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Me and Marvin Gardens
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Me and Marvin Gardens

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  2,109 ratings  ·  466 reviews
Obe Devlin has problems. His family's farmland has been taken over by developers. His best friend Tommy abandoned him for the development kids. And he keeps getting nosebleeds, because of that thing he doesn't like to talk about. So Obe hangs out at the creek by his house, in the last wild patch left, picking up litter and looking for animal tracks.

One day, he sees a creat
Kindle Edition, 256 pages
Published January 31st 2017 by Arthur A. Levine Books
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Average rating 3.88  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,109 ratings  ·  466 reviews

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Neil (or bleed)
A. S. King never disappoints me.
Dec 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A renowned YA author’s middle grades debut that reminds us to cherish our environment, our history, and consider our impact for future generations. Expect this book to pop up again in Newbery 2018 discussions.

If you know this author’s YA titles (written as A.S. King), you’ll immediately identify the qualities that are central to most of her books: we have a protagonist who is dealing with social ostracism in peer group and at home; we have parents who are a little evil; we have a absurdist con
Jul 08, 2018 rated it it was ok
2.5 stars

I have to admit, I'm a bit disappointed with King's debut middle grade novel. King is one of my favorite YA authors so I was curious to see the similarities & differences the new genre would bring to her writing. King is well known for the lovely magical realism she gives to each of her books & MARVIN GARDENS is no exception. Yes, it's not realistic that Obe discovers a new animal species that eats plastic & has burning orange scat. But here is where the aspect lies- it's not supposed t
Mar 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade, library
Enjoyable odd little book about a sixth grader, concerned with the planet and all the litter that accumulates in his family's creek, who finds a strange animal that eats plastic. Could this be the solution to the world's landfill problems? But who to tell, and what will happen to the animal? Added to that, our young protagonist has a strained situation with former friends, a mean math teacher, and his own family, plus the stress of watching what was his family's land get sold off for a cheap new ...more
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was pretty good overall and I enjoyed reading it. In the beginning, I was not really enjoy this book but towards the end I could not stop reading. Me and Marvin Gardens has a pretty cool idea throughout the book that was cool to see as the story played out. Overall, This book was very good and I would recommend it to most people.
Aryana Parmar
Mar 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-caudills
This was a good book... it addresses many aspects of life like friendships, loneliness, and new beginnings. I liked how Obe didn't obsess over Tommy and how he found a new friend. I like how his family becomes united towards the end. Overall, it was a very good book. ...more
Alex  Baugh
One hundred year ago, 11 year old Obe Devlin's great grandfather drank his 170 acres of land away, leaving his wife and children with only one small house to live in. There is also a small creek running by the house, the Devlin Creek. But now the Devlins are surrounded by three housing developments on what used to be their land before it was used to by booze.

Obe has made it his business to keep the creek free of garbage that people are always tossing into it. And he has lots of time to do that,
Nov 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love everything that A.S. King (here writing as Amy Sarig King) has written, and this book is no exception. I fell in love with both Obe and Marvin Gardens. I really related to Obe as he reminded me so much of myself at that age, and a little of me as an adult. As a kid I was forever bringing home stray dogs and cats, or a baby bird that fell out of the nest. I would have filled my whole house and yard with them if possible. Obe did everything he could to protect and save Marvin Gardens, and k ...more
Holly Mueller
Oh, I loved this book!!!! I think it would make a great read aloud, and I'm glad I was reading it on Earth Day and finished it the day after. How perfect! Obe is so tender-hearted, and his discovery and care of a new kind of animal, one who eats plastic, made me so nervous for the both of them all through the story. I loved Obe and Marvin Gardens so much I didn't want anything to happen to them! Thank God for Annie and Ms. G! Stories like this make me want to be a better person. Wonderful!!! Als ...more
Jan 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
This books packs a WHOLE LOT into a wonderful story of friendship: the need for conservation, the perils of overdevelopment, the angst of teenage growing pains, the effects of bullying, the perils of alcohol and the importance of a good education. There is just so much but it is all woven together so well. Obe is a very likable character who is wise beyond his years, although he is not aware of that fact yet, and his sidekick Marvin Gardens is lovable in all his slimy cuteness. The friendship th ...more
Feb 27, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grade, kids
If you're looking for A.S. King, yes this is the same author, but it's an entirely different feel when she switches to middle grade books. Not that it wasn't good, but it was clear she had an agenda here and there were slip ups here and there where it started to feel a little preachy. I think this would be an excellent choice to read and discuss in a classroom. There's plenty about science and the environment to dig into, but also more universal themes of bullying and friendship and trying to fi ...more
I wish this book existed when I was growing up.
Carrie Gelson
An incredible read. Would be a fantastic read aloud or book club book. Loved.
Mar 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book was pretty good, and it was very interesting! It takes a while to get into, but this was really good... and it’s a Caudill book! 😁
Mar 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Perfect for students who are ecology focused. The main character will win your heart and the message is loud and clear.
Ms. Yingling
E ARC from Edelweiss Above the Treeline

