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The sequel to SHEEP.
Diminutive, shy, and quiet, sixth-grader Minnie McClary learns how to use her power and her voice to stand up for what she knows is right. A Bankstreet College Book Of The Year!
A homeless dog and a homeless girl find each other and start a new life together. A Bankstreet College Book Of The Year!
"The victory of the human spirit shines through Defiance like the sun."
--Suzanne Fisher Staples
A Kirkus and School Library Journal Best Books of the Year
Life changes for Lucy when she visits her grandmother at the end of a very special summer. A Booklist Best Books of the Year book
The heartwarming story of a dog and boy who find each other when hope is nearly gone. A California Young Reader Medal Winner!
Young Adult action and romance. Now available as an ebook on Amazon Kindle A BIG PICTURE award winner!
The book that jumpstarted my career and won me a Flying Start award from Publisher's Weekly. Young Adult (12-18). An American Library Association Best Book Of the Year
In the late 1960's, fourteen-year-old Cory's life is greatly changed by the sudden death of her father and her brother's tour of duty in Vietnam. A Bankstreet College best book of the year
"With all my heart, I loved Bobby James Walker. I forgave him, too. But I did not want to see him anymore. Not then, and maybe not ever." Sally Jo Walker An American Library Association best book for reluctant readers
An endearing young couple's search for independence and identity. A New York Library Best 100 Books Of The Year
An elderly couple fall in love and elope to Yellowstone. IBBY award winner

Minnie McClary Speaks Her Mind

BOOKPAGE

Little Minnie's big voice

Review by Alice Cary

Sixth grade hasn’t started out well for Minnie McClary. She lives in a new town because her father lost his job as a lawyer. She worries about her Uncle Bill, who after losing his leg in a helicopter crash in Iraq, lives in their basement and builds a model helicopter, trying to make sense of his war experiences. And Minnie’s language arts class erupts in chaos every day, having already chased away four substitute teachers.

Minnie is a small girl with a big heart who fears that she may have already committed social suicide by shouting “Stop it” to her wild classmates. Surprisingly, everyone listened and stopped their shenanigans. After her outburst, however, Minnie quiets her voice, trying to blend into her new surroundings.

Life seems more promising when Miss Marks takes over Minnie’s class. Wearing blue jeans and message-spouting tee shirts (LIVE OUT LOUD), Miss Marks looks more like a teenager than a teacher. She asks her students to fill their daily journals with meaningful writing and questions about life. Her goal is to teach her charges to write and think, which worries parents whose focus is standardized tests scores.

Minnie soon finds her first friend at school: an Iraqi girl named Amira, who covers her head with a scarf. Unfortunately, bullies relentlessly tease Amira, drawing mean portraits and yanking her scarf off her head. Meanwhile, a group of concerned parents protest Miss Marks’ unorthodox teaching methods.

Valerie Hobbs has written a fast-paced story with a likeable heroine. As is the case with most sixth graders, Minnie struggles to figure out her own identity. Just in the nick of time, however, she finds her voice, coming to the defense of both her teacher and her friend.

Minnie McClary Speaks Her Mind is a thoughtful novel about learning to ask important questions, and stopping to think before jumping to misguided conclusions.