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Your Friend in Fashion, Abby Shapiro by Amy…
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Your Friend in Fashion, Abby Shapiro

by Amy Axelrod

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It’s 1959 and eleven-year-old Abby Shapiro wants three things: a Barbie doll, a training bra, and to be Jackie Kennedy’s fashion designer. But as this coming-of-age story progresses, her true problems arise-- trying to find a place as a very American girl in her extended Jewish family, conflicts with the neighbors, a troubled relationship with her mother, and her deadbeat dad. Abby finds comfort and strives to handle these issues by talking with her Aunt Rina and writing sweet and often long-winded letters to the soon-to-be first lady, including fashion sketches for outfit ideas. The sketches are printed throughout the book and are actual drawings created by the author in her childhood, a nice touch for readers who aren’t familiar with the 60’s fashion scene. Overall, though, the letters repeat much of the story narrative and slow the pacing. Readers will appreciate Abby’s growth throughout the novel; she begins as a comedic little girl but progresses believably into a teenager while gaining a new understanding of her place in the community and her family. A glossary of Hebrew and Yiddish terms is included. Would make a great read for a mother-daughter book club. Recommended for ages 10 and up. ( )
  jessicaschmidt917 | Oct 6, 2012 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0823423409, Hardcover)

Deeply affecting and laugh-out-loud funny, this coming-of-age novel captures the temper of the times and introduces readers to an unforgettable young heroine.
The lightbulb of good ideas is burning bright for eleven-year-old Abby Shapiro. As personal fashion designer for Mrs. Jacqueline Kennedy, Possible Future First Lady of the United States, she ll become famous and earn enough money to buy both a Barbie doll and a bra. Abby decides to get in touch immediately. In her letters to Jackie, she shares her wry, insightful observations along with her drawings and fashion tips. The letters help Abby through a tumultuous year in which her father abandons the family, her gangster uncle falls in love, her beloved aunt suffers a stroke, and her relationship with her mother goes from bad to worse. This book is based in part on the author s childhood and is illustrated with paper dolls she made when she was Abby s age.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:52:40 -0400)

Beginning in 1959, Abby, nearly eleven, writes a series of letters to Jackie Kennedy, each with sketches of outfits she has designed, as she faces family problems, concerns about neighbors, and her own desperate desire for both her first bra and a Barbie doll.… (more)

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