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4.15  ·  Rating details ·  587 ratings  ·  101 reviews
Last spring, Pansy chickened out on going to spring break camp, even though she’d promised her best friend, Anna, she’d go. It was just like when they went to get their hair cut for Locks of Love; only one of them walked out with a new hairstyle, and it wasn’t Pansy. But Pansy never got the chance to make it up to Anna. While at camp, Anna contracted meningitis and a dange ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published May 5th 2015 by Sky Pony (first published January 1st 2015)
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MIriam Spitzer Frankllin If you can't find the book at your library, please put in a request, and ask a couple of other people to request it, too! Hopefully they will add the …moreIf you can't find the book at your library, please put in a request, and ask a couple of other people to request it, too! Hopefully they will add the book to the system. Thanks! :)(less)

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Average rating 4.15  · 
Rating details
 ·  587 ratings  ·  101 reviews

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Cristina Monica
Entertaining, light-heartened, sparkling, atmospheric… I had a blast following Pansy’s path to becoming ‘‘extraordinary’’.

I will deny it not: my last middle grade reads had been awful ‘‘ditch away’’ ones. I mean, they all start pretty well (don’t they?), but rare are books aimed for a young audience that keep my interest from dwindling.

Extraordinary was the perfect read to lift me up of my sudden book slump. I didn’t even know it was there before I realized how I kept starting book after book wi
kazually ♡
Apr 27, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: meh, decent, prettyy
a sweet story about friendship and overcoming one's self
Apr 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Why did I pick it up?

I was asked to review and feature Extraordinary for its one year book birthday! I was actually looking for a contemporary middle grade and loved the sound of Extraordinary.

What's it about?

Extraordinary is the story about a girl looking for fulfill her promises to her best friend, and to become Extraordinary. After having a fight with her best friend before she left for camp, Anna gets sick and has some brain damage due to the illness. Pansy soon finds out that Anna isn't the
Ashley Elliott
Jun 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I always peruse the Juvenile section at our library for the new books featured on the top shelf, and this one caught my eye. The premise sounded interesting, but I was going to put it back... until I flipped to the author bio and found out that the author was an ex-public school teacher in my old school district (yes, I was public schooled for a year - shocker), and now she works with homeschooled students! SO COOL! That was basically the only reason I actually got it, but when I dived into the ...more
Gail Nall
Dec 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade, arc, 15ers
This is a beautiful book full of heart, about a ten-year-old girl named Pansy who wants to become extraordinary so she can be the perfect best friend. Her BFF, Anna, contracted meningitis which resulted in brain damage. Pansy feels guilty that she fought with Anna beforehand and never had a chance to apologize before Anna became sick.

I read a really early draft of this book, and loved it then. I love it even more now. Pansy's loyalty to Anna is inspiring and heart-breaking, and her friendship w
Mar 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc, 2015, ya
Middle grade readers will surely identify with 5th grader Pansy Smith as she tries to be the most Extraordinary friend ever.
Pansy is trying to win the class reading contest, learn to ice skate, be a girl scout, and still be a good citizen for her teacher. Why is she trying to do so much? Because she let down her best friend, Anna. Pansy is certain that Anna will recover from a terrible illness and when she does Pansy will be the friend she always wanted to be. “If I turn into an Extraordinary p
Sandra Waugh
Mar 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
warm and sweet and moving.
PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
Pansy’s best friend Anna outshines her in everything they do. When Anna develops brain damage, Pansy sets out to become EXTRAORDINARY so that when Anna is cured after surgery in December, she’ll be proud of Pansy. Pansy refuses to listen when her mom says that the surgery will hopefully stop Anna’s seizures, and the brain damage is permanent, Pansy knows if she only accomplishes her goals, Anna will be back to her old self.

EXTRAORDINARY is a younger middle grade book, with great messages about f
Mar 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Originally posted at Log Cabin Library

