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Love Me Tender

3.25  ·  Rating Details  ·  110 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
Elvira’s family has never been the warm, fuzzy type. Most of the time, Elvira can’t stand the sight of her little sister, Kerrie. Elvira and her mother, Mel, fight more often than not. Mel hasn’t spoken to her own family in years. And when Mel announces she’s pregnant again, Elvira’s daddy storms off to Las Vegas to enter an Elvis impersonator competition. But when an urge ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published April 22nd 2008 by Random House Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2008)
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Dec 23, 2008 Rory rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kids
Like "The Postcard" by Tony Abbott, which I also just read, this book went down smoothly enough--it had just enough well-rendered details, and a good group of believable, dynamic characters, and a strong enough sense of place, and was pitched perfectly to the 12-year-olds it was written for. But I was pretty bored reading it, and that made me realize something.

I often protest that children's and YA fiction can be just as good as the best stuff for adults. I don't want to retract that opinion bu
It should be 3.5 stars but I still haven't figured out how to give to do half stars.

When a very pregnant Mel hears that her mother may be dying, she packs up her 13 year old daughter Elvira and 8 year old daughter Kerrie and heads to Memphis to be with the family. Mel and her husband Tony, an Elvis impersonator, have had a fight just a few days earlier so he is in Las Vegas with no idea that his girls are headed to a reunion which may be anything but happy.

While it was an entertaining read, I fe
Jun 22, 2016 Lyn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1-ya, 2-bookloons
'Don't let things fall apart while I'm gone,' thirteen-year-old Elvira's dad says as he takes off for Las Vegas to compete in an Elvis Impersonator competition.

Elvira is not thrilled with the responsibility. Mel, her mother is so pregnant she only gets up from her chair in front of the TV to go to the bathroom. Her eight-year-old sister Kerrie shifts from her grown-up voice to her baby voice, whichever one will let her have her way. And now her dad has morphed into Elvis and left, and she's not
Audience: ages 10-14
Recommend to: fans of Catherine Murdock and Sharon Creech

1. Love in families doesn't always look like what you expect it to, especially when you have three generations of stubborn women. Elvira's mother, Mel hasn't talked to her own family in years. In fact, 13-yr-old Elvira has never even met them. After their father heads to Las Vegas to enter an Elvis impersonator contest, Mel receives word that her mother is dying and she packs up the girls and heads home. As Mel works th
May 14, 2008 Tasha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens-books
Elvira's father has left to pursue his dream of being one of the great Elvis impersonators and her mother, Mel, has just received word that her mother is dying. So off they head to Memphis where Elvira and Kerrie will finally meet their maternal grandmother. But grandma isn't dying and her relationship with Mel is strained and bitter. Mel's sister Clare wants to put her mother in a nursing home, but Mel isn't sure that is necessary. As they spend more time with each other, the varied personaliti ...more
Ariane Terry
This book is a very emotional book. It was very heart felt, and I could definetly relate. The main character of the book is named Elvira. She is a fourteen year old girl who is living the life of an adult. Her parents are having problems. Her dad does not like his job and wants to be just like Elvis. Wierd right? Well her mother does not completely agree, but wants her husband to be happy. She just needs to be able to support her family. One day her father gets up and leaves for California to pa ...more
Aug 11, 2008 Becky rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Couloumbis, Audrey. 2008. Love Me Tender.

"Early Friday afternoon, Daddy left mad.
He carried his guitar. The weather had turned so hot, the sweaty circles on his T-shirt looked like the wings of an insect against his back.
I followed him, dragging his duffel and panting, "Daddy, this thing is too heavy. What all are you carrying in here?"
What, besides his blue suede shoes and tight white jeans, did he need?"

The narrator of Love Me Tender is thirteen-year-old Elvira. The oldest of what will soon
Elizabeth K.
This YA novel was not bad, but suffered from having great unmet potential. 12 year old Elvira, her mother, and her little sister take an impromptu trip to Memphis to visit a grandmother she has never met after her father, a former Elvis impersonator, has a mid-life crisis and takes off for Vegas. On the plus side, the characters are great and believable (and you believe they are a family, and the author as a good ear for dialogue. On the negative, the ending felt tacked on and yet managed to tou ...more
Nov 16, 2008 Makenna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this book is a amazing book.
when 13 year old elvira's mom, mel gets pregnant, her dad leaves the family to go enter a elvis impersinators contest. meanwhile, the family gets a strange message on the answering machine. it says "mother's time is coming" with out a hello or a goodbye. they decide to drive to nashville, where mel's mother lives. on the way, they encounter some things that aren't too great. elvira's little sister, kerrie gets some fake eyelashes stuck on her eyelashes, and they have
Feb 21, 2012 Slizzards rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: teen-fiction
13-year old Elvira, along with her mother and little sister, goes on a journey to visit her mother's estranged family in Memphis after her father leaves for Vegas to compete in an Elvis impersonator competition. Elvira goes through a life changing experience meeting family she's never before met and accepting her changing world right beneath her.

