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Full of Beans

(Turtle in Paradise)

4.04  ·  Rating details ·  2,573 ratings  ·  521 reviews
Newbery Honor Book Turtle in Paradise is beloved by readers, and now they can return to this wonderful world through the eyes of Turtle’s cousin Beans.
Grown-ups lie. That’s one truth Beans knows for sure. He and his gang know how to spot a whopper a mile away, because they are the savviest bunch of barefoot conchs (that means “locals”) in all of Key West. Not that Beans really mind/>
ebook, 208 pages
Published August 30th 2016 by Random House Books for Young Readers (first published 2016)
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Average rating 4.04  · 
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 ·  2,573 ratings  ·  521 reviews

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May 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Summary: Strongly voiced male protagonist in depression-era historical fiction, ideal for whole class reading or book clubs for grades 4-5 and for readers who have already read Turtle in Paradise. Students might need some background knowledge on the Great Depression and the New Deal.

Disclaimer: Review from ARC on behalf of a reader advisory program.

Review: At the not-so tender age of eleven, Beans Curry has learned a hard truth: adults lie.

Beans’s mother lies when she says everything’s going to be all right even tho
Mary Ann
Mar 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Does building resilience in kids mean they have to be able to handle everything by themselves? Or that they can weather the hard times, with their sense of self intact? I adore Jennifer Holm's newest novel Full of Beans precisely for the way that Beans struggles through hard times, learning about the consequences of his decisions, yet never losing his sense of humor or his loyalty to his family and friends. It is both delightful to read and wonderful to reflect upon.

Read my full revi
Ms. Yingling
Aug 02, 2016 rated it liked it
Copy provided by publisher

