fp September 2011
Planet Middle School
from the book...
For twelve years, Joylin Johnson's life has been just fine, thank you
very much. A game of basketball with the boys-especially her friend
Jake-was all it took to put a smile on her face. Baggy jeans, T-shirt,
and hair in a ponytail were easy choices. Then suddenly the world seemed
to turn upside down, and everything changed at once. Her best girl
friend is now flirting with her best guy friend. Her clothes seem all
wrong. Jake is acting weird, and basketball isn't the same. And worst of
all, there is this guy, Santiago, who appears from . . . where? What
lengths will Joy go to-and whom will she become-to attract his
In short poems that perfectly capture the crazy feelings of adolescence and first crushes, award-winning author Nikki Grimes has crafted a delightful, often hilarious, heart tugging story.
If you have read this verse novel and would like to share your opinion of it with other readers please send your review or comments to YARR-A
Twelve year old Joylin Johnson is a sassy young girl who lives with her mother, father and younger brother and has two best friends KeeLee and Jake. She loves basketball and excels at it, liking nothing more than one-on-ones with her friend Jake or her father. But suddenly things start to change, her hormones kick in and she begins to discover her feminine side. With physical changes happening to her body, her old-world seems to be disappearing. She has started to notice boys, one in particular, Santiago. But how will she get his attention? Definitely not in her baggy jeans and t-shirts, thus begins her transformation. But will it work?
Nikki Grimes has created a realistic and very likeable character in Joylin. Her expert use of verse conveys all the emotion and confusion facing Joylin. With touches of humour throughout, this book is sure to be a winner with tweens and middle school readers. A great and accessible read which comes highly recommended.