Bobby vs. Girls (Accidentally)

Lisa Yee, Author , illus. by Dan Santat. Scholastic/Levine $15.99 (160p) ISBN 978-0-545-05592-5

When Bobby enters fourth grade, he learns that it's more important than ever to keep his longtime friendship with Holly a secret (“We used to be sorta-best friends, only these days she's my enemy,” he admits to his goldfish). Using humor and relatable situations, Yee (Absolutely, Maybe ) shows how the two friends manage to support each other, despite peer pressure. Hurtful accidents—like when Holly lets it slip that she's seen Bobby wearing curlers, and when Bobby's picture of Holly with horns and a mustache appears on the classroom wall—add tension to the already strained relationship. But when Bobby and Holly run against each other for student council rep, their loyalties prove stronger than their grudges. Santat's expressive b&w illustrations evoke the energy of Saturday morning cartoons, and Yee's occasional inclusion of some over-the-top moments (several nervous parents hide in the bushes on the first day of school to see their kids off) only drives the feeling home. The bright prose, concise chapters and gratifying resolutions are likely to please even reluctant readers. Ages 7–10. (Sept.)

Reviewed on: 08/31/2009
Release date: 09/01/2009
Paperback - 170 pages - 978-0-545-05593-2
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