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Clementine (A Clementine Book) Hardcover – September 12, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 100 customer reviews
Book 1 of 6 in the Clementine Series

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 2-4–Clementine, a not-so-common third grader, knows her way around the principal's office as well as she does the art-supply closet. Daily rituals take on a different view when seen from her eyes. She's constantly being told that she needs to pay attention, but to her mind she is paying attention and making astute observations. Whether looking out the window during the Pledge of Allegiance at the janitor locked in an embrace with the lunch lady or dealing with a pesky pigeon problem at her apartment building, her concentration is always focused. Clementine goes to great lengths to be friends with fourth-grade neighbor, Margaret, but more times than not, both girls end up in trouble. Humorous scenarios tumble together, blending picturesque dialogue with a fresh perspective as only the unique Clementine can offer. When the protagonist pleads to skip school because of a self-inflicted haircut fiasco, she tries to convince her mom that she must have caught arthritis from old Mrs. Jacobi or has possibly come down with the heartbreak of sore irises. Frazee's engaging pen-and-ink drawings capture the energy and fresh-faced expressions of the irrepressible heroine. And even though she confesses that I do not think fathers should be comedians, her parents are portrayed as being fairly cool. A delightful addition to any beginning chapter-book collection.–Cheryl Ashton, Amherst Public Library, OH
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

As Clementine says, "Spectacularful ideas are always sproinging up in my brain." All the better for readers who like to laugh. Reminiscent of both Ramona and Junie B. Jones, Clementine is an ingenuous third-grader with a talent for trouble and a good heart. Her best friend is her neighbor Margaret, a fourth-grader who experiences both qualities firsthand. After all, plenty of kids may have had their hair chopped off by a helpful friend in an effort to get the glue out, but how many of those friends would think to improve matters by drawing hair back on the scalp, forehead, and neck with a Flaming Sunset permanent marker? "It looked beautiful, like a giant tattoo of tangled worms," Clementine observes in the fresh, funny, first-person narrative. Frazee's expressive ink drawings capture every nuance of the characters' emotions, from bemusement to anger to dejection. Sometimes touching and frequently amusing, this engaging chapter book is well suited to reading alone or reading aloud to a roomful of children. Carolyn Phelan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series, and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. Pre-order the official script book today. Kindle | Hardcover

Product Details

  • Age Range: 7 - 10 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 790L (What's this?)
  • Series: A Clementine Book
  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Disney-Hyperion; First Edition edition (September 12, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786838825
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786838820
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (100 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #258,129 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I have a bad habit when I read a book. If I'm reading a children's book (which, 19 out of 20 times is usually the case) and I hit on a passage that I think is especially amusing, I'll dog-ear the page. I know, I know. I'm a children's librarian. If ANYONE knows not to dog-ear pages it should be me. So to stop myself from this habit I've only been dog-earing the Advanced Readers Copies of books I review. Usually this isn't a problem. Then I read, "Clementine". I blame Sara Pennypacker personally for the fact that what was once a lovely little ARC is now a dog-eared-to-death series of bound pages. Sorry, Sara, but how could I help it? We're dealing with a book where if the infant brother of the main character says, "Go for a wok?" to her, he's referring to a game in which she puts him in the family's wok and spins him around real fast. I mean, how am I supposed to resist that? What we have here is one of the most amusing characters to grace the pages of children's literature in years. Engaging, mischevious, never ever dull, and topped off by illustrations by Marla Frazee, Pennypacker's early chapter book, "Clementine", is everything you could hope for in a story for kids. Finally, a character that can challenge Ramona Quimby for her throne.

Clementine can tell you right from the start when her week started going poorly. It all began when her best friend Margaret let Clementine cut her hair in the school bathroom. Margaret's always been jealous of her friend's bouncy red curls, so it makes perfect sense to Clementine to take the strongest red marker she has and color some curls onto Margaret's nearly bald head. That's the kind of kid Clementine is. She's always willing to go the extra mile.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Sara Pennypacker has created that rare marvel - a book about a little girl like so many little girls -- who "can't pay attention (code name ADHD) -- who is utterly charming and beguiling not just for parents BUT FOR KIDS THEMSELVES. My 7-and- 10-year-old daughters passed the CLEMENTINE test with flying colors, and keep repeating "But I was paying attention! I was paying attention to the bird outside the window!" This is an amazing, engaging book and should be an instant classic. I wish I had written it.

