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The Pain and the Great One (The Pain and the Great One #1)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  1,819 Ratings  ·  113 Reviews
An eight-year-old girl, "The Great One," and her six-year-old brother, "The Pain," state their cases about each other and who is best loved by their parents

An IRA-CBC Children's Choice.
Paperback, 32 pages
Published August 1st 1985 by Dragonfly Books (first published 1974)
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Somehow this is one of the Judy Blume books that escaped me growing up. I suppose because once she became my favorite author, I was more interested in the "older girl" books than I would have been in some kiddie book.

This book was actually very cute. It is a story of sibling rivalry told from both perspectives. Big sister (The Great One) thinks little brother (The Pain) gets away with everything and is coddled by mom and dad. Lil brother thinks big sis is the favorite cause she's smart and can d
Dawn Little
Judy Blume was a fixture in my childhood, but somehow this book slipped through my radar. Had I seen it when I was a kid, I would have seen my brother and me in it! And I still do! This is a great book to use as a mentor text when taking sides on an issue. It is also a great mentor text for making connections -- because unless you are an only child, we all have stories of sibling rivalry from when we were younger.
May 27, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: children-read
6-yo review: I didn't like this one that much because they are not very nice. It's about a girl who is 8, and the boy is 6. They are brother and sister. The girl is the great one, and the boy is the pain. The great one gets ready super-fast, and the pain has super-ugly behavior.
Muse Here
Mar 19, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: kids
I like that this book had perspective from both point of views. I did not, however like the parenting mentioned throughout the book. Clearly the parents have NOT read "Siblings Without Rivalry" by Adele Faber & Elaine Mazlish. Anyone who has more than one child, should definitely read this book. The parents mentioned in this book, I think are fairly typical. They are (unbeknownst to them) pitting their children against each other. The parents DO show favoritism, to each of the kids in the bo ...more
Jul 04, 2008 rated it really liked it
One of the great gifts of Judy Blume is that she doesn't lie to kids. Her books are refreshingly - and sometimes painfully - honest. As a kid, I sure appreciated it. Too many books lie, because they think children can't hear the truth. They ignore the fact that children already *know* the truth many times.

The truth in this book is that sometimes, having a brother or sister just sucks. The lie that most people would try to give is the moral that you really, deep down have to love your sibling aft
Debbie Reiber
Feb 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing

The Pain and The Great One by Judy Blume is a contemporary realistic fiction book. The age group this book is intended for is primary to intermediate. There are really two stories in one; the sister tells how she sees her brother and how her parents love him more, and the brother tells how he sees his sister and how his parents love her more.
I thought this book was definitely a book that most children could relate to when it comes to family. The older sibling sees the younger sibling as a pain
The Pain and the Great One is a story that most children can relate to. It’s about Jake (The Pain) and Abigail (The Great One) who are siblings. Their problem is that they are always arguing about everything. However, they come to realise when serious problems arise, such as bullying, they are both there for each other. I enjoyed the book greatly, as I felt I could relate to it, having siblings myself. The different chapters contained different themes, such as ‘Bruno’s ear’ and ‘The Breaf-kast C ...more
Shira Burns
Nov 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
The joys of sisterhood when you have younger brother who absolutely gets on your nerves. In this story the main character has named her younger brother The Pain because he gets away with all types of things that mom and dad would not let her get away with and he is destructive. On the other end the younger brother names his sister The Great One because mom and dad believes that she is really smart and she gets to be responsible for things around the house. Many young readers with siblings will b ...more
Karen GoatKeeper
Nov 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
We see the world through our eyes. We judge others by our standards. The saying we should walk a mile in another's shoes first is wise advice. How do you teach this to a child? How many of us forget to do this?
This book opens that door. The daughter is two years older than her brother. He is so often a nuisance.
The son is younger. He sees his sister doing things he can't yet.
I highly recommend this book for all children to read and talk about. It wouldn't hurt for parents to read and think about
Jan 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Could Judy Blume have known my little brother and I any better?! He was the pain and I suppose I was the great one. The way the girl described her brother and the preferential treatment was exactly how I felt as a kid towards him. So I know when the little brother was doing the same that it must be how my brother felt about me. Interesting! Blume did a great job with showing both sides!
Jennifer Lara
Oct 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I think that this book is trying to tell how they both feel about each other.My opinion is that they may have different feeling about each other because they are siblings.I will recommend this book who has similar feelings like the people in the book.
Mar 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
My students always enjoy this book. I read it to illustrate point of view. The kids have many connections to the stories of these contentious but lovable siblings.
Dec 06, 2014 rated it liked it
Its a really funny book. Dont get your hopes up they don't get along at the end. I say agin its a funny book.
May 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
It was good though if you don't know my favorite character think harder I'm a boy who else is a boy in the story???
Mar 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
i also read this 2 my sis v cute reccomend 10/10
Whittney Davis
Oct 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: child-lit
“The Pain and The Great One,” is about two siblings, an older sister and younger brother, and the story is told from two different points of views. The first half of the story is told from the older sister’s point of view about her little brother, The Pain, and how she feels her parents love her little brother more than her. The older sister describes things her younger brother does that she thinks makes him “The Pain” and feels her brother can do anything he wants. The second half of the book i ...more
Mary Alexandre
The proverb, the grass is always greener on the other side, accurately describes the two very different perspectives of a brother and his older sister and their respective roles in the family. This story is a fun and simple read which includes illustrations that help show each character's dilemma. This book is a great read for elementary students, especially those with siblings, and can be used as a teaching tool for understanding others' perspectives.
Jul 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
First, an eight-year-old girl tells her side of the story, complaining about her younger brother who she calls The Pain. Then, the six-year-old boy complains about his older sister, whom he calls The Great One. And, of course, they both feel like their parents treat them unfairly and give special treatment to the other sibling.

