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The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher (Family Fletcher #1)

3.99  ·  Rating Details ·  1,659 Ratings  ·  376 Reviews
Meet the Fletchers. Their year will be filled with new schools, old friends, a grouchy neighbor, hungry skunks, leaking ice rinks, school plays, wet cats, and scary tales told in the dark!

There’s Sam, age twelve, who’s mostly interested in soccer, food, and his phone; Jax, age ten, who’s psyched for fourth grade and thinks the new neighbor stinks, and not just because of t
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published July 22nd 2014 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2014)
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Dana Levy So sorry! I just saw this, for some reason. Well, I suspect you've moved on long ago, but I think the book would transfer well. It's been translated…moreSo sorry! I just saw this, for some reason. Well, I suspect you've moved on long ago, but I think the book would transfer well. It's been translated into several different languages so I assume those publishers think it will! The challenges the kids face in the book are largely universal -- new school, new neighbors, struggles with friends, and so on. I think it would work well! And for what it's worth I offer free Skype visits with classes and book clubs that are reading my book if that's ever of interest.

Community Reviews

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Dana Levy
Mar 20, 2014 Dana Levy added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Well, I wrote this book. So you know, I'm pretty fond of it.
Why do I think it's so great? Hmmm...I'll be honest, I am a sucker for "comfort food" books - you know, books you can curl up with and feel like the world is an okay place for a little while. Some of my favorite books growing up were Elizabeth Enright's MELENDY QUARTET (including THE SATURDAYS and THE FOUR-STORY MISTAKE), Edward Eager's HALF MAGIC, Sydney Taylor's ALL OF A KIND FAMILY series. When I started writing about the Fletchers
Jul 26, 2016 Kelli rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s, audio
We hit the jackpot for audiobooks on our recent vacation. We listened to this one on our way home, the second audio in a row containing a curmudgeonly old man and the second excellent middle grade story. In this one, we follow the Fletcher family through an entire school year. This non-traditional family has two fathers, but the focus was really on the children, each of whom had his own issues to overcome. I liked that this highlighted different strengths and personality traits in each child, th ...more
Kristen Lippert-Martin
May 14, 2014 Kristen Lippert-Martin rated it it was amazing
I think my new litmus test for whether someone is a decent soul will be to make him read this book and then ask, "Is that not the most delightfully funny, sweet, heart-warming story you've ever read in your life? WELL? ISN'T IT?" And if they say no, OK then ... *ahem* ... nice knowing you, buddy.

This book has no agenda other than to present a beautifully rendered portrait of family life. The Fletcher bond is an especially tough cement mixed from love, kindness, patience, chaos, and stinky sneak
Mar 12, 2014 Shoshana rated it it was amazing
Pretty much damn near the perfect middle-grade.

Follow the lives of the four Fletcher boys, Sam, Jax, Eli, and Frog and their two Dads (the kids are all adopted) over the course of a school year. Each boy struggles with his own hurdles, from finding new interests, to difficulty with friends, to trying out a new school, but it all blends together perfectly in a show of everyday family life. Each chapter opens with a note, e-mail, or text from one character to another (or from one of the fathers t
Rachael Stein
Sep 11, 2014 Rachael Stein rated it it was amazing
Back in 2005, Jeanne Birdsall did such a good job of updating the traditional "family novel" that her effort, The Penderwicks, won the National Book Award for Young People. I am, *ahem*, kind of a Penderwicks fan, but I have to give some credence to one of the most common critiques of the series: that in attempting to establish a "timeless" tone, Birdsall actually fails to create an accurate portrait of the modern world. There are cell phones and computers in Penderwickia, but they are rarely us ...more
Jen Downey
Dec 15, 2013 Jen Downey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My family and I adored this book, and it was with great sighing sadness that we turned the last page, and ended our visit with the loveable Fletchers. In fact, along with their Dads, I got a little choked up at the parting. Four boys. Four distinct but entwined adventures in pet acquisition, neighbor diplomacy, friendship navigation, begging for experiences that don't deliver all that was dreamed, new talent discovery, and valiant attempts at family cooking, just to name a few! The book abounds ...more
Jun 14, 2014 Stephanie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mg-fiction
I absolutely adored this book, to the point where, when I came to the end, I refused to read the acknowledgments - I couldn't stand the reminder that these characters were only fictional creations! I really WANTED them to be real, because I loved them all so much, every single member of this wonderful, wacky family. (Maybe especially Frog, the six-year-old, but only because he reminded me *so much* of another kid the same age whom I know and love in real life…)

I can't count how many times I laug
Aug 14, 2014 Sara rated it really liked it
Oh so lovely. More books like this, please. Books where "non-traditional" families are presented in super straightforward, low key ways. Where the book isn't about "OMG LOOK AT THIS NON-TRADITIONAL FAMILY WITH LGBTQ PEOPLE IN IT!" Instead, it's all like, "Hey, look at these interesting characters with quirky personalities doing funny things and sad things and living their lives!"

