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Junie B., First Grader: Boo...and I Mean It! (Junie B. Jones, No. 24) Paperback – August 23, 2005


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Junie B., First Grader: Boo...and I Mean It! (Junie B. Jones, No. 24) + Junie B., First Grader: Jingle Bells, Batman Smells! (P.S. So Does May) + Junie B., First Grader: Aloha-ha-ha! (Junie B. Jones, No. 26)
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 - 9 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 4
  • Lexile Measure: 380L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (August 23, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375828079
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375828072
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.3 x 7.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,793 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

In the 24th installment of Barbara Park's Junie B. Jones series of illustrated early chapter books, Boo... And I Mean It!, the precocious first grader is worried about Halloween--with good reason. Paulie Allen Puffer has given her five good reasons, in fact, not least of which is that real witches and monsters go trick-or-treating on Halloween (no costumes necessary); if you carve pumpkins with pointy teeth, they will bite your feet; and...shhh...candy corn isn't really corn. Junie B. goes to great lengths to avoid trick-or-treating altogether, but she finally decides that if she dresses up like Squirty the Clown (a disturbing circus clown who terrified her grandmother by chasing her with a seltzer bottle and making her wear an "unattractive balloon hat"), even the most horrific witches and monsters will be scared off. As ever, her way of expressing herself "I did a groan" and "Chills came on my arms" is grammatically unique, but as you get to know her, more endearing than alarming. Children who have mixed feelings about Halloween festivities will relate to Junie B.'s fears, and they'll be relieved when Halloween passes without a monster attack or pumpkin bite, just a delicious bag of 100% candy. (Ages 4 to 8) --Karin Snelson --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

From USA TODAY:
"Junie B. is the darling of the young-reader set."

From Publisher' Weekly:
"Park convinces beginning readers that Junie B.—and reading—are lots of fun."

From Kirkus Reviews:
"Junie's swarms of young fans will continue to delight in her unique take on the world....A hilarious, first-rate read- aloud."

From Booklist:
"Park, one of the funniest writers around . . . brings her refreshing humor to the beginning chapter-book set."

From Time magazine:
"Junie B. Jones is a feisty six-year-old with an endearing penchant for honesty."

From School Library Journal:
"Readers will relate instantly to the trials and tribulations of this first grader....She is always endearing and wonderfully funny."

More About the Author

I grew up in Mt. Holly, New Jersey. It was a small town surrounded by farmland . . . the kind of town where you greet people by name on Main Street. It was only an hour's drive to the ocean. So every summer we spent family vacations on Long Beach Island. My brother and I would ride the waves during the day and play miniature golf at night. It's the kind of idyllic memory that stays in your head long after you've grown up and moved away.
After graduating from high school and spending two years at Rider University, I transferred to the University of Alabama where I met my husband, Richard. Eventually his job brought him to Arizona. We both fell in love with the desert and wanted to stay here forever. Still, during the heat of the Arizona summers, those ocean memories would come rushing back. So-after years of sweaty summers-my husband and I finally built a house on Long Beach Island, the same island where my brother and I rode the waves as kids. In the story business, that's called "coming full circle." These days, Richard and I divide our time between the desert and the ocean. In the words of Junie B. Jones, I'm a lucky duck.

Q. What inspired you to start writing?

In my case, it was sort of "reverse" inspiration. I got a degree in secondary education. My plan was to teach high school history and political science. But, because of a scheduling problem my senior year, I ended up doing my student teaching in the seventh grade. The word disaster doesn't really cover this one. I'll spare you the details. But as I ran screaming from the school building every day, I knew that I would never be a teacher. My husband and I married after graduation, and started a family. A few years later, when I was ready to go to work, I was still haunted by the memories of student teaching. So I was "inspired" to try my hand at writing instead.

Q. How did you go about getting published?

The first children's novel I wrote was Operation: Dump the Chump. As soon as it was finished, I bought a copy of Writer's Market, found some addresses, and started sending it off to publishers who were accepting unsolicited manuscripts. It was rejected three times. All three rejections managed to work in the classic industry one-liner, "It isn't right for our list."

The fourth time I sent it to Alfred Knopf, Inc. A few weeks later, they called and said it was exactly right for their list. I felt like I'd hit the lottery.

