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Alice In-Between Hardcover – March 1, 1994
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From School Library Journal
Grade 5-7-The perennial heroine of five Naylor novels is back in a droll tale of early adolescent pluck, curiosity, and angst. Motherless since early childhood, Alice finds turning 13 a time of awkward transition from girlhood to womanhood, a topic she never hesitates to discuss frankly with her father and older brother, Lester. The highlight of her summer is a visit with best friends Pamela and Elizabeth to her Aunt Sally's home in Chicago. The girls travel without a chaperone, enjoying the sophistication of an overnight train trip in a sleeper car. Pamela is comely and deceptively mature-looking, and when she attracts the persistent attention of an older man, Elizabeth and Alice boldly and humorously stage her rescue. A sober touch is provided when Mrs. Plotkin, Alice's beloved sixth grade teacher and surrogate mother, has a heart attack and is hospitalized. By summer's end, Alice is beginning to feel more in control of her fledgling maturation as she renews her special friendship with old flame Patrick. This is bound to reassure the many adolescent fans who can identify with the "in-between blues."-Susan W. Hunter, Riverside Middle School, Springfield, VT
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Gr. 5-7. Naylor's books about Alice get better and better. This gentle, affectionate comedy dramatizes the uncertainty of being in-between. At 13 Alice feels she's no longer a kid, though she does slip back sometimes and act giggly and gross. She's not yet a young woman, though she does have lots of "intimate conversations" about boys and bodies, and she longs to have real cleavage to fill out her clothes. Her two best friends are like the opposing parts of herself. Pamela is suddenly sexy and flirting with danger. Elizabeth hates any talk of nudity and wedding nights, and she doesn't pass the pencil test when they measure their breasts. Alice is less of a klutz than she used to be in the early books, such as The Agony of Alice (1985), though she's still bewildered about rituals like table manners ("It's what to eat and what to eat it with and how much to eat and what to say andÿ20.ÿ20.ÿ20."). Her widower dad has become just too sensitive, loving, and wise to be true, but the farce of her older brother, Lester, and his girlfriends continues to provide Alice with entertainment and instruction. His laconic one-liners are perfectly tuned. Alice says by eighth grade she and her friends will all be raving beauties. "Raving, anyway," Lester says. Hazel Rochman
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Top Customer Reviews
This times readers are introduced to teenager Alice - and she brings it in with a bang. She takes a trip to Chicago with her two best friends, and mayhem on the train ensues thanks to Pamela.
But is being thirteen all Alice had hoped for? After all, this is the start to a new part of her life.
The title is perfect because Alice finds herself at a crossroads in this novel. She is coming off of childhood and stepping into adolescence, but is she ready for all that that entails?
Friendships change, people change, and Alice finds herself changing as well - but for the better.
I loved the way this novel ended. As a matter of fact, I just love reading Alice novels. They make me feel good about life, even if that is not the life I lead when I was her age. They always remind me that there is still good in the world.
Then, as a birthday surprise, Alice's Aunt Sally invites her, Pamela and Elizabeth to visit in Chicago. The trio is thrilled at the idea of traveling all the way from Washington D.C. on an overnight train, exploring a new city and spending time with Alice's cool older cousin Carol.
Of course, as is typical for Alice, nothing ever goes as planned. Pamela, determined to act older than she really is, flirts with trouble when she meets an older man on the train. Then, when the girls return, Alice's happiness is burst with sudden sad news about a favorite teacher.
As always, Naylor's Alice is a true-to-life heroine, funny and self-conscious in equal measure, sure to be enjoyed by readers of all ages.
At the end of the year, a teacher retires and Miss Summers gives everyone an assignment about poetry that is true. I like this book because the author indicates about friendships, going through changes when you're 13, and learning about sad things that had happened back in the past.
Like the fact Alice had accidentally memorized her wrong poem in class. The poem she had said was about her mother. It was sentimental and really sad.
So on the train to Chicago, Pamela meets a guy who is disrepectful. So read it for yourself. It explains about REAL teenage life and friendships. And Pamela gets gum in her hair and getting it cut really short.
Elizabeth tells Alice and Pamela about God. Like refusing to forgive someone is an unforgiveable sin and what God looks like in her opinion.
Alice's dad and Miss Summers go at a music conference together in Michigan when Alice gets back. So for the second time, read this if you're curious with REAL teenage life as 13.