Children's Literature Review: True (...sort of) by Katherine Hannigan

I was first introduced to Katherine Hannigan when I was working as a teacher in Virginia.  I was at a one day reading workshop where the presenters talked mostly about new books and how to use them to make reading more exciting (definitely my kind of workshop).  One of the presenters talked about Katherine Hannigan's first book, Ida B., and compared the main character in it to the main character in Kate DiCamillo's book Because of Winn Dixie.  I, of course, went to find the book that weekend and read it within a day.  I have been buying my teacher friends copies of Ida B. since then.  Hannigan was another author I had the privilege of meeting this summer at the ALA conference where I was able to score a signed copy of her new book True (... sort of).

Synopsis:  Eleven year old Delly Pattison is nothing but trouble with a capital T.  She gets in fights, ditches class, and enjoys spitting in inappropriate places.  Delly starts to really believe that there is nothing good about her because she cannot stop getting in trouble.  Just when she is about to be kicked out of school, Delly receives a surpresent (a present that is a surprise) in the form of a new student named Ferris Boyd.  Ferris Boyd is a pale, skinny girl who doesn't talk, cannot be touched. and looks like a boy.  Delly decides to befriend Ferris Boyd because she thinks Ferris will help her stay out of trouble.  As the novel progresses, R.B. (Delly's younger brother) becomes a part of the chumbudions (the fiercely faithful friends) and not only does Ferris Boyd save Delly from all of her trouble-making but Delly saves Ferris Boyd from troubles that even the surrounding adults failed to recognize.  

Hannigan's new novel is definitely something to Dellybrate (to celebrate in a Delly sort of way, often involving doughnuts, a trip to the river, and trouble). 

**Words in bold print are from the Dellyictionary which is found in the back of the novel. 

Recommended for Grades 4-6.  

Note:  This new book is even better than Ida. B.  So run... don't walk to get your copy.  Or just click here to order a copy from Amazon. 


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