Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

The Truth About My Bat Mitzvah

The Truth About My Bat Mitzvah

Spring 2008 Fiction
Ages: 10 - 14 yrs.
Author: Nora Raleigh Baskin
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
ISBN: 978-1-4169-3558-2
Hardcover Price: $15.99
After Nana's funeral, Caroline's whole family returns to Nana and Poppy's apartment. A tall mean-looking woman introduces herself to Caroline as her great aunt Gertrude. Caroline dislikes her instantly, and is astonished to learn that she is Poppy's older sister. Later, when Poppy gives Caroline a piece of jewelry that Nana wanted her to have - a gold chain with a Star of David - the present sends her on a journey of self-discovery.

Told in the first person, Caroline and her best friend Rachel, who is Jewish and is preparing for her Bat Mitzvah, struggle with the complex issues of boys, sixth grade, and friendships. A spend-the-night party at a classmate's mansion brings Caroline and Rachel face to face with prejudice. The author knows a young girl's heart, whether she is grieving or suffering socially. Baskin shows how Caroline matures as she gets to know great-aunt Gertrude and finds that first impressions are not always correct. A fine, spot-on story.

Kemie Nix   ©2008 Parents' Choice
Kemie Nix is Chairman of Children's Literature for Children (CLC), a non-profit, tax-exempt, educational organization dedicated to bringing children and books together. Mrs. Nix, a senior book editor for Parents' Choice, has a remarkable sense of selecting books children love to read.

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