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HOW OLIVER OLSON CHANGED THE WORLD by Claudia Mills

HOW OLIVER OLSON CHANGED THE WORLD

by Claudia Mills and illustrated by Heather Maione

Age Range: 7 - 9

Pub Date: March 23rd, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-374-33487-1
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Third grader Oliver Olson has a problem that may make many young readers envious: His parents have a compulsion to be deeply involved in his homework, to the extent that when he’s assigned a diorama on the solar system, Dad and Mom are planning to do all the work. Oliver’s parents are extremely overprotective, and he yearns to find some freedom now that he’s getting older. Fortunately, classmate Crystal comes from a less restrictive family, and, when they find common ground on the issue of Pluto’s no-longer-a-planet status, she volunteers to partner with Oliver on the diorama. Oliver’s concern about his parents’ likely disappointment at their exclusion adds a nice level of believability to his character. Each chapter includes a lively illustration from Maione that matches the text neatly, characters’ varied facial expressions conveying just the right emotions. Oliver may not change the world by the end of his diorama project, but he will certainly provide a fast-paced, entertaining read to the chapter-book audience. (Fiction. 7-9)