Title: Waylon! One Awesome Thing
Author: Sara Pennypacker
Recommended for: readers in grades 2-4 (and as a readaloud to the same grades)
Pages: 198 p.
Call Number/Link: J Fiction Pennypacker, S.
“Waylon, a boy with the mind of a scientific genius and the vulnerable heart of an eight year old, is trying to understand his older sister and deal with changes among the kids at school” – Provided by publisher. –
I love this author’s Clementine series. Waylon is a boy from Clementine’s class. I liked this book, but Clementine remains my favorite kid at their elementary school.
Waylon is a quirky child. He reads a lot, loves science and has an amazing memory for random scientific things he’s read. He loves to tell people about these scientific facts (and his ideas) at great length. Not everyone appreciates that, including some kids in his class at school who think he talks too much.
Waylon is not thrilled with ways that things at school are changing in fourth grade. A boy named Arlo divides the boys in the class into two teams. Members of one team aren’t supposed to socialize with members of the other team, even if they are best friends. Waylon winds up being one of two boys in the class who are not on a team. On one hand, he’s happy to avoid having muddy pine cones pushed down the back of his shirt in a conflict between the teams. On the other, he doesn’t enjoy being left out. But mostly, he wishes that everyone in his class could get along and be friends again.
Waylon also has a teen sister who is going through an awkward, unfriendly stage. She’s gone emo, wants to be called Neon and frequently disagrees with her parents.
Waylon is a nice boy and tries his best to make things better, both at home and at school.
One Awesome Thing would be a good classroom readaloud, especially at the beginning of the school year.