Courtney Sheinmel My So-Called Family

ISBN 13: 9781416957850

My So-Called Family

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9781416957850: My So-Called Family
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Leah Hoffman-Ross just moved to New York and she wants her new friends to think she's a typical thirteen-year-old. But Leah has a secret: She doesn't have a father; she has a donor. Before Leah was born, her mother went to Lyon's Reproductive Services and picked Donor 730. Now Leah has a stepfather and a little brother, and her mom thinks that they should be all the family Leah needs.

Despite her attempts to fit in and be normal, Leah can't help but feel like something is missing. When she finds the link to the Lyon's Sibling Registry, Leah has to see if she has any half siblings. And when she discovers that one of the other kids from Donor 730 is a girl her age, Leah will do anything to meet her -- even if she has to hide it from everybody else.

Debut author Courtney Sheinmel puts a contemporary spin on a timeless question in this heartfelt novel about what makes a family.

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About the Author:

Courtney Sheinmel is the author of All the Things You Are, Sincerely, Positively, and My So-Called Family. She graduated with honors from Barnard College, part of Columbia University, and attended Fordham University School of Law. Courtney lives, works, and writes in New York City. Visit her at www.courtneysheinmel.com.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 5–8—Thirteen-year-old Leah loves her family, which includes her mother, stepfather, and five-year-old half brother, Charlie, but she is curious about her biological father, an anonymous sperm donor. She's also embarrassed by the whole idea and refuses to tell her friends. Without her parents' knowledge, she goes to the sperm bank's Web site and makes contact with a girl her age who was fathered by the same donor. From Samantha she learns that she also has three half brothers. Leah's family has recently moved to the New York City area, where she tells everyone that her father is in Europe, and a new friend encourages her to stop obsessing about the opinions of others. The book raises interesting questions about what constitutes a family. While Leah's character rings true, her new best friend, Charlie, and the nine-year-old half brothers she meets at the end occasionally talk and act out of character for their ages. Still, this is a solid story, providing a fresh take on an issue that's rarely addressed.—Natasha Forrester, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR
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