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Just Like Jackie

4.34  ·  Rating details ·  674 ratings  ·  217 reviews
For as long as Robinson Hart can remember, it’s just been her and Grandpa. Robbie knows they look like an odd pair, because her blond hair and pale skin don’t match his dark complexion—but those differences don’t mean anything to her. And though she wishes Grandpa would tell her more about the rest of her family, she’s learned over the years that he doesn’t like to talk ab ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published January 2nd 2018 by HarperCollins
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4.34  · 
Rating details
 ·  674 ratings  ·  217 reviews

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Nikkie Cole
Oct 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a amazing book targeted for 8 to 12 year old's and I would have loved this as a child. As a adult i simple ADORE it. Laugh, cry, and relate to this wonderful gimps into the life of a struggling girl named Robinson aka Robbie. She doesn't have the best of tempers and when resident bully Alex doesn't leave her alone she punches him in the nose. Little did she know that this would be the start of when everything changes. Follow her through her struggles as she finds out that not everyone ha ...more
Scott Moore
Jan 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This beautiful story and powerful protagonist definitely made me tear up at least twice. The novel seamlessly weaves into its Vermont-embedded narrative considerations of family (and what that means), race, gender, Alzheimer's, and more - all through the lens of an inspiring fifth grader and her life with her grandpa.
Oct 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2018
Probably 3.5 stars. I liked this but did not love it - I think one of my main reservations is baseball as a theme. I can think of one student who is into baseball and yet it continues to be a predominant theme in children’s literature. As for the book itself, there was a lot to appreciate even if it didn’t totally win me over.
Fierceness and compassion move this story.

It can feel rare in children's lit, that educational and mental health professionals are shown to be competent and doing what is best for the situation. Often when a story needs a heavy, poor teaching or bad counseling stand as a foil. I appreciated that in this book everyone around Robbie is supportive, without solving her problems for her.
Jordan Henrichs
Feb 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I went away to college at about the same time my grandfather went away to a facility that could care for him and his Alzheimer's. Visits with him were rough. In fact, I only visited him one time because instead of his grandson, he thought I was some buddy from the war he had been stationed with. It was one of the most awkward, saddest conversations I've ever been a part of. I had lost my grandpa for good even though he was physically sitting right next to me on a bench, patting my leg.

What a boo
Dec 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This debut novel is simply beautiful. Robinson is learning about what makes a family and how sometimes you get a family and sometimes you make a family, all while trying to help her grandpa who has been forgetting things a lot. She's trying to navigate school, friends and other kids who also have hard things going on in their lives. The characters in this book ars all so likeable. The relationship between Robison and her grandpa is sweet and tender. The other adults in her life are kind and supp ...more
Laney Nielson
Mar 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A deeply moving, beautifully told story of a girl and her grandfather. Perfection!
Apr 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is so important. I’ll be recommending it to all of my middle grade readers.
Maria Bienz
Apr 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Loved this one too! "Respect the Wand" ~ love the magic of the talking wand....we could all benefit by using the wand lol!
Jun 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A girl, a grandfather, Alzheimer’s, anger, friendship, support, mechanic shop. This story has it all. Beautifully told...
Mar 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Set in rural Vermont, Just Like Jackie is about a young girl's connection with her grandfather. Robinson is all tomboy. I don't know if that term is even considered politically correct anymore given the current social climate but Robbie harkens back to characters such as Jo March and Scout Finch. Fists flying, sports loving, dress hating girls. Archaic as the term may be, it is the best way I can describe this spark plug.
Robinson has never known either of her parents; her father was never in th
Well-written, well-developed characters. It doesn’t feel like an “issue” book because it’s all handled in an organic and story-based way. One of the things I like best about it (even though this is more of a didactic plus, I suppose, than a literary one) is that it’s really good at modeling. She’s dealing with a lot and wants to deal with it on her own, but she’s surrounded by adults who care about her and want to help—and who actually do help. If I were a kid, I think I’d feel a lot better abou ...more
Jan 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Loved @LindseyStoddard's debut: a MG #heartprintbook ❤"You should hold close the people who push you to be the best version of yourself."❤ Fell in love with the characters and the story. Tissues required. Grandpa and Robbie will remain with you. ...more
Jan 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Loved this book! It grabs you right away on page 1. I know my students will love this book.
Jenni Frencham
Stoddard, Lindsey. Just Like Jackie. HarperCollins, 2018.

Robinson lives with her grandfather in Vermont. She loves helping him in his auto shop after school, tapping maple trees with him to make maple syrup, and being the one to squeeze the cheese sauce into the mac'n'cheese. She's his right hand man. But Grandpa has been forgetting things and mixing up his words a lot. Robinson isn't sure what to do. She thinks she can take care of her grandfather, but who will take care of Robinson?

