Thursday, February 07, 2013


This chapter book is told in alternating chapters in first-person by Sydney and Sidney. Sydney is nervous about third grade, as it's the first year she won't be in class with her best friend, Harley. Sidney is the new boy in town, and he first encounters Sydney in their third-grade class after an embarrassing name mix-up. Sidney is nervous about his new school, but he quickly makes friends with Gomez after they share a joke at the bus stop. Sidney and Sydney's mothers meet, so the two children are thrown together. Apprehensive about being friends with a member of the opposite sex at first, they quickly discover common interests. The approach of Halloween gives them a project: Harley's mother doesn't allow sugar and Gomez is diabetic, so Sidney and Sydney team up to make the holiday fun for their friends.

I read this book to my six-year-old and we both really enjoyed it. The messages are very positive: Sidney and Sydney are very different children who find common ground and become friends despite a rocky start. Sidney and Sydney consider the feelings of their friends and use creative problem-solving to make sure Halloween is fun for everyone. The conflict is extremely mild; I expected at least a chapter of Sidney and Sydney hating each other, but they quickly resolve their differences. This is probably appropriate for the 6-8 age range the book is suggested for. The inclusion of a nut-free table in the cafeteria and a diabetic best friend opens the door for talking about how different people have different needs, and Sidney and Sydney are sensitive to that.

Very cute chapter book for the younger set. First in a series.

Source disclosure: I received an e-galley from the publisher.

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