Pansy and Anna have been best friends ever since they were little. Anna is daring and brave, exactly the traits that Pansy wishes she had if she didn't chicken out of everything. Like when Anna cut her hair for Locks of Love and joined the Girl Scouts so that she could go on the annual camping trip. Things that they were supposed to do together until Pansy got too scared. Pansy and Anna then had a huge fight and Anna went off to camp without her where she c
Noa Freire
Jun 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It was so sad yet amazing at the same time. Full of trials for the main character and realization. It is a story of true friendship and how far one friend will go just to make it up to the other.
Jun 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Extraordinary was an amazing book. It was the first book to EVER make me cry. I never cry during books or movies normally, but this book touched my heart in an amazing way. I definitely recommend this book, because it is a masterpiece.
Izze Brand
Oct 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Anna was always there for Pansy-Even though Pansy broke her promises. But when Anna was at sleep away camp, (Something that Pansy promised she would do with Anna) she gets severe meningitis. Pansy knows that she has to make it up to Anna, and be the friend who will never chicken out of anything. Pansy soon overhears her mom talking to Anna´s mom about brain surgery. Everyone tells Pansy there is no cure-but Pansy believes that Anna will be back to normal. Pansy is determined to be the friend tha ...more
Nov 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Pansy has been struggling since her best friend Anna contracted meningitis and suffered a stroke, leaving her with irreversible brain damage. When Pansy finds out Anna has brain surgery scheduled, she is sure it will bring the old Anna back, and she decides to turn herself into the perfect person by December 5th. But live never works just like you think it should, does it? My heart broke for these sweet girls.
Linda Phillips
Apr 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed the heartfelt and realistic journey of fifth-grader Pansy, as she comes to terms with her best friend's tragic illness. This inspiring book would lend itself well to classroom discussions about students dealing with disabilities among their peers. Pansy sets an "extraordinary" example for others to follow.
Pibe Vernaca
Aug 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was the most amazing book! I read it in less than two hours on a bus across Ireland and there were times when I wanted to cry and times it made me smile! Thank you for writing this amazing book!
Jan 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book because it shows the emotions of Pansy when she is trying to change for her best friend. It also shows how Pansy feels when Anna is going through tough times. Pansy's only mission is to change and be the best she can be to impress Anna.
Jan 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
A delightful debut--reminded me a lot of my own 5th grade trials and joys! Review to follow on blog soon!
Apr 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book was very good!!! It was funny at certain parts and was very well done!
Jul 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
Here is my review, check it out -
Holly Weiss
Dec 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reading with my granddaughter, Clara.
Dec 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book was about a girl named pansy and her best friend anna (and anna's twin brother andy).Anna right after going to a camp got sick and got brain damage. She did not remember or understand anyone but was strong and was going to get an operation in fourteen weeks, four days. Each chapter Anna is closer to her opperation that will stop her brain seizures, but Pansy belives a miracle will happen and Anna will become her old self again.In this book Pansy is trying to be extordinary for Anna. Ri ...more
Mar 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Extraordinary by Miriam Spitzer Franklin is truly an extraordinary book, and one of the best I’ve read in a while. While the book is targeted for middle grade readers, I enjoyed it thoroughly as a teenager and thought it was a beautifully written tale.

On the same note, there were a few issues I had with it—not enough to degrade my appreciation or my rating, but enough for me to want to at least mention in my review, so I’ll dive into that now and get it done with so I can move onto my positives.
Jan 22, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a sweet book about friendship and lost seen through the eyes of 11 year old Pansy. Last spring, Pansy chickened out on going to spring break camp, even though she’d promised her best friend, Anna, she’d go. It was just like when they went to get their hair cut for Locks of Love; only one of them walked out with a new hairstyle, and it wasn’t Pansy. But Pansy never got the chance to make it up to Anna. While at camp, Anna contracted meningitis and a dangerously high fever, and she hasn’t ...more
Apr 27, 2019 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Lower-middle-grade fans
Three stars for Extraordinary. I liked Pansy's sweet narrative voice and her day-to-day struggles and triumphs of fifth grade. The chapter titles are done in a creative way that pulls the story along nicely. Only three real criticisms:

-A lot of the characters in the large cast have similar-sounding names. Not to the point of confusion, but it just seemed odd, as well as a missed chance to add some diversity (pretty much all the characters are presumed white).

-There were a lot of minor inconsiste
Oct 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book is an amazingly well written story that shows the beauty of friendship in two girls. Pansy and Anna have been friends for just about forever when Anna gets sick with meningitis, affecting her brain with serious damage and common seizures. When Pansy learns this she is crushed, and disappointed in herself for not being the most perfect friend, and not doing things that would've been easy to do before Anna got sick. Now prepared to step outside of her comfort zone, Pansy becomes an Extra ...more
Corissa Marlette
May 15, 2019 rated it liked it
Pansy and Anna are best friends, but Pansy would always make promises to Anna that she could never keep. Like when they were going to go to camp over spring break together, but Pansy chickened out last minute. When Anna returns, she becomes extremely ill and is now stuck in a wheelchair. Now that Anna will go under surgery, Pansy realizes that this is her only chance to make it up to her best friend and needs to do all the most "extraordinary" things before she gets better.

Friendship and forgiv
Ellie Allocca
Jul 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
I read this book last year and it's still probably one of my favorites. I just had to e-mail the author about how awesome it was. It really shows you that friendship should never be taken for granted. And that no matter what happens, you should always keep a promise. Even if you have to conquer one of your greatest fears. I found this book truly inspiring and I will definitely live by the lessons I learned from it. Thank you, Miriam!
Robin McCann
Mar 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Really good book for middle school age kids. I liked it even as an adult. Realistic view on grief and the way people process it but with a not to sad ending and format that I think is appropriate for any age student. No romance or bad language. Just a good book. Basically a fearful girl works to overcome her tentative self in hope that her best friend, who became brain damaged after a fight they had, will forgive her.
Sarah Guyette
Mar 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thought this book was amazing! What I really liked about it was how interesting the book was which made me not want to put it down, for example the part where she tries roller bladding for the first time. What I didn't like about the book was how it didn't talk much about Anna, when she was one of the main characters. My experience with the book was at night I would always look forward to getting cozy in a blanket reading the book.
Apr 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book was sooo good! I wish it never ended. The only thing I would’ve wanted different is to get to meet the real Anna. Like maybe at the beginning it could’ve started when she was still ok just so that we could get to know her a little better. I don’t know if anyone else felt this way but I know I did.
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