Ivy and Bean meets Aliens in my Pocket in this start to a brand-new chapter book series about Frankie Sparks, a third grader who uses her love for science and math to help her solve problems she comes across in her daily life.
The best thing EVER is happening in Frankie Sparks's third grade class: They are getting a class pet! Their teacher, Miss Cupid, tells them they will vote on their pet, but it has to meet some "parameters." Their pet must:
Frankie thinks that a rat--just like the rats in her beloved Aunt Gina's lab--would be the perfect fit. But her best friend, Maya, doesn't think a rat would be great at all. They are kind of gross and not as cool as a hermit crab, which is Maya's top choice. Using her special workshop, can Frankie find a way to convince her teacher and her best friend that Team Rat is the way to go?
Gr 1-4--Frankie is a relatable and true-to-life third grader who is so enthusiastic about her school project she can barely contain herself. The class is getting a pet and they need to decide together what kind of animal is best. Frankie is sure that a rodent, specifically a rat, is the best choice. But Frankie will need to convince her teacher, the whole class, and, most importantly, her best friend Maya who thinks a betta fish would be better. Blakemore, in the tradition of Beverly Cleary, writes convincingly from the child's point of view. In this series debut, Frankie faces two problems. The first is the common social development conundrum of how to respond when your friend disagrees with you. The second is a practical problem for Frankie to solve: how can the class keep a rat as a pet when no one will be there to feed it over the weekends? Frankie's parents help her understand that it is okay for friends to have different opinions. Frankie uses scientific methodology to invent an effective solution to the rat-feeding problem. Sarell's simple illustrations, which depict Frankie as an African American girl, accentuate the book's realistic tone. VERDICT Perfect as a tie-in to STEAM curricula and for readers who enjoy Betty Birney's "Humphrey" series and Cleary's "Ramona." Highly recommended.--Tara Kehoe, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, NCCopyright 2019 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.