Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Sunny Side Up by Jennifer Holm and Matthew Holm...

How I Heard About It:  You would have to be living under a rock not to have heard about this recent graphic novel.  I kept hearing about it via my Twitter friends.  When I saw it on the shelf at the local bookstore, I picked up a copy.  I also ordered some copies from the Scholastic book order.  With the business of the fall, the book sat in my TBR pile, but I finally got to it and really enjoyed it.  

What It Is About:  This story is "semi-autobiographical" from Jenni's early years.  Sunny has been sent to stay with her grandfather over the summer.  He lives in Florida.  She is quite excited because she knows Disney World is in Florida.  She is in for a surprise when she arrives and she and her grandfather do "elderly" things instead of "touristy" things.  Sunny is thrilled when she meets Buzz who is a young boy that is quite focused on comics.  The two of them kick off a friendship which helps Sunny's stay in Florida.  During her stay Sunny learns the real reason why she is in Florida with her grandfather instead of back home with her family which includes her troubled older brother.  

What I Thought Of It:  Loved it, loved it, loved it!  The graphics were spectacular.  The story line was engaging.  The characters were lovable and sweet.  The entire package of the story was top-notch. I enjoyed how the plot switched back and forth between Sunny's stay in Florida and her life back at home.  It always amazing me how some people don't think graphic novels are complex, but most of the time they can be more complex than a typical fiction story.  This is definitely a story I'll be sharing with my students.  In fact, some of them have already read it.  

Who Should Read It:  This graphic novel is for all ages.  I think to truly "get" the plot of the story, readers should be in grades four or higher.  At first I thought the book might be more geared toward girls, but after reading it, I think boys will enjoy it just as much.  The character of Buzz and the older brother bring that male perspective to the story.  If you have a fan of Jennifer and Matthew, then this is the graphic novel for you.  Happy Reading!  

Rating:  5 STARS out of 5 Stars

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