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Julep O' Toole: Confessions of a Middle Child Hardcover – September 22, 2005


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 6
  • Series: Julep O'Toole
  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton Juvenile; New edition edition (September 22, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0525476199
  • ISBN-13: 978-0525476191
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.8 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,751,293 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 4-6–With an older sister who appears to be perfect and a younger brother who is highly asthmatic and spoiled, 11-year-old Julep feels invisible. She is absorbed in the ordinary trials of life, wishing to be popular, agonizing over what to wear for her school picture, hating her red hair and freckles, and resentful at having to look out for her brother. The low point of her existence is when she suddenly throws up in gym class with all eyes on her. Her priorities and her sense of self-worth, however, take a dramatic turn when her parents are away and she must take charge when her brother has a severe asthma attack. Julep comes across as imaginative, real, and often funny. Her concern over being a middle child, however, borders on obsession; the text mentions it repeatedly throughout. Still, readers who also feel unappreciated, or who can overlook this element, will enjoy the realistic school and family dynamics and will identify with her everychild concerns. Lightweight, with a rather standard plot, this is still fun and will serve a purpose in collections needing to balance the many novels filled with loss and grief.–Faith Brautigam, Gail Borden Public Library, Elgin, IL
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 4-6. Eleven-year-old Julep feels invisible. At home, sandwiched between perfect older sister, Harmony, and obnoxious younger brother, Cooper, she is only noticed when her parents want something from her--such as when they want her to trade her nice, uncarpeted bedroom for asthmatic Cooper's disgusting one (aka the Chicken Coop), with its dirty carpet and "snot green" walls. At school, Julep gets attention, but not the kind she wants: her journal is read over the loudspeaker and she barfs in gym. Just when things finally begin to look up, Cooper suffers a severe asthma attack. Julep's sporadically incorporated, acronym-peppered journal entries occasionally seem superfluous to the story, but the third-person narrative, filled with details that readers will relate to, sympathetically portrays Julep's progression from passive and wishful to proactive and appreciative. The heavy-handed message notwithstanding, this is still an entertaining read. Shelle Rosenfeld
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on November 9, 2007
Format: Paperback
Julep is a middle child and she is stuck between her older sister and younger brother. I like this book because it's very funny and has lots of action, too, like when Julep gets her journal read over the P.A. at school! It also tells a good story. Julep has to help her brother when he has a bad asthma attack and her sister doesn't know what to do. Julep will make you think and make you laugh, so read it!! There are more books in the series, which I plan to read. Julep O' Toole: Miss IndependentJulep O'Toole: What I Really Want To Do Is Direct (Julep O'Toole)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on April 3, 2007
Format: Paperback
Julep is a middle child and she hates it. She wants to be popular like her older sister or the spoiled baby like her little brother. I love this book because Julep is very real. She gets into embarrassing situations, just like me and my friends do sometimes. My teacher read this book to our class and we all thought it was true and funny! It's serious, too, like when Julep has to help her little brother when he has an asthma attack. Read this book!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. Lee on April 17, 2011
Format: Paperback
As a mother who screens everything her 11-year-old daughter reads, I had previously really enjoyed Trudi Trueit's "Secrets of a Lab Rat: No Girls Allowed" and non-fiction books. I had not heard of Julep O'Toole, however, until it was brought up in a second book club said daughter is in - and, happily, it was available at our local library. It's a terrific series!!! Why is it not available on Amazon?! There are three books so far - and if you're a parent unhappy with Lauren Myracle's "Winnie" series, I recommend in the "Julep O'Toole" series as an age-appropriate and value-endorsable offering. I think Ms. Trueit worked her research experience in writing non-fiction books into this series extremely cleverly, and I love how Julep grows as a character even in the first book, without growing up too fast, even as her 14-year-old sister matures at her own pace. I think the character of the father can be better developed - but the family is well-drawn as one. A light-hearted read, all three books in the series, with enough stuff to discuss after. In the words of said daughter:

"The book, `Confessions of a Middle Child' by Trudi Trueit was a good, funny start to a good, funny series. It's hilarious!

"Julep O'Toole has always been the middle child, the average kid, the child that no one notices. But that all changed when Julep is invited to the most-popular-girl-in-school's party. But will Julep be able to go? Or will her brother and her annoyingly perfect big sister ruin her only chance of gaining popularity? Read the book to find out!
Read more ›
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on November 23, 2007
Format: Paperback
Julep makes you laugh from beginning to end! I love the part where Clavin reads from Julep's journal over the loudspeaker at school!! Read this book and you will really enjoy it. All of my friends are reading Julep now and we can't wait to read the other books in the series. Go Julep!! C.Y.L. (you will get this when you read the book).
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