I picked this book because the back cover described this book in an interesting way that made me want to try it out.
I finished this book because I wante
Ryann Murphy
Teen Elvira is left to take care of her pregnant mom and younger sister when her dad, an Elvis impersonator, takes off (after a fight with mom) to win a big competition in Las Vegas. When a cryptic message is left on the home machine that hints at a grandma's sickness, the girls hop in the truck and take off for Memphis, TN. The next couple of days are spent getting acquainted with a grandma they girls never met and dealing with the undefined absence of their father. It ends plausibly, with reve ...more
Sep 21, 2008 george rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, read-in-2008
The premise is that Elvira is thirteen years old. Her mother is pregnant and her father, an Elvis impersonator, has flown the coop to an Elvis competition in Vegas. Then the call comes that Mel's (that would be Elvira's mother) mother is about to die. So Mel, Elvira and little sister Kerrie hop in the car and drive to Memphis to see the mother Mel no longer has a relationship with and the grandmother the girls have never met.

Eh. I didn't really like it all that much. I mainly felt like I was plu
Sep 23, 2013 BookCupid rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade, own
Elvira's dad leaves her little sister and pregnant mother to join an Elvis impersonator show. The mother's distraught over this takes a toll on Elvira. Why is mother always so harsh? Leaving to visit Grandma, a women Elvira has never meet, looks like the only thing that can save this family.

The book was a pleasant read. Often somber, with lots of sibling rivalry. Sadly, I expected more of a family crisis, and found things a bit too easily resolved. It is my belief that time deepens the wounds,
Sep 07, 2014 Rena rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really cute book and made me a laugh a few times.
Jul 02, 2009 Jespera rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Elvira is the daughter of an Elvis impersonator/gardener and a free spirited mom she calls Mel. The story starts as her dad leaves for a competition after a fight with Mel who is expecting another child. Then a phone calls leads Mel to take her two daughters to her own home where they meet her mother and sister. I really like the relationships between the sisters and the dialog.
Elvira's mom hasn't spoken to or of her family for years. But when her father leaves after a fight and Mel (Elvira's mom) gets a call saying her mother is at death's door, the family packs up and sets off to meet that part of the family. Once there Elvira, still longing for her father, finds that family isn't always what you dreamed, but sometimes it's better than you hoped.
Jun 13, 2008 Jennifer rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: kids aged 9 and up
I liked, but did not love, this book. I enjoyed it more the further I got into it. It took me some time to get used to the way the characters in the family related to one another-- for awhile I just had to trust that the love really was there between all of them-- but there are some positive messages to be gained, and some funny passages as well.
Oct 31, 2008 April rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Possible Mock Newbery choice. Story about a family with a father that is an Elvis impersonator who leaves the family for a contest in Las Vegas and then the two sisters and there pregnant mother get an emergency call to go to Memphis where the girls meet their sometimes forgetful grandmother and eccentric aunt.
Nov 02, 2009 Kim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chapter, family, divorce
Elvira worryies about her family. Her father left after her parents had a fight. Her mom, who is pregnant, takes her and her younger sister to visit their grandma. Usually visiting your grandma is a good thing, but Elvira has never met her grandma because her mother had stopped talking to her.
Apr 29, 2008 Linda rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: 4th - 6th graders
Shelves: middle-grade
Elvira's dad, an Elvis impersonator, heads to Vegas to hit the big time, leaving Elvira (13), her 8-year-old sister and her embarrassingly pregnant mother behind. The girls head to Memphis to see "the grandmother" (as Elvira calls her). Elvira's voice keeps this one going. 4.5 stars.
I didn't realize this was a kids' book when I bought it secondhand (oops) but it's a cute premise and a decent coming of age story. Suggest it to the 10-14 year old set of girls in your life; they'll be happy you did.
Apr 06, 2012 Suzanne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nice story about a tween learning to deal with her expanding family -- adding a new baby & a grandma she'd never met. Oh, & how to deal with an elvis impersonating dad. Great middle grade read.
May 12, 2008 Megan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a really cute story! What would you do if your dad was an Elvis impersonator who took off for Vegas and your mom took you on a long roadtrip to see your long-lost grandmother?
Nov 11, 2011 Ashley rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Personally, I found the writing and the characters to be well done, but not much of a thrust to the story. Great for kids that stories about real-life, though.
Jun 05, 2008 Hannah rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Turns out I'm not the only writer who thought a teenaged girl with an Elvis-impersonating father would be funny. Rats.
Rachel Ann
Aug 22, 2013 Rachel Ann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an AWESOME book so far. It is really good. I recommend it to anyone who LOVES family drama!!!
Aug 09, 2008 Marilyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well-developed characters and a distinct voice/POV distinguished this book for me.
Sue Poduska
Nov 03, 2012 Sue Poduska rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Heartwarming coming of age story.
Aubrey Antram
Dec 05, 2010 Aubrey Antram rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
really sweet!(I love Elvis)
Dayse Dantas
Dec 16, 2013 Dayse Dantas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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