Twelve-year-old Julius has his hands full over the summer when his mother attempts to improve his grades and teach him responsibility by signing him up for a French class and getting him a job babysitting.
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Claudia Mills is also the author of Dinah Forever and, most recently, Standing Up to Mr. O. She lives in Boulder, Colorado.
Grade 4-7-Seventh-grader Julius Zimmerman's plans for an idle summer are spoiled when his mother signs him up for a five-week French course and an afternoon baby-sitting job. After only 45 minutes of French, the boy is convinced that he is the worst student in the class. Then, he meets his young charge, Edison Blue, and is horrified to learn that the child still wears diapers. The next few weeks present many challenges to Julius: toilet training the three-year-old, studying a new language, and trying to live up to his mother's expectations. During this time he also develops an interest in Edison's next door neighbor, Octavia. Throughout the story, the boy records his goals for each week, which change from lofty to realistic as the summer passes. As she did in Dinah Forever (Farrar, 1995), Mills catches the angst and awkwardness of middle schoolers with a light and humorous touch. There are some laugh-out-loud moments: one comes when Julius's French teacher gives him a private lesson in "le Hokey Pokey" with the entire class watching through the window. Julius is an appealing character-he isn't the best of students, but he tries hard. By the end of the summer, he accomplishes some of his goals and impresses his mother with his talent for working with children. Give this book to readers who enjoy Betsy Byars's Bingo Brown (Viking) or Lois Lowry's Anastasia (Houghton).
Terrie Dorio, Santa Monica Public Library, CA
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Descripción Hyperion, 2001. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. 1st Hyperion Paperback ed. Nº de ref. de la librería DADAX0786814489