One Thing I'm Good At

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9780688168469: One Thing I'm Good At

Nothing seems to be going right for Julie Dorinsky. Her best friend, Abby is hanging with the gifted crowd, while Julie's struggling to keep up in school. She can't even read the notes Abby passes her in class. It seems as if everybody, from her snooty older sister, Alexia, to her baby brother, Bean, is smarter than she is. There must by one thing she's good at.

In One Thing I'm Good At, Karen Lynn Williams has created a warm and winning portrait of a young girl discovering her hidden talents.

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About the Author:

When Karen Lynn Williams was growing up in New Haven, Connecticut, her dream was to become the youngest novelist ever. At the age of ten, she formed a writing group with some of her friends. They would lounge around on pillows and in old stuffed chairs in her basement and write for hours. When Karen hadn't produced the hoped-for novel by the age of twelve, she gave up on her dream of early publication, but not on writing. Although it took longer than she initially thought it would, eventually Karen became the award-winning author of such books as Baseball and Butterflies (a novel) and Galimoto and Painted Dreams, both picture books illustrated by Catherine Stock. Karen Lynn Williams lives with her husband, Steven, and their children, Peter, Christopher, Rachel, and Jonathan, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

From Publishers Weekly:

Julie Dorinsky believes she is "a dumb kid who couldn't do anything right." In fact, little seems to be going right for this fourth-grader. A shaky speller and slow reader, she's afraid to show her parents her stack of "poor work" school papers and she is losing her best friend to the class snob. Things are equally rocky on the home front. Julie's father is recovering from a heart attack, so her mother has taken a secretarial job and often seems "tired or upset or busy." Once Julie's confidante, her older sister, Alexia, is now dismissive and condescending ("You are so stupid!... You can't even take a phone message!" she screams when Julie takes down a caller's name and number incorrectly). At times, the girl's ineptitude is overblown, and most readers will quickly pick up on the ways Julie positively influences her bright and likable four-year-old brother. She patiently teaches him to write his name, make a kite and dial 911. When their father passes out and the boy phones in a life-saving call for help, it becomes clear to everyone--especially Julie--that the one thing she is good at is teaching. Williams (Galimoto) delivers an encouraging message for any middle-grader short on confidence and self-esteem. Ages 8-up. (Oct.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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