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The Secret Olivia Told Me
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The Secret Olivia Told Me

4.01 of 5 stars 4.01  ·  rating details  ·  167 ratings  ·  83 reviews
Can you keep a secret? Olivia has a BIG secret. It's a secret that she tells only to her very best friend. And her friend promises she won't say a word. But the secret is really BIG and JIUCY. What happens when a trusted friend slips and the secret gets out? Can you keep a secret? In the Secret Olivia Told Me, find out what happens when Olivia's friend can't.
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published November 20th 2013 by Just Us Books
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Community Reviews

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As a primary teacher, I can not tell you how many times I have heard, so and so told a secret about me. So you can imagine how happy I am to have come across a book that shows the effects of gossip and telling secrets. This story begins with the narrators best friend telling her a secret. Immediately after hearing the secret she feels the need to tell someone else, but she does not want Olivia to stop being her friend. However the pressure proves to much as she accidently slips to her friend Aya ...more
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(NS) Brea M
N.Joy’s The Secret Olivia Told Me is a simple story about a young girl who learns a secret from her friend Olivia. She tries but cannot resist telling the secret to another classmate Ayanna. From there the secret spreads and even gets bigger as untrue parts are added to it. In the end, Olivia decides that honesty is the best policy and she tells Olivia what she has done. N. Joy offers a story with a lesson for any elementary student. She even includes questions at the end to encourage discussion ...more
Vanessa Wilder
This book is a great book for children who may gossip or spreading rumors. This can also open for discussion a time that someone has told a secret that they may have regretted.

Class Activity: Teacher will stand in a circle and play the game telephone. This is where the teacher will begin to say a phrase and will whisper it to the student beside her and it will be a continuation until it is to the last person.
Mackenzie Cannon
The Secret Olivia Told Me, by N. Joy is about a young girl and her best friend Olivia, who go to school together. Olivia tells her a secret she has that’s very big and very important, and her friend tries as hard as she can to keep the secret, until one day, she accidently tells one of her other friends Olivia’s secret. From there, the secret is told around the school, until everyone knows. Olivia’s friend feels terrible about leaking her secret, so she confronts Olivia and tells her the truth, ...more
Jennifer Binns
The Secret Olivia Told Me is about a girl who tells a secret to her friend. Although her friend doesn't want to tell anyone else the secret, which would betray Olivia's trust and friendship, the secret "accidentally" slips. Soon everyone knows the secret. Throughout the book, there is a red balloon. The balloon symbolized the secret. Unsure about what to do, but wanting to do the right thing, Olivia's friend tells her that she told someone else the secret. One theme from this book is the way tal ...more
I picked up a copy from library to read before I received a copy from author for my niece.

Actually not to be funny, I wanted to know the big secret but the premises was sharing a secret with your close friends presuming they'd keep it to themselves. Moral of the story is, tell someone no longer is a secret because most people cannot hold water and spill their guts for real, simply telling the info they heard from the source. but as we know in communication courses, once said, the message becomes
Cecilia Marsh
I started reading this book in the library this week. It's been a great book and the kids sit on edge in anticipation about how things will turn out. I love to see the light bulb go off in their heads when they realize how the balloon represents the secret and so many of them are intuitive making the prediction about the balloon's fate in the story.

I think this is a must read for classrooms and library visits. It's only day two reading this one to the kids, but so far, very good.

I also love th
Sarah Wilbern
Joy, N. (2007). The Secret Olivia Told Me. New Jersey: Just Us Books.
Coretta Scott King Award
Free Choice.

The book is about two girls who are friends. One friend tells the other a secret. The friend promises not to tell anyone the secret. But, the secret accidently came out. The secret spread and spread. As the secret spread, some false parts were added to it. The friend felt bad about telling the secret in the first place and went to tell her friend about it.
The book had a good pace, and rhyme
S Collins
Oct 06, 2014 S Collins added it
Shelves: child-lit
Joy, N. (2007). The Secret Olivia Told Me. Just Us Books, Inc.

Starred review Coretta Scott King prize for the illustrations 2008


Gossip is the topic of this clever story of a secret that travels and travels then grows bigger as to moves on out of control. The book’s illustrator does not use many colors but the pictures are still powerful and engaging. I think the use of black enhance s the story’s plot because the situation in the book could happen to anyone. It was also interesting to see
Miriah Mascetta
This book was the only book i picked with a different different award. This book was awarded the Corietta Scott King award in 2008. This book was a story of two girls, one told a secret to the other and she blabbed her mouth to everyone about it. Even though she promised her friend that she would not tell. This book could teach students the importance of trust and friendship, but sometimes that secrets can be hard to keep. It never tells us as the audience what the secret actually was! I thought ...more
Beautiful black and white silhouette illustrations help tell the story of a young girl who is trusted with a secret from a friend. She struggles with it and eventually the secret slips. Consequences are swift and a valuable lesson is learned.

In the author's note, the author offers some questions for children about secrets. Do you have secrets? Are there secrets you should tell? and others. I was very pleased with the inclusion of the discussion questions as the ending of the book had me a little
Published in 2007 by Just Us Books, Inc.
Interest Level: 2nd-6th Grade

This picture book cleverly shows the idea of how a secret can be grown through gossiping. The secret is symbolized by a red balloon while everything else is in black and white. As the secret is held and told to others the balloon gets larger and larger until it pops and then the two friends realize that secrets are not secret if told aloud. At the end of the book there are several discussion items about secrets geared towards y
Ashleigh Pollard
The Secret Olivia told me was a very catchy read. The words created a pattern and rhythm from start to finish. Since this children's book is a picture book, the illustrator made a point to tell the story through the movements of the characters body. Olivia told a secret to her friend, which she promised not to tell anyone, but unfortunately her friend did. As the story goes on, more and more people find out about Olivia's big juicy secret. To show how large the secret was getting, the illustrato ...more
May 18, 2013 Veronica added it
Shelves: manners
I'm working on creating a booklist for my local public library. This book was one in consideration for this list.

