Gertie's Leap to Greatness is a whirlwind of awesomeness! Kate Beasley has brought to life a gutsy, flawed, and determined heroine you root for, evenGertie's Leap to Greatness is a whirlwind of awesomeness! Kate Beasley has brought to life a gutsy, flawed, and determined heroine you root for, even when the odds are stacked against Gertie. This is a 21st century Ramona Quimby, with her colorful cast of friends, family, and frenemies.
Gertie is a girl that embraces life, and only wants to share that zeal with the world around her. Her immediate family consists of her her working-class dad and her stay-at-home great-aunt. You immedietly learn that Gertie's mom isn't in her life, yet remains in the same town in what Gertie refers to as the "housiest house on Jones Street," a fancy place in sharp contract to her humble home. Gertie's bound and determined to be the best fifth grader ever, a Genius with a capital G, in order to garner the non-existent attention of her estranged mother.
Gertie's exploits causes hoots and hollers, but also chafes her family and friends. She has to figure out on her own what's important in life, and to discover that "she shouldn't have to change so that someone would like her." You get to know and like Gertie's dad Frank; her sassy and always honest Aunt Rae; her afternoon Kindergarten buddy Audrey; her constant friend Junior; her sometimes fickle BFF Jean; her patient teacher Ms. Simms, and cranky drama teacher Stebbins. Yes, there is a seat-stealing, too-perfect girl in Mary Sue, stirring up mischief that could be the making of Gertie.
This is an amazing, hilarious, heart-warming story for all ages, especially ages 8 and up.
There is so much to enjoy and love in the third installment of the Dory Fantasmagory series by Abby Hanlon, "Dory Dory Black Sheep." Our intrepid heroThere is so much to enjoy and love in the third installment of the Dory Fantasmagory series by Abby Hanlon, "Dory Dory Black Sheep." Our intrepid heroine Dory is back in eclectic style, ready to battle siblings, Mrs. Gobble Gracker, and learning how to read.
If grown-ups are still scratching their heads as to why children adore Dory, then this book will have all the answers. Dory is such a smart, imaginative child, and wraps herself in protective layers of creativity, humor, and antics so she can weather the pain of the not always being perfect at home and at school. Dory struggles with the written word, and her teacher pairs her with George instead of her new gal-pal Rosabelle, who happens to be an advanced reader. Dory and George sift through their pre-selected titles, and see a pattern: they are all Easy Reader books, and are all about farm animals. You can start to see and hear the hurt Dory feels when she sees her bestie reading hard books with a know-it-all, and the dreadful feeling of being left out and left behind. Of course, Dory is not made for sadness, and gets in to all sorts of adventures with the farm books, with an adorable black sheep that leaves the book and follows her, a cameo from Mr. Nuggy, and a Freaky Friday-ish potion for Mrs. Gobble Gracker.
This is a highly recommended books for children ages 5-9, especially the ones who love goofy humor, and are emerging readers. Also recommended for the adults who love them and are helping them learn to laugh and read.