Every character in the Family Fletcher is memorable. I loved coasting along with them for a year, learning about thei
Sep 01, 2014 LauraW rated it did not like it
Right now, I am rather annoyed at this book for the way the character Eli was handled. I doubt if there could be many more smart kid stereotypes used for him. I am also very annoyed at the way the school for gifted kids was described - no playground, no recess, bathroom breaks that were timed, on and on - anything that could make the school sound like a prison, in direct contrast to the wonderful public school. I wonder if the author has actually ever visited a school for gifted kids or has inte ...more
Feb 15, 2014 Jaye rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade
In the tradition of Jeanne Birdsall or Hilary McKay, Dana Alison Levy draws a loving portrait of a boisterous family. Two dads, four adopted boys, a grumpy neighbor, and an awesome cupcake baking aunt that lives in NYC (along with various pets) fill the pages of this school year long adventure. I cheered for each boy's individual arc as they started new schools, tried out new activities, made real friends, and always circled back to the foundation of the home their dads built for them.

A wonderfu
Katie Lawrence
Jun 30, 2015 Katie Lawrence rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-books
I loved this book! What a wonderful portrayal of a diverse family that focuses more on their adventures than on their diverse makeup. There need to be more books like this, featuring a blended family that happens to be made up of gay parents, four adopted sons (one Indian, one African American, one jock who happens to love musicals and one gifted student grappling with what that means) plus a cat and a dog and a cranky next door neighbor. What a valuable understanding for young readers, that a f ...more
Meet the Fletchers. First there’s Sam – he’s 12 and likes soccer, food, and his phone. Then there’s Jax. He’s 10, and isn’t super excited about the new neighbor OR about the fact that Eli (also 10) will be going to a different school this year. Eli is going to the Pinnacle School this year – he’s excited because everyone there will be as smart as him. Youngest, Frog (no, not his real name) is ready for Kindergarten but is worried there won’t be a seat next to him for Flare, his invisible cheetah ...more
Carrie Gelson
Beautiful, endearing novel about family. So very, very well done! I loved every member of this wonderful family. I rooted for each of them, celebrated them, smiled so big it hurt my cheeks. This is what family is. Loved the noisy, messy mumble jumble of every day love and family connection explored in this book. A happy, hilarious MG read.
Alina Klein
Feb 10, 2014 Alina Klein rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this family. Every single one of them. Read it and laugh.
Wish there had been better teachers, librarians & principals for these kids!
Oct 17, 2016 Bobbi rated it it was amazing
Great audio narrator.
Tanja Voosen
Heute möchte ich euch ein besonders tolles Kinderbuch vorstellen, von dem ich richtig überzeugt wurde und denke, dass es Kindern, sowie Erwachsenen gefallen könnte. Der Titel ist hier Programm: es geht um die Familie Fletcher. Diese bietet die etwas andere Familien Konstellation, denn die vier Jungs haben zwei Väter und daher gibt es hier nicht das "übliche" Bild einer klassischen Familie. Das Buch ist abwechselnd in Kapiteln erzählt, die sich mit verschiedenen Dingen und Problemen der vier Flet ...more
Pop Bop
Jul 27, 2014 Pop Bop rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Gentle, Funny, Realistic Tales of Family Loyalty and Support

This is an episodic collection of domestic comedy vignettes that mostly feature the four sons in the family. We basically follow a year in the life of the Family Fletcher.

Much can be made, I imagine, from the fact that this is a "modern" non-traditional family, which just means that the family unit is headed by a gay couple and includes four adopted sons. You have your standard issue traditional family comedies, (say, Birdsall's Penderw
Ms. Yingling
Jun 09, 2014 Ms. Yingling rated it liked it
The new school year is starting, and the Fletcher boys are getting ready. Frog is in kindergarten, Jax is in 4th grade, and Sam is in 6th grade. Eli is the same age as Jax but not at Grove School with the rest of them—he has chosed to go to the Pinnacle school for gifted students. He isn’t settling into the new school all that well, and starts to regret his choice, especially when his family storm the school (a chapter title!) and he has to explain not only that Frog is from India, all the boys ...more
Alina Borger
The Fletchers are in the epicenter of the culture wars: a multi-faith family with two dads, three different ethnicities, and four adopted kids. And there are moments—when the whole family attends back-to-school night at Eli’s new school, for example—when that reality threatens to erupt into the novel.

But it doesn’t.

