Call Me Hope

( 77 )

Overview

As 11-year-old Hope struggles to live under the pressures of her verbally abusive mother, she's tempted to run away but instead chooses resilience. She creates a secret safe haven and an innovative point system (giving herself points for every bad thing her mother says to her); finds comfort and inspiration from Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl; and gains a support team. Ultimately, Hope is able to confront her mother about her hurtful ...

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Call Me Hope

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Overview

As 11-year-old Hope struggles to live under the pressures of her verbally abusive mother, she's tempted to run away but instead chooses resilience. She creates a secret safe haven and an innovative point system (giving herself points for every bad thing her mother says to her); finds comfort and inspiration from Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl; and gains a support team. Ultimately, Hope is able to confront her mother about her hurtful words and help her begin to change.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Anyone who equates child abuse only with physical blows may think in broader terms after reading this moving story of a sixth grader tormented by her mother's hurtful words. Hope, whose father left when she was a baby (because she "cried all the time," according to her mother), has been called stupid so many times she gets a "stinkin' stomachache" every time she hears the word. She can't seem to do anything to please her mother, but luckily there are others-Hope's teacher, her school counselor and classmate Brody, for instance-who believe she does have value. Hope reaches a turning point after making friends with two women who run a used clothing store. Deeply affected by their kindness and inspired by Anne Frank's diary, Hope gradually begins to believe in herself, even when her mother dishes out her cruelest punishment by not allowing Hope to participate in the Outdoor School program. Without giving too pat a solution to Hope's internal and external conflicts, Olson (Joyride) provides signs that her protagonist's future will be considerably brighter than her past. Children who can identify with Hope's predicament will find solace in this book as well as tips for survival, listed by Hope in the final chapter. Ages 8-12. (Apr.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
VOYA - Christina Fairman
Eleven-year-old Hope is a typical adolescent. She is bright, energetic, and wants simply to be an active part of her sixth-grade world. Hope is also the victim of neglect and verbal abuse at the hands of her mother, an aging former actress who vacillates between icy detachment and a need to belittle Hope's every move. The story follows Hope as she tries to maneuver amidst these minefields so that she can attend an annual class camping trip, a prized event that she has been anticipating for months. Spurred on by a class reading of The Diary of Anne Frank, Hope seeks to discover her own strength to survive despite her mother's dehumanizing actions. The primary benefit of this book is its potential to offer encouragement to young people in similar situations. Despite occasionally stilted dialogue and a simplified ending, it sends the message that help is available in the form of school counselors, teachers, and community members. The author is on the board of directors for the Hands and Words Are Not for Hurting Project, a nonprofit organization that promotes the "moral and legal right to live free of abuse and violence." At the end of the book is a checklist for young people that includes practical advice ("Make friends with people who listen without interrupting") and organizations that readers can contact for help. This book would be a useful resource for schools and libraries where bibliotherapy and abuse issues are in demand.
VOYA - Emily Petit
Most of this narrative relies on unique characters to hold the readers' attention. Despite the somewhat sluggish story line, the resilience of Hope Elliot will inspire and console readers of all ages, particularly girls on the verge of adolescence. It is a reflective account of a courageous child striving to maintain a sense of self-assurance in a verbally abusive relationship with her mother, shedding light on the truth of how destructive such an affiliation can be. \
School Library Journal

