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Wants Jeff Matthews to notice her.
Hates sexist boys.
Wonders when she’ll get her period.
Must avoid looking like a wuss.
Must deal with his blended family.
Must get a chance with Kelly A.
Then something freaky happens: Emma and Tom switch bodies. And until they can find a remedy:
Can’t believe she has a . . . thingie.
Hates mean girls.
Finds out secondhand that her period has arrived.
Must learn to put on a bra.
Must deal with an overachieving family.
Must not be alone with Jeff Matthews.
From the Hardcover edition.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
IN THE RAIN
It was a wet, drizzly morning in Seattle, Washington. Tom Witherspoon stood on the pitcher's mound at George Wilson Middle School, where he and some other people were playing a pickup baseball game before class. Tom had just struck out Zach Leland, who was throwing his usual tantrum.
"That wasn't fair!" Zach complained. "I wasn't ready!"
"Yes, you were, you wuss!" yelled the first baseman.
"You're the wuss!" Zach said, throwing down his bat.
"Sit down and let someone else have a turn!" the third baseman shouted.
Tom tugged on the bill of his perfectly worn Mariners cap. Across the field, several girls, including his neighbor Emma Baker, sat on a bench behind third base. That was where they spent their mornings, whispering, giggling, and doing whatever it was sixth-grade girls did. He and Emma had hung out when they were little kids. But now she was a member of Courtney Hall's clique, the Grrlzillas. Tom wasn't sure what the point of Grrlzillas was, except to be incredibly annoying. Maybe they had no point. Either way, Tom wished they would sit somewhere else--they were making him nervous.
Thwack. Tom slapped the ball in his glove. Still no batter. He watched Emma chattering away. The summer before fourth grade, the two of them had built a tree fort and spent countless hours in it. They would wake up early and ride their bikes around the neighborhood. Hike on the scrubby path alongside the stream next to the park and collect bugs and cool rocks. That was ancient history now.
Finally, a new batter appeared. Great. It was Jane Hennessey. Tom was not happy to see her. Jane was a tall, athletic seventh grader who had been known to hit the ball out of the park. Way out.
"Hey, Tom!" Zach yelled from the backstop. "Think you can strike out a girl?"
"I struck you out, didn't I?" Tom yelled back. He pulled down the bill of his cap so that it covered his eyes. He had practiced his pitching all winter in hopes of making the junior Little League team this spring. If he couldn't get a few fastballs past Jane Hennessey . . . well, that would be bad.
"Whaddaya waiting for? Throw it!" Zach cried.
Jane grinned, took a few practice swings, and waited for the pitch.
Tom stared at home plate. His dad had worked with him that Saturday and had shown him how to place his pitches. Tom tried to remember what his father had said about tall hitters. You pitched them low and outside. Or was it low and inside? Tom had trouble remembering details, especially under pressure. Whatever. He just needed to focus. He had to strike Jane out.
"C'mon! Throw it!" shouted the first baseman. "The bell's going to ring."
Tom took aim, wound up, and threw his best fastball. Jane lunged forward and whacked it toward third base. At that very moment, the third baseman was sharing his Skittles with the shortstop. Neither saw the ball as it shot past them.
"Hey!" Tom screamed. "Get that!"
The third baseman turned helplessly as the ball rolled into the outfield. He looked at Tom and shrugged.
Tom sprinted after the ball himself--he was medium height, thin, and one of the faster boys in his class. He used all his speed now. Under no circumstances could Jane Hennessey hit an inside-the-park home run off him.
The ball rolled to where Emma and her friends sat on their bench and stopped at Courtney Hall's feet. Tom ran to it, reached for it . . . and then Courtney kicked it.
"Don't touch that!" Tom tried again, but another girl knocked it from his grasp with her heel. The ball rolled beneath the bench and Tom dove under Margaret Cooper to get it. Unfortunately, Margaret was wearing a skirt.
"Hey!" shrieked Margaret. She was especially touchy about boys. Two days earlier, Tom's best friend, Brad Hailey, had snuck up behind her in gym class and yanked down her sweatpants in front of everyone.
"What are you doing?" Margaret yelped. "Get out! Get away from me!"
Tom was caught in the skirt and fought to untangle himself. He had to find that ball. He could not let Jane Hennessey hit a home run.
"Perv alert! Perv alert!" Courtney shouted. She and the Grrlzillas rushed to defend Margaret. Rachel Simms kicked Tom in the butt and hit him with her backpack. The other girls joined in, whacking Tom with textbooks, gym bags, whatever they had. One of them even jabbed him with an umbrella.
"Stop it!" Tom grabbed the ball and jumped to his feet. "I was trying to get the ball." He turned to Emma. "Emma, help me out."
But she frowned and crossed her arms.
Tom suddenly saw Jane Hennessey rounding third. He ran clear of the girls and threw the ball as hard as he could. It was too late. Jane jogged home easily. As a final humiliation, Courtney lobbed a Hello Kitty key chain at Tom's head. "Skirt perv!" she called.
Tom muttered under his breath as Jane high-fived her teammates.
"The things a boy will do to look up a girl's dress." Rachel shook her head.
"I was getting the ball," Tom said, his teeth clenched. "You guys were too busy yapping to notice, but Jane was going to score!"
Margaret snorted. "Yeah, right."
Tom threw up his hands. "You got me. This whole game was played so that I could look at Margaret's flowered underwear."
Ashley Orendorfer, another Grrlzilla, rolled her eyes. "Pathetic." Emma gave him a look of pure disgust.
Courtney slung her backpack over her shoulder. "Listen up, Spoonie. We're sick of boys getting away with stuff like this. S-I-C-K. From now on, we're doing stuff to you. So get used to it."
And with that, the Grrlzillas lifted their chins and defiantly marched up the hill to school.
From the Hardcover edition.
Grade 5-7-Tom and Emma played together when they were in fourth grade, but now that they are sixth graders, they don't get along. Both are unhappy when they are teamed up for a gender-differences project for their health class. Then, a collision on a trampoline results in a body switch. As Tom and Emma frantically try to impersonate one another, each gains insight into the other's life. Just as they decide they'll have to remain switched forever, another blow to the head switches them back. Their health teacher is impressed with their reports, and Emma and Tom make tentative steps toward friendship. Physical development and differences are the focus here. The terms perv, crotch, boner, thong, and masturbation all make an appearance, with repeated references to naked pictures, and breasts. Tom, in Emma's body, gets her first period, and Emma, in Tom's body, wakes up with an erection. There are some humorous situations-Emma thinks the erection is a small animal under the covers with her-but the epiphanies reached by the characters-Emma: Being a boy was lonely, and Tom: -¦people expect more of [girls]-are mundane. The text contains plenty of cultural references and slang that will quickly become outdated. Though middle schoolers might be intrigued by the story's frankness, most readers will be disappointed by the lack of substance.-Laurie Slagenwhite, Baldwin Public Library, Birmingham, MI
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Book Description Delacorte Books for Young Read, 2007. Paperback. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P110553376039
Book Description Condition: New. New. Seller Inventory # STRM-0553376039
Book Description Delacorte Books for Young Readers, 2007. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0553376039
Book Description Delacorte Books for Young Readers, 2007. Paperback. Condition: New. Reprint. Seller Inventory # DADAX0553376039