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3.97  ·  Rating details ·  854 ratings  ·  177 reviews
Patricia Polacco takes on cliques and online bullying

Lyla finds a great friend in Jamie on her first day of school, but when Lyla makes the cheerleading squad and a clique of popular girls invites her to join them, Jamie is left behind. Lyla knows bullying when she sees it, though, and when she sees the girls viciously teasing classmates on Facebook, including Jamie, she i
Hardcover, 48 pages
Published September 13th 2012 by G.P. Putnam's Sons
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Average rating 3.97  · 
Rating details
 ·  854 ratings  ·  177 reviews

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Nov 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I was every elementary school teacher's dream, when I was a girl: a quiet kid who kept a poetry journal and made an A in every subject. By the 3rd grade, I was tasked with reading poetry aloud to a group of slow readers on a weekly basis; by the 5th grade, I was the sole recipient of the school's special award for the only child who hadn't missed a single day of school. IN SIX YEARS. Got it?

(All of this good girl business eventually landed me in a mosh pit in combat boots in college, but for now
Lisa  (not getting friends updates) Vegan
Apr 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Patricia Polacco fans; for discussing cyber-bullying and bullying in general
It was ready at the library today. I picked it up today. I read it today. Now I’ll have to wait ½ year for her next book. I’ve been caught up for a while with all Polacco’s books so I’ve been waiting book to book. This was a worthwhile one to wait for.

I think this story does an admirable job of addressing the subject of cyber-bullying, in this case among some sixth graders.

I realize that this book and several other books by this author-illustrator could (almost) go on my san-francisco shelf. I a
Sarah W
Feb 08, 2021 rated it really liked it
Being bullied does not feel well. It feels awful. It feels nasty. It feels obnoxious. Lyla, the main character, was friends with a boy named Jamie after she moved to a new school. At the same time, she was friends with the popular squad. However, the squad bullies Jamie and told Lyla not to be friends with him. Lyla still chose Jamie over them. Jammie and Lyla's friendship is hard as metal, not even fire can break them apart. ...more
Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone Looking for Contemporary Children's Stories About Bullying
The ever-prolific Patricia Polacco, who now has fifty-six picture-books to her credit, was inspired to create this latest title after witnessing the dramatic rise of bullying amongst students, over the twenty years she has been visiting schools to talk about her work. Following the story of Lyla, whose family has just moved to the San Francisco Bay Area, and who is anxious to fit in, it sets out a series of events that is as believable as it is sobering. Initially making friends with fellow new- ...more
Kelly Ketcham
Raise your hand if you can tell us what cyber bullying means. Who has seen or experienced cyber bullying? What if you finally became a member of the popular crowd but then realized you didn't agree with the choices they were making. This is what happens to Lyla in "Bully" by Patricia Polacco. Lyla is left with a choice and must make some difficult decisions in her sixth grade year to do the right thing. However, every choice has a consequence...

Opening Moves-
-Tell the meaning of a key word
Mar 05, 2014 rated it it was ok
I found this a shallow and inauthentic story about standing up to a school bully. The characters just didn't click with me at all and the plot was the same as Mean Girls, but not funny. ...more
May 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I'm a new and now forever fan of Patricia Polacco. Her book, Bully truly touched my heart. Immediately after I sat the book down, my 15 year old daughter picked it up, and read it immediately. Once she finished reading it, we conversed on the subject of bullying and how the school she attends practices and enforces anti-bullying. This book is a must read for teachers, students, and parents alike because it focuses on some of the effects that bullying can have on people.

Lyla Dean and her family
Sue Seligman
Oct 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
When I heard that Patricia Polacco wrote a book called Bully, I thought it was going to be a YA chapter book, but I was wrong. It is a children's book with Polacco's signature illustrations and concerns a 6th grade girl's experience with cyber bullying. Lyla has moved to a new school near the Golden Gate Bridge, and immediately becomes friendly with a cheerful boy named Jamie. She soon becomes aware that the school is inhabited by the usual cliques of middle school: the athletes, the nerds, the ...more
When Lyla Dean's family moves to the San Francisco area, she is relieved to make friends with another new student, Jamie Aldrich. But their friendship is threatened when she is invited to join popular girls Gage, Kenyon and Maeve at their table. Although Lyla knows it's wrong, she says nothing when the girls leave cruel comments on other students' Facebook pages. As she watches her younger brother and Jamie become victimized by the school bullies, she decides to stand up to Gage on Jamie's behal ...more
Valerie Barnhart
Feb 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: k-2-books
As sixth graders, how does it feel to be a new student at a school? Did you know some people from elementary school? The friends you had in elementary, are they still your friends in middle school? Why or why not?

