From School Library Journal
Grade 5–7—A novel told in doodles. Twelve-year-old Dodo moves from Southern California to San Francisco with her family, renaming herself "Doodlebug" as she begins her journal on the long drive there. Her parents decided to change locales when she was kicked out of school for an unfortunate incident involving her ADD medication. At her new school, Dodo hopes to use doodling instead of Ritalin to help her "survive." She tells her story using small drawings and words that are sometimes written in cursive, sometimes in capital letters, each page a fresh, creative layout. Reluctant and struggling readers may appreciate the alternative storytelling format. While Young does not quite attain the level of humor of other authors in this genre, Dodo's voice is genuine and will especially resonate with girls who have similar problems.—Richelle Roth, Boone County Public Library, KY
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Seventh-grader Doreen “Dodo” Bussey’s family has moved to San Francisco, where her father is starting a new job; however, because she was kicked out of her old school, Doreen believes that she was responsible. When given a blank notebook to while away the long drive, Doreen starts doodling all kinds of things and decides to call herself Doodlebug. She writes in the notebook about her new school, how easily younger sister Momo (Maureen) seems to adjust, and about the troubles she gets into with her new teachers, who don’t quite understand Doodlebug’s absolute need to doodle. Along the way, readers find out what happened at her old school; learn that her parents are struggling, too; and see that Momo has her own problems adjusting. Like Melissa Moss’ Amelia books, Young presents the story as if it is Doodlebug’s notebook, incorporating drawings, graphs, and different kinds of lettering that are an integral part of the story and make this insightful look into a middle-grader’s life a pleasure to read. Grades 3-5. --Kat Kan