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ALMOST ZERO by Nikki Grimes


From the Dyamonde Daniel series, volume 3

by Nikki Grimes & illustrated by R. Gregory Christie

Age Range: 5 - 8

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-399-25177-1
Publisher: Putnam

“Everything we have is a gift,” or at least that’s what Dyamonde’s mom says. It takes a while for Dyamonde to appreciate this truth, but, when she does, she helps others to understand it as well. When classmate Tameeka shows up with expensive sneakers, Dyamonde takes her friend’s advice and demands red sneakers for herself. Mrs. Daniel, after a moment of soft, scary speaking, decides that her daughter needs to learn a lesson about want versus need and packs away almost all of Dyamonde’s clothes, forcing her to wear the same outfit to school, even when it gets dirty. When her classmate’s house burns down, Dyamonde realizes the lesson her mother is trying to teach her and organizes a clothing drive for her friend. Third in a series, this chapter book continues to introduce interesting secondary characters to keep Dyamonde’s young fans engaged. Christie’s modern black-and-white illustrations are perfect for the urban setting. Dyamonde’s readers will enjoy seeing a strong, smart African-American girl face the same challenges they do. A treasure. (Fiction. 5-8)