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Small Medium at Large Hardcover – July 3, 2012


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 12
  • Lexile Measure: 590L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens (July 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1599908360
  • ISBN-13: 978-1599908366
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #99,118 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 6-8-As if seventh grade weren't hard enough, 12-year-old Lilah suddenly finds herself able to communicate with the dead when she is struck by lightning at her mother's wedding reception. Accompanied by the ghost of her grandmother and a slew of other mismatched spirits, Lilah navigates the craziness of middle school, helping a number of people, both living and dead, along the way. Her real success, though, lies in what she discovers about herself as she overcomes her shyness at talking to her crush. Levy has created a fun, witty account of middle-school life while effectively capturing its preteen angst. Lilah is a refreshingly strong character who embraces her own individuality while sticking up for herself and others. Though some of the book's elements are predictable and many of the conflicts are resolved too neatly, readers will be drawn in by the quirky characters and the outlandish story line, making it a purchase that definitely won't sit on shelves. A very strong debut novel.-Rebecca Gueorguiev, New York Public Libraryα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Review

"In a fresh, frank and funny first-person voice, Lilah tells of her ghostly encounters from the perspective of a normal Jewish girl coping with abnormal powers. Droll middle school drama." - Kirkus

"All the ups and downs are portrayed with honesty and wonderful humor. Middle school girls are sure to relate and will probably see themselves somewhere in this story. Purchase is recommended. Look for the next title from this talented first-time author, as it is sure to be eagerly awaited by readers." Reviewer: Sylvia Firth - Children's Literature

"[SMALL MEDIUM AT LARGE] is tightly-written and fast-paced, the dialogue is clever and funny, and the story flows well. While there are some discussions of kissing and dating, there is nothing in it to make it inappropriate for a fifth-or sixth grade girl, and Small Medium at Large is a perfect read for every girl who is struggling or has ever struggled to fit in. Highly Recommended." - CM Magazine


Chosen as a 2013 Sydney Taylor Notable Book

"A can't-put-it-down read." - Eileen Cook, author of Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood

"Joanne Levy is hysterical - she turns the tragedy of middle school into sheer hilarity...I'd read anything by her." - Lisa McCann, NYT bestselling author of the Wake trilogy and The Unwanteds


More About the Author

Joanne Levy's love of books began at a very early age. Being the youngest and the only female among four children, she was often left to her own devices and could frequently be found sitting in a quiet corner with her nose in a book.
After some teenage misadventure, Joanne eventually graduated from university and now spends her weekdays as an executive assistant at one of Canada's big banks planning meetings and thwarting coffee emergencies. When Joanne isn't working, she can usually be found at her computer, channeling her younger self into books.
Joanne still lives in Ontario with her husband and kids of the furred and feathered variety.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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The ghosts, in general, are really amusing and bring out Lilah's character.
Sarah
Small Medium at Large was a nice, refreshing, lighthearted story, and I hope Joanne Levy writes more books just like this one.
Amazon Customer
This is a wonderful middle grades book that I think readers of all levels will enjoy.
Amazon Customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Evie Seo TOP 1000 REVIEWER on September 3, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
This was probably the funniest, most adorable Middle Grade book I have ever read. The witty humour, strong writing and interesting lead character pulled me directly into the wonderful, uplifting story. Amusing, clever, and astonishingly captivating, Small Medium At Large is a delightfully charming and deliciously atmospheric gem of a book! And though it's a rather short and quick read, it's certainly a very memorable one. Joanne Levy packs a punch for fans of all things quirky and paranormal!

Lilah Blood: my kind of hero. What a wonderful, cheerful, funny little girl she is! She definitely made the story for me. Her witty remarks and hilarious inner thoughts had me hooked right away. I was constantly laughing out loud. She is smart and sassy, and as far from snobbish and whiny as you can possibly get. When, after being struck by lightning, Lilah wakes up in a hospital bed with the ability to communicate with ghosts, her world is turned upside-down. Thankfully, she can't actually see all the ghosts that are all of a sudden trying to chat with her (that would be scary!), she can only hear them. And one of the very first voices she hears belongs to no one else but her own grandmother, who, concerned about her divorced son's well-being (Lilah's dad), decides to team up with Lilah and play match-makers!

