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Confessions of a So-called Middle Child by…

Confessions of a So-called Middle Child

by Maria T. Lennon

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Maria T. Lennon writes a funny book about a girl who finds her potential to be nice.

Charlie C. Cooper spends her summer grounded after doing a very bad thing at school. In fact, it was so bad that she was kicked out of school, her family had to move, and she has to see a shrink on a regular basis. She must spend 8:00 a.m. through noon in her room reading all summer. The books are not what anyone would want to read: _Love Thine Enemy, Love Thyself,_ _Embrace Your Inner Middle Child,_ etc. Summer is over and she is starting her new school. She's got her outfit picked out and wants to be part of the popular crowd.

Here's the catch. Her shrink wants her to befriend the most bullied kid in school who has no friends. This is NOT what Charlie cares to do; she'll never make friends hanging with a loser! The first day of school, Charlie sees her: Marta the Farta. Great. Here's a girl with hair that doesn't look like it's been combed or washed in ages, yellow teeth, clothes that don't fit and are hideously ugly, and she almost growls at people. This is not going to be easy.

I thoroughly enjoyed this novel. Charlie is so selfish and really isn't very caring towards other people. She's not a bad person, however, and does the assignment the shrink gives her. Of course, it's a feel-good novel and ends with good overcoming the school bullies. You won't regret reading this one. ( )
  acargile | Mar 20, 2014 |
Charlie C. Cooper did such an horrendous thing at the end of sixth grade, she brought shame to her family, was expelled from school and her family had to move so she could attend a different school. Her punishment was being grounded all summer and seeing a psychiatrist, Dr. Scales. Everyone will admit she made great progress over the summer and she was sure she could start anew, sans therapy, in her new school. Well, she was almost right.

In order to solidify her transformation, Dr. Scales had a teeny, tiny project for her before she was free of him. On the first day of school, she must befriend the most bullied girl in her class. Everyone knows that such a task can be social suicide for a twelve year old…or anyone for that matter. But, Charlie, being a ‘glass half full’ kinda girl figured out that she could do it and still be in the in-crowd. The question is can she, especially when that girl is called Marta the Farta?

I’ll admit, it took me a while to like Charlie C. Cooper, but I ended up really liking her. I like glass half full kinds of people.

Maria T. Lennon has filled Confessions of a So-Called Middle Child with great characters beginning with Marta and Charlie, Charlie’s siblings and Trixie and Babs, the top of the rung kids. The storyline is different from your normal ‘bully’ book and Lennon fills it with True Facts (are there any untrue facts?), such as “When you’ve finally hit upon the right course of action, the stars align.”

I’ll also admit readers might need to suspend their belief a little when reading Confessions, but that’s OK. Not all bully books need to read like text books. If you’re looking for a cute book about bullying to recommend to middle school girls, why not give this book a shot. It’s different and it’s fun. ( )
  EdGoldberg | Jan 10, 2014 |
‘Confessions of a So-Called Middle Child’ is truly humorous! It is an ideal book for the very young and older YA, too. This story centers on the second child in a family of five…you are correct – the middle child!

Having been expelled from one school, her family moves to a different location where her father was able to get a job he enjoyed and Charlie was to cause no problems and visit a therapist every week. When the long summer ends and a new school year begins, Charlie will agree to almost anything to discontinue the therapy. Will she live to regret it? The therapist’s requirement was almost more than she could bear! Can she really succeed in such an impossible task?

The reader will experience the “roller-coaster” of events that evolves. It will be especially enlightening to any of you “middle” children. Charlie tries to “walk a middle line” but soon discovers it is not at all easy to do that.

I personally have seen this scenario actually happen in my life in two separate occasions. It isn’t at all a “far-fetched” tale.

The book cover is delightful and very fitting to the story line. It is colorful and eye-catching. The title is whimsically applicable to the story.

The book is fun, clean and well written in the first person. At first the “flow” of the writing seemed a little disrupted but then improved and ended “with a bang”! Four this reason, though, I cannot give it a full Five Stars rating, so I rate it with a Four and a Half Stars.

This was sent to me for an honest review, of which I have given. ( )
  LAWonder10 | Jan 9, 2014 |
Charlie comes from a family where money is no problem. That is the problem. She often thinks she is above getting in trouble. That is until she pulls a prank and she gets kicked out of school. The prank was so bad her parents send her to counseling. She hates going to the psychiatrist. He gives her an out. Since she has to go to a new school, she needs to find the girl who is most bullied and become her friend.
Charlie wants to hang out with the type of kids she hung out with at her old school. To ditch her psychiatrist she has to be come with Marta the Farta. She will do it because she wants out of counseling. What she learns is that Marta is not that bad. She sees Trixie, who was just like her old friends for who she truly is. Trixie has it in for Marta and she wants Charlie to help her, even if it means she will blackmail Charlie because of her past.
This type of thing truly does go on in middle schools. Just turn on the news and you will hear new extreme cases of teens bullying each other. This is definitely one I will recommend to my fellow teachers and one I will recommend to my students. ( )
  skstiles612 | Nov 30, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0062126903, Hardcover)

Fans of Harriet the Spy and Mean Girls will cheer when they meet Charlie C. Cooper, reformed bully, gifted hacker, slightly misguided fashionista, and so-called middle child!

This debut tween novel stars the hilariously fresh Charlie Cooper as she tries to ditch her middle-child reputation and make cool friends at her new school in Los Angeles.

But being cool isn't as easy as it looks—especially when her dandruff-ridden psychologist tasks Charlie with finding the biggest loser in school and becoming her friend. In public.

As Charlie says, "Just kill me now, please."

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:23 -0400)

Charlie C. Cooper, reformed bully, gifted hacker, and middle child wants to make "cool" friends at her new school in Los Angeles, but her psychologist tasks her with becoming friends with the school's "biggest loser".

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