SKINNY MELON AND ME by Jean Ure

SKINNY MELON AND ME

Age Range: 10 - 12
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KIRKUS REVIEW

A brash 11-year-old chronicles family changes in this brightly chatty import from the author of The Children Next Door (1996). In the diary that she starts at the urging of her English teacher, Cherry records: her impressions of each day’s school lunch (“Pond scum and glop pie, and a dollop of cold vomit”); the troubles of her best friend, Melanie Skinner (see title), whose widowed mother has a suitor dubbed “weird Melvin”; and, most important, the persistent campaign of her dorky new stepfather, a children’s-book illustrator (with the unfortunate name of Roland Butter), to win her over. Ure saddles Cherry with a set of particularly insensitive divorced parents, which makes sweet, silly, stoutly loyal Roland all the more appealing as he slips friendly notes written in rebuses under her door, consistently takes her side in spats with her mother, and finally breaks down her last-ditch defense by finding a puppy for her that doesn’t trigger his allergies. Spot illustrations add to the droll humor and offer the challenge of deciphering Roland’s notes. Readers may feel underestimated when Cherry recopies and translates all of them near the end, but this self-assured young narrator keeps things hopping, and her ultimate change of heart is well earned. (Fiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-8050-6359-5
Page count: 204pp
Publisher: Henry Holt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15th, 2000




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