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Winnie at Her Best Hardcover – August 7, 2006

4.3 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 2-4–This lovely early chapter book, the third in a series about fourth-grader Winnie, is full of quiet emotions and on-target observations about the way young children think and act. Winnies friend Zoe represents their school in the city spelling bee. Vanessa, her other best pal, is in the high schools production of The Sound of Music. Winnie, trying to find what she does best, enters an art contest run by a local museum. At school, she is paired with a defiant kindergartener, John Stuart, as a reading buddy. While keying in on his interests and helping him to learn to read, she finds that they have something in common; Winnies mom died soon after she was born, and John Stuarts mom is sick and his father is absent. Later, when his mom is rushed to the hospital, Winnie can either stay with the frightened little boy or see how she does at the art contest. Choosing the right thing to do does not come easily. By the end, she realizes that although she draws well, shes best at being a friend. Simple line drawings add charm and whimsy and effectively depict the characters feelings. Winnie is a well-rounded and earnest protagonist who can comfortably join the ranks of spunky girls like Amber Brown, Ramona, and Junie B. Jones.–Tina Zubak, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 2-4. The third chapter book in the series that began with Winnie (Dancing) on Her Own (2001) continues the story of Winnie and her two best friends. Now in fourth grade, Vanessa is to play one of the Von Trapp children in the high-school musical, and Zoe wins the spelling bee. Feeling left behind, Winnie throws herself into art in hopes of becoming the best at something. When the fourth-graders are paired with kindergartners for reading aloud, she gets little response from young John Stuart, but her efforts to help him have an unexpected consequence later. Both story lines come together in the satisfying and ultimately touching conclusion. Winnie's single-parent dad is supportive of her artistic aspirations as well as the choices she makes in the end. With illustrations featuring a beautiful economy of line, a story that sensitively depicts the characters' feelings, and fine-tuned, realistic dialogue, this is a rewarding choice for young readers. Carolyn Phelan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 7 - 10 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 5
  • Lexile Measure: 700L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 84 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers (August 7, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0618472770
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618472772
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.2 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,854,090 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
How can an ordinary girl shine in a family where everyone has a talent? Winifred faces competition, jealousy and changing self-image as she contends with a family of achievers in another winning Winnie story for pre-teens. Winnie's concerns are realistic and mirror the changes kids face in families and life.
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By JDWAT on December 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
These Winnie series books are lovely and I bought them because my granddaughters name is Winnie so she loved them.
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Format: Hardcover
Winnie does not want to be ordinary. If she is good at drawing, then she must practice. But how will she know she's the best? After all, Zoe won the spelling bee and Vanessa is in the high school play. How can Winnie prove that she is the best artist?

Zoe and Vanessa stay busy with spelling bees and rehearsals, so Winnie is left to go to the library alone. She finds a flyer from the local art museum about a children's drawing. There's not much time as the contest deadline is two weeks away.

Meanwhile, Winnie has been assigned to be a reading buddy for a kindergartener. Before long Winnie must choose between the welfare of the shy little boy and her attendance at the museum's announcement of the art contest's winners.

When it's all over the reader will decide if Winnie has proven her worth as an artist or discovered something better. Winnie at Her Best, a chapter book written for children aged 7-11, is a quiet story that weaves the story strands together to produce a satisfying read.
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