Sunday, March 23, 2008

Clementine by Sara Pennypacker

Clementine, a third grader, lives with her artist mother, her father who manages the apartment building where they live, and her three-year-old brother Spinach. Or Radish. Or is it Rutabaga? Pea Pod? Well, whatever his real name is, it's not a food. Clementine got stuck with a fruit name and the only thing worse than a fruit name is a vegetable name, so Clementine's collected lots of vegetable names for her brother.

On Monday she ends up on the principal's office. Something about Margaret's hair. On Wednesday Clementine's plan to make Margaret feel better plops her back in the principal's office. Something about Clementine's hair.

"Clementine! What have you done?" asks Mrs. Rice.

"Wow! Clementine and Rice! We both have food names!" Clementine responds.

You see, Clementine always pays attention. It's just that adults seem to believe she should be paying attention to something else. Okay, fine.

But Clementine's week gets better, even though Friday's breakfast eggs had clear parts in them. She is promoted to captain and then sergeant in the Great Pigeon War. She doesn't miss her cat, Polka Dottie, quite as much. Margaret and her mother are even coming around. And, believe it or not, her parents aren't getting rid of her, even though she overheard them say, "One's all we need."

Judy Moody. Ramona Quimby. Make room, ladies. There's another young lady on the block.

And she fits right in!

Other Clementine books: The Talented Clementine and Clementine's Letter.

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