This book is not going on my list, and I'll ya, I don't like it. The illustrations, the story, the layout of the text. Everything is going for this book, except for the ending.

The moral of this book is don't trust anyone, keep all secrets to yourself, including that your uncle touches you. It doesn't say that verbatim, but it might as well. This book teaches the wrong lesson.

So Olivia
In rhyme, a girl relates what happens when she lets slip her best friends secret.

This is a lesson for all to learn from, so the author portrays each child as a silhouette that represents "every child". To this simple structure of black on white, is the red of balloons. These balloons symbolize the secret, with its string issuing forth from whispering children. As is spreads from mouth to mouth, it grows from the lies that become mixed in with the truth. Matters go out of control. Rather than fei
Christina Fonner
I only enjoyed this book because the pictures were similar and interesting of how it related to the story line. The pictures were only black representing the children and one item in the picture was red. I believe this book is a lesson about giving everyone a second chance, because everyone makes mistakes so it is always good to help a friend out regardless the situation one is in.
Yesenia Garcia
I really enjoyed this book. This book can be used in a unit about gossip and/or bullying especially since I teach middle school. It shows how a secret can be spread throughout a school or community. I like how the girls learned a valuable lesson by the end of the book. Letting one secret slip can make it become a bigger, more outrageous secret that everyone knows about.
Madeline Natzke
I had to read this book with a group of peers in class. I went out and bought it afterwards. The pictures really go along with the story. Its all about a secret that Olivia told her friend, and then she let the secret spill out. The secret then got mixed up and told to everyone at their school. In the end the girls make up and are still friends. The moral of the story is once you tell someone a secret, it is no longer a secret. I really like this book because no matter the age, you can relate to ...more
Picture Book for Young Readers
The question of what happens when a secret is spread is examined in this picture book for grades 1-5, which received the 2007 Coretta Scott King Award for Illustrations. Although the secret is never revealed, the story of what happens to a relationship when a confidence is broken will surely inspire spirited discussion. To facilitate this discussion, a list of questions appears at the end of the story, including “Why do you think it’s hard for people not to tell sec
This is the story of what happens when a friend does not keep a secret. Olivia tells her best friend an important secret, and makes her promise not to tell. Her friend describes how hard it it was to keep the secret, and how she ends up telling. The secret spreads like wildfire throughout the school. She finally confesses to Olivia that she made a huge mistake. She apologizes and asks that she not end the friendship over this. In the end it shows them talking about the lesson they learned.

The p
Loved the artwork and the symbolism of the red balloon as a rumor getting bigger & bigger. I just disagree with the idea that a secret should never be told. There are discussion questions in the back which would be good to use in the classroom.
Jesse Lasarte
One of the things I enjoyed about this book was its message. Not much can devastate a friendship more than gossiping. However, I also thought the illustrations in this book were high quality. The illustrations do a great job of extending or developing the plot. The secret gets told over and over again, while the red balloon in the illustration gets bigger and bigger. Also, I thought the illustrations were very artful. The illustrations are mostly monochromatic, except the bright red balloon and ...more
I needed a book to read aloud to two assemblies - one of K-3rd graders and another 4th-5th graders - for March is Reading Month. This was recommended to me by another librarian and I have to say, it was a total hit. The kids, all ages, as well as the teachers and administrators, all enjoyed the book. While I was reading I could hear murmers of agreement and gasps of "oh no". On top of the simply stated story of a traveling secret, the illustrations are bold and eye-catching. By using black silho ...more
This book is great for teaching lessons on keeping secrets and/or gossip to students. The discussion questions included at the end are a nice bonus. As other reviewers have mentioned it's important to stress to students after reading the books that there are secrets we shouldn't keep. The discussion questions address this, but the story itself does not. When I use this book in class I pair it with a game of "telephone" and the kids love it. The illustrations are beautiful. I love the use of the ...more
Raquel Bernal
The Secret Olivia Told Me, is a book about a girl who shares a secret with her friend. She is told not tell anyone but of course she has to tell. The moral of the story is once you tell someone a secret, it is no longer a secret. This book clearly shows the effects of gossip and telling secrets.The book won Coretta Scott King prize for the illustrations.I really liked the book I think is a good lesson for children to learn the importance of not telling anyone a secret. The last page has a quote ...more
Sarah Ragan
The silhouettes in this book really set the mood of the book and was very artsy.
Marilea Blair
This book was very good and had great Illustrations. I think that this would be a good book to introduce to students as a read aloud if you notice that there is an issue with rumors being spread throughout the classroom. Although the book is placed at a first to second grade reading level, I think that it will make a good book to introduce to older students as a type of poetry. This book would also be helpful if introducing an art lesson about silhouettes; it has amazing illustrations that actua ...more
Camille Peterson
I did not give this a high rating because it is a little uncomfortable for me. At the end of the book, the lesson that they state they learn at the end of the book hardly seems to be a good lesson. They say they learn not to tell anyone any secrets... this seems like a rather strong statement to make! I believe at least they could have said something to the effect to be careful what you tell and who you tell it to, or if someone tells you a secret, do what you would want them to do and keep it a ...more
Mar 05, 2015 Angee rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: All Teachers
Key Word: Accountability
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