Somebody's Girl

  • Pages:176
  • Publisher:Orca Book Publishers
  • Series: Orca Young Readers
  • Themes:adoption, foster care, new baby, family, novel about dealing with change
  • Available:05/01/2011
  • Age Groups:Fiction Ages 9-12
  • Lexile:650L
  • ATOS:4.3
  • Fountas & Pinnell Text Level Gradient:S
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Martha knows she is adopted, but she's well-loved and popular, at least until her mother gets pregnant and she feels her parents' attention start to shift. Upset and confused, Martha lashes out at—and loses—her friends. She also makes no secret about her annoyance at being forced to do a school project about sturgeon with Chance, a difficult boy whose foster parents are family friends. To add insult to injury, Martha's birth mother announces that she is getting married and moving away. Now Martha isn't number one in anybody's life. When her mom goes into labor prematurely, Martha realizes that she needs to figure out a way to be a better friend and daughter, and a great sister.
"The story is beautifully written, and Martha and Chance are particularly authentic and robust, though even minor characters are deftly drawn. Although the book has a strong appeal to those interested in fiction about open adoptions, it deserves a wide audience because it is so well told."
– School Library Journal
"In this book, Martha shows her personality and readers will recognize similar situations in their own lives. Adopted or foster children will especially relate to the intricacies of Martha's relationships. Recommended."
– Library Media Connection
"de Vries manages to bring in a number of important issues that would trouble an adopted child whose parents are having their own, long-desired but unexpected baby. Also well presented are the interactions between the teacher and her students."
– Resource Links
"Martha's story is one that most children from a single-child household can relate to. Going from one child to two can be nerve-wracking for anyone, adopted or not...De Vries expertly handles this difficult situation. While Martha becomes pricklier and pricklier, she's still likable. De Vries looks at the world through a child's eyes and in doing so, she captures the essence of childhood. Young readers will feel like they are active participants rather than being talked down to. At 164 pages, Somebody's Girlis just the right length...Kudos to De Vries for a fine narrative that will hit home with many young readers."
– Cracking the Cover blog
Saskatchewan Young Readers' Choice Awards - Diamond Willow   | 2012  |  Nominated