Friday, May 4, 2012

Heart to Heart with Mallory

Heart to Heart with Mallory (Mallory #6)
Laurie Friedman, illustrated by Barbara Pollak
Carolrhoda, 2006
$5.95, Paperback
February 8th, 2012

Genre: Realistic, School Story, Humor
Age: 7+
Description: Mallory’s grandmother sends her a diary so Mallory, being away from Mary Ann, can tell her innermost secrets to the diary instead. At first, Mallory isn’t too sure how she feels about that because she doesn’t want a notebook to take the place of her best friend. However, when it seems that things are heating up romantically between Mary Ann’s mother and Joey’s father, Mallory finds she needs to confide in something about her mixed emotions to what would happen if her two best friends become step-siblings.
Opinion: This series attracted my attention because of the fun covers which are featured on all the books (currently up to 18 volumes). Like the quote from School Library Journal on the back cover says, “Mallory is an appealing character who deserves a place among Junie B. Jones, Judy Moody, Amber Brown, and Clarice Bean.” I wholeheartedly agree. Mallory is a character any child, from late elementary school age to older tween age, can relate too. The topics of the books are very pertinent to young readers’ lives. Each book of the Mallory series continues to offer something new to the experience of a young girl that everyone can relate too. While Mallory might seem whiny at times, it is all just a testament to how great Friedman got the self-absorbed worldview of an eight-year-old girl down. Each book begins with an introduction to the reader from Mallory and usually incorporates handwritten letters or emails to friends within the pages. Each book also ends with a special ending of something relating to the story—such as class pictures, scrapbooks of photos from the events, Valentine’s Mallory received from her friends, instructions for things, and so on. Everyone will find a little piece of themselves in Mallory.

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