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Along Came Spider

3.6  ·  Rating Details ·  106 Ratings  ·  31 Reviews
Can their friendship survive the fifth grade?

Spider Stevens and Trey Cooper have lived next door to each other their entire lives. Their houses are on the odd-numbered side of Maple Street, which seems just about right.
Because, well, Trey Cooper is a little odd himself.
It didn't matter when they were little kids --- you know, way back in second grade. And it doesn't mat
Hardcover, 144 pages
Published September 1st 2008 by Scholastic Inc. (first published 2008)
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Jul 24, 2012 Melissa rated it really liked it
This book really brought out a lot of emotion in me so I wrote about it often.
Chapter 1: I am not impressed with Robert (Spider). First of all, his neighborhood friend has to call him Spider instead of Robert…seriously… a bit proud. During writing workshop, Robert decides to draw cartoon figures of his classmates. These drawings so far are not exactly going to earn him an award for kindness. I really hope the teacher uses his work for a teachable moment.
Chapter 2: Trey seems like a dreamer and w
The Reading Countess
Feb 04, 2011 The Reading Countess rated it really liked it
Preller, author of the beloved Jigsaw Jones series, certainly did his research before he set out to write this story of a friendship struggling to stay afloat. Spending one year in a fifth grade classroom, he was able to pick up on the tentative steps towards middle school that kids take in their final year of elementary school. Figuring out what's cool and who's not is typically a top priority for most fifth graders, and Preller addresses it with honesty. He's also able to correctly capture the ...more
Dec 02, 2013 Pandora rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s
I am not a big fan of realistic fiction but, this is one of the better ones. It is about the difficulties of keeping a friendship going with the pressures to fit in. Spider is caught between his friendship for the odd Trey and the social pressure to be one of the guys. Being in the realistic genre is the perfect genre for this story as it explores the pressures of fitting in and being true to your self. There are no pat answers just a good examination of the problem similar to Firegirl. The book ...more
Kate Hastings
Oct 08, 2008 Kate Hastings rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Grades 4-6, autism, realistic, school, friendship, boys
Written by the author of the Jigsaw Jones mysteries, this was a very different book. It's 5th grade, and Spider's friend Trey doesn't fit in with the rest of the class. He never has-- his obsessions with facts and odd behavior alienate him from kids his age. Preller never names this behavior autism or spectrum disorder, but it is mentioned in the credits.

Spider and Trey are neighbors and have been friends for as long as they can remember. But Trey's odd behavior is beginning to effect Spider's s
Oct 09, 2008 Tami rated it it was amazing
Robert “Spider” Stevens and Trey Cooper had been friends for as long as they could remember. They lived next store to each other. They were inseparable.

That is, until fifth grade. Trey was well rather unique. He wasn’t very good at sports. In class, he would interrupt with little bits of trivia that no one cared about. People laughed at him.

Everyone always asked Spider why he hung around Trey. After all Spider could easily transition into the popular group. In fact, when the class decided to j
Feb 27, 2009 Talia rated it liked it
Spider and Trey have been neighbors and best friends since they were young, but now that they’re in the fifth grade, Trey has become even more noticeably,…different. And it’s a little embarrassing for Spider. He wants to be friends with Trey, but he acts so strange. Soon Trey can only be an “at home” friend to Spider, and he seeks friendship with a female classmate and the school librarian.

This book was interesting, but I don’t understand the title, especially since Spider isn’t the “weird kid”
Roxanne Hsu Feldman
It's not the kind of book that blow you away, but it is really a very solid short middle grade title. It works. It feels real -- especially the emotional truth within. The less-portrayed-topic-in-books-for-grades-3-to-5, friendship dilemma story between two boys, makes this book stand out. I can see it being "used" in classrooms but I can also see that the children will appreciate the effort the author put in to create an authentic experience. I do wonder if the story wouldn't have come through ...more
Jul 22, 2009 oplkids rated it liked it
Trey & Spider are the same age & have lived next door to each other their whole lives. They played with each other pretty much every day when they were little, and they've walked to school together ever since they started going. Now they're in 5th grade and Spider is having a problem. He likes to play basketball and hang out with the other kids, but Trey is different. Sometimes poeple talk to him and he doesn't even hear them - he's too busy looking for rocks for his rock collection, or ...more
Rhonda Morris
Jul 12, 2009 Rhonda Morris rated it really liked it
Along Came Spider is the story of two boys in the 5th grade who have known each other since they were born. Spider (Robert is his given name) accepts Trey for just they way he is; Trey is different and the rest of the 5th grade gives him a hard time. This is a story of endearing friendship, loyalty, and acceptance. Although the author never states Trey's true disability, the descriptions make the reader think that he is autistic.
This would be an excellent book for use as a read-aloud to help st
Sep 25, 2008 Sheila rated it really liked it
Shelves: anokaberry
I felt like I was back in 5th grade with the friends thing goin on. I could feel for Spider, but also for Trey, who I identified with even more because he saw things a bit different. I didn't 'get' the book until I was more than half through.. but I did get it. Friendships are fragile and friends are precious and hard to find, but when you have them you are very lucky indeed. I loved the chair and the stool...
Nov 01, 2012 Ace rated it liked it
James Preller has friendship as a theme for his book about two friends named Spider and Trey.Trey is feeling lonely because of his skills at sports aren't so great.Trey and spider figure out about a B-Ball tournament, and because of Trey's low skills in basketball Spider finds his own basketball team without Trey on the roster. Overall the book is a great realistic fiction about two friends that start to grow apart. I recommend this book for grades 4-6.

