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Ida B. . . and Her Pla...
Katherine Hannigan
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Ida B. . . and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the World

3.86 of 5 stars 3.86  ·  rating details  ·  18,687 ratings  ·  1,418 reviews
What do you do when your life goes from righter than right to a million miles beyond wrong? Try to scare away the new neighbors with signs and posters that warn things like "Typhoons Known to Occur Here -- Water Rats Abound."

Avoid eye contact and word contact, with Mama and Daddy in particular.

Stay away from the orchard and the brook and the old tree and anything else that
Published (first published January 1st 2004)
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That..there is more than one way to tell each other things, and there's more than one way to listen too.
That...Even when you think you're in heaven, you need to stay alert and have a plan...but some things are very hard to plan for.
That...When your heart changes, you change, and you have to make new plans.
That...Sometimes our head knows something, but our hearts refuse to feel it.
That..Sometimes our unhappiness is the quiet kind, that doesn't do much and says even
Meg J.
In this book, I saw so many similarities between the character and myself. This quote describes how I reacted to things many times growing up.

Quote: "I couldn't do anything except curl up like a ball on the floor of the barn and lie there, crying. The kind of tears that burn your eyes, and the sort of sobs that make your chest ache so that you're sure it's going to bust open. And when the sobs finally ran out, the tears kept coming, so I lay there with my mouth wide open, but I hardly made a so
Apr 09, 2008 Sarah rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Grade 3 and up, Adults
Ida B. is an only child in a perfect world. She spends her days making miniature rafts with questions attached like, "What is life like in Canada?" Her best friends are the apple trees, with whom she has long conversations.

Then one day the apple trees are worried, daddy seems worried, and mommy doesn't seem the same. Her parents tell her that her mother is sick and while she's trying to get better, Ida is going to have to stop being homeschooled, and instead go to school in town. Ida is furious,
I am getting old. All I could think as I was reading about Ida B. proceeding from one bratty, precocious, stereotypical only child action to the next was "Get this kid stricter parenting!"

The story is this: Ida B, her parents, and their many animals live on many acres of land with trees and a brook. Ida B loves to take her animals to the brook and talk to the brook and the trees, which she has given names and which talk back to her. She went to school (for like three days btw) and hated it, so
After finishing this book and failing to find words for how much I loved it, I checked out some other people's reviews here and on Amazon for inspiration. I was surprised to discover that a lot of people think of it as a book about environmentalism. I can kind of see that if I squint, but for me the message about loving nature was a much softer undercurrent, not the main point of the book at all.

For me, this is a book about Big Feelings, and about a child going through those feelings for the fir
Feb 15, 2008 Kristin rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone with a sense of humor about kids
Recommended to Kristin by: Katie - a great student
I wanted to read something yesterday when I was in bed with the flu, and I wanted a story. My currently-reading list is all nonfiction right now, but Ida B, with its brightly colored cover, called to me from the bookshelf. What a fun, quirky character Ida B is! I read the entire book quite quickly. Althought it's a little younger than the other YA books I read (Ida B is a fourth grader), this is a delightful story written in a creative and humorous voice. Just what I needed for an uplifting read ...more
Megan Anderson
I. Love. This. Book. Why didn't it win an award? It's brilliant, and it has all the right pieces: a loveable main character, gorgeous prose, and a plot so realistically drawn that it's easy to fall into. It struck a chord with me, and I found myself laughing even as tears poured down my face. Such a beautiful, beautiful novel--first novel, especially.

This book is made of win, and everyone (especially teachers!) need to read it. Now.

5/5 on here, 10/10 for myself
The B could stand for "Brat." She is a likeable character--because I do hearing her voice throughout the book, no matter how at times it seemed a bit too advanced for a 4th grader--but she's still a brat. Too much of the only child home-schooled with little interaction with society so she has gotten too used to her own way, her own feelings, her own everything. In short, SELFISH. And is she ever!

And yet the story is told in such a way that you can't help be at least a little sympathetic for her
This is the kind of book that would have depressed the heck out of me for weeks when I was little.