How would you feel if you didn't know anyone at middle school? Perhaps you moved from the other side of town or another city, how would you feel as a new student at our middle school? As we gain new friends, do we change? Do we keep the old friends from before?

What character traits are
Oct 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
A powerful look at cyber-bullying, school, and middle-school students. Jamie and Lyla are new to the school and become friends in the spirit of new-kid friendship. They have a lot in common, but as Lyla starts to excel at all activities in school, cheer-leading, grades, and service, Jamie is left behind somewhat. They are still friends, but....

Now, Lyla has caught the eye of the most popular girls at school and they take her under their wings. When the group starts a cyber-bullying campaign aga
Nov 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy-sci-fi
I'm officially a Patricia Polacco fan! This is such a great, great story that targets a worldwide issue. Bullying is no joke and it's so unfortunate that children are victims, and even abusers. This book does a great job addressing issues that happen in schools. Now it is also common for children to suffer from cyber bullying just like what happened with Layla.
Layla is a sixth grader in a new school and although, she has a charming personality she realizes their are certain groups of friends i
Marguarite Markley
A nice addition to Patricia Polacco's wealth of stories about real life situations. I think the bully's punishment should have been more severe, but realistically speaking, it is probably more of an accurate depiction of what would have happened to the bully. I think it is important to note, however, that the popular kids are not always the ones who do the bullying. Sometimes bullies can be loners who pick on other loners simply for something to do. I would read this to introduce the topic of bu ...more
It's amazing that this book covered such an important topic yet I don't think it was executed well at all. It was like it was mean girls written as a picture book for kids expect it's not as good as the film. I didn't connect to the characters at all and I think that cyber bullying is never solved so easily. I also didn't like the fact that the ending revolved around going to another school or not. Is the message to children supposed to be "if you get bullied at one school you can always go to a ...more
Jul 30, 2013 rated it liked it
I'm curious to find out how this book is received by the children who are the audience. As an adult I think it seems a bit sensationalized. I do like that it ends with a question posed to the reader about how they would respond to such actions. ...more
Julie Sigmund
Mar 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
perfect read to begin a conversation about bullying, especially cyber bullying.
Feb 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: wow-books
Synopsis: The book Bully, by Patricia Polacco, is a realistic fiction book that is about a young girl navigating the complexities of middle school social politics. Lyla’s parents don’t allow her to have social media or many of the advance pieces of technology that teenagers use to communicate with each other. On her first day of school she meets her soon to be best friend Jamie. However, later on in the story Lyla makes the cheerleading team. The group of girls on the cheerleading team start to ...more
Rayona Hart-Wilson
Apr 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-favorites
Lyla and her family move to anew city but she is very nervous about starting anew school. She befriends a girl named Jamie on her first day. When Lyla makes the cheer team and starts hanging out with the popular girls, she doesn't see Jamie as much. The popular girls start bully Jamie and thats when Lyla decides she doesn't want to be friends with them anymore. The girls then start toe bully Lyla and lies about her stealing the states test. Jamie tells the principle she has evidence they lied an ...more
May 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
- Story told by the viewpoint of a sixth grade girl entering into a new school. She experiences anxiousness settling into a new environment. The story takes the reader through the daily struggles of adolescence. The main character is dealing with bullying while trying to fit in and make an identity for her self. The characters deal with real life issues of sixth graders today dealing with not having certain technology that other kids have. This story also discusses online bullying which is so re ...more
Feb 14, 2018 rated it liked it
A very relevant book about cyber-bullying. The book didn’t end the way I expected, but I think it would allow for a quality discussion after a read aloud.
Leah Edel
Jan 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
It is the new girl Lyla’s first day at school, so she does not know a single person and needs to meet new people. When she gets to school, she realizes that everyone already has their friends and she doesn’t want to join a group. Then she sees another new kid, a boy named Jamie, Lyla and Jamie end up becoming very good friends. At the school they go to there are three girls that are popular and bullies to others. After some time, Lyla starts to do good in school and joins the cheerleadin
Jan 31, 2018 rated it liked it
This was a nonfiction picture book chosen for Battle of the Books this year for my school, and usually I'm not a fan of the picture books they choose, but this one was well-written and relevant. It's a book I'd actually recommend to my students and highly recommend to other librarians to purchase for their library. Other than that, though, there was nothing out of the ordinary that moved me or struck me as extraordinary, so I give it three stars. ...more
Jun 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Lyla was very nervous about starting sixth grade at her new school, but she met Jamie on her first day and they immediately became friends. Lyla found herself fascinated by the three popular girls in school, who completely ignored her. She managed to get their attention when she got the top grade on an essay. Lyla tried out for cheerleading and made the team. Lyla even negotiated with her parents to get a laptop and Jamie helped her put together a Facebook page. Suddenly the popular girls starte ...more
Abbey Jenkins
Oct 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: rdng-350
Bully is a truthful story about what bullying can look like in the school setting. This book is about a sixth grade girl named Lyla who just moved and is adjusting to a new school. She soon meets up with a guy name Jamie. Jamie is also new to this school, and he becomes a great friend to Lyla. Just like in any other school, in the cafeteria, there are different tables based on a student's characteristics. There was the nerd table, the popular table, and the athlete table. The popular girls soon ...more
Maggie Webster
Nov 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book is about a girl named Lyla. The new school Lyla is attending is very cliquey. There is one clique in particular though that everyone wants to be a part of. As weeks went by, Lyla slowly became friends with these popular girls, but they turned out to be bullies. The girls bullied others online through Facebook and text messages. Soon they were bullying Lyla after she decided not to be friends with them.
The major theme of this book is that bully is not okay, but especially cyberbullying
Nov 20, 2012 rated it it was ok
I've been anxious to see Polacco's newest book, so when it came in my most recent book order, I immediately pulled it out to read. This particular story is obviously written for an older audience than some of her others, and feels a bit more "preachy." With the inclusion of cell phones and laptops and facebook, it is a frank depiction of what some tweens and teens have to deal with. It will be housed in the oversized fiction section. I will be curious to see the response from students, faculty a ...more
Oct 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
A great Patricia Polacco book! Tells the story of Lyla, a sixth grader who moved to a new school. It talks about her experience as she tries to fit in to a new school. Lyla manages to make her way up the social ladder and eventually becomes friends with the popular girls. When Lyla became uncomfortable with some of her new friends' actions, she decides to stop hanging out with the popular girls. This makes her a target for their bullying.

