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Starring Sally J. Freedman as Herself Hardcover – March 1, 2000
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From the Publisher
It's 1947, and Sally J. Freedman full of wild ideas. She's got her eye on handsome Peter Hornstein, the Latin lover of her dreams...on hold Mr. Zavodsky, who looks suspiciously like Hitler in disguise...and on her father, who Sally misses terribly. There are so many things to worry and wonder about. But whatever happens, Sally's school year in Miami Beach will certainly be exciting--and absolutely unforgetable. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Inside Flap
Miami Beach has so many things to worry and wonder about, Sally is in for one unforgettable winter! --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Probably the descriptions in this novel are so apt because this is largely an autobiographical tale. I read that Judy Blume really did spend one school year in Miami with her mother, brother and grandmother, and that many stories contained in Sally J. Friedman really happened to Judy Blume.
The novel realistically addresses true concerns and fears concerning adolescence. While most people no longer worry about one of their neighbors turning out to be Adolph Hitler, children often fear things that they learn from newspapers. Their understanding of current events is often one-sided and uninformed, as they are shielded from all the facts by well-meaning adults. They fill in the gaps with their imaginations. Additionally, kids and adults alike have concerns about fitting in, keeping and making friends, and mortality.
I especially enjoyed Sally's relationship with her mother and father. Her mother is a worrier...to the point that she lets much of the joy in life pass her by. Her father is more free spirited, and tries to explain to Sally why her mother behaves the way that she does. One beautiful scene in the novel occurs when Sally's dad explains that one can worry so much, that they don't enjoy what they have when they have it. Sally struggles to be more like her father, while appreciating the concerns and motivations of her mother.
While this book paints a picture of an era, it contains smart prose and human insight that is timeless. As all good historical fiction does, it teaches us something about the past while involving us in a story that is universal.
Sally is looking at the adult world with open curious eyes, not always able to understand grown ups and the grown-up world. The adults in the book, on the other side, are so much better understood by me today, their characters (so well defined) and their efforts to try and raise their children according to the best of their knowledge and what they deem important in life.
This book is dear to me for many reasons. First of all - the characters are so Jewish I immediately feel its close to home. I am talking about the ever worried mother, the constant haunting of the holocaust, the conversations, the Yiddish expressions... and especially my favorite character in the book which is Ma Fanny, the lovely grandmother. I love this book because of the adults efforts to build a sheltered world for the kids who are, as the mother and grandmother say "all my life" and thus sometimes protect them too much from the outside world. Because of the good yet real family relationships ("you are worth a million...more even"...) and the accurate portrayal of the family life. Sally is such a funny lovable character and her inner portrayal is rich and trustworthy.
One reviewer complained of Sally and her brother discussing their parents "doing it", and how it wasn't age appropriate reading for a 10-13 year old. Not sure what alternate universe she's living in, but most kids know what sex is in the year 2011. Too bad she shut the book off, she might have liked the rest of it. It was one sentence in the book. It's a Judy Blume book for Christ's sake, not an Anne Rice novel.
All in all I enjoyed the book. Sally seemed a little spoiled though and it was annoying.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of my favorite childhood books. Just as good as I remember it. I've always had a bit of a dark imagination & Sadly does tooPublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
I am an eight year old in secant grade and I LOVE this book my mom recommended the book and I wasn't too psyched but once I started the first
chapter I loved it and when I was... Read more
I LOVED this book! It is about a girl of about age 10, who has a brother that develops nephritis, a kidney infection. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Bryan Stewart
I read this book when I was Sally's age, probably ten times. I'm 32 years old now and had an inkling to revisit Sally's curious, poignant, and hilarious lens of the world,... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Mallory
I especially appreciate this book's ability to carry the reader into someone eles's world. Sally clearly loves her family and is figuring out how things work in our social... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Robert L. Stromberg
Although World War II has just ended, ten-year-old Sally is still preoccupied with Hitler. Read more
Really enjoyed this. Blume's imagination is original and funny.Published 11 months ago by Karen L. Smith
Stopped half-way through. While I agree with some that kids will use certain language and hear worse, I was hoping for a good read-aloud and couldn't bring myself to use words like... Read morePublished 18 months ago by Reader Mom