Beans, Turtle's cousin from Turtle in Paradise (2010) is doing the best he can to help out his family during the Great Depression in Key West, Florida. He and his brother, Kermit, dig through the trash for tin cans, babysit, and even engage in illegal activities in order to make some money. Their father is away in New Jersey, trying to get a factory job, and their mother takes in laundry and occasionally tries her hand at dressmaking. When New Deal men come
I loved this historical fiction novel for younger readers. The characters are expertly sketched, and as readers mature they will begin to more deeply understand the relationships presented. I am a huge fan of Key West and learned so much about the island's history in this slim volume--now I want to read even more Jenni Holm books!
Mx. Firke
Mar 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book gets to some big issues in a way that is fun! It's also a very quick read. :) I won't spoil it, but I think this is a GREAT choice if you were interested in the historical period of Bud, Not Buddy.
Oct 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A charming companion story to TURTLE IN PARADISE!
Alex  Baugh
It's July 1934, and times are hard for the Curry family. Poppy's out of work and in New Jersey looking for a job, and mom is taking in laundry, so son Beans Curry does what he can to help out. But after sifting through garbage, collecting empty cans and expecting to get 10¢ for every twenty cans, he is cheated out of 5¢ by the wily Winky, who now claims he said 50 cans per 10¢. One thing that Beans knows for sure is that grown-ups lie and Winky is a good example of that. Angered, Beans is determ ...more
Stacy Fetters
"I had never held so much money in my whole life. I felt like Daddy Warbucks. Except with hair."
Received from my blogger partner JT. He received it at ALA Orlando 2016!! Thanks!!
My first experience with Holm was with The Fourteenth Goldfish and it was so different and I was dying to read more of her work.
This might be one of the first Middle grade historical fiction that I have ever read and I can't say that I was disappointed, but I wasn't captured like I was with her other book. ...more
There is much to love in this middle grade story about a time during the Great Depression and the re-making of a town about to die. Yes, it's historical fiction, and Jennifer Holm manages to weave a story about Key West, and a government program that helped it be re-born into a vibrant and successful tourist destination. But the real story is about Beans Curry and his buddies who lead different lives from children today. They are poor, shoeless, and spend a lot of time on the streets, trying to ...more
Lively middle grade historical fiction, set during the Great Depression on Key West. I never knew that the New Deal was responsible for making Key West the tourist destination/artists' colony it is today, so there's some fascinating and unusual history at play here. Beans, the main character, has an engaging and quirky voice, but Holm introduces a lot of characters and plot threads, and some don't go anywhere, while others are resolved a bit too abruptly. But I think kids will be pulled along by th ...more
A.E. Conran
Aug 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Jennifer Holm yet again enchants us with humor, heart and historical mastery. I too wanted to know more about Beans and this book does not disappoint. Such fascinating facts about the new dealers, bermuda shorts and illnesses in Key West. Such great characters and one-liners. So happy that Beans is still not impressed by that writer fellow!
Jul 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
So cute! So funny! I really loved it because it didn’t take the typical plot route I was expecting. Also I’ve been to Key West twice so I could picture it perfectly (even though it was set in the 30s) and pretend i was there. Then i had to read Turtle In Paradise.
Ms. B
Feb 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Companion novel to Turtle in Paradise. This story about Beans and his money making schemes in depression era Key West, Florida had me laughing out loud more times than I could count on one hand (or two). Even though, it's geared towards kids; anyone who fondly remembers The Little Rascals
I had no idea what this book was about when I started it, and sometimes that is the best way to read a book. This book was a joy to read. I learned stuff that I didn't know...and it was cool stuff about Key West in the Great Depression. The characters are totally characters! The whole Nana Philly thing is a hoot! I think kids and adults alike are going to fall in love with this book.
Niki (Daydream Reader)
Turtle in Paradise is my favorite book by Jenni Holm! So I loved reading about Beans and The Diaper Gang again. A very enjoyable book!
Claudia Silk
Sep 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
A truly delightful children's book that was so enlightening! Little rascals meets historical fiction about the new deal and key west.
Michele Knott
Loved finding out pieces that connect this story to TURTLE IN PARADISE.
Loved the details of the setting.
Loved each and every character.
Loved the ending.
Emily Scheinman
May 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My favorite book of 2016. Such a wonderful joy to read. Beans stole my heart. And Jenni's storytelling, just wow!
Beans Curry may only be 10 but he's wise to the way of the world. Beans knows grown-ups lie. They lie to kids by telling them everything is OK even though any kid in Key West in 1934 knows times are tough. Beans is a conch- born and bred in Key West and he has the tough street smarts to prove it. Since his dad is out of work and his mom takes in laundry, there's little money for extras like movies. Beans longs to be a Hollywood star like that Shirley Temple kid. Beans and his pals have a surefir ...more
Mar 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
This story, set in the 1930s, is told from a young boy named Beans. Living in the Key West during the Great Depression brings a lot of challenges. His dad, also known as Poppy, has headed north to find work which means he has to pick up some responsibility for his little brothers. His mom works hard but they still just manage to get by, if that. Beans is resourceful and very observant. He knows every "conch" in town and is always looking to make a buck. But when opportunity knocks, will Beans go ...more
Samantha Martinez
Full of Beans by Jennifer L. Holm, is a captivating novel about a young boy named Beans who is trying to get by during The Great Depression in Key West. I really enjoy reading historical fiction novels and I without a doubt enjoyed reading this historical fiction novel as well. I have developed this love of historical fiction as a student in elementary school where I read several historical fiction novels about Titanic and World War II in Germany. It has been a long time since I have read any hi ...more
Sydney Novotak
Before reading Full of Beans, I recalled my History 101 notes my freshman year of college. I needed up having multiple pages going in depth about the clothing styles, money, daily life style, and work during the 1930's. From this I realized most scenarios were to make the best of what you were given. After this I read farther into how partially due to World War II, sharp reductions in spending, taxes, and regulations on items the economy started to rise again from the Depression. During the stor ...more
Sydney Dunigan
Feb 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: wow-books
This was such a cute book! A great historical fiction read, a 3-5th grader would not be disappointed in this book. The book was filled with giggles and scheming as Beans tried to maneuver his way through dealing with the Great Depression with his family in Key West. He tries to help his family and earn a little money by collecting cans (and getting into trouble) with his little brother, and helping his hardworking mother after his father leaves to go north to look for work. Through the perspecti ...more
Apr 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
When I looked at the cover of the book I initially thought that it would be about a boy who lost his parents during the great depression and all he had was his dog to accompany him while he collected garbage. The title seemed very interesting, and that is part of why I decided to read this book. I knew that this book was about the Great Depression and I remembered learning about it for the very first time in the third grade and being confused about what the stock market was. I later learned that ...more
Aug 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What fun it was to be back in Key West, Florida, this time with Turtle's cousin Bean and his friends and family. Key West during the Depression was definitely not the vacation paradise filled with multi-million dollar homes that it is today. Most houses were little more than unheated shacks and everyone was struggling to find enough work to put food on the table. I loved how Beans and his friends came up with some pretty savvy ways to make a little money-like freeing up the parents by carting th ...more
Judi Paradis
Aug 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Beans lives on Key West at the height of the Great Depression, and it is not a lovely tropical spot--its full of trash (they cannot afford to pay to haul it away), run down houses, rum runners and unemployed men. Beans is a hoot and spends his days watching his awful brother Kermit and trying to figure out how to make a buck. When some men come from President Roosevelt's "New Deal," Beans thinks they're nuts, but is impressed when their efforts to paint the houses pink and clean up the island ac ...more
Barb Keltner
I had been skipping over this book because the cover made it look like a silly story. But when it kept appearing on award lists, I gave in and read it. It's set in Key West during the depression and ends up telling the story through a child's point of view of the clean up that led to Key West becoming a tourist destination spot instead of being given up on by the government and evacuated. Beans is a good main character and learned some important lessons. The "Author's Notes" explain more of some ...more
Jul 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017-reads
Another home run recommendation by my son. This is a prequel of sorts to Turtle in Paradise.

The year is 1934, and this is a Key West like no modern tourist would ever believe. Broken-down wooden shacks, rotting garbage in the streets, bankruptcy, shysters, smugglers, and barefoot kids abound when President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal comes to town.

Multifaceted supporting characters—a motley group of friends (all with nicknames such as Pork Chop and Too Bad), a fussy baby brothe
Sydney Neaves
Feb 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Full of beans was a book that did not disappoint! It was very cute and a great historical fiction read. Overall this book was always holding my attention with Bean's schemes and ideas of ways to make money to help his family during the Great Depression. The book starts with Beans the main character who is in a marble "gang" in the town of Key West with some of his ten year old friends and his younger brother. The book follows Beans and his family as they struggle through the times of the Great D ...more
Millie Dearden
Sep 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is another of our 2018 William Allen White nominees.
I had no idea about Key West! I know this is historical fiction but it is a good read and you learn about Key West and what happened to it!!
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Jennifer L. Holm is a NEW YORK TIMES bestselling children's author and the recipient of three Newbery Honors for her novels OUR ONLY MAY AMELIA, PENNY FROM HEAVEN, and TURTLE IN PARADISE.

Jennifer collaborates with her brother, Matthew Holm, on two graphic novel series -- the Eisner Award-winning Babymouse series and the bestselling Squish series. She is also the author of several other highly pra

Other books in the series

Turtle in Paradise (2 books)
  • Turtle in Paradise
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