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The Resource The meaning of Maggie : a novel, by Megan Jean Sovern

The meaning of Maggie : a novel, by Megan Jean Sovern

Label
The meaning of Maggie : a novel
Title
The meaning of Maggie
Title remainder
a novel
Statement of responsibility
by Megan Jean Sovern
Creator
Author
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Eleven-year-old Maggie Mayfield is an A-plus student with big plans for herself, but at this moment she is also facing a lot of problems--like starting middle school and figuring out how to help her father who is out of work and in a wheelchair
Storyline
Character
Review
  • Grades 4-7 Maggie Mayfield, 11, begins chronicling her life, because keeping a memoir is very important when you are a future U.S. president. This is the year that she will start middle school, defend her science fair title, and become a Coca-Cola shareholder. But while Maggie is acing her classes and keeping an eye on her flighty sisters, her father’s health is failing. He quits his job, and her mom goes back to work, plus her sisters are acting even more strangely while everyone is adjusting to this new system. As her father’s symptoms of multiple sclerosis become more severe, Maggie’s hope is to find a cure with her science fair project. Maggie’s story is at once optimistic but realistic. Typical school problems and family issues compete for attention, but she stays true to herself. Give this first novel to fans of other characters that are a little left of center, like Emma-Jean in Lauren Tarshis’ Emma-Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree (2007). -- Erickson, Tiffany (Reviewed 05-15-2014) (Booklist, vol 110, number 18, p56)
  • /* Starred Review */ Gr 4 – 7 — In this humorous, fast-paced "memoir" set in Atlanta in the early 1990s, Maggie recounts the past "year that changed EVERYTHING!" She aspires to become President of the United States and continually mentions being an avid reader and excellent student. She struggles socially though, studying alone at lunchtime, not getting flowers on Valentine's Day, and procuring many teacher signatures in her yearbook, but very few from peers. On Maggie's 11th birthday, her father leaves his job as an airline ticket agent because his legs "won't wake up," (he is diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis) and her mother begins full-time work as a domestic at an elegant hotel. Maggie has a caustic relationship with her older sisters who spend more time with hair, makeup, and boys than studies. She is determined to find a cure for her father, who falls out of his wheelchair, loses the ability to eat independently, suffers a seizure, and is hospitalized with a massive infection. As his multiple sclerosis worsens during the year, the fifth grader realizes how hard her mother works at her job and at home and that her mother and sisters have tried to shield her from the grim reality of her father's disease. Meanwhile, Maggie's parents tell stories of their adventuresome hippie pasts to encourage their daughters to live life to the fullest. They share their love of Neil Young, Led Zeppelin, Bruce Springsteen, and other bands of that era, and hold their family together with love, hard work, respect, and courage. Maggie learns that she can survive getting a B, run an entire mile, and bravely face her father's illness and extend support. Readers will appreciate Maggie's humor and rejoice in her growth. This is a remarkable story of a working-class family pulling together in the face of a serious illness.—Laura Scott, Farmington Community Library, MI --Laura Scott (Reviewed April 1, 2014) (School Library Journal, vol 60, issue 4, p154)
  • Maggie Mayfield aspires to be president one day, and she’s preparing by excelling at school, following the rules, and living by her family’s motto of pulling up one’s bootstraps when times get tough. Unbeknownst to Maggie, her 11th year is one of those times. The novel is structured as Maggie’s memoir, written one year later, as she recounts those tumultuous 12 months. Maggie knows that her father is ill (he requires a wheelchair ever since “his legs fell all the way asleep,” as Maggie puts it), but her family is shielding her from his diagnosis, a balancing act both they and first-time author Sovern pull off beautifully. Maggie (and readers) see hints of the grim reality, but it isn’t until halfway into the story that Maggie uncovers the full truth: multiple sclerosis. Although Sovern dials up Maggie’s precociousness a bit high (and the novel’s late 1980s setting seems entirely incidental), the author handles the topic of debilitating illness with a light touch in a story that’s heart-wrenching yet full of heart. Ages 8–12. Agent: Marietta Zacker, Nancy Gallt Literary Agency. (May) --Staff (Reviewed February 24, 2014) (Publishers Weekly, vol 261, issue 08, p)
  • /* Starred Review */ Based on the author's family's story, this novel mixes in equal thirds tears, wit and reassurance amid debilitating illness. The day her father "won't stop beeping," future president Maggie Mayfield begins a memoir of 1988, the year her "cool dude" dad's multiple sclerosis takes a turn for the worse. Her dad's MS is as much a presence as his love of Neil Young records; a scene of her mother brushing his teeth is as casual as a kiss on the cheek. Its progression hits hard—suddenly, her dad is unemployed and her mother is exhausted, while her older sisters mess with makeup and boys. Maggie vows to fix her father, but her hardest lesson may be that she can't; the collision of her bookishness against her dad's unknowable prognosis is bound to elicit tears (aka "brain sweat"). Tough family bonds ground the story, even under stress, and Maggie's quirky everyday observations and sibling squabbles relieve tension. Maggie writes of a book that "[b]y the time you reach the end of the chapter, you realize you've highlighted every single word because every single word was really important." Smart, sensitive, sad and funny, Maggie's memoir reads the same way. More than an issue novel, Sovern's debut will be a boon to kids coping with a parent's illness or the unpredictability of growing up. (Historical fiction. 9-12)(Kirkus Reviews, April 15, 2014)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10307782
Cataloging source
NJQ/DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Sovern, Megan Jean
Dewey number
  • [Fic]
  • 813.6
Index
no index present
Intended audience
  • Middle School
  • 690
Intended audience source
Lexile
LC call number
PZ7.S7304
LC item number
Me 2014
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 4
  • 7
Nature of contents
bibliography
Reading level
  • 4.3.
  • 4.3.
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Study program name
  • Accelerated Reader
  • Reading Counts!
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Fathers and daughters
  • Families
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Middle schools
  • Fathers and daughters
  • Family life
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Middle schools
  • Schools
  • Families
  • Fathers and daughters
  • Middle schools
  • Multiple sclerosis
Target audience
pre adolescent
Label
The meaning of Maggie : a novel, by Megan Jean Sovern
Instantiates
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm
Extent
220 pages
Isbn
9781452128764
Lccn
2013029644
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
(OCoLC)858080415
Label
The meaning of Maggie : a novel, by Megan Jean Sovern
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm
Extent
220 pages
Isbn
9781452128764
Lccn
2013029644
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
(OCoLC)858080415

Library Locations

    • A. Mitchell Powell Jr. BranchBorrow it
      25 Hospital Road, Newnan, GA, 30263, US
      33.387732 -84.816797

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