Published 3:54 pm Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Book: “Clementine”

Author: Sara Pennypacker

There is a new girl on the block, and her name is Clementine. With a penchant for getting into trouble and exasperating the adults in her life, Clementine is nonetheless good at heart.

When she helps her best friend Margret get the glue out of her hair (by cutting it off) she stands by her in solidarity by cutting her hair off as well.

At school she can’t help it if her idea of paying attention (noticing that the janitor is locked in an embrace with the lunch lady outside the window) doesn’t match her teacher’s version of paying attention (saying the pledge).

Nor is it fair that her parents stuck her with a fruit name but didn’t give her little brother one too. Clementine solves this disparity by calling her brother a different vegetable name every time she sees him.

When she has run out of the mundane veggies (radish, carrot etc.) she goes to the Chinese grocery in order to find some exotic names for him.

Fans of Junie B. Jones and Ramona Quimby will love Clementine.

Perfect for reading together, kids and parents alike will laugh out loud as they root for this smart, quirky character.

Go ahead and get the next two in the series: “The Talented Clementine” and “Clementine’s Letter.“ You’ll have to have more of this sweet, funny girl.

Clementine was illustrated by Marla Frazee. It is recommended for grades 2–4 (and anyone young at heart).

Reviewer: Mary Campbell is the Children’s Librarian at Pelham Public Library.