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Positively Izzy by Terri Libenson

Positively Izzy (edition 2018)

by Terri Libenson (Author), Terri Libenson (Illustrator)

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874202,396 (3.65)None
Title:Positively Izzy
Authors:Terri Libenson (Author)
Other authors:Terri Libenson (Illustrator)
Info:Balzer Bray (2018), 224 pages
Collections:Your library

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Positively Izzy by Terri Libenson



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Very clever middl grade graphic novel. I read this with my 12 year old daugher and there is surprise ending that even I didn't see coming! I encourage you to try it. ( )
  JenMat | Jan 10, 2019 |
Recommended Ages: Gr. 5-7 (reviews say 4-6)

Plot Summary: Chapter alternative between two girls and two stories. Izzy is told through more paragraphs and text with cartoons and speech bubbles and Briana is told through graphic novel format with a decent amount of narrative description on the panel. Izzy wants nothing more than to be in her school's talent show. She's good, but she's not very good in school. She keeps hearing she needs to focus focus focus, but she doesn't really care to focus. When she gets in trouble in school, her mom threatens to take away the talent show. What will she do? Meanwhile, Briana is the opposite -- book smart and school smart with no interest in theater. But her mom, the drama teacher, is in desperate need for a someone to fill in on a scripted part of the talent show. Will she do it? Who will help her?

Setting: suburban community?

Izzy - 14 months younger than Ash
Ash - Izzy's sister, 6th grade
Dani - Izzy's sister, sophomore
Izzy's Mom - ER nurse, single parent
Briana - super nerd-book smart, not interested in theater, loves her mom but isn't happy her mom is the drama teacher at her school, swears off boy crushes
Dev - boy always talking to Briana, has other part in talent show

Recurring Themes: family, divorce, friendship, focus, drive, perseverance, theater, passion, sibling rivalry

Controversial Issues:
pg 8 - lemon shandy
pg 9 - "Oh Breck. Kiss me now." "Regular or French?"
pg 45 - "Don't be jealous of my sexy gams, boys."
pg 94 "I know Ash sneaks out. She leaves when Mom's asleep or at work and Dani is doing homework. She goes to her friend Meghan's house (who Mom thinks is a 'bad influence') and they sneak-read her dad's dirty magazines in the bathroom."

Personal Thoughts: This seems like a book I should like but I felt like nothing really happened and I wasn't hooked by page 51, but I continued anyway. It was all character development for the first 50 pages and zero action. Which wouldn't be so bad except it was along the lines of "telling not showing." There is a supposed twist on the last page but it totally went over my head the first time I read it and I had to go back to it a few days later and it took me a while to understand. I'm also not happy about the number of inappropriate comments for the targeted grade level. I think this is much more of a book for 5th - 7th.

Genre: realistic; graphic novel

Pacing: slow
Characters: not well developed despite the constant character development and lack of action

Activity: ( )
  pigeonlover | Jan 9, 2019 |
This book holds two stories, which are evenly distributed in a pattern of story one to story two to story one, etc. The first story is about Bri, a character labeled as "the brain" whom has long, blond hair and wears leggings and short/long sleeved shirts. The second is about "Izzy"( This is her nickname, her real name is not revealed in the story), a girl with ADHD who loves acting. Though the two girls never meet, their stories take place in the same setting, eighth grade. In Bri's story, conflict arises when her mother(Mrs. D, the drama teacher) asks her to play a role in the talent show. She works with her friend, Dev, to memorize her lines. Meanwhile, Izzy wants to act in the talent show, but is grounded for bad grades. She and her younger sister sneak out but get caught during rehearsal. She convinces her Mom to let her act and the conflict resolves.
I think that this book was clever and had good commentary on the middle school spirit of labeling. I personally enjoyed the character development shown for Izzy's older sister, Dani. At first, she was shown as the bossy older sister, but later, she's shown to be the person who has to clean up the mess of her younger siblings. I also liked the contrast between the two main characters. Izzy and Bri are opposites, yet they both went through some very similar experiences. It's a short read(~220 pages), but a good read. If I could give this a grade, I'd give it an 87. ( )
  CarolinaT.G1 | Dec 19, 2018 |
Wonderful funny warm novel with lots of great illustrations--it's part comic book, part prose, ala Diary of a Wimpy Kid but it's in color, yay! Great story for middle schoolers about family, siblings, friendship, and self-confidence. And did I mention it's FUNNY?! Love it! ( )
  GoldieBug | Nov 27, 2018 |
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On the day of the school talent show, the lives of shy Bri and dreamer Izzy converge to create an event even more dramatic than either could even imagine.

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