Ida B. is a very charactery character. She is precocious. A trait I have never enjoyed in others. As an only child she has had a lot of indulging. Her imagination is lovely. She loves a good plan, which I can totally get with! She has the run of a large piece of land with trees, and water, and mountains.

Ida B.'s mom becomes ill with breast cancer and Ida B.'s bubble of perfectness pops. She must g
Ida B is a simple girl that loves her mom, dad, and the nature that surrounds her. Katherine Hannigan's book is most appropriate for readers in grades 5th and 6th grade. Ida B talks to the trees in her orchard and the stream that runs through the property, and all is seemingly perfect until her mom becomes sick. Ida is sent to school, some of the land has to be sold and life for her changes so much that she becomes resentful. Throughout the book she is battling with her thoughts and her feelings ...more
Galilea Estrada
I love this book a lot I like how Ida B was a different girl from the regular ones. She had a thing that no one can change about her. I really like the part when she talked to the apple trees and when they respond back to her and when she had really long conversations with them. When you are reading the story it makes you feel that you are living the life that Ida B is living. Sometimes she had her bad days and stuff with her mom when she was sick of cancer and when Clare and her became friends ...more
Apr 27, 2015 Kyra rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Middle-graders, Teens, Adults, Grandparents, Everyone
Another gift from a dear friend... I read this to my children. At first, we had a hard time following Ida B's conversations with the trees, but once we had a feel for Ida B., we figured it out. I loved seeing into Ida B.'s heart, and I appreciated how it reminded me that we don't always understand what is hurting others or why they act as they do... I cried bucketfuls at a couple different spots--I think it made me hard to understand.;)
Dec 13, 2010 Emily rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Emily by: evan mencke
Shelves: childrens
This book is precious. I was afraid the narrator's voice would become grating after a while, but it doesn't; it rings true and sweet-but-not-too-sweet throughout this midwestestern girl's story. I think the book's title and synopses are a little misleading, making it sound like another girl power book. It is about girl power and fun, but it's deeper, sweeter, and - dare I say - more mystical than that.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Honestly, I didn't enjoy this book to the slightest extent. I am aware the story was supposed to be a depressing, angry story. And I just didn't like that. After I finished it, I felt very relieved and happy it was over, and I felt like I needed to do something happy to make up for that angry book.

Dec 14, 2010 Kimberly rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who wants an amazing, touching, kind of sad book
Shelves: drama, adventure, humor
Ida B was so sad but cute and touching and Katherine Hannigan did an amazing job with developing everybodys' characters!

Guided reading level: S
This was probably one of the worst books I've ever read.
I read this book so long ago, I can't remember much about the when. What I do remember is how much I loved the story and the quote that was printed at the top of the front cover from Kate DiCamillo that caused me to read the book in the first place. It read, "I feel a deep gratitude that Ida B exists." At least, that's how I remember the quote having gone. In any case, it's a good quote and a true one. I feel the same way. Ida B is one of the few unparalleled joys that children's literature has ...more
I want to know Ida B. I want to run through the orchards with her and I want her to teach me how to listen to the wind. In her world, the wind will whisper wisdom and truth in your ear. You just have to know how to listen for it. It's magical.

I learned many lovely and wise things from Ida B, from reading her story. A few favorites:

