Book Spotlight: Confessions of a So-Called Middle Child

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Posted: March 17, 2017

Category: Staff Picks

Book cover for Confessions of a So-Called Middle ChildCharlie is a self-centered tween girl.  When her best friend started hanging around with someone else, Charlie tried to have her expelled from school by framing her for a prank.  But when things went wrong, Charlie revealed that she played the prank and was expelled instead.

As a result of the expulsion, Charlie’s family had to move, she had to start seeing a psychiatrist, and had to spend the summer mostly reading in her room.  No video games.  No television.   No fun.

By the last day of summer vacation, Charlie’s psychiatrist is somewhat pleased with her progress, but he has one final task for her:  to become friends with the most bullied person in her new school.  This is an even harder task than you might think.  On the first day, Charlie immediately becomes friends with Trixie, a smart, cool, fashionable girl.  But to follow her psychiatrist’s requirement, she also has to reach out to Marta.

Marta is also known as Marta the Farta due to her general odor and appearance.  She is awkward, unpopular, and comes to school dragging a wheeled Cinderella suitcase rather than carrying a backpack.  But Charlie tries to reach out to her, at first to meet her psychiatrist’s requirements, but later because she actually cares.

When Trixie and Marta start competing for the same spot on the school gymnastics team, Charlie is caught in the middle.  Will she give in to her shallow side and stay friends with Trixie, or will she support Marta and her dreams?

Confessions of a So-Called Middle Child and its sequel Watch Out, Hollywood:  More Confessions of a So-Called Middle Child, by Maria T. Lennon, are shelved upstairs in the juvenile fiction section of the Children’s Department.

If you enjoy Confessions of a So-Called Middle Child, you may also enjoy Breaking the Ice by Gail Nall.  Kaitlin’s outburst after a skating competition costs her a spot in her skating club.  Her reputation spreads quickly, and soon she only has one option left:  a skating club called Fallton, popularly known by the nickname “Fall Down.”  Can she recover in time to save her skating career?  Breaking the Ice is also shelved in the juvenile fiction section.

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