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Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie Paperback – January 18, 2007

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 7-10 -Scott Hudson is the quintessential freshman. He's small, he's lost, and seniors yoke him for spare change. His honors homework keeps him up all night and his gym teacher is trying to kill him. He joins the paper, runs for student council, and tries out for the play, just to be near a girl he likes. This all backfires. He turns out to be the least athletic sports reporter in school history, and freshman lackey to the sadists on stage crew. Meanwhile, his mother is pregnant. The plot is framed by Scott's journal of advice for the unborn baby. The novel's absurd, comical mood is evident in its entries, like "Scott Hudson's List of Good Things about Getting Beat Up," and jabs at the fetus ("I hope we can recover our investment [in baby furniture] when I sell you."). The author brings the protagonist to three-dimensional life by combining these introspective musings with active, hilarious narration. This format also breaks up the story for slower readers. Scott's character arc is extremely satisfying as he develops his true strengths over the nine months of school and the pregnancy. His interactions with the school delinquent and the heavily pierced new girl are fresh and subtle. Though Scott purposely peppers his journal with SAT words, Lubar's language use and writing style are deceptively simple. The teen's physical and emotional tumult is as clear, familiar, and complex as high school itself.-Johanna Lewis, New York Public Library
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Gr. 8-11. Scott Hudson chronicles the ups and downs of his eventful freshman year in high school, as he joins the newspaper, works as a stage manager for the spring play, learns a lot from his outstanding English teacher, tries to help a student who attempts suicide, is beaten up because of a girl, and goes to the spring dance. Along the way, he discovers that his mother is pregnant, and he writes a series of insightful letters to his soon-to-be sibling. By the end, Scott has outgrown his freshman insecurities, realizing that he has carved a place for himself in the high-school world. The story delivers too many messages as Scott learns one important lesson after another. Still, most readers will find plenty of amusing, accurate observations about freshman life, from the insecurities of first dates to the dangers of walking the hall between classes. Todd Morning
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 0560 (What's this?)
  • Series: Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Speak; Reprint edition (January 18, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0142407801
  • ISBN-13: 978-0142407806
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (128 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,184 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

David Lubar has written more than thirty books for teens and young readers. His novels, including Hidden Talents and Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie, are on reading lists across the country, saving countless students from a close encounter with Madam Bovary. His novel, Dunk, won Pennsylvania's Young Adult Book Award and was used by the New Jersey Library Association for their One Book New Jersey program. His Weenies short story collections have sold more than two million copies. He had several books come out this year, including Hyde and Shriek, and Extremities: Stories of Death, Murder, and Revenge (He's actually a much nicer person than these titles would indicate.) He is a popular speaker at schools and conferences around the country. He also designed and programmed many video games in an earlier eight-bit life, including Home Alone and Frogger 2. In his spare time, he takes naps on the couch. He grew up in New Jersey, went to Rutgers, and now lives in Nazareth, PA with one awesome female and various annoying felines. You can visit him on the web at

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Jarrod T Thompson VINE VOICE on April 20, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Sleeping Freshman is a great book for any Young Adult to read. It is an interesting and funny perspective of Freshmen trying to fit in at the high school level.

The main character, Scott, realizes that people change and grow up as he does throughout this novel. As Scott matures, he outgrows some of his friends and realizes others are better friends than he could ever imagine.

This book is just fun and funny. As icing on the cake, Scott gets involved in everything and realizes that is one way to avoid being on the outside looking in; he is actually a somebody by the end of this year. He learns that sometimes the ideal person, like a potential girlfriend may be there all along, and once Scott stops dreaming and starts living he learns this lesson very abruptly.

What a funny and interesting view of Freshman year. I would recommend this to students, parents and teachers. This is a great book by David Lubar.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Debra Garfinkle on August 25, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is an entertaining novel about a guy's first year of high school. The main character is kind of an average joe who learns he excels at some things such as writing and fighting. His confidence leads him to stand up for himself and his friends and family when it matters.