This book i
Ms. Yingling
Nov 14, 2017 rated it liked it
E ARC from Edelweiss Above the Treeline

Robinson lives with her grandfather Charlie in a small town in Vermont. It's always been just the two of them. One boy at school, Alex, gives her a hard time, never calling her the name that she wants to be called (never Robin, sometimes Robbie) and making fun of the fact that she looks very little like her African-American grandfather. After she hits Alex yet again, she gets sent to group counseling, which Alex attends as well. Many of the children in the
Cassie Thomas
Jan 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I haven’t read a book that felt so much like my real childhood since Wish last year. I felt so close to Robbie who is being raised by her Grandpa Charlie. Robbie holds a lot of anger, especially when their teacher assigns a family tree project and the only person she has in her family is her Grandpa, or so she thinks. This story is one of realizing that just because you don’t have the “American Dream” family, doesn’t mean friends don’t become family and that those who raise you aren’t parents wh ...more
Debbie Ladd
Feb 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is a MUST read for teachers, families, librarians, and anyone who cares about children! Robinson, named for Jackie Robinson, lives in Vermont with her grandfather, her only family member as far as she knows. She works through lots of challenges with the help of a guidance counselor at school, along with some of her peers. I could not put this book down, such a strong first novel. Well done, Lindsey Stoddard. You have captured the actions and emotions of a young adolescent.
R. G. Nairam
Jan 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: mental-health
Great voice, but some plot elements and character developments felt a little exposed--like I could see the author working behind the scenes.

Also a bit weird just in my 2019-Newbery-contender reading that this book is ALSO set in Vermont (/Small Spaces/) and ALSO includes group therapy (/Harbor Me/).
Laura Harrison
Oct 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Great concept and I really enjoyed the first few chapters. But there is a lot that isn't plausible and hard to ignore. Maybe I will pick it up another day. I have a good idea on how Just Like Jackie ends.
Christy Kingham
Feb 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have been in a reading rut lately, but I’m
back after stepping in to Robbie’s world. A stunning text. Teachers, parents, lovers of plain old beautiful stories...this is a book for all of us, and certainly a classroom library must!
Sep 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Just really sweet and well-written. I would want this on the Newbery Honor list.
Jun 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Stoddard’s debut novel displays an amazing amount of skill in drawing characters and relationships, with a narrative rich in metaphors and difficult topics that are handled with grace. Car, tree, and baseball analogies weave throughout the narrative, giving insight into how Jackie views the world. Her voice, rough and abrasive, is immediately evident in the narrative, reflective of her anger and tomboy nature. Readers will feel the fury radiating off of Jackie from the first scene and will slowl ...more
Jun 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Snowy Vermont with it's maple syrup is a delicious setting of Robinson's story. I found myself rooting for Robinson as she fought to find peace with her "family tree". I couldn't put the book down. Good read.
The Reading Countess
I loved Robinson from page one. I loved her blind devotion to those whom she holds dear (hint: not many-she shoves people away), her stubbornness, her colorful use of words when pushed to the tipping point...Just Like Jackie has it all: strong make figure—enter Grandpa, with more than a failing memory serving as the sole caretaker of said plucky heroine. Mixed in for good measure is some Vermont love via going mapling, a bully with a family secret and group therapy and you’ve got yourself a book ...more
Kelly Hager
Ooof, this book. It reminds me quite a bit of The Great Gilly Hopkins (one of my favorite books as a child) in that (a) Robinson has all this yearning for a family she knows nothing about and (b) she is so completely full of anger. 

This offers some coping mechanisms for children who may have similar anger problems, but it also shows compassion for the other characters and explains why bullies can be that why, as well as that sometimes people are just insensitive and not actively mean.

I loved thi
Sandy Brehl
An unforgettable character in a truly unique story. Robinson is one tough cookie who rejects anything except her inner mission: to protect her Grandpa (her Only family) and prevent ones from knowing about his failing memory and independence. No matter how hard she tries to remember the coaching tips of the school counselor, her anger escapes. It’s not that she doesn’t have good reasons for he short fuse.
These characters, adult and kids, ring true and memorable.
Liz Kelley
Feb 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2019
" is something you get... but it's also something you make." So true and such a good message (among others) in this great middle grade read. Definitely recommend!
Theresa Grissom
Jan 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book! There is something for everyone in this book. No matter who you are, you will find a character to relate to. This is a heartbreaking, beautiful story of family, aging and compassion. Will be booktalking this to the upper elementary students at my school.
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I was born and raised in Vermont where I began my love for reading and writing in local libraries and independent bookstores. My parents always like to remind me how well behaved I was growing up, EXCEPT in bookstores. I would run and hide between the shelves because I wanted to live there! I still kinda do... :) I moved to New York City after college and taught middle school English for 10 years ...more