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See You at Harry's

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  12,594 ratings  ·  1,724 reviews
Starting middle school brings all the usual challenges — until the unthinkable happens, and Fern and her family must find a way to heal.

Twelve-year-old Fern feels invisible. It seems as though everyone in her family has better things to do than pay attention to her: Mom (when she’s not meditating) helps Dad run the family restaurant; Sarah is taking a gap year after high s
Hardcover, 310 pages
Published May 8th 2012 by Candlewick Press (first published May 1st 2012)
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Alicja Dzikowski
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Esther I know! That was so sad for me to read. I cried and sob and weeped. I do not understand that. Maybe the author wanted to make Fern appreciate her litt…moreI know! That was so sad for me to read. I cried and sob and weeped. I do not understand that. Maybe the author wanted to make Fern appreciate her little brother more? I dont know! All i know is that it was the saddest part in the book.(less)

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Average rating 4.12  · 
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 ·  12,594 ratings  ·  1,724 reviews

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Jesse (JesseTheReader)
Nov 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Such an emotional story!
Cristina Monica
3.5 stars.

Too often, stories centering on characters that have lost a loved one—so death, loss and grief—do not introduce the departed in a way that familiarises us with the latter. In those cases, it’s hard for me to care about the dead characters.

But SEE YOU AT HARRY’S is especially emotional and impactful because we do spend quite some time with the character whose fate is a tragic one. It’s easier for the reader to understand emotional reactions to loss when they’ve met the deceased and got
Sep 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mg-fiction
Last night my husband had to confiscate our Kindle from me because I was crying uncontrollably, so wrecked by what had just happened in the book I was reading that I could barely even breathe, I was crying so hard.

This morning, though, I took the Kindle back. I started reading again, and ten minutes later, I was crying again. But I didn't stop reading until the end of the book, because I couldn't.

The book was Jo Knowles's See You at Harry's (I got an e-ARC through Netgalley), and honestly, if an
Gary Anderson
Apr 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
A book like See You at Harry’s reminds us of the absolute pleasure of becoming immersed in a terrific read. Author Jo Knowles leads us to empathize with her characters, engages us in a narrative that pulls us through in ways that render true the cliché “I couldn’t put it down,” and then leaves us with the stark knowledge that tricky currents are churning in the lives of young people from their families, schools, friends, and really, contemporary culture.

As much as I admire See You at Harry's
At NCTE I knew that I would be compelled to tour the exhibit halls, if only to get an ARC of Eye of the Storm by Kate Messner. Before hitting those exhibits, however, I was lucky enough to attend a session on critique groups for writing with Kate as one of the panelists. I’m met Kate a few times. She was kind enough to Skype with my school for family reading night. I’ve run into her at conferences over the past two years and “spoken” with her on twitter several times. At the end of the session I ...more
Kellee Moye
Reviewed at:

Author interview:

I have read a couple of books recently that were really hard to review (Wonder, The Fault in our Stars, The One and Only Ivan) because they are books that reach into your heart and settle there. It is hard to write a review of a book that becomes so personal. See you at Harry's is one of those books. As I sit here trying to write a review, I don't know how to put all of my feelings into
Nov 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I picked up this one from middle grade genre randomly just because I wanted to read something not very intense. So basically I had no idea that this book would hit me with such an emotional punch! I cried so hard that my eyes got swollen!

I loved this book, I really loved it. I loved the way it’s been written. Kudos to the writer.

Fern’s family is quite imperfect, but I loved all of them. The starting was amusing except the parts where Holden gets bullied. Those parts made my angry. I was mad at
Asghar Abbas
Nov 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing

Don't read this book if you cry easily.
Wounded people and a very human story.
Everyone overcoming their grief for each other.

In fact, read it even if you do cry easily. For the fans of Tell the Wolves I am home, this is a must.

This is how you write about real people.

Flaunt your false heart in this false light all you want, hock it even, flout all the rules, this book is not for the faint of heart.

Steampunk but a mechanical heart.

Feint all you want, feinting all the way and all the way bac
☾ ℕefertiti ☽
Aug 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This was such an emotional story about love and how important one person can really be. It's a beautiful story which you should totally read. If you do, I suggest having a few tissues around. I read this book in one sitting and now here I am, crying. I love you Charlieeee ♡ don't forgot itttt!
GRPLTeens Grand Rapids Public Library
Appeal Characteristics: family relationships, death, restaurant business, bullies, coming out/gay relationships, school

I cried like a baby at this book. I love dysfunctional families. For some reason, I hate reading adult literary works about dysfunctional families, but I love kids perspectives on them. Fern's family is tough to beat. I felt like this was Bridge to Terabithia for the next generation. I don't want to write any spoilers because I want the magic to be there for anyone who wants to
Sandy Littell
May 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
A real-life story about a busy family in the restaurant business. The parents and two older kids, Sara and Holden, are in their own worlds, dealing with their own personal and sometimes complicated issues.