Jacquelyn Mitchard, author, THE DEEP END OF THE OCEAN and CAGE OF STARS
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I agree with Jaquelyn Mitchard's review and her statement, "I wish I'd written it!" I read about this book in Book Page from the local library and immediately put it on reserve - it wasn't even out yet! Mind you, I'm a 50-something empty nester! But I LOVE great children's books and this is DEFINITELY going to be a classic. Clementine is the gutsy, imaginative, free-spirited girl we all wanted to be. Author Sara Pennypacker is sheer genius! I laughed out loud all the way through and constantly found myself marveling at this phrase or that. Like this one - "I jumped up and gave my dad a kiss right where his beard stops being crunchy." Hilarious!

And if the characters and quirky scenarios and crazy plot lines weren't enough, Marla Freeze gives us the perfect pictures of Clementine in all her glory. An award-winning combination if ever there was one!

My kids are grown and off at college, but I've already decided to start a Clementine collection for my future grandchildren. Bravo, Pennypacker & Frazee! Bravo Clementine! Can't wait for the next one!
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Format: Hardcover
I cannot say enough good things about Clementine. I would put it on my list of favorites of all time. It's Junie B. without so many of the grammar issues. It's Ramona but more modern. It's Judy Moody without the attitude. But no, it's Clementine.

She is very funny. She has some great made-up words, such as saying that Margaret always makes "I-wish" eyes about a bracelet she wants and how Clementine and her mother made "corner-eyes" at each other. She calls her brother vegetable names all through the book, because she doesn't think it is fair that she got a fruit name. But you know she loves him because she gives him spinning rides in her mother's wok.

The illustrations by Marla Frazee show off the playful, lively spirit of this girl and her family. The tone of the writing captures the language and thought process of a creative eight-year-old girl. The author also gives a fair treatment to Clementine's parents, who are both thrilled to have such an interesting child and frustrated by her mess-ups.

I haven't even told you the story, but I'm not sure it matters. An eight-year-old girl tries to help a friend with a little hair problem, but makes it worse. And then makes it worse still. And even yet again. Then she does something good by helping her father with his pigeon problems...

You know what? Just read it yourself. There is no way that you will regret it.
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Format: Paperback
Being a Ramona and Junie B. fan, I looked forward to seeing what Clementine was all about. I like that Clementine lives in a basement apartment with parents who appreciate her for the creative person she is, and I like that she figured out why pigeons were congregating in front of the building. But unlike the authors of the Ramona and Junie B. Jones books, this author doesn't seem to have a clear sense of the age group she's writing about. Clementine talks and thinks more like a 5 year old rather than an 8 year old, yet she suddenly leaves her apartment and runs off to a copy store without anyone caring (something a much older kid would do). Her relationship with Margaret upstairs is more strange than believable. I found it odd that Margaret and Amanda-Lee are running off to "the mall" when this is a city, where most people go to stores. Many things feel contrived--especially Clementine's calling her brother by a different vegetable name throughout. I might believe it if she called him Spinach throughout, but her constantly coming up with new names makes the adult-author visible to me. I'd believe it if a father playfully called a kid Rutabaga, Spinach, Celery, etc.--but it's hard to believe a child, who doesn't care much for her little brother anyway, would take the time to think up a new vegetable name every time the brother is mentioned. In Junie B. Jones, Junie B. has many fun, quirky phrases and ways of describing things that sound just like a kid--but this author seems to try too hard to come up with similar-but-different Junie B.-isms that just don't work or flow. She says, "Okay, fine" a lot, and her thought patterns jump around not the way a child's might but the way the author THINKS a child's might--and it makes for clunky reading at time.Read more ›
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