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Only Emma Hardcover – April 7, 2005

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 710L (What's this?)
  • Series: Emma
  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Viking Juvenile (April 7, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 067005979X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670059799
  • Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 5.8 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,161,821 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 2-4–When Emma's mother loses her job, the third grader has to leave private school, and they move to a new neighborhood. Then Anthony, the four-year-old son of her mother's friend, comes to stay for a week. To Emma, he's just one big annoyance. She makes friends with Cynthia, also an only child, whom she is eager to please for fear of losing the relationship. When Cynthia invites Emma to sleep over, her mom gives her the option of asking her friend to their house instead, because of Anthony. Emma can't imagine that Cynthia would like the boy, but she is in for a surprise–about her friend and about herself. The black-and-white illustrations are charming, and thumbnail sidebars present fun scientific facts about animals mentioned in the story. Though nothing in this early chapter book is new in a field saturated with "Amber Brown," "Junie B. Jones," and "Judy Moody" books, it holds its own. Emma is a likable character whose feelings and behaviors are common to many children. A sequel is planned.–Linda Zeilstra Sawyer, Skokie Public Library, IL
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 2-4. Emma McGraw is having a tough time. She is the new kid in school and has just moved to a new apartment. Her best friend, Cynthia, is mad at her. Her only-child world has been invaded by a peanut-butter-smelling crybaby named Anthony Scarpetto, who is staying with the McGraws while his parents are out of town. To add insult to injury, her mom seems to love having Anthony around! Luckily, this dynamic, animal-obsessed eight-year-old dives headfirst--sometimes gracefully and sometimes not--into each new challenge and emerges with a fresh perspective. A natural for fans of the Amber Brown and Judy Moody books, this middle-grade series debut features a boxy trim size, charming ink-and-wash drawings, and animal facts scattered throughout the accessible text. The second installment of Emma's adventures, Weirdo Emma!, is planned for fall 2005. Jennifer Locke
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author


Sally Warner was born in New York City and grew up in Connecticut and California, where her family moved when she was eight years old. She attended public schools in Pasadena. She then received her B.A. degree from Scripps College in Claremont, California, and her B.F.A. and M.F.A. degrees in fine arts from Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles.

Sally Warner worked as an artist (primarily charcoal drawings) for many years, exhibiting her work at galleries, small museums, colleges, and universities across the country. Her drawings are in many private collections. She also taught art education for ten years at Pasadena City College. Her teaching led her to write her first non-fiction book for adults, ENCOURAGING THE ARTIST IN YOUR CHILD, in 1989. This book sold more than 20,000 copies. She still gets mail about another of her non-fiction books for adults, MAKING ROOM FOR MAKING ART (1994).

Sally Warner then began writing fiction for young readers. Her first novel, DOG YEARS (1995), has sold almost 90,000 copies--in Italy! Sally Warner did the cartoons herself.

To date, Sally Warner has had 30 novels published, mostly for ages 8--12. One of her most popular books so far was SORT OF FOREVER (1998, still available through Scholastic Book Club), which has sold close to 250,000 copies! She also writes for younger readers, ages 7-10; the books in her previous funny series for Viking (ONLY EMMA, NOT-SO-WEIRD EMMA, SUPER EMMA, BEST FRIEND EMMA, and EXCELLENT EMMA) have been getting lots of positive attention. Five ELLRAY JAKES books have come out in the last couple of years, and the 6th-ELLRAY JAKES IS MAGIC! will be out in spring, 2014. Three more EllRays are in the works.

Sally Warner and her husband live in Southern California. She has four step-daughters, five step-grandchildren, and two sons who both have active careers in the arts: dance/choreography/teaching, and stereoscopic computer generated imagery for television and movies. For her family, the arts were definitely not a frill!

For photos, cartoons, and more information on her books:

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on October 31, 2012
Format: Paperback
Emma is an eight year old girl. Her mom and dad split, and she and her mom moved to a tiny condo. Now, afther eight years, her mom's friends son, has to stay with them. At first, Emma hates living with Anthony. He's a pest, won't leave Emma alone, and has to sleep in her room, on her bed! But, soon, Emma finds out that being a big sister is actully fun. I recemend this book to ALL girls, not just only children. READ THIS BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Target Lover on August 24, 2010
Format: Paperback
After reading some reviews of this book, I picked it up from the library for my daughter who is an only child. I thought the character might be someone she could relate to (same age) and perhaps it would contain some positive messages about being an only child. Fortunately, I read it first and immediately hid it from my daughter until it could be returned. Emma is a major complainer and in the end she concludes the only good thing about being an only child is you can watch tv whenever you want. It ends with her stating "Yuck" about her only child status and feeling depressed. (To be fair she says she will probably get over it.) Still, this is not the message I want to convey to my daughter.

The story itself is okay, although I found the line drawings to be a little creepy (not nearly as cute as the cover drawing). However, if you're looking for positive only child role models, Emma is not the best choice.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By R. Ford on September 17, 2007
Format: Paperback
Only Emma, by Sally Warner, is a humorous, realistic tale of an eight-year old girl who has grown up as an only child. When faced with the devastating news that Anthony Scarpetto, a feisty four-year old, will be staying with them for a week, Emma reacts in a way that most children would. As I read this book aloud to my third graders, it was obvious that they (as eight or nine-year olds) understood what Emma was going through. The author does a terrific job of portraying the dynamic relationships between Emma and Anthony, Anthony and Emma's Mom, and Emma and her best friend Cynthia. I loved this book, and my students are already begging me to read the next one in the series!! I would recommend this book for children 7-10 and I feel that girls could related more to Emma's character, and may find the book more enjoyable than boys would.
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