by Lisa Graff
Reviewed by The Junior Book Dealer: Elena Elizabeth Hynes
“Nice tutu,” she said to him with a smile.
“Nice hair,” he replied. Her smirk quickly faded into a frown. Kansas almost didn’t believe she had really done. It. But she had. Francine’s new green hair hung down in front of her face like vines in a jungle.
“I can’t believe you made me do this,” she said, jabbing a finger toward her head. “You’re so mean. I would never do anything so mean to you.”
“I’m so mean? “ Kansas replied.
The door whipped open.
“Why hello there, you two!” It was their teacher, Miss Sparks, white teeth flashing. “I thought I heard some students out here. Come inside, won’t you. You both look incredible for spirit day, by the way.
Incredible? Kansas was pretty sire that what they looked like was two circus freaks! (p. 108).
Francine Halata and Kansas Bloom were competing for the position of newscaster of the school’s daily news. Once the class votes, the score is tied, so they agree to do dares to decide the winner. The winner of the dare competition will determine who will earn the role of school’s daily newscaster.
This book is a good combination of seriousness and humor. It tells of gentle hearts, working together, and new experiences. Francine and Kansas discover that although they are competing, they learn they have much more in common than they first thought. What is funny is that it takes Kansas’s adorable six-year-old sister (Ginny) to teach them a lesson. Both of the main characters learn that friends are chosen family.
Suggestions for Possible Concepts: Friendship, Family, Struggles, Dare