Great story!
Jul 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was my eight year old daughters first Judy Blume book. She loved it! The story is told from two different people's point of view - the older sister and the little brother. Funny how the same story is told so differently and yet so similarly. Great for anyone with siblings.
Rhyme Owens
Sep 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
I really liked this book because it reminded me of my relationship with my older sister, except that I know how to swim and the Pain doesn't. I think it was good to see the different ways they think, so that you can remember how other people feel is different than how you feel.
Savanna Kandiko
Nov 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
In this story we see a young girl feuding with her younger brother. This portrays a story students can relate to. Sibling rivalry is a large piece of student growth and to address the concept, in my mind, is very important.
Tai Jerry
Sep 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The two kids can relate to the story. They thoroughly enjoyed it. Parent accompanied for 5 years and up. Independent reading: maybe grade one or two.
Gail Fazio
Feb 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humorous
Cute but a little too babyish for me. This book is very short.
Cara's Craftastic Creations
A realistic look at a sibling relationship. I'm sure anyone who has a sibling has both felt like they were a pain and or great one.
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018
Enjoyed it very much !
This book is short and sweet, but very wise.

In simple terms, Judy Blume examines the power of perspective. Brother is convinced his parents love Sister more. Sister believes Brother is the favorite. Both ignore little details, and overstate others, as they jump to wrong conclusions.

It's hard to exaggerate the value of this lesson, even for adults.

Reading this with my 6- and 8-year-olds (same ages as the brother/sister pair in the book), we had a great discussion about how you can think you und
Sep 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: eng261, picture-books
This book reminded me of my little brothers and myself. This book described my childhood well, and I often found myself laughing at the accurate descriptions of what many brother and sisters think about each other. It's genre could be considered to be either realistic fiction or comedy/humor. The themes seem to be sibling rivalry, conflict resolution, and mischief. This book would be most suited for children aged 6 to 9. However, I found it very enjoyable for adults as well. Its a wonderful stor ...more
Lindsay Fischer
Sep 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This timeless tale explores children's views of parental favoritism. The book is about the Pain, a six year old boy, and the Great One, an eight year old girl. The story is split into two sections: the Great One's point of view and the Pain's point of view. The Great One cannot stand her little brother. She hates that he get's away with making a mess in the bathroom when he takes a bath and that the cat sleeps on his bed instead of hers even though she feeds it. She wants time alone without him ...more
Brandon Hardesty
Apr 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
"The Pain and the Great One" is a contemporary realistic fiction picture book for children ages 5 and up. It's written by Judy Blume, who's very well known for her work in contemporary realistic fiction. It won an IRA-CBC Children's Choice Award, as well as a Young Readers Choice Award.

The book is told from two different perspectives: a young brother (The Pain) and his older, pre-teen sister (The Great One). Each sibling narrates, in detail, their annoyance with the other sibling.

This is a stor
Natalie O'neill
Jan 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
The Pain and the Great One is about a brother and a sister who both complain about each other all of the time. This book is divided into two parts – one for the sister to rant about her brother, the pain, and one for the brother to rant about his sister, the great one. In each section, they complain about everything the other one does. At the end of the great one’s views, her parents allow her to stay up later because she is older than the pain. She is excited at first, but then realizes that no ...more
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Mini Lesson #3 Point of View 1 1 Oct 22, 2017 06:31PM  
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