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Publisher's Summary

At age 11, Gilly is nobody's real kid. If only she could find her beautiful mother, Courtney, and live with her instead of in the ugly foster home where she has just been placed! How could she, the great Gilly Hopkins, known throughout the county for her brilliance and unmanageability, be expected to tolerate Maime Trotter, the fat, nearly illiterate widow who is now her guardian? Or for that matter, the freaky seven-year-old boy and the shrunken blind black man who are also considered part of the bizarre "family"? Even cool Miss Harris, her teacher, is a shock to her.

Gutsy Gilly is both poignant and comic as, behind her best barracuda smile, she schemes against them and everyone else who tries to be friendly. The reader will cheer for her as she copes with the longings and terrors of always being a foster child.

Katherine Paterson, winner of the 1978 Newbery Medal for Bridge to Terabithia and of the 1977 National Book Award for The Master Puppeteer, again reaches across boundaries with her wit, compassion, and love, and here creates an immensely engaging story about a child's desperate search for a place to call home.

©1978 Katherine Paterson; (P)1996 Recorded Books

Critic Reviews

  • Newbery Honor Book, 1979

"This Newbery Honor Book manages to treat a somewhat grim, and definitely grown-up theme with love and humor, making it a terrific read for a young reader who's ready to learn that "happy" and "ending" don't always go together." (Amazon.com review)
"Not to be missed, Bresnahan’s reading of this Newbery Honor book and National Book Award winner adds a rich dimension to Gilly’s story." (AudioFile)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

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  • CM
  • 04-18-17

Heartbreakingly Wonderful

This is a heartbreakingly wonderful story that is perfectly narrated. What more is there to say? Read it or listen to it. The author's characters are so believable and the narrator perfectly captures Gilly's personality. Great book for middle grades and up!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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GOOD

Good. At first gilly was kind of racist but she learned her lesson. I liked it

The audio connection was not very good

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great Book for Mature YA Reader

Although it is an easy read, I would only recommend this book to mature YA readers or adults due to the language and topics mentioned (racism, abandonment, religion, etc.). The story itself is enchanting as it follows a tough 11-year-old girl, seeking to find "home".

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Not age appropriate

Too much negativity and language. Ended sadly too. I do not recommend for anyone under the age of 15.

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Sharing with my daughter

One of my favorite books of all time and now I get to share it with my daughter!

The narrator has a beautiful and expressive voice. It was a bit difficult to tell sometimes whether Gilly was saying something out loud or just thinking it to herself.

  • Overall

Bad

The chapters are not the same. It needs a lot of work and maybe they even need to restart.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful