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Pearl Verses the World by Sally Murphy

Pearl Verses the World (2009)

by Sally Murphy

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639188,983 (4.06)5

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"Pearl Versus the World" is about a little girl named Pearl who lives with her mother and sick grandmother. Her grandmother suffers from Dementia and her mother is always tired from taking care of Pearl's grandmother. Along with this, at school, she doesn't feel as loved and goes through the struggles of feeling lonely and being disappointing. Her teacher, Ms. Bruff, is teaching the class about poetry and when Pearl writes, she doesn't include rhyming in it which Ms. Bruff disapproves of. She describes herself feeling like a "group of one" in her class. Pearl also goes through the hardship of her grandmother eventually passing away. To be able to properly talk about her feelings in her own way at the funeral, she shares a poem that she wrote about her grandmother. With this poem, Pearl finds the comfort she needs through this tough time and also proves to her teacher that a poem doesn't need to rhyme to be considered one. Overall, this book was very great to read. The story is full of realistic and sad situations that a young child could go through. Although Pearl faces hardship, she comes out stronger in the end and finds the comfort she needs for herself. This book shows the reality for some children's lives and how they try to find acceptance and love within themselves and others. I would definitely read this book with my students one day to teach a lesson on poetry while also teaching them the concept of accepting loss and finding comfort within themselves and positive outlets.

It was a very sad story. As a piece of writing, I think it would be worth using in class if we discussed the underlying themes and the idea of coping with loss of a family member. I think the book would be best suited for a child struggling with loss. ( ( )
  goreyes | Oct 13, 2016 |
This book would be good for a young girl who is facing the death of a loved one, especially a grandparent.
Pearl and her mother have always lived with her grandmother and now her grandmother is very ill and passes away. ( )
  TeamDewey | Feb 20, 2014 |
I love that Pearl's poems don't rhyme. A warm, real, sympathetic character who will resonate with many young readers. ( )
  Sullywriter | Apr 3, 2013 |
This very short book told in verse is touching but not sappy. Pearl's Granny is dying and she is trying to cope. The illustrations are just right. Could be used to help 1st thru 5th graders. ( )
  knitwit2 | Nov 15, 2011 |
A lovely story about losing someone you love for the first time ( )
  khollis | Sep 14, 2011 |
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For Grandma, Garmie and Grandma Chadd, and for grandmothers everywhere - SM
For my father John Alfred Potter, who was so proud of all seven of us - HP
First words
Sometimes I think
That I am on an island -
A deserted one
With just a single coconut tree.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
At school, Pearl feels as though she is in a group of one. Her teacher wants her to write poems that rhyme but Pearl's poems don't. But when her grandmother passes away, she finds the courage to deliver a poem that defies her teacher's idea of poetry - her poem doesn't rhyme; it comes from the heart.
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Pearl feels like an island in school, isolated and alone, but at home she feels loved and secure until her grandmother's illness changes the way Pearl views her world.

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