Friday, July 3, 2015

A Review of Izzy Barr, Running Star by Claudia Mills

Izzy Barr, Running Star
by Claudia Mills                              
Pictures by Robb Shepperson
Published 2015 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Middle Grade
144 Pages
Review copy provided by Blueslip Media
Goodreads Summary

Izzy Barr is the star athlete of the third grade: she hits homeruns on her softball team and is one of the fastest runners in her class. But at home, her half-brother, Dustin, seems to be her father's favorite athlete—why else would her dad go to all of his games and miss so many of hers? Izzy pretends that she doesn't care, but as she, her friends Annika Riz and Kelsey Green, and the rest of their class are gearing up for class field day, she can't help but hope her dad will be there to cheer her on in the big race against her rival, Skipper Tipton. Dad doesn't make it to field day, but when he realizes how important it is to Izzy, he and all of her friends and family are there to watch her participate in the citywide 10K run.

My Thoughts
Claudia Mills continues to create endearing characters in this latest installment of The Franklin School Friends series. This time Izzy is in the spotlight. Izzy faces a situation that many students will find familiar, she feels that her father is favoring her older brother because he seems to choose to attend more of her brother Dustin's events than her own. Izzy tells him that she doesn't care, although she cares very much and wants him to see her run. Each of Mills' characters has their own strengths and their talents which they use together to solve problems. Like the two previous books, Kelsey Green, Reading Queen and Annika Riz, Math Whiz, this book follows a familiar pattern that students will find comforting. With text that is not too complicated, but not too simple, this series is perfect for students who are making their way into longer chapter books. I would recommend it for grades 2-4. 

Visit Claudia Mills' website for more info and discussion guides for her Franklin School Friends series. 

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