MY MOTHER GOT MARRIED (And Other Disasters) by Barbara Park

MY MOTHER GOT MARRIED (And Other Disasters)

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A year after his parents' divorce (Don't Make Me Smile, 1981), Charlie Hickle has another shock: his mother marries Ben, a quiet man who is ""as different from my dad as you can get,"" a widower with two children who seem to take over Charlie's house. Thomas, five, is delighted to share Charlie's small room, his worship of his new stepbrother making him a real pest; teen-age Lydia is always on the phone--except when she's locked in the only bathroom. Meanwhile, Charlie, a self-centered only child who is used to his mother's full attention, has a predictably tough time adjusting and spends most of the book sulking, feeling sorry for himself, or being rude; only after he is inadvertently responsible for Thomas falling from the roof does he take a hard look at himself and start to meet his nice new family half way. Nothing extraordinary here, but Charlie's narration is an engagingly deft blend of humor and honest self-appraisal. Having thrown a tantrum when his mother offers her new mother-in-law his bed for the night, he observes, ""I don't usually explode like that in front of strangers. Normally I save the worst behavior for those I love."" He also realizes that the bickering that follows his withdrawal from his new siblings is a step in the right direction. Not deep, then, but right on target; kids who love Superfudge will love this too.

Pub Date: April 10th, 1989
ISBN: 0394850599
Page count: 138pp
Publisher: Knopf