After Carson and his dad move to California, he becomes “The New Kid” in a public school classroom that is in some ways the same as his old Montessori school and in other ways very different. Mainly, he has gone from knowing everyone to knowing no one. His classmate, Wes, is very friendly but also rambunctious and frequently in trouble. Would he make a good friend? As the year draws to an end, Carson begins to understand his classmates better. Author of the Newbery Honor Book Like Jake and Me (1984), Jukes writes at a deliberately slow pace here, letting characters reveal themselves gradually and giving unusual weight to the details of everyday life. Readers will learn, for example, about the many differences between birthday celebrations at Carson’s two schools. This quiet, episodic but nevertheless compelling story is particularly well suited to young children reading above grade level and looking for a longer chapter book with a modern, realistic setting. Grades 2-5. --Carolyn Phelan
--This text refers to the
About the Author
MAVIS JUKES is the award-winning author of several books for children and teenagers, including the picture books No One is Going to Nashville, Blackberries in the Dark, I'll See You in My Dreams, You're A Bear
, and Like Jake and Me
, which earned a Newbery Honor Award. Other titles include several nonfiction books in a series for adolescents, including Be Healthy! It's A Girl Thing: Food, Fitness
and Feeling Great
, cowritten by Lilian Cheung, DSc.
Mavis taught school for several years, then became a lawyer before writing her first book for children. She recently returned to the classroom full-time, currently teaching computer class to 900 enthusiastic students in three different public schools a week. It is from this job that she has drawn inspiration for the ideas and antics featured in The New Kid.
Mavis lives with her husband, the artist Robert Hudson, in Sonoma County, California. They share their small ranch with four cats, a dog, numerous hawks, owls, raccoons, opossoms, skunks, and other mysterious critters whose eyes twinkle in the dark. Mavis and Bob are the parents of four children, all artists.