And that’s what makes Levy’s middle-grade debut so stunning. The family navigates Sam’s muddy leaps from soccer practice to musical rehearsals, Jax’s veterans project, Eli’s move to
I'm pleased to realize that this book is the start of a planned series about a family that lives in New England. Not surprisingly, with four adopted boys ranging in age from six to twelve, two pets, and two fathers, one a teacher and one who works from home, there are all sorts of occasions for joy and anxiety. After all, that's what happens in most families, right? It's the little moments that matter--one-on- one time with a parent, creating family traditions or cooking a special holiday dinner ...more
Carol Royce Owen
Jul 29, 2015 Carol Royce Owen rated it really liked it
The Fletcher family is made up of four adopted children, Sam, age 12, Jax, age 10, Eli, also age 10, and Frog, age 6, and their two dads. In many ways this is a story about a family dealing with the hectic and crazy schedules brought on by four kids in school, and dealing with a rather cantankerous new neighbor who doesn't like noise or any disruption to his peace and quiet. That's not going so well, though, and already he's called the cops on them, certain they are trying to torment him.

As the
Oak Lawn Public Library - Youth Services
Title: The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher

Author: Dana Alison Levy

Lexile Level: 750

Pages: 272 (5 discs)

Summary: Two dads, four boys, a dog and a cat make up the Fletcher family. It’s the start of a new school year and there are a variety of personalities to deal with. Add in a new neighbor and a new school too. Sometimes things just don’t work out the way you plan, but as a family they get through it together.

Recommendations or Comments: There is a lot going on in the book. The first sever
Monica Edinger
May 13, 2014 Monica Edinger rated it it was amazing
I reviewed this for Horn Book concluding:

Focusing each chapter on one boy while still keeping the whole family in the picture, Levy provides a compelling, compassionate, and frequently hilarious look at their daily concerns. Family rituals such as each boy getting the meal of his choice on the first day of school are presented with warmth and humor. By book’s end readers will want to be part of (or at least friends with) this delightful family.

Also wrote on my HuffPo blog (http://www.huffington
This book highlights the family life of 6 family members, 2 dads and 4 adoptive brothers. Each child is unique and has his own set of quirks, yet they interact with each other both physically and verbally like close siblings. Dad and Papa do a nice job of helping the boys navigate their wide array of pets and shenanigans.

Text-to-text connection:
This book reminded me of Anne of Green Gables meets Pippi Longstocking. The aspect of being adopted tied to the complexity of belong and findi
This is a FANTASTIC read.

One of the things that makes me super-happy as a reader is when an author makes me feel I know the characters SO WELL without tons of descriptions that feel extraneous. By a few chapters in, I was wishing that I lived near these characters. By the end, I was super sorry to be done with the book, because I had to say goodbye to them.

I also loved that the boys have 2 dads, but that it doesn't feel like and "issue" book. It's not about families with 2 dads - it just so hap
Oh, I really enjoyed the Family Fletcher! The characters are relatable, realistic, and funny; the situations are both silly and mundane. But most of all, the book is touching. There aren't many middle-grade books starring a gaggle of boys that have made me both laugh and cry.

Levy's book also provides readers a wonderful introduction to the diversity they'll meet in their schools and neighborhoods -- diversity of religions, of races, of personalities, of family situations, and more. Everyone shou
Jennifer Armstrong
Jun 25, 2014 Jennifer Armstrong rated it it was ok
Sorry to say I do not share the glowing affection so many others seem to feel for this book. Trans-racial families are not "just like everyone else," as much as it may comfort you to think so. The dynamics are different and I think it's naive to think an entire year of this family's life can go by without any charged conversations about race and identity, especially with teens, and especially with an African-American teen-aged son. I'm an adoptive white mother of a black child, and to me this bo ...more
Jun 15, 2016 Darren rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this one because it's the first in a new middle-grade series (well, the first of two) about a family of two gay dads and their four adopted children. And I completely appreciated the way those facts are underplayed with both elegance and occasional and appropriate attention. I just wish the "misadventures" were a little more compelling, as not a lot here made me want to keep reading about the six primary characters. There is such an even-handedness to the storytelling about all four child ...more
Mar 15, 2016 Margaux rated it it was amazing
Shelves: modern, children-s, humor
This book was just plain endearing. It tracks a family of boys (four kids and two dads) throughout the school year. groggy is in kindergarten, Jax and Eli are in fourth grade (although Eli is starting at a private school) and Sam is in sixth. With reports to write, sports to play, and friendships to navigate, it's no wonder there are a few misadventures.

It reminds me of childhood, being a kid with a big family too, it's hard to muddle through sometimes, but this family relies on each other. Wha
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Dana Alison Levy was raised by pirates but escaped at a young age and went on to earn a degree in aeronautics and puppetry. Actually, that’s not true—she just likes to make things up. That’s why she always wanted to write books. She was born and raised in New England and studied English literature before going to graduate school for business. While there is value in all learning, had she known she ...more
More about Dana Alison Levy...

Other Books in the Series

Family Fletcher (2 books)
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