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Research for the Social Improvement and General Betterment of Lydia Goldblatt and Julie Graham-Chang (The Popularity Papers #1) Hardcover – April 1, 2010
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From School Library Journal
Grade 4–6—Fifth-graders Lydia and Julie, best friends, decide to observe "the popular girls" at their school in preparation for junior high. Julie, who lives with her two dads, loves to draw, and Lydia, who lives with her mom and sister, loves to sing. In this Diary of a Wimpy Kid (Abrams, 2007) for girls, the story is told entirely in full-color drawings and in each girl's individual handwriting as they pass their notebook back and forth to record their observations. Of course, things don't go as planned—though the girls' quest for popularity leads them to new hobbies and new friends, it also challenges their own friendship. This entertaining look at the social hierarchy of preteens and the challenges of growing up will entice even the most reluctant readers.—Laurie Slagenwhite, Baldwin Public Library, Birmingham, MI
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Before they leave elementary school behind, two fifth-grade best friends are determined to uncover the secrets of popularity by observing, recording, discussing, and replicating the behaviors of the cool girls, because when you’re popular, “You are just better.” In a notebook format, this heavily illustrated title shows their research in dramatic, alternating, handwritten entries and colorful, hilarious drawings. Lydia lives with her single mom and pseudo-goth older sister; Julie lives with her two dads. All the girls' family members play big roles in the process, which lasts the whole school year and realistically includes instances in which the girls misjudge and misunderstand themselves and others. Their experiences may be typically tween (boys, cell phones, camping trips, and school musicals), but their reactions to them are laugh-out-loud funny and definitely on par with, though much more feminine than, Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. Ignatow offers a quick, fun, well-developed story that invites repeated readings. Grades 3-6. --Andrew Medlar
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