Gr 4-6 - Hope is a bright 11-year-old, eager to please and looking forward to a week at camp with her 6th-grade class. With ingenuity, she manages to fulfill the requirements, despite lack of support at home, but she has not fully reckoned with her unhappy and punitive mother. Anything can set Mom off, and when it does, a scorching tirade and cruel punishment follow. "Hopeless" is the kindest word that her mother hurls at her. This portrait of a verbally abusive parent is acute and painful. Readers will cheer for Hope as she finds ways to comfort herself and to shore up her damaged self-esteem. Especially important is her new friendship with two older women who run a thrift shop where Hope works to earn the boots and clothes she needs for the trip. When Mom punishes her by refusing to let her go to camp, it takes the intervention of caring adults to give her back her dreams and to stop the abuse. While Hope is away, her mother enrolls in parenting classes. That a troubled adult would turn around in one short week is a fairy-tale ending, but this didactic story is nonetheless a compelling and rewarding read. The back matter contains a list of "Hope Notes"-ideas for ways that readers can build their own resiliency.-Carolyn Lehman, Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Kirkus Reviews
Hope's mother verbally abuses her, calling her hopeless, an accident, stupid, the reason her father left, as well as innumerable profanities. When she's brought into the principal's office for calling another student a "dumb shit," her mother arrives, speaking demeaning profanities about Hope to the principal. So the reader gets the picture right away. Because her sixth-grade class is studying the Holocaust, she begins reading Anne Frank, and watches the film Life is Beautiful. Hope begins to develops coping methods, as did Anne in her attic and Guido in the internment camps. All the while, readers see her as a good girl, smart and hardworking, while her mother continues to denigrate and dismiss her. Fortunately, she has support from other adults and an older brother who knows her grief. The abuse remains erratic-like living with a rattlesnake-and finally, Hope's mother refuses to give her permission to attend the most important event of the year, the Outdoor School. Her brother contacts educators and friends, who intervene and convince her mother to change her mind. When Hope comes home, her mother has begun counseling and is beginning to change. Written for the purpose of helping other abused children, this has a hopeful, though rather facile ending; sadly, such is not the case for every abused child. (Fiction. 10-14)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316012362
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 4/1/2007
  • Pages: 288
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 780L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.62 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Gretchen Olson is the author of the YA novel Joyride (Boyds Mill Press) and on the board of directors for The Hands & Words Are Not for Hurting Project. She received the University of Oregon's Community Award for her work with the Hands Project. Gretchen lives with her husband on their blueberry farm in Oregon.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 77 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(61)

4 Star

(11)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(3)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 77 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 5, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    A great book, for someone who doesn't like to read.

    I usually don't EVER read in my free-time. I never would sit down and just read a book on a weekend or during the summer. But when I got this book Call Me Hope it changed everything. I was reading it all the time! I would sit on the couch, in my room, outside- where ever, and just read it! This book was very good. It caught my attention and I heard about the book from someone in my school. When I went and got it at barnes and nobles I read the back and it didn't seem very interesting but it did seem interesting- So i bought it. Within two days that I got it, I already read half of it. It comes with a great lesson and a great story. I highly recommend this book to anybody. Even my aunt who is in her 40's. I looked to see if Grtechen Olson wrote any other books, but it didn't say that she did. This is a great novel by Gretchen Olson. and YOU should really read it!

    10 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 22, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Heart-warming with a few tears

    A heart-warming story that will bring a few tears as you read this beautiful story by Gretchen Olson on verbal abusive in a young girl's life. As she learns about herself and creates a plan you will find yourself feeling Hope's pain and joys.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 30, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club.com

    Hope Marie Elliot is eleven years old and in sixth grade. She has a lot to hope for: that her verbally abusive mother will stop calling her stupid and making her feel as though everything she does is wrong, and that she will get to go to Outdoor School at the end of the school year. But Hope is aptly named, and while her mother's insults continue unabated, she begins to form a refuge for herself. She throws her energy into school work and takes on a challenging project related to Anne Frank's diary, which her class is reading. She forms a friendship with two women who own a consignment clothing shop, and works to earn clothing for herself. She makes new friends at school, and begins to see her school counselor as someone she can open up to.<BR/><BR/>She is surprisingly independent for a girl her age, but much of her independence is forged from neglect. When Hope could be drawing inward and closing up, instead she reaches out and sees that the wide world is not necessarily like the one she experiences at home. And that gives her courage to reach out for more. Underlying much of the book is the recognition that while physical abuse is no longer accepted, verbal abuse is often still ignored or dealt with awkwardly.<BR/><BR/>Call Me Hope by Gretchen Olson is told simply through the words of the young protagonist, and it is richly layered with many themes. Some of the questions it asks readers to ponder: What is verbal abuse? How does a parent's verbal abuse affect members of the whole family, especially when it's directed at only one sibling? How do voices from the Holocaust have meaning for and inspire us today? What impact does a loving community have on a child's emotional well being? Is there hope for change?<BR/><BR/>Author Gretchen Olson has written a book that shines a light on an issue that isn't talked about much, while giving us a character, Hope, who will burrow into your heart and stay for a while.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 11, 2011