Obe lives in a previously rural bit of Pennsylvania that is quickly becoming suburban. Worst of all, the land on which the new houses are going up used to belong to his family, before his great grandfather lost it to pay drinking debts. His family is doing okay, but Obe is fighting with former best friend Tommy as well as dealing with recurring nosebleeds that resultant from Tommy punching him in the nose. His one solace is going to the creek behind his hos
Kate Olson
Apr 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
This one needs to be in list form to highlight my love for it (and I will probably be adding to and revising this the more I think about this book!):

1) perfect way to approach environmental issues with the middle grade audience! Fans of "Hoot" by Carl Hiassen will love this, or fans of this story will love "Hoot" depending on their age/reading history.
2) excellent portrayal of how some kids handle bullying, and I loved how strong Obe and Annie were in the face of it. Not immune, but it did not
IMAGINE a world where a slimy not dog, not pig eats plastic ... oh the joy! The hope! That we should be this lucky! I think that Obe's mom would forgive him if he had brought home Marvin Gardens..

Marvin Gardens and his family! Obe and his family! Teachers, Game Wardens, and others! Family pride, love, friendships, bullying, pizza sandwichs... So, Obe is having a hard time growing up. He seems to be a pretty deep thinker and is concerned with the environment. He has trouble with friends.. finds M
Nay Keppler
Nov 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"Maybe if everyone realized that we could change the world, we'd learn to live differently."

This book was recommended to me by a close friend because of my love for the movies Okja and Pete's Dragon. That friend was totally spot-on, and I would also recommend this to fans of Sara Pennypacker's Pax.

I would love to see this book turned into a movie. I wanted to meet Marvin Gardens IRL so badly. Such a sweet story, nearly every chapter made my heart melt. Just a good ole classical tale about a boy
Michelle Glatt
Dec 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
For a while now I have been hearing and reading about how amazing A.S. King is, and I am so glad that I have finally read one of her works and that it is as unique and thought-provoking as expected. I love the hope that permeates this novel, including the hope that this is a story that might one day come true in its own way. I love that Obe is so real and that as a reader I *felt* so much a long with him. And I love that A.S. King wrote this for middle graders. And now, if you'll excuse me, I'd ...more
Jared Reck
Mar 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Can't even tell you how much my daughter and I loved this book. A.S. King is my favorite author anyway, and I was excited to be able to share her first middle-grade offering with Mabel. In short, it was everything I love about A.S. King, just with a younger main character. Obe reminded my of a younger Lucky Linderman.

So so good.
Lindsay Fouts
Mar 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I am a huge fan of A. S. King, so I couldn't wait to read her middle grade debut.

This book deals with important issues such as taking care of the environment, consent (at a 6th grade level), and relationships.

A must read!
Really liked this. Reminded me a bit of Fuzzy Mud by Louis Sachar, but without so much suspense. Nature loving sixth grader spends a lot of time by his favorite creek, picking up trash and enjoying the scenery. One day he discovers a strange animal that eats plastic...
Aug 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A beautifully told story about a uniquely special kid who finds a uniquely special animal and how their friendship teaches him about the nature of fear, of taking care of our family and environmental legacies, and that we’re all just kind of weird loners, really.
Aug 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A fine Young Adult book focusing on what is happening to our environment as well as telling about the challenges of growing up being a loner.
Stacy Ford
Apr 25, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cre, 2019
A boy discovers a new species that eats plastic that may or may not be the solution to pollution. Bullying. Friendships. Coming of age. 5th and up.
Ro Menendez
Jun 27, 2018 rated it did not like it
This story aims to create awareness about the harm humans do to the environment and the vital work of conservation, and yet, it chooses to do so through a fantastical animal whose diet consists solely of eating plastic. Could this animal, who the main character, Obe, names Marvin Gardens, be the answer to the enormous amount of plastic waste created by humanity, be the solution? We will never know as this is left unresolved. The downside of this animal's plastic diet is how toxic its scat is and ...more
I was super curious about how A.S. King would handle a middle grade book--I'm not always big on juvenile fiction, but I should have known I could more than handle hers.

So yeah, this book is weird. It's about a weird kid and a weird animal and how they help each other. It's also about bullying and environmental issues and losing places and people you love and dealing with people who think very differently than you do.

I grew up a lot like Obe, without the pain of my family once having owned but
Jan 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens-books
Everything has changed for Obe over the last few years. His family’s farmland has turned into a housing development. His best friend is now friends with the kids living in the new development. He has constant nose bleeds caused by something he doesn’t like to talk about, but it has a lot to do with his ex-friend and the new development. Obe spends a lot of time at the creek on his family’s remaining property, cleaning up the trash left by others. Then he meets an unusual animal. It is an odd mix ...more
Julie Suzanne
What a precious story. Lovable characters, wonderful themes, enjoyable writing style (love the narrator's "voice").

I love how bullying is dealt with. I love the flawed parent-child relationship that was so realistic but not in any way dysfunctional (I'd call it "normal"). Again, I love the messages woven throughout each scene. I love that a teacher was a positive influence without being like Mr. Terrupt or countless other stereotypical, perfect, day-saving literary teachers. She seemed totally r
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Mock Newbery 2023: Me and Marvin Gardens 8 69 Jan 08, 2018 08:54AM  

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A.S. King writes middle grade fiction under the name Amy Sarig King.  ...more

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