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No one understands them- but they understand each other. Lester's smart, handsome, and thoughtful-but he has cerebral palsy, and that's all anyone sees. It's the same for Alfred, Claire, and Myron. Alfred is incredibly honest and kind; Claire pulls no punches; Myron makes sure that everyone is taken care of. On the outside, though, Alfred is "slow," mentally challenged; Claire is a tomboy; and Myron is overweight and clumsy. The four meet and quickly band together, and soon they're working on an amazing project: The Getaway, a full-size boat they're building" in Myron's basement. Can four misfits make something beautiful to show the world? Can they enjoy approval from their parents and kids their age, going out without being made fun of, freedom, laughs and accomplishments other kids seem to take for granted? Alfred's summer is a summer of close calls, hard falls, good times and tough times and life getting more worthwhile and exciting.
After two eleven-year-olds get through the toughest year of their lives, they unexpectedly have a chance to travel back in time and live the year again as they wished it had been.
During a stay of several months in Hawaii with her family, Sara reports her experiences by tape back to her sixth grade class in Boston, detailing the ups and downs of her life.
Bendemolena decides she likes to wear a shiny pot on her head. When her mother asks her to run some errands, Bendemolena hears everything through the shiny pot. Confusion unfolds, but Bendemolena manages to pull through with a lot of fun and a smile.
In the stunning sequel to Jan Slepian's critically acclaimed first novel, The Alfred Summer. Everything has changed and none of it good as far as 16-year-old Lester is concerned. Worst of all is watching his retarded friend Alfie waste away in the hospital. Lester, himself a cerebral palsy victim, is desperate to save Alfie, and from this desperation is born the daring-- but disastrous--kidnapping attempt. Still determined to rescue Alfie somehow, Lester enlists the aid of his old friend Claire who awakens his desire to love a girlfriend, Claire's new neighbors, Lena, who seems like a movie star, her musical prodigy son Alex; and a young hospital volunteer, generous, endearing, impossibly romantic Tillie-Rose. But even their combined efforts cannot save Alfie. In the ensuing tragedy, Lester is forced to examine the real motives behind "The Alfred Fund" and is finally able to turn to his own future with hope. With honesty and sensitivity, Jan Slepian confronts the problems of disabled youngsters in this witty, powerful coming-of-age novel that explores the many ways we need, use and love others. She shows how teens cling to unrealistic fantasies of their future and of how reality forces them to look at their lives differently. Bookshare has "The Alfred Summer," the tale of Alfie and Lester one happy, challenging, summer when they adventure together to build a boat. Check it out to read more of Lester's story.
It is summer in the city, and the sights, smells, and sounds beckon Skip to join in on the fun. From her front porch Skip can see Mr. Kaminsky's roses and Jean, a girl who appears to be her own age and full of danger and excitement. But Skips's stuck and keeping an eye on her older sister, who's a little slow--and she's sick and tired of it! Skip decides that she will answer summer's call and hang out with Jean without her sister--and that Jean will be her new friend--at any coat...."The characterizations are believable and comples; the setting--the street--is vibrantly brought to life...strong and lucid..."--Horn Book.
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