“Strange: adj, extraordinary, remarkable, singular”
I don’t know how I managed to miss this Golden Kite Honor book in 2008, but I’m glad I’ve caught up with this award winning book. Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree (Dial, 2007) by Lauren Tarshis is told in two different viewpoints. And like Emma-Jean the 2nd definition of strange fits this delightful book.
Emma-Jean is the smartest girl in 7th grade and has been observing her class mates for a long time so knows all about their lives, even if she doesn’t really understand them. But when Colleen Pomerantz asks for help because Laura Gilroy is trying to steal her best friend Kaitlyn, Emma-Jean decides to get involved in their messy lives.
Colleen cares very much what others think of her and wishes she could be more like Emma-Jean who doesn’t care that others think she’s strange (definition 1, not 2). But when Laura cancels the ski trip with Kaitlyn, Colleen is suddenly afraid that Emma-Jean had a hand in it.
Then there’s the companion book, Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell in Love (Dial, 2009), which I need to get a hold of next. Though I might have to hide it from my husband so he doesn’t get it first–he definitely enjoyed Emma-Jean.
There’s an interview with author Lauren Tarshis here where she talks about her process. On her website, not only can you learn about her other books, but learn about her magazine editor job.