. There's a natural wit and authenticity here that makes the book an easy, yet deeply engaging read. It doesn't ask too much of the reader, but rewards at every turn. The beauty is in the simplicity of the tale. A breezy read for anyone over 14. Well done Nancy!
Prairie Star
I loved the narrative voice of the protagonist, Billie Marie, which immediately drew me into the story. Although, at times, she definitely spoke with a voice beyond her years. In some cases this was warranted based on her experiences, but in others it seemed a little forced. Billie's age at the beginning of the novel is unclear. And when the dramatic events of the novel begin to unfold they are made doubly horrific when the reader discovers her true age. The novel spans five years of Billie's li...more
Mrs. Foley
The river jeopardizes the levee and most of the town leaves; but Miss Lydia, an elderly neighbor, and Billie form a friendship that withstands tragedy and time. - From library catalog record

This book is one of the Gateway Award nominees for 2009-2010. Not many students have read it (I think because neither the title nor the cover are appealing). This is unfortunate as it really is a great book set in Missouri...and the author is from Missouri! The relationship between Billie (a young girl) and M...more
Ryker
I saw this on my recommendations and I didn't think I would like it from reading the description, and I guess I was right. The description doesn't even begin to describe this book, because honestly, if I were to describe it, I would pretty much say that I loved it, fifty pages in it got me hooked and had me crying, and I stayed interested in it throughout the whole book. I have honestly never wanted to own a book of my own just so I could underline and annotate it so much before. This book is ju...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Dena Landon for TeensReadToo.com

This novel set in Missouri in the 1960's transports the reader to another time and place, where the problems faced by Billie Standish are just as real as those faced by teens today.

Billie's parents wanted a boy, hence the first name of William, and spend the majority of their time ignoring her. When the river starts to rise and threatens to flood, Billie's family is one of the few to stay. She forms an unlikely friendship with an elderly woman, Miss L...more
Gabriel
Well, this book is really good despite that it is a debut novel of Nancy Crocker. I really liked how Nancy made her protagonist in this novel and because of Billie's being the invisible one in their house as well as in her school, I am really sorry for Billie for being so lonely and considering herself as invisible to others because her parents didn't pay attentiom to her that much and thanks to Mrs. Lydia all of it changed because Billie experienced having a friend in her person and teaching Bi...more
B.A.  Wilson
This is an excellent story about facing a nightmare, finding a way to keep living a normal life in spite of it, and letting others help you heal again. It also reminds people that friendships defy demographics (age, race, gender, income, education, etc.) This book deals with some serious stuff. It might make you cry, and it will definitely touch your heart.
Amy
I have mixed feelings about this book. I'm giving it 4 stars because the writing is excellent and I love the story. I just really, really, really have a hard time with books about rape. And I thin that's my main complaint. I almost feel as if the story didn't have the rape, it would be even more powerful. Its not really a book about overcoming sexual assault. It's a book about friendship. So for me, personally, (and I expect a lot of people to disagree), the story would have been better without...more
Amy Taylor
This is the story of William Marie Standish, the only daughter to farmers living in Missouri. Billie thinks she'll be spending the summer of 1968 like she has spent every other summer she can remember, alone. Her parents work very hard from sun up til sun down while Billie stays home. However, this summer has something different in store for Billie. When her town is evacuated for a possible flood her family decides to stick it out. Her family and one neighbor are the only people left. Billie and...more
Heid E.
Bille Standish Was Here is the kind of book that might make a difference in a young girl/woman's life. It is a cautionary tale and a strong-heart song--giving even the wounded the courage to continue, to step back up and be brave. Detailed in the brutal rape the main character suffers, but understated in other ways so the event is in no way salacious. It' the kind of book that might make a difference in a young boy/man's life too. This book is remarkable and I've found, this summer, that I wante...more
Rosanise
This book was great! Billie Marie Standish lives an almost invisible life. Her parents work from dawn till dusk and she doesn't fit in with her small town. One summer she creates an unforgettable friendship with her older neighbor, Miss Lydia. After a tragic and life-changing accident involving Miss Lydia's son these two best friends must keep a scary secret and bond together to sew up the rip made in their lives. This book is a bit mature, some graphic images but nonetheless a sweet book. I onl...more
Julie
If I hadn't been sitting in Five Guys Burgers and Fries, I would have cried at the end. As it was, my eyes moistened. When Billie was raped, I thought, "Oh boy, this is going to be a book of never-ending misery," but no! It's a book about healing and love, and most of all about living..