1. We are the earth's caretakers. We take care of all the things on it, and when we are done we should leave it better than we found it. AND the earth takes care of u
Ida B. has a plan. She is not going to go to a traditional school, the kind where you sit in a stuffy classroom all day, where teachers don't call you by your real name, and where you're not allowed to do anything until it's "time" to do them. She's going to be home-schooled, where she can spend time with her favorite people, her mama and daddy, and talk about things that matter and have plenty of time to do the many interesting things there are to do in any given day. Ida B's plan is perfect, t ...more
Katherine Hannigan’s Ida B. is such a beautiful story. Ida B. (not just Ida, that’s her mom) lives with her mom and dad. She loves the nature that surrounds her home, making friends with the apple trees and stream. She has a beautiful dialog with the trees. During one of her night time walks with her father he talks about how they must be caretakers of the earth. Ida B. says, “the earth takes care of us too.” This is very much a theme in this book. Ida is home schooled and lives a beautiful life ...more
Amy Musser
Only child Ida B Applewood has figured out a routine that allows her to maximize the good, fun things in life. But her happy life as a homeschooler is disrupted when her mother gets sick. Not only does Ida B have to go to public school, she is devastated because some of the family’s land, along with many of her beloved apple trees, is going to be sold to pay for the hospital bills. Ida B knows she has to come up with her best plan yet, one that will change everything back to righter than right o ...more
I remember once i was about to brake something that my mom gave to me, because i was angry at her, but before i could do so i realized how doing that would affect me. My hand clasped the jar she had painted, and images flashed through my mind of how, when i broke that, more than those pieces of clay would lay broken and scattered on the ground. All throughout life i think we face those kinds of challenges, a hurdle that asks you to chose between yourself and someone else, no matter what decision ...more
Katherine Hannigan tells this beautiful tale from the viewpoint of child in an almost magical way. The reader gets to see the thinking process of a child whose blissful world is blown to bits when her mother is stricken with cancer. Ida B. has been home-schooled up until this point so when she is made to go to school she views it as punishment from her parents. Ms. Washington (her teacher) is the most patient person on the planet! (Don't you love it when teachers get a good representative!!!) Sh ...more
Reagan (9) and I read this book together and I'm glad we did because there were so many conversations we had over the course of the book. Ida B is a young girl who loves nature and loves being homeschooled. When her mom gets cancer, Ida's world is turned upside down and she is angry. Ida B struggles with her feelings throughout the book.

It was a great opportunity to talk with my daughter about sickness, communication, dealing with anger, and nature. Great read!
"(I)thought about the magic that happens when you tell a story right, and everybody who hears it not only loves the story, but they love you a little bit, too, for telling it so well. Like I loved Ms. Washington, in spite of myself, the first time I heard her. When you hear somebody read a story well, you can't help but think there's some good inside them, even if you don't know them."
This is my favorite quote from the book, but there are a lot of little gems packed in this touching coming of ag
I would highly recommend this book because of the wonderfully childish voice the narration has. The author has managed to capture the creative, inventive language and thinking process that children use, and Ida B is very realistic and believable because of it. Even when she is being angry and vindictive, that creative narration keeps the reader going. This book also does a good job of showing cause and effect. It teaches children that when something bad happens, making yourself miserable does no ...more
Feb 03, 2009 Rachael rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Rachael by: donna
Definitely 4.5 stars if possible. I'm just holding out for truly perfect 5 star books.

This is so much more than your average children's book. Her voice is clevery and witty, a little Ramona or Junie B. At first it didn't feel authentic to me, but by the end of the book it really suited the story. I loved how real her problems were, I loved how she talked about her heart shriveling into a tiny black lump that wouldn't let any happiness inside. Despite her best efforts to resist the unwelcome cha
I read this book because a young reader friend of mine was enjoying it and I thought it would be fun to read a book at the same time she was. It was a cute book - geared toward a younger audience, but with a good message for all of us. It is important for us to take care of our earth and in turn it will take care of us. Ida B is a young girl trying to make her way in the world while her mother is fighting cancer and her father is trying to keep his farm and apple orchards financially strong. A s ...more
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What's The Name o...: Please help me find: Novel that had a photo of a red apple on the cover about an imaginative little girl whose mother is dying [s] 5 33 Sep 01, 2014 02:36PM  
Word Game 10 18 Jan 25, 2013 12:34PM  
ida b 29 17 Sep 26, 2012 10:38AM  
Ida B. 41 63 Aug 11, 2012 12:27PM  
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Katherine Hannigan's first novel, Ida B . . . and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the World was a New York Times bestseller, a Book Sense bestseller, and a Parents' Choice Gold Award winner, and it appeared on more than twenty-five state award lists. She (and several wild rabbits) live at the edge of a meadow in northeastern Iowa.
More about Katherine Hannigan...
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“...if a child waited to speak until all the grown-ups settled down and gave her some room to say her piece, the most important things would never get said.” 43 likes
“I closed my eyes, put my right hand on top of the book, and passed it lightly across the cover. It was cool and smooth like a stone from the bottom of the brook, and it stilled me. A whole other world is inside there, I thought to myself, and that's where I want to be.” 36 likes
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