Aldo Applesauce

( 2 )


For a shy 4th-grader like Aldo Sossi, making friends is very difficult in this story about the trauma of moving by an author who understands children.

When he and his family move to the suburbs, Aldo has difficulty finding new friends.

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For a shy 4th-grader like Aldo Sossi, making friends is very difficult in this story about the trauma of moving by an author who understands children.

When he and his family move to the suburbs, Aldo has difficulty finding new friends.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780140340839
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/1/1989
  • Pages: 128
  • Age range: 9 - 11 Years
  • Lexile: 750L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.02 (w) x 7.78 (h) x 0.34 (d)

Meet the Author

Johanna Hurwitz is the award-winning author of more than sixty popular books for young readers, including Faraway Summer; Dear Emma; Elisa Michaels, Bigger & Better; Class Clown; Fourth-Grade Fuss; and Rip-Roaring Russell, an American Library Association Notable Book. Her work has won many child-chosen state awards. A former school librarian, she frequently visits schools around the country to talk about her books. Mrs. Hurwitz and her husband divide their time between Great Neck, New York, and Wilmington, Vermont.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

The House on Hillside La

It was bedtime and the light was out.

Aldo Sossi lay in bed trying to fall asleep. The bed was his old one, but the bedroom was new. This morning the Sossi family had moved from New York City to Woodside, New Jersey. There were so many thoughts jumping about in Aldo's head that he couldn't relax and go to sleep. Tomorrow he would start attending the fourth grade at the Woodside School.

"Nobody moves and starts a new school in the middle of the year," Elaine, his older sister, had complained to their parents.

"This is January fifth," Mr. Sossi had answered. "It's not exactly the middle of the year."

But for the Sossi children, Elaine and Karen and Aldo, the year seemed to begin when school opened in September. Having their father change jobs and make the family move in January seemed very difficult.

Actually, when Mr. Sossi had told his children about the proposed move to New Jersey, it had seemed very exciting. Elaine and Karen, who were fourteen and twelve and a half, were delighted that they were going to have their own private rooms. Their mother promised the children that they could invite their old city friends to come and sleep over when there was a school vacation. And they liked the thought of living in their own house and having a backyard, an upstairs and a downstairs, a fireplace, and an attic.

Aldo remembered the Saturday about a month ago when the family had driven out to visit their new home. It was located on Hillside La, which seemed odd since the area was actually on level ground. The real address was 17 Hillside Lane. La was anabbreviation, and all the street signs they passed used the short form: Forest La, Maple La, Cherry La, and finally their own Hillside La.

"Quelle malson!" shouted Elaine, when the car stopped. She was studying French this year at school, and she liked to use French words whenever she could. Mrs. Sossi had studied French years ago but had forgotten it all. So no one could be sure what Elaine was saying, and if she sometimes made a mistake, no one could correct her.

Aldo noticed with pleasure that their new house was really several houses. First, there was the house that they would all live in. Then there was a garage, which was the house for the car. In the city they had just parked the car out on the street. There was also a doghouse in the yard, and finally, hanging from an old maple tree, there was a little birdhouse.

"Will we get a dog to live in the doghouse?" Aldo had asked his parents eagerly. Aldo loved animals, and he had wanted a dog for as long as he could remember.

"I don't know. Let's wait and see how things work out," said his mother. "Maybe the cats will want the house for themselves," she said. The Sossi family had two cats, Peabody and Poughkeepsie.

"Will the cats go outdoors?" wondered Karen. In the city the cats were always kept inside the apartment. Life in the suburbs was obviously going to mean a lot of changes for them all, even the cats.

They had gone inside, and each of the Sossi children had picked out a bedroom. It was fun walking through the empty rooms and hearing their voices echoing as they called out their discoveries to one another.

"Voila!" Elaine shouted. "This room has a window seat!"

Karen found a closet that was so big it had a window inside it.

Aldo was interested in everything. He went down to the basement, where there was a furnace and a washing machine and a dryer. He investigated the attic, which had nothing in it but dust and old spider webs.

Mrs. Sossi was mentally moving all their furniture about. "Let's put the sofa here." She pointed to one area of the living room. "And we can put the television over here."

It had been a very exciting day, and Aldo, watching squirrels chase one another up and down the maple tree in the backyard, had tried not to think how nervous he would feel when the time came to start the new school.

The month in between had gone very quickly. Now he tossed in his bed and wished that they had never moved at all. He wondered if he would have a good teacher. He worried that the things this new fourth grade was studying would be different from what he had been learning back at P.S. 35. And he worried about making new friends.

Suddenly Aldo heard the door to his bedroom squeak open. His father had said that he would have to put oil on some of the hinges.

Now the noise was like the scary sound effects they used on television or in the movies. Something landed with a thud on Aldo's bed. But even though it was too dark to see, he knew what it was and he wasn't frightened.

Either Peabody or Poughkeepsie had come to sleep on his bed. Aldo wished he could see in the dark, like the cats. Then he could tell which one had come to spend the night with him. It didn't matter, though. He loved them both equally. He thought of them as if they were his brothers or his best friends. He had given them secret nicknames that no one else in his family knew: Peeps and Pouks.

"How do you like it here?" he whispered to the cat. And as if in answer, the cat began a very soft purr.

The pressure of the cat's body cuddling up against his feet comforted Aldo, and he began to relax.

"Good night, Puss," he whispered affectionately, as he started to fall asleep. Maybe tomorrow wouldn't be so bad after all.

Aldo Applesauce. Copyright © by Johanna Hurwitz. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2003

    Aldo's Here!

    Aldo Applesauce is about a boy named Aldo. He moves from New York City to Woodside, New Jersey. On his first day of school his mother packed him some applesauce. When he was eating it at lunchtime, he knocked it over and it went everywhere. Everyone laughed and started calling him Aldo Applesauce. You would want to read this book because it is about new friendships, and a new school. You would also want to read this book because it is sort of funny and the characters do strange things. People who like fiction books about kids who do strange things would want to read this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2000


    I really enjoyed it. I read it a while ago, but it's not a book thats easy to forget. I'd read it over and over again 100 times if I could.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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