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Happy Birthday, Sophie Hartley [Paperback]

Stephanie Greene

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Book Description

Aug. 1 2011 Sophie Hartley
The third novel about indomitable, quirky, passionate Sophie. For her double-digit (tenth) birthday, Sophie wants a baby gorilla and convinces herself and most of her friends that she’s getting one. This birthday has many surprises in store for Sophie—and not just the kind you unwrap.


Product Details

  • Paperback: 132 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (Aug. 1 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0547550251
  • ISBN-13: 978-0547550251
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 13 x 1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 45 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #954,173 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"Girls undergoing the same growing-up trials will be happy to have Sophie make them laugh."--Kirkus Reviews

"A lively chapter book full of humor, believable family dynamics, and characters who think and talk like real people. . . . Greene explores her themes of identity, ambivalence about growing up, and friendship with an unusual naturalness and depth, yet the themes never trump story or character."--The Horn Book, starred review

"[Readers will] want to unwrap this gem of a story and savor the delicious conclusions."--School Library Journal

About the Author

Stephanie Greene is the author of the Owen Foote books and of three previous novels about Sophie Hartley, as well as a number of other books for children. A graduate of the MFA program in writing for children at Vermont College, Ms. Greene lives in Durham, North Carolina.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book for Girls May 4 2010
By S. Power - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product
Sophie Hartley wants a baby gorilla for her birthday. When her Dad says yes she's excited. However when it's time to tell the family she instead gets a shocking announcement from her older sister. Her sister is moving out of her room and into the attic. Sophie's story is entertaining and fun.

It's difficult for parents and teachers with young but advanced readers to find books that are interesting yet challenging. This book has some very difficult vocabulary while still having a plot that young children will like and there are no major boy obsessions. The book isn't overly long and the chapters are short. I would recommend this book for kids who read on a fourth or fifth grade level or as a read aloud.

This is a girl book, with lots of talk of bad girls and other things that third grade girls find important. There is a chapter in which Sophie and her friend talk about bras and breasts (in a typical childlike way with lots of giggling and even some sock boobs). It's enough to make a boy uncomfortable but not too much to alienate a young girl (it's a step down from Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret..

My one complaint about this book would be the price, this isn't a good enough book to justify paying hardback prices. At around 130 pages it will be devoured quickly and while it's a very good book, it's not so good that one would have to read it in hardback. If it was 4.99 like all the other great children's fiction out there I'd say run and get it, but it's not special enough to justify hardback pricing.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Charming MG fiction Aug. 28 2011
By Madigan McGillicuddy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This is a charming middle-grade novel where readers are treated to a sneak-peek of Sophie's family, school and friends. I loved all the little details about Sophie's family, who obviously have a lot of warm feeling for each other. As the youngest child Sophie is always feeling a bit left out. She's crushed when her older teen sister Nora moves out of their shared artistic messy room into a tidy attic room of her own. For her tenth birthday, Sophie doesn't want much... just a cute baby gorilla. Once she promises her classmates that getting a gorilla is a certainty, there's no end to the teasing she gets. She's worried about how on earth she'll make good on her word, until she saves face when her mom reminds everyone that gorillas are endangered, and therefore, impossible to keep as pets. Greene does a marvelous job of illuminating the inner-life of a child and everything Sophie thinks and says definitely rings true.

This story reminded me a lot of Alice's Birthday Pig by Tim Kennemore, about a similarly sweet and delightful family. Happy Birthday, Sophie Hartley is the latest in a series about the irrepressible Sophie, but readers need not have read the earlier volumes to make sense of this one. I'll recommend this book to readers looking for something finer and more gentle than Junie B. Jones, and something just a hair easier than the Ramona books by Beverly Cleary.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sophie Has a Wonderful Birthday! Sept. 30 2010
By Bettie Corbin Tucker - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product
This delightful, age-appropriate book for pre-teens will entertain and captivate its young readers. It shows a typical family setting with sibling differences and some financial problems. Sophie who is going to turn ten, asks her father for a rather unusual present when he is watching a ball game and paying very little attention. He agrees without realizing what he has promised. Sophie and her two best friends come across as real, and their conversations reflect the thoughts of girls this age--from boys to bras.

There is some adjusting that takes place when Sophie's older sister moves to the attic, giving Sophie a room all to herself. But, of course, Sophie plans to share it with her promised birthday present. Although, the present isn't the one she expects, her birthday turns out to be wonderful with all family members contributing....and her friends, too. A truly enjoyable, wholesome story.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fine easy reader Aug. 17 2010
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Happy Birthday, Sophie Hartley tells of Sophie's forthcoming birthday. Sophie has specific ideas on what she should get for her birthday - but which one would be the perfect birthday gift? The one she bragged to her friends about, the one her mom doesn't know is coming, or the one she's really wanted? A fine easy reader covers Sophie's choices.
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Themes and Characters Nov. 18 2013
By Sunayna - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Sophie is excited about her tenth birthday. She even wants a baby gorilla as a gift. This book is about friendship and family. Sophie's parents don't even want a pet, something very common in a lot of families. I loved the characters, especially Sophie. She was funny at times. This book would probably be best for the 8 to 10 crowd due to its simple writing. I still had fun reading it, though.

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