Highly Reccomended
Ruth Ann
Nov 04, 2011 Ruth Ann rated it really liked it
Friends since birth, Spider and Trey are drifting apart. Now, almost the whole fifth grade thinks Trey is weird. It would be so easy for Spider to go along with the class. Sticking up for his friend will be much harder. And Spider's popularity is on the line. Read this story about friends, new and old, and what's really important when you want to do what's right.
Debbie McNeil
Feb 25, 2011 Debbie McNeil rated it really liked it
Torn between 3 & 4 stars here. Gave it 4 because of it was one of our easier reads yet had quality writing (great description), good but honest message, the curricular tie-ins, and (honestly) the kind, kick-@$% librarian. I do think it lacked depth and a fuller resolution. So, think of this review as a 3.5.
Brenda Kahn
Nov 30, 2011 Brenda Kahn rated it really liked it
Shelves: friendship
I reread this because my sixth graders chose this for their book club this month. This nice, solid middle grade book about friendship between boys would make a great read aloud as well. I can't wait to hear what the book club has to say.
This book is about two boys, Spider and Trey who have been friends their entire lives. This book explores the growing pains of friendship and dealing with adversity and disability. Would be a good book paired with Loser by Jerry Spinelli.
Oct 20, 2008 Dina rated it really liked it
I'm quickly becoming a fan of James Preller. Both this and Six Innings, two totally different books, appealed to me so much, and I can see their appeal for kids. Which is just about the best thing I can say.
Plus, I've discovered Preller's blog and like that, too.
Addison Children
Spider and Trey have been best friends forever, but it is hard to stay friends in the 5th grade at Spiro Agnew Elementary when Trey is SO different. (He is apparently a high functioning autistic, but that is never said, nor is it a subject heading.) I enjoyed it.
Jul 18, 2011 Kyle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a good book. There is a boy, Trey, that doesn't fit in with others. Kids think he's weird. He has one part-time friend. Do you think Trey needs another friend? Doesn't everyone need a friend? This book is good to read because it's interesting to find out what happens.
Nov 23, 2011 Susan rated it liked it
Spider and his friend Trey are in fifth grade. Trey is Spider's neighbor and is autistic. They have been life-long friends, but peer pressure is forcing Spider to choose whether to keep Trey as a friend or not.
Josh Newhouse
Dec 12, 2010 Josh Newhouse rated it liked it
Not bad but a little halting and the ending was not satisfying... characters kind of flat. Bystander by same author is much better.
Clare Cannon
Oct 14, 2010 Clare Cannon rated it liked it
Recommends it for: 6-9 years (boys)
Shelves: 04-8yrs
Cute story about 'it's ok to be different', well written, but not as good as Spinelli.
Nov 30, 2008 Paige rated it liked it
Recommended to Paige by: CLAU
Shelves: juvenile
another "differences" book; good message and lesson
Nov 29, 2010 Kathy rated it liked it
Kids are too good in this school store with some classmates who are 'different'.
Nov 21, 2009 Leeat rated it really liked it
I love this book but the endding is bad
Nov 11, 2009 Rachel rated it liked it
Good story about friends. Voices of the characters are awkward at times but there is a good message here.
Mary Lee
Adding this to my "empathy" shelf, and to the unit of study we're starting on Monday.
Pat Gilleland
Jul 10, 2011 Pat Gilleland rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a realistic coming-of-age story of a boy who wants to be popular but feels guilty abandoning a childhood autistic friend. The characters are sensitively drawn and the plot believable.
Mar 28, 2012 Kerri rated it really liked it
Great read-aloud for 4th - 6th grade to discuss bullying. Love the school librarian Mrs. Lobel! She rocks!
Jan 12, 2010 Gresham rated it really liked it
Great story about how friendships change. I like how the ending wasn't tied up too neatly. It left me with questions about the characters, as well as my own life.
Weezie Payton
Weezie Payton rated it it was amazing
Oct 26, 2012
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James Preller (born 1961) is the children's book author of the Jigsaw Jones Mysteries, which are published by Scholastic Corporation. He grew up in Wantagh, New York and went to college in Oneonta, New York. After graduating from college in 1983, James Preller was employed as a waiter for one year before being hired as a copywriter by Scholastic Corporation, where he was introduced (through their ...more
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