Q: You've written middle-grade novels, early chapter books, and picture books. Which do you like writing best?

I can't really say which I like best. But after all the Junie B. books I've written, those certainly come the easiest. The middle-grade novels are more of a challenge. But in some ways, that makes them more rewarding. The last two I've written (Mick Harte Was Here and The Graduation of Jake Moon) were both about very sensitive topics, so it took a long time to get them exactly right. But I think those two books have made me the most proud.

Q. Tell us about your most recent picture book.

It's called, MA! There's Nothing to Do Here! It's about a baby in utero who is bored out of his mind. The idea for it was born (so to speak) when my daughter-in-law, Renee, invited me to my first grandson's ultrasound. Although I had never had an ultrasound myself, I'd seen pictures of other babies in utero. But I wasn't prepared for how amazing it would be to see my own little grandbaby on that screen. I felt like I was watching the Discovery Channel.

Q. How much did you continue to think about the baby after seeing the ultrasound? How did this develop into the idea for the book?

A. On the way out of the doctor's office, I remember thinking, Okay, so now we're all going back to our busy lives. But the baby is still in there just floating around. Except for an occasional kick or hiccup, he's got absolutely nothing to do.

A few months later-when I was getting ready to give Renee a baby shower-I wrote this poem, framed it, and gave it to her as a shower gift.

Q. Of the characters you've created, who is your favorite?

A. This would be a bit like picking a favorite child. I don't have a single favorite character, but again, I lived with the characters Mick and Phoebe Harte and Jake and Skelly Moon for a very long time. So those four are the most dear to me.

The characters I've had the most fun with have been the little ones. Little kids are so free to say whatever is on their minds. They aren't silenced by peer pressure and the notion that they have to sound cool. Molly Vera Thompson in The Kid in the Red Jacket is six, and Thomas Russo in My Mother Got Married and Other Disasters is five. They both were such fun to write about that they led to the creation of Junie B. Jones.

Q. Is Junie B. modeled after you as a child? Did you ever do any of the things that Junie B. does?

A. I was sent to "Principal" in first grade for talking. There were lots of notes sent home that year, as well. My father was on the Board of Education. Not good.

Q. There's been some criticism of the Junie-speak in the series. How do you answer concerns that Junie's grammar is not good for young readers?

A. Honestly, most of the grown-ups I hear from are writing to tell me that Junie B. Jones got their reluctant readers to read. I have drawers full of letters from parents and teachers that are so meaningful to me, I can't bear to part with them. These are adults who understand that fictional literature plays a whole different role in children's lives than a book of grammar or a basic reader.

That having been said, there are always going to be a handful of people who denigrate books that speak in a voice other than their own. I've stopped trying to explain the concept of literature to people like that. Wasted time better spent.

8. What makes you laugh?

My sense of humor is a little bit off-center, I think. In the movies, I usually laugh at parts that no one else seems to think are funny. Then there are movies like Young Frankenstein where I laugh from the opening scene straight through to the end.

Lots of other things make me laugh, as well. My husband and sons make me laugh. My dog. My grandsons. Friends. The absurdities of life. My lopsided cakes. The list goes on . . .

What advice do you have for teachers that are aspiring writers? For kids?

There's nothing revolutionary in my advice, I'm afraid. It's the same old stuff. Write as much and as often as you can. Try different genres to find your niche. Then rewrite, rewrite, rewrite. And-above all-be your own worst critic.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

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#90 Overall (See top 100 authors)
#90 in Books
#90 in Books

Customer Reviews

My granddaughter and I love reading these books together.
Laura Clark
These books are really great and have inspired my daughter to read.
Gregory D. Guth
I think however is reading this would read Junie B. Jones books.
tiyler lynn mcclain