Fern, the third child, has just started middle school, and discovers that someone important to her is being bullied on the bus. She spends her after-school hours at HARRY'S; greeting customers, doing homework, and babysitting for her pesky 3 year-old brother, Charlie. Her best friend, Ran, kee
সালমান হক
May 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
I hate it when I am reading a book and someone starts cutting a onion. How can one hold up the waterworks when someone is cutting onions nearby? This book is like that. You are reading and all of a sudden the writer starts cutting onion on the pages. :/

Vivid characters, beautiful writing and a heart wrenching plot. Such a emotional story!
Feb 03, 2012 added it
Shelves: unfinished
If you are a parent of small children, do not read this book.

I love Jo Knowles. I think she's a brilliant writer, and whenever she comes out with a new book, I don't even bother to check what it's about--it's an instant Must Read for me. That was the case with this book, too. I was so excited for a new Jo Knowles book. I dove in, and got immersed in her pitch-perfect characters and middle grade voice. There were all these lovely bits and elements, and I was looking forward to seeing where it was
Ms. Yingling
Apr 17, 2012 rated it it was ok
Fern's parents spend a lot of time at the family restaraunt their grandfather started, Harry's, and love to use their family in the commercials. Sara is taking a gap year and not thrilled with the whole idea, although she does appreciate one of the busboys. Three-year-old Charlie is a handful, but the light of everyone's lives. Holden is struggling with bullies at school and his first romance... with an older boy, Gray. Fern is just trying to understand her friend Ran, to take care of Charlie, a ...more
Danielle Bartos
Sep 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
Let me start by saying that yes, this is a great book. But, on a personal level this was probably the hardest book I've ever had to force myself through. On the surface it looks like a fun, light-hearted family drama that will wrap itself around coming to grips with the "outing" of one of the family's 4 kids. Oh, how I was so wrong. In reality the book is about one family's journey through coping with tragedy and unimaginable grief.
The incredible difficulty for me is my own reality of losing bo
Priscilla Cho
Dec 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I can't find the right words to describe this book. My outlook on life has changed a little bit. It showed me that life is unpredictable. You never know when you'll have to say good-bye to the world, or when someone else you love will have to. You have to live life to the fullest, and learn to accept things even when it's not easy to. No matter what happens, there are people who love you and that's all that matters. This clear message just stood out to me throughout the whole entire story. I thi ...more
So many people told me to read this book, but I was worried that it would make me sad. It did. I cried buckets. Jo Knowles writes the most honest families. Heartbreaking and beautiful.
lucy  Ü
Jul 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
if you want to go through a rollercoaster of emotions... then this book is for you.

focused on a family of six, this book will show you the power of family love, how one person can truly make the world of difference in your life, and how important it is to tell the people you love that you love them.

