Here's to You, Rachel Robinson
Here's to You, Rachel Robinson

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Annotation: Expelled from boarding school, Charles' presence at home proves disruptive, especially for sister Rachel, a gifted seventh grader juggling friendships and school activities.
Catalog Number: #135406
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
All Formats: Search
Publisher: Dell Yearling
Copyright Date: 1993
Edition Date: 2010
Pages: 193 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-385-73987-7 Perma-Bound: 0-605-06847-X
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-385-73987-0 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-06847-6
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 93009631
Dimensions: 21 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
Blume is back near the top of her form in this companion to Just as long as We're Together (1987). This time the focus is on another of the three friends introduced in that story, narrator Rachel Robinson. Rachel, a child prodigy (as her brother, Charles, snidely calls her), has a penchant for doing her homework on time, doing the right thing, and, in general, living up to her potential. Her 16-year-old sister, Jessica, also aims high, despite a serious case of cystic acne. It's middle sibling Charles who sees himself as the mirror that reflects the family's flaws, and he relishes the job, labeling his mother an ice princess, his father a wimp, and Jessica a potato head. Meanwhile, he has flunked out of school, smokes dope, and generally turns up the pilot light hoping to burn the family. Blume does a fine job of showing, rather than telling, so the reader really understands the family dynamics and Charles' motivations (some of them, anyway). But she also has a tendency to skim the surface, and just when readers really get interested in a particular story line--for instance, how difficult it is for Jessica to deal with her acne--Blume whisks you away to some other situation, such as an older cousin's flirtation with a married man or Rachel's feelings that friends Alison and Stephanie like each other better than they do her. What Blume gets so right is the stress of modern family life, just as wearing on the kids as on the adults. Everyone tries to keep going, but it's like running an obstacle course where the hurdles are everywhere and awfully high to boot. (Reviewed Sept. 1, 1993)
Publishers Weekly
PW's starred review lauded Blume's ``ability to shape multidimensional characters'' in her followup to Just As Long As We're Together. Ages 10-up. (Oct.)
School Library Journal
Gr 5&11;8&12; Rachel Robinson is every teacher's dream student. As she's wrapping up the seventh grade, teachers are trying to lure her into participating in extracurricular activities for gifted students, and as a result, away from her friends. But Rachel's mind is focused on one thing: Charles, her older brother. He's back at home after being kicked out of boarding school and his mission in life is to torture and bully his family. Rachel's friends think Charles is cute, but true to her no-nonsense nature, Rachel can't understand what they see in him. Charles focuses most of his cruelty on Rachel and their older sister, Jessica, a shy high school senior, who is battling a painful case of cystic acne. He also gnashes his brutish teeth at his trying parents and at his cousin, Tarren, a divorced, single mother who is having an affair with a married man. Judy Blume is a master at creating complex characters that tweens enjoy. In this novel (1993), Rachel's personal growth and eventual acceptance of her family is never forced and sends the message that life is messy, but everything's going to be fine. Mandy Siegfried's narration enhances Blume's talent for writing dialogue. Her girlish pitch provides an authentic performance. This companion novel to Just As Long As We're Together (1986, both Orchard) is an excellent choice for libraries where the author is popular.&12; Annica Stivers, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA
Word Count: 39,102
Reading Level: 4.3
Interest Level: 5-9
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 4.3 / points: 6.0 / quiz: 10119 / grade: Upper Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:5.9 / points:9.0 / quiz:Q05190
Lexile: 650L
Guided Reading Level: T
Fountas & Pinnell: T

From the New York Times bestselling author of Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret and the adult bestseller In the Unlikely Event comes a tale of family, friendship, and pre-teen life like only JUDY BLUME can deliver. The companion to Just As Long As We’re Together.
CAN YOU BE too perfect?
From the outside, Rachel looks like the perfect daughter in the perfect family. She’s a straight-A student, a gifted musician, and a good friend. But Rachel feels as if it’s all falling apart. Her brother, Charles, was just kicked out of boarding school and is now at home, wreaking havoc. Her sister, Jessica, has problems of her own, which Rachel thinks it’s her job to help solve. And Rachel herself is considering adding drama club, community service, and class president to her already crowded roster of activities. Rachel’s best friends, Stephanie and Alison, urge Rachel to lighten up and enjoy the end of seventh grade. Easy for them to say. Not so easy for Rachel. Not even when Jeremy Dragon, the coolest boy in ninth grade, notices her. Is it possible that perfection isn’t the key to an exciting life?
An ALA Best Book for Young Adults
“A master.” —SLJ

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