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A. Fuson on February 11, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This book is full of antics you would see out of your typical first grader. It allows the reader to get inside this little girl's mind and see the comical thoughts going through her head. Young children are sure to love this book, because Junie is so funny! Her language is also typical of a young child. "I quick opened the pages," is just one example of this.
Barbara Park also recognizes the distinct gap in the lines of communication between adults and children. Throughout the book, Junie would tell adults something totally different than what she had been thinking. She didn't want to tell the five truths she knew about Halloween that Paulie Allen Puffer had told her, because something bad would happen to her if she did tell. So, she turned to her stuffed animal for support. How many children talk to their stuffed animals? So realistic!
All in all, her fears and confusion of Halloween make for a hilarious book for children to read. I know this child's actions remind me of some of the things that my nieces have said and done. I found myself giggling out loud while reading about them. I would definitely encourage young students to read this book. It would be a great read-aloud.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A. Methvin on January 20, 2007
Format: Paperback
Hands down this is one of the best Junie B. books ever. I would say it is tied for first place with my other personal favorite, Junie B. Jones is a Beauty Shop Guy. This one will have you laughing out loud non stop! We have the book, and the recording, and we have listenend so many times, we all repeat the funny one liners along with Junie B.-even my husband! "If candy corn isn't corn, then what kind of vegetable is it?" If you don't have this one in your collection, get it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Andrea VINE VOICE on October 8, 2010
Format: Paperback
It is getting close to Halloween, and I wanted to review another Halloween book. I read this book a few years ago, but I re-read it a few days ago so that I could properly review it. This is not an adult book - it is a children's chapter book. But adults are allowed to read children's chapter books, and so are children. Therefore, this cute little Halloween book that I rated 5 stars can be read by anyone - child, teen, adult.

In this book, it is getting close to Halloween, and Junie B. Jones is getting a little frightened. Someone told her 5 secrets about Halloween. I can't tell you what those secrets are - I don't wan to ruin this book.

Her mom takes her shopping for a Halloween costume. Junie B. doesn't want to go - - she's frightened about Halloween and those 5 secrets. But she decides on the costume she wants, and there is a very good reason for that costume (but I can't tell you what the reason is).

Junie B. gets in that costume and her mom takes her trick-or-treating. Junie B. is determined to scare people (other trick-or-treaters or just anyone). Will she succeed in doing so?

The book has a happy ending. She gets what she wants at the end of the book. I so badly want to tell you what it is, but that would ruin it for you.

If you have a child, or even a teen, and if they enjoy the atmosphere of Halloween, they would probably like this book. And you might like it, too.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By George Buttner VINE VOICE on December 21, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Halloween is fast approaching, but this is one holiday Junie B. Jones is not excited about. In fact, she's a bit scared and upset. It seems that crazy boy Paulie Allen Puffer is at it again --- he told Junie B. five scary secrets about Halloween that have soured her on the holiday. Despite the fact that Paulie Allen's information has been bad in the past, Junie B. is still scared. She tries to literally hide from the holiday and doesn't want to go shopping for a Halloween costume.

Junie B. gets a great idea on how to overcome her Halloween fears. It's a funny idea, but one that exasparates her Mom.

This book is full of the usual clever humor including some funny bits about candy corn not be real corn and "thank you" sometimes being a fib.

This story really isn't too different from any normal Junie B. Jones story. Most fans of the series will likely eat this up, just like a bag of candy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Gregory D. Guth on August 18, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
These books are really great and have inspired my daughter to read. These latter books are even better they teach lessons of values. My daughter is 9 years old and can't put these books down once she starts them. She used to have problems with reading but since she found the Junie B Jones series, she has become a reader by choice. I highly recommend these books to any parents of a young girl at the beginning to intermediate reading level. This book was fun to read but not my favorite of the series.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. Arena TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 14, 2008
Format: Paperback
Junie B. Jones has five good reasons to be scared silly by Halloween, and to the surprise of none of her fans, these "reasons" are mix-ups and misunderstandings that she's picked up from her first-grade classmate, Paulie Allen Puffer!

Will Junie come out at the end all the wiser? Thanks to Barbara Park, you know that she will.
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Format: Paperback
This book was hilarious only like Junie B. can be. As a first grade teacher I have read the kindergarten books to my past two classes, and they LOVE her! Although I have not read BOO...and I mean it! to them I know they would love this book as well. I myself laughed throughout the entire story. Junie B. is scared of Halloween because a boy, who has been known to tell, lies to Junie B., has told her awful things about the holiday. Readers will enjoy reading this book as Junie B. tries to find ways to avoid Halloween and the scary things that is until she decides to scare the "scary" things first. I love this book because I know first graders who are also scared of Halloween. If you know a child who is scared of Halloween I suggest that you read this book to them. It is wonderful!
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