This is a story that most middle school students can relat
Karen Arendt
Jul 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The perfect book for the 21st century child. Polacco offers a story of a new girl in town, Lyla, who befriends a new boy in town, Jaime. As they both settle into the new school, Lyla gets noticed by the most popular girls and through cheerleading begins to hang out with them. She still is friends with JAime, but does not always speak up for what's right. When Lyla does speak up, she is dropped by the popular girls and used as a scapegoat. Including cell phones, laptops, and facebook in the story ...more
Dawn Sahakian
Feb 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: text-set
Bully is a very contemporary story about Lyla, a girl who goes to a new school and falls victim to wanting to "fit in" - the story is very similar to the movie Mean Girls and I think that is a great story about how bullying comes in all forms, especially today. It depicts cyber bullying, bullying via texts, and of course, in-person bullying. The illustrations are vivid and really help bring the story to life. The situations are realistic and allow children to identify with the characters quite e ...more
Stephanie T.
Mar 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book because we rarely see books about cyber bullying although it extremely prevalent today. Bully introduces social class as well, as main character Lyla and her new friend Jamie separate those in their school into groups such as popular and unpopular. When Lyla joins the cheerleading team and becomes part of the popular crowd and Jamie is left behind, and she notices her new popular friends teasing other classmates, Jamie included, on Facebook. Lyla luckily realizes tha ...more
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Patricia Polacco is a New York Times bestselling author and illustrator with around seventy beloved and award-winning books to her credit, including The Keeping Quilt, Pink and Say, The Blessing Cup, Chicken Sunday, and Thank You, Mr. Falker. She resides in Michigan.

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