i cried about a dozen times throughout this book because of everything that happens and the transparent emotions you feel and see through each character as they navigate the pitfalls and mountains t
Caitlin Speyer
Oct 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
What would you do if a tragic event wrenched your family apart - and it was your fault? Twelve-year-old Fern feels invisible. Her father is too preoccupied with ideas of promoting the family business to worry about protecting his children's dignity. When her mother isn't meditating in solitude, she busies herself with just about everything but paying Fern some attention. Her sister, Sara, is taking a year off of high school while all of her friends move on to collage. Her brother, Holden, despe ...more
Beth Dailey Kenneth
Dec 27, 2012 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
As Rebecca Stead said,"Heartbreaking, soul staining, and all-around beautiful." This book is definitely beautiful, and I have never called a book beautiful before. The way Jo Knowles writes is incredible. A few of the chapters were in such focus and detail. I couldn't help but smile at the writing. But... This book was also heartbreaking. I cried, kept crying, and couldn't stop crying. When Fern didn't cry, I couldn't cry. She was breaking down inside and so was I. Then, Sarah kind of forced her ...more
Feb 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
All the while I read this, I kept wondering, "What is wrong with me? I pick up this book and, within pages, I'm crying, no sobbing, again." Loving Jo Knowles since my first NCTE Convention three years ago in Philly when I serendipitiously seated myself at her table for the Middle Level Mosaic, I knew I had to read her latest book, See You at Harry's. From Jumping Off Swings to Pearl, Knowles always takes her readers down a path that they don't see coming. After finishing the last page of See You ...more
Sep 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
There's no fancy elements to this book. It is what it is, there's no melodrama there's no exaggeration. I cried heaps man, (view spoiler). I think the process of grief within an individual and also a family was incredibly well done and I enjoyed Holden's story as well. It also introduced me to a really beautiful poem, Epitaph by Malloy, the line "When there is nothing left of me but love, give me away ...more
May 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book was lovely. I read it in one sitting on Mother's Day. And that was a mistake. Now I'm covered in my own snot and my husband took the kids to the park so I could have some kid-free time to read and zone out and all I want is for them to come back so I can squeeze the crap out of my babies. Read this book without reservation if you do not have kids; read this book with some bourbon and/or a tranquilizer if you do have kids. (And if you're a teenager -- hello, actual intended audience! -- ...more
Paul  Hankins
As this is a May 2012 release we will have more to say about SEE YOU AT HARRY'S as it's release date draws near. For those of you who have loved Jo Knowles's past titles, just know this. . .she keeps getting better and better. Jo Knowles is the kind of young adult author that you want good things to happen for. . .you know? There is a real gift in "Harry's" and in May, readers will get to open it for themselves. This one of the early "can't miss" books for 2012.
Jan 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
A heart-wrenching story of family love and healing, filled with beautiful language, vivid and loveable characters, and precious moments of uplifting humor. I admit that this book had me sobbing (the real deal) and I usually hate books that make me cry, but this was such a moving and ultimately uplifting book that it made all the tears (each and every one) worth it.
Agata Wilusz
"See you at Hawee's!" is Charlie Wallace's new catch phrase for the family's restaurant. It is only fitting that Charlie's line become iconic for the restaurant as he is the center of attention in the Wallace family.
Just 3 years old, Charlie was a surprise baby, with an overlooked older sister, Fern, a unique older brother, Holden, and Sara, who is taking some time off of school.
When an unexpected tragedy shakes the Wallace family, will they ever be able to have good and happy days ahead?

So sad but so good. {spolier alert for the rest!}

I pretty much cried throughout the whole second half of this book. The first half is very good too, mostly dealing with the main character Fern's 14-year-old brother Holden being gay and everyone in his family kind of knowing but Holden not wanting to talk about it. Fern (who's 12) is the closest to her brother and has a pretty kick-ass but scary day when she sits at the back of the bus and realizes what the bullying is like for her brother at sc
Vikki VanSickle
here is a lot of emotion packed into this tight little book. The general plot reminded me a bit of Sara Ellis’ sublime novel The Baby Project (known as The Family Project in the US), though See You At Harry’s is for a slightly older audience. I appreciated the way Holden’s family deals with his homosexuality, which is accepting overall, but with some reservations. This felt very realistic. None of the characters are perfect or 100% likable all the time, but I thought this was a smart and accurat ...more
Feb 21, 2013 rated it liked it
There's so much to recommend this story: the descriptions of the family's grief are perfectly heartbreaking and sensitive; so many readers will see themselves in Fern; the parents are flawed, but in such a realistic and relatable way... The sibling relationships are wonderful.

However, I did tire of the repetitive descriptions of Fern's feelings and her family relationships. As an example, Fern's mother repeatedly disappears to meditate in her office as a way to escape her daily stresses. But ab
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Middle Grades: See You at Harry's 2 7 Jun 26, 2018 01:54PM  
The Top 100 Child...: APRIL 2017 - See You at Harry's Discussion 67 12 Jun 03, 2017 08:38PM  
Round and Flat Characters See You At Harry's 3 13 Nov 13, 2015 10:19AM  
Dent Book Challen...: See You at Harry's by Jo Knowles 1 6 Apr 15, 2015 12:44PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Please combine: See you at Harry's 3 22 Jan 02, 2014 06:44PM  

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Hi! I'm the author of Where The Heart Is,Still A Work In Progress, Read Between The Lines, Living With Jackie Chan, See You At Harry's, Pearl, Jumping Off Swings, and Lessons From A Dead Girl. I'm available for school, library and book club visits either in person or via Zoom. For more info, please visit Thanks! :-) ...more

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“I breath in and out through my mouth to feel the quiet. In. Out. Over and over. Until I fall asleep.” 9 likes
“For someone who is invisible, why am I the only one in this family who can’t seem to master the art of disappearing?” 7 likes
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