I laughed out loud several times and smiled throughout. I liked not only the main character, but also his girl friend full of piercings and weird hair, and his guy friend who didn't always obey the law but usually meant well.

A Very fun book.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By KidsReads on August 11, 2005
Format: Hardcover
"They can't expect me to be a sports writer," Scott said jocularly.

"I'm never going to survive freshman year," Scott said gravely.

"All the older kids pick on the freshmen," Scott said sophomorically.

Welcome to Scott Hudson's freshman year of high school. He isn't the handsomest or most popular guy around, and he doesn't have a clue as to how to talk to Julia, who once shared his peanut butter crackers and has morphed into the hot chick over the summer. Seniors smack him on the head on the bus. He doesn't have classes with his best friends. His Spanish teacher has a thick French accent.

On top of his woes, his parents have announced that they're having a baby, he loses out on a book reviewer's position for the school newspaper, and he gets roped into running for the student council. Mix in a gym teacher who's Satan in Nikes, some eyeroll-worthy Tom Swifties, and a sign on a locker that says, "This is not a locker," and you have a hilarious and bittersweet story about one freshman finding his place and becoming his own person almost completely by accident.

For all of us who started (or will start) high school feeling overwhelmed and out of place, Scott is a hero. Like all of us he has his strengths and weaknesses, but most importantly he keeps his sense of humor, shown through his letters to his brother and sister-to-be, and his oddly useful Guides to Surviving the perils of high school. Supported by his family and a few close friends, Scott discovers there's a lot to get out of freshman year, assuming he doesn't sleep right through it.

--- Reviewed by Carlie Webber
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By K. M. VINE VOICE on August 2, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It's been decades since my freshman year in high school (and, yes, the cliche "where did the time go?" applies), so a book about that fated year in student life doesn't generally flip my "must read" switch. But my niece, who will be frosh in a matter of weeks, convinced me, via a glowing telephone review, not to pass up David Lubar's SLEEPING FRESHMEN NEVER LIE.

This novel about Scott Hudson's first year in high school features a kid with a blessedly even keel, a refreshing openness to acquiring learning, and the ability to pile on after-school activities without clobbering his grades. For Scott, Spanish turns out to be his most incomprehensible class because a series of teachers with heavy accents from countries like France and Australia teach it. But English is his favorite class, as his teacher, Mr. Franka, introduces word play "Tom Swifties" and tosses out an enigmatic hint about a poem about vampires. Franka deepens Scott's already present love of language; at one point Scott declares, "Words were too important to be used like blobs of paint. I mean, when someone can come up with stuff as amazing as 'caverns measureless to man,' people have no excuse for spouting gibberish and calling it art." Bravo, Scott.

Lubar winningly incorporates many nuggets to entice young readers to read other works. Scott is enthusiastic about THE PRINCESS BRIDE, TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, and ENDER'S GAME, not to mention that mysterious vampire poem that Scott tracks down. And the author turns SLEEPING FRESHMEN into a lively demonstration of various writing styles as Scott, in his lists, journal, and articles, puts into practice many of the things Mr. Franka teaches. People (young and not so young) who read this book will, it's hoped, also catch some of the joyful verve of the written word.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Absolute Book Fanatic on January 2, 2007
Format: Hardcover
One rather lazy summer day, I went to the library. On a lark I picked up this book from a display shelf, opened it when I got home, and read the entire thing. I've checked it out 3 times since then. This novel is filled with wry, subtle humor which is an unusual find in a young adult book, whose preoccupations usually don't stretch farther than skinny girls in bikinis and getting drunk. The very character is very amusing and I laughed quite a bit, and smiled at every sentence. I also shared with him a love of reading and English class. I even made up some of my own "Tom Swifties"(you'll have to read the book) because that's just the kind of weird person that I am. But I digress, anyone who enjoys wry humor(me) and love to writes or just loves English(guess who) you will definitely enjoy this novel.
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