While it obviously has some great paranormal elements, Small Medium At Large reads more like a contemporary comedy than an actual supernatural novel. All the characters are very down-to-earth; they worry about relevant, every-day stuff, such as dating, being liked and accepted by others, or - in Lilah's case - getting her very first bra. Many of the situations described in the book are simply adorable and amusing.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Sarah on July 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover
In all honesty, I'm really picky about middle grade novels. I don't know if it's just that I'm a high school English teacher and therefore more interested in young adult novels, or what, but I don't always like middle grade novels. I have a really difficult time connecting with them and enjoying them, so when I find one that I like I want to spread the word all over the place. I didn't just like Small Medium at Large by Joanne Levy, I loved it.

Small Medium at Large released this week and positive reviews have been all over Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads, so on an impulse I decided to get a copy. It's a short book, at only 208 pages, but it has the perfect blend of realistic situations, supernatural elements, and humor that amounts to one positively adorable and enjoyable book. I'm not always sure what's "okay" for middle grade readers, but I feel secure recommending Joanne Levy's debut to 5th graders and above because it's a clean book and the themes in the story aren't too complex. The characters aren't doing anything questionable or using foul language. There are discussions about "boobs" and kissing but that's as far as it goes. Considering I was reading Caroline B. Cooney books and the like in 5th grade, I think this one is okay (not that her books are bad, but there were some "big" issues in her books).

Lilah Bloom is such a cute character. She ends up with the ability to hear ghosts after being struck by lightning and is pretty level-headed about the whole thing. The first ghost she encounters is Bubby Dora, her grandmother who passed away four years ago. I love her interactions with Bubby because Bubby acts as both an authority figure and a helpful friend.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Lisa McMann, author of the WAKE trilogy on July 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover
There are many paranormal novels out there for teens, but this one is perfect for tweens. Lilah Bloom is a smart, quick-thinking protagonist who begins hearing dead people after being struck by lightning. Throw in a scheming sidekick BFF and Lilah's dead grandmother, along with a well-rounded cast of ghosts who all need Lilah's help (in some unusual ways), and hilarity ensues, along with some very touching scenes. It's great as a stand-alone but would also make a terrific first book in a series.

Disclosure: my name is on this book--I blurbed it because I loved it. I especially love that I can point younger readers who aren't quite ready for teen paranormals to Small Medium at Large. Plus, I'm a sucker for an author who can write funny stuff -- it's really a rare gift to be able to do so.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Sadie Katon on February 20, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Great book about growing up and finding out who you really are and going to be. The age range is 10+ I think.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Christina (A Reader of Fictions) on December 20, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Small Medium at Large is every bit as frickin' adorable as the puntastic title implies, and I am so happy to be able to say that. I had extremely high hopes for Joanne Levy's debut, since we've bonded over Twitter, but experience has shown that just because I love an author, I won't necessarily be impressed by their novels. Thankfully, Joanne's was a little ray of middle grade sunshine that made me say "AWWWW" out loud multiple times.

From the very beginning, I knew I would love this, because Lilah has such a great, optimistic voice, perfect for a middle grade narrator. As the book begins, Lilah's the bridesmaid as her mother marries her new step-father, Stan. In most books, this would be where we hear about the evil step-parent or sadness over the divorce, but Lilah is nothing but supportive of her parents finding happiness. Even better, both of her parents are involved and loving.

While standing outside the reception hall, Lilah leans against a metal pole while trying to scrape some crud off her shoe and gets struck by lightning. She wakes up in the hospital with all three concerned parental units (mom and step-father having delayed their honeymoon), apparently no worse for the wear. Well, except that now she can hear her Bubby (her dead grandmother) talking to her.

Turns out, the lightning strike scrambled her brain and now she can hear dead people, but not see them, which is probably for the best. It's like The Sixth Sense, only hilarious and adorable instead of creepy. These sassy ghosts do what sassy ghosts do best: impart lots of advice of varying quantities of usefulness, and also ask for help of their own.
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