    Amazing

    This book compared two different lives, and it really makes you compare yours to it too. It really makes you think, about your own life. How good you really have it. Hope goes through changes she never expected, and she finds friends she never expected. She learns many lessons on the way, both good and not so good. This is a book teens would like. It has funny, sad, and shocking and exciting parts that keep the book going. You get drawed in from the begining, not the middle.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2012

    Amazing

    I got it from the library a day later I was finished I recomend this book to ANYONE!!!!!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 9, 2011

    Wanna have it!

    It looks like a super good but sad book!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 23, 2011

    heart wrenching

    thisbook either had me in tears or yelling at the dang book. hope takes you n a awful journey. most endings aredry but this is one of those books that the end makes the book. a must read that any reader will love and fall in love with Hope.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 22, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    An OK book...not "WOW!!!!! GREAT!!!!!!"

    This book was OK... I don't reccommend it for people who don't want to read bad words. This book has only one bad word... But it is used so that the reader can see how Hope's mother treats her. This book is heartwarming and touching. At some points it was amusing or exciting, some points sad, and at some points i was absolutely BORED OUT OF MY MIND!!!!!!!!

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 28, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Timeless, Priceless, Sadness

    To tell you something, a good friends recommended this book to me. I read it and absloutly loved it. I hated and it made me sad that Hope's mother would treat her like the way she did. I just think that it was very nasty and vile to treat Hope that way. What made me happy was the love and the togetherness between hope and her brother Tyler. Tyler really saved hope when she really needed it.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2013

    Loved it

    This book is very good it i think kids 10 to 16 will love this book. When i first saw this book i was like no i am not going to read this but i am so happy i read call me hope

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2013

    Verry good

    Made me cry (alot)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2012

    Call Me Hope

    This is a compelling story and a worthwhile read.
    (Stop here if you dislike spoilers!!!!)


    What really irks me though is that in the end the mom becomes all nice just like that and you are prettty much right back where you started from.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2012

    HELP Me

    How do u get your names instead of Anyomus?

    1 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2011

    Meh.

    I was really excited about reading this book, but I have to say I was disappointed about it. It was slow but had a good message.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 3, 2011

    GREAT BOOK!!!!!!

    This book is great for teens.it helps you think about your life and compare the two lifestyles. i would read this book over again. but i personaly enjoyed it!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 30, 2010

    review

    this book is great for kids to understand that they need to take their parents for granite. cause there are lots of kids out there who get abused and dont know what it is like to be loved. so this book teaches kids to really understand that there are kids who are suffering.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 12, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A Touching story!!

    This book touches your heart in a weay that u will never froget and she finds a way to deal with her mom lov this book!!!! A MUST READ!!:):)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2014

    Amazing reads

    This book helps me get through hard times. Hope is an encouraging character and has wisdom beyond belief. I highly recommend this book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    Hope

    I "hope" this book inspires kids to be a better person
    Btw loved the book read a previw in a book and looked 4eva for found it read it loved it

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 26, 2013

    Most beautiful literature

    I hava barely cried when I read a book. When I read this at home I was pouring tears! You must read this to go on with your life. After I read this book I never felt the same way again.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 77 Customer Reviews

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