October is Bullying Awareness Month and with today being National Say No To Bullying day I thought it would be nice to introduce some books that are both entertaining and informative, that deal with the subject of bullying. Each of these books either relates to bullying, or self-acceptance, or how to handle it in a school environment.
For Miriam Fisher, a budding poet who reads the Oxford English Dictionary for fun, seventh grade is a year etched in her memory‚”clear as pain‚” That’s the year her older sister, Deborah, once her best buddy and fellow‚”alien‚” bloomed like a beautiful flower and joined the high school in-crowd. That’s the year high school senior Artie Rosenberg, the‚”hottest guy in the drama club‚” and, Miriam thinks, her soul mate, comes to live with Miriam’s family. And that’s the year the popular‚”watermelon girl‚” turn up the heat in their cruel harassment of Miriam‚–ripping her life wide open in shocking, unexpected ways. Teased and taunted in school, Miriam is pushed toward breaking, until, in a gripping climax, she finds the inner strength to prove she’s a force to be reckoned with. This riveting first novel introduces readers to an unforgettable heroine, an outsider who dares to confront the rigid conformity of junior high, and in the process manages not only to save herself but to inspire and transform others.
When three popular girls go on trial in Government class for their ruthless bullying of a girl named Ivy, it seems like the misfit will finally get her revenge. Eight first-person narrators give different versions of the event: Ivy” this victim doesn’t want revenge, she just wants to be left alone; Ann” she’s the beautiful, but infamously cruel, leader of the bullies; Marco” he may be the only person involved who has any morals, but he’s also the target of Ann’s persuasive affections; Daria” Ivy’s painfully shy lawyer doesn’t stand a chance; Bryce” the goofy court reporter knows all the real dirt, even if he doesn’t care; Cameron” he sleeps through the proceedings but might wake up just in time to make a difference; Wayne” a true devotee of the legal process, too bad he’s on the sidelines; and Faith” as the only witness for the prosecution, it all comes down to her. But where do her loyalties lie?
Introducing SQUISH–a new graphic novel series about a comic book-loving, twinkie-eating grade school AMOEBA trying to find his place in the world (or at least trying to make it through a school day). Inspired by his favorite comic book hero, SUPER AMOEBA!, Squish has to navigate school (bullies! detention! Principal Planaria!), family (dad: Hates to wear a tie. Secretly listens to heavy metal in the car), and friends (Peggy-rainbows! happy all the time! and Pod . . . who’s . . . well, you just have to meet him). Can Squish save the world–and his friends–from the forces of evil lurking in the hallways? Find out in Squish: Super Amoeba –saving the world, one cell at a time!
Maya has been part of the group ever since the day Candace asked her if she wanted to “do lunch” in the cafeteria. Yet when Candace suddenly deems her unworthy, Maya’s so-called friends just blow her off. While Maya just wants the girls back like they used to be, she knows that can never happen-because whatever Candace wants, Candace gets, no matter who gets hurt. Maya isn’t sure exactly where things went wrong for her, but she knows she has to find out who her real friends are, and who among the girls she can trust. “[A] suspenseful and realistic portrayal of a popular middle school clique . . . . Readers will identify with and remember these characters.”
When Danny gets caught trying to cross his name off the “Geek” list in the girls’ bathroom, he’s sent to detention. Bullies torment him mercilessly — until they discover that Danny can draw. He enjoys his new “bad boy” status, supplying tattoos and graffiti, until he’s unknowingly drawn into a theft. Turns out the bullies took a comic book from Danny’s favorite store. Can he steal it back before they get caught — and break off with the bullies before he gets in too deep?
Tired of being told what to write by the school newspaper’s advisor, Zibby and her friend Amr start an underground newspaper online where everyone is free to post anything, but things spiral out of control when a cyberbully starts using the site to harrass one popular girl.
Eric is the new kid in seventh grade. Griffin wants to be his friend. When you’re new in town, it’s hard to know who to hang out with – and who to avoid. Griffin seems cool, confident, and popular. But something isn’t right about Griffin. He always seems to be in the middle of bad things. And if Griffin doesn’t like you, you’d better watch your back. There might be a target on it. As Eric gets drawn deeper into Griffin’s dark world, he begins to see the truth about Griffin: he’s a liar, a bully, a thief. Eric wants to break away, do the right thing. But in one shocking moment, he goes from being a bystander . . . to the bully’s next victim.
Fourteen-year-old Alex struggles to rise above the life events which seem to conspire against him, from a mother who lies, to a probation officer who won’t give him a break, to bullies at his new school.
Ten-year-old Auggie Pullman, who was born with extreme facial abnormalities and was not expected to survive, goes from being home-schooled to entering fifth grade at a private middle school in Manhattan, which entails enduring the taunting and fear of his classmates as he struggles to be seen as just another student.
Sheila Tubman (Peter Hatcher’s sworn enemy) sometimes wonders who she really is: the outgoing, witty, and capable Sheila the Great, or the secret Sheila, who’s afraid of spiders, the dark, swimming and, most of all, dogs. When her family leaves the city for a summer in the country, Sheila has to face some of her worst fears. Not only does a dog come with the rented house, but her parents expect Sheila to take swimming lessons! Sheila does her best to pretend she’s an expert at everything, but she knows she isn’t fooling her new best friend, Mouse Ellis, who not only is an outstanding swimmer, but loves dogs! What will it take for Sheila to admit to Mouse and to herself that she’s only human?
Even though his classmates from first grade on have considered him strange and a loser, Daniel Zinkoff’s optimism and exuberance and the support of his loving family do not allow him to feel that way about himself.
Dirty looks and taunting notes are just a few examples of girl bullying that girls and women have long suffered through silently and painfully. With this book Rachel Simmons elevated the nation’s consciousness and has shown millions of girls, parents, counselors, and teachers how to deal with this devastating problem. Poised to reach a wider audience in paperback, including the teenagers who are its subject, Odd Girl Out puts the spotlight on this issue, using real-life examples from both the perspective of the victim and of the bully.
What counts as rude behavior in school? What can you do when a teacher is rude? What’s the best way to handle bullies and bigots? Here’s sound advice (touched with humor) for teens who want to make school more bearable.
“If you’re like us, you probably have questions about friendships. Maybe you’re not sure if someone is a real friend or the other kind.” So goes the story of Jack, Jen, Chris, Abby, Mateo, and Michelle–six students trying to figure it all out in middle school. Real Friends vs. the Other Kind , the second book in the Middle School Confidential series, follows these characters as they work to forge friendships while navigating tough social situations. The book offers insider information on making friends, resolving disputes, and dealing with other common middle school concerns–like gossip, exclusion, and cyberbullying. There’s also expert advice on crushes, peer pressure, and being there for friends who need help. Filled with character narratives, quizzes, quotes from real kids, tips, tools, and resources, this book is a timely and engaging survival guide for the middle school years.