Tuesday, April 8, 2014


written by Sara Pennypacker
pictures by Marla Frazee

Ages: 7-10 years (approximately grades 1-4)

Ivy and Bean. Beezus and Ramona. Bink and Gollie. As a parent of a beginning reader, you may already be familiar with these humorous and light-hearted tales of family and friendship. But if you are looking for something new to entice your young reader, try Clementine.

Clementine tells her own story in this first-person narrated, realistic fiction book. She is an eight-year-old girl with spunk, a short attention span, and a fruit for a name. Although she is well-intentioned, things never seem to go her way. When she accidentally gets glue in her fourth-grade friend and neighbor Margaret's hair, she thinks that she has a wonderfully clever idea to help her friend out. Unfortunately, her idea involves a pair of scissors… So, you can guess what Margaret thinks of her new hairdo after Clementine tries to “help.” But what I really like about this series is that it is as poignant and sweet as it is funny. In this case, at the end of the book, Clementine makes up for her mistake by cutting off her own hair so that Margaret won’t be feel ostracized at school. The story is full of situations and scenarios that do not work out at all as Clementine plans.

Any reader will definitely laugh out loud during Clementine’s hilarious antics and misadventures, but it’s also an excellent book to use in a children’s book discussion group. The Clementine series is perfect for both boys and girls ages 7 to 10 who are chapter book readers and who love a good laugh. It is humorous, fast-paced, and offers a lot of food for thought about the meaning of the phrase “good intentions” and what it means to be a good friend. Since reading a good book is like making a new friend, why not introduce your child to some new friends? 

If you liked Clementine, try one of these other series:
Allie Finkle
Ruby Lu
Clara Lee
Clarice Bean
Gooney Bird Green
Horrid Henry
Just Grace
Marty McGuire
Ready Freddy

Or find Clementine in our catalog.

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