Here's why I didn't give it 5 stars, even though I really liked it: I never could fully reconcile Miss Lydia's revenge, and I am not sure about the title accurately capturing the spirit of the book. But it was clo...more
Terry
Wonderful book ... There is a violent act, rape, of the main character, but that is not what the book centers around. It is a story of love and family, and how those things come from unexpected people. I loved it.
JC
This book took me a bit to get into, but by the end I was engulfed. Billie is a young woman who doesn't have any friends and no one seems to pay much attention to her. Fortunately, her dear neighbor, Miss Lydia, takes Billie under her wings and helps her to find herself in one of the most important times of her life. The book is slow moving at times but extremely touching and you'll be cheering and for Billie and Ms. Lydia by the end.
Paula  from Reading Lark
Beware: this one is SAD.

If you can stomach the awful stuff happening to this girl, the relationship she eventually builds with her elderly neighbor is SO worth wading through the sadness. Such a good depiction of a cross-generational friendship that is believable. I love books with exceptionally well-developed characters, and this one surely has them.
Claire
I really loved this book it was written really well. Billie one day finds out everyone in the neighborhood had left except her family and the old lady next door, Miss Lydia. This book goes through Billie's years (11-16?) and Miss Lydia's as well. Full of life, love, adventure, sadness,and an 11 year old girl want ing a friend. I loved this book!
Swati
Fantastic book that uses an intergenerational friendship as a coming of age story. Crocker interweaves history in a way that is neither didactic nor irrelevant, but demonstrates how our history affects the way we grow up. This book refuses to get caught up in a great, but fairly typical plot, using that as a basis to go further and deeper.
Taylor Elwood
So we all have that book that touches us when we need it the most, gives us that extra push, gives us a friend we forgot about when we feel the loneliest. Billie Standish was here, was that book for me. This book is truly beautiful. It reminded me what love is, what life can be, and the beautiful nature of true friendship. Bravo
Mokamonkey
This one kind of reminded me of "Pictures of Hollis Woods" - a emotionally damaged girl heals with the help of a elderly woman. I thought at first that this was going to be a book for older kids, rather than teens, because the main character was 11 for at least the first 1/2, but then we follow her until she is 16/17.
Toni
Fantastic! Billie Standish lives on a farm and has no friends until she befriends her elderly neighbor across the street. Something terrible happens that the two of them keep secret. The friendship develops until the inevitable, heart-rendering end.
Karen Wilson
This was one of my favorite books from the Gateway Award list this year. You really get to know the two main characters well, and their relationship is so profound in many ways. I was on an emotional rollercoaster the whole time I was reading it.
Carolina
Nov 26, 2007 Carolina rated it 4 of 5 stars Recommends it for: people who like a good quick read that will leave you breathless at times with love and devotion
This is an easy read about how love enters your life and changes you. It is a quick read and a book I found myself having a hard time putting down. I learned from this book that I am fortunate to have parent's that that love me and tell me so.
April
I picked this one up because of a friend's review here. I had no idea it was set in Missouri and kept referring to Kansas City things! I really enjoyed that part. It is also a great story about healing.
Angela
Great YA book club book. Enjoyed the discussion with the girls. Had a great discussion especially because Nancy Crocker was amazing enough to respond to a list of questions we sent. Very moving.
Jane
Well written story about the friendship between an older woman and an 11 year-old girl who is basically abandoned, while living with her parents.
Angela
One of the best books I've read in a LONG time. A touching story and impeccably written. I can't wait for Nancy Crocker's next book!
Gretchen
Aug 25, 2008 Gretchen rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya
Also reviewed at my conference as a great book that got no press. Think it may have an r rated scene. YA, for HS not middle school . . .
Lisa
I'm not sure why I finished this book. It wasn't bad, it just wasn't particularly original.
Mendy
in the beginning I wasn't really sure but by the end I was hooked. I really liked it!
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