Flip-Flop Girl

by Katherine Paterson

After her daddy dies, Vinnie, her little brother, Mason, and Momma must move from... read more

After her daddy dies, Vinnie, her little brother, Mason, and Momma must move from Washington to Virginia to live with Grandma. To make matters worse, Mason won't talk to anyone - he hasn't since Daddy died - and Vinnie thinks that everyone is so concerned about him that no one cares about her. Then Vinnie meets Mr. Clayton, her new fourth grade teacher; the attention he gives Vinnie and her capacity to imagine become her greatest source of pleasure. Sometimes Mr. Clayton also pays a lot of attention to another girl in her class - Lupe - but Vinnie is certain that she herself is the one he finds special. As a result, when Mr. Clayton announces he is getting married, her feelings of betrayal and jealousy are so strong that she lashes out in an act of anger which powerfully satisfies her rage, but then terrifies her into letting Lupe being blamed as the perpetrator. Firmly grounded in Vinnie's point of view, Paterson's storytelling magnificently renders the emotional landscape of childhood. (Ages 10-12)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 1994

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