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Clarice Bean Spells Trouble

Clarice Bean Spells Trouble

4.2 14
by Lauren Child

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Clarice Bean is in for a spell of trouble -- and shares a lesson about kindness -- in this hilarious sequel to the NEW YORK TIMES bestseller.

Clarice Bean seems to be in nonstop trouble these days, almost as much as Karl Wrenbury, who is the naughtiest boy at school. If only she could be more like her favorite book character, Ruby Redfort, girl detective, who


Clarice Bean is in for a spell of trouble -- and shares a lesson about kindness -- in this hilarious sequel to the NEW YORK TIMES bestseller.

Clarice Bean seems to be in nonstop trouble these days, almost as much as Karl Wrenbury, who is the naughtiest boy at school. If only she could be more like her favorite book character, Ruby Redfort, girl detective, who is very good at getting out of trouble. The problem is, Mrs. Wilberton is planning a spelling bee, and just thinking about it gives Clarice a stomachache. But when Karl Wrenbury has a family problem and gets into really big trouble, Clarice does something utterly unexpected, altruistically proving Ruby Redfort's maxim "Never let a good pal down." The superbly talented Lauren Child presents a fast-paced, full-length adventure full of wacky wit, visual appeal, and a surprisingly heartwarming twist sure to reel in the most reluctant reader.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
PW called Clarice Bean, who graduated from picture books to chapter books in Utterly Me, Clarice Bean, "once again,... utterly a charmer." In the heroine's second paper-over-board chapter-book adventure, Clarice Bean Spells Trouble by Lauren Child, she is again obsessed with Ruby Redfort, the 11-year-old secret agent star of her book, and attempts to help a friend by following fictional Ruby's rules, all this while preparing for a spelling bee and attempting to land a leading role in The Sound of Music. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Many things in life puzzle Clarice, including spelling. Unfortunately for Clarice, her teacher has organized a school-wide spelling bee and she has little hope for success. Clarice once again relies on advice from her TV hero, Ruby Redfort, as she endeavors to win a part in her school play and help her friend, Karl, who seems to be having a tough time. In the process, she learns a bit of spelling, meets a wonderful new teacher, finds herself accused of vandalism and winds up in a movie. Clarice is a very appealing character and sure to attract fans of Junie B. Jones and Ramona. Even when we see trouble coming for Clarice, readers know her heart is in the right place. Occasional small illustrations and typeface changes add some spark to the text, which is large and easily readable. A definite add to your collection for a fun and easy read. 2004, Candlewick Press, Ages 8 to 12.
—Sharon Oliver
School Library Journal
Gr 1-4-In this follow-up to Utterly Me, Clarice Bean (Candlewick, 2003), Clarice prepares for a spelling bee, hopes to land a good part in a play, tries to please a teacher, and is supportive of a friend. She continually employs the mind-set of her favorite book/TV detective, Ruby Redfort, to try to keep out of trouble and to help others. However, Clarice discovers that sometimes being a real friend is worth being in big trouble. The childish language and writing style will attract fans of Barbara Park's "Junie B. Jones" series (Random) and random sketches and font changes should help keep the interest of young readers. The novel begins well, slows down, and picks up again toward the end. Loose ends leave readers to assume that unanswered questions will be addressed in future books. While the story is somewhat disorganized and some readers may not be satisfied by its conclusion, overall it is appealing.-Amanda Rose Conover, St. John's County Public Library System, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
As utterly herself as ever, Clarice Bean Tuesday returns, to chatter on while riding an emotional roller coaster to close out her school year. Along with wondering what's up with classmate Karl Wrenbury (who's acting out in response to family problems), and earning a suspension by taking the rap for one of his misdeeds, she has many more issues. She frets about an upcoming spelling bee; continues to dote on her book/TV heroine Ruby Redfort; ruminates on what it takes to be a good writer; gets and loses the role of Liesl in a class production of The Sound of Music; and records typically droll doings in her extended family, along with encounters with teachers good and bad-her regular one, Mrs. Wilberton, being a painfully vivid example of the latter. Child kicks Clarice Bean's already vivacious narrative up a notch with lots of small, quick ink sketches, typeface changes and polysyllabic study words (some of them made up), then closes on a delirious high note as Clarice unexpectedly lands a bit part opposite Ruby Redfort herself. Judy Moody and Junie B. Jones fans will happily dive into the observations of this "exceptionordinarily" entertaining middle-grader. (Fiction. 8-10)

Product Details

Candlewick Press
Publication date:
Clarice Bean Series
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
7.18(w) x 11.04(h) x 0.49(d)
1040L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

Tuesday is not my favorite day because there is testing to see how smart everyone is and how can you see that in a test? That's the thing about school: they might only test you for one thing, i.e., math or spellingy type things or punctuationy thingummybobs, and they will not see that maybe you will know absolutely every episode of the Ruby Redfort series by heart. And that you can tell them how Ruby managed to jump out of a moving helicopter without twisting an ankle. Which is a hard thing to do.

And maybe you will know how to cleverly mend your hem with a stapler or stand on your actual head -- or stand on your actual head while drawing a dog in ballpoint pen -- or teach your dog how to draw with a ballpoint pen while he stands on your head. But they do not test you for these things because the people who come up with the testing do not think it is important.

But would you rather know someone who knows how to jump out of a moving helicopter without getting a twisted ankle or someone who can spell grapefruit?

I would like to know someone who knows how to get green marker out of a white carpet.

Until I do, Betty says put a chair over it.

I just hope my mom doesn't move the chairs before I discover the answer. Anyway, testing is my worst, whereas someone like Grace Grapello, for an actual example, is good in a test situation because ask her what 3.3 divided by 2.4 is and she will get a big check mark and I will get a headache.

Anyway, there we are doing this testing thing and the room is all quiet and I can just hear the clock ticking really slowly -- but strangely, every minute I look up, it is ten minutes later and time is running out.

And I can hear Robert Granger breathing. That's what he does. He sits behind me and breathes. It drives me utterly crazy.

And I turn around and go, "Stop breathing, will you!"

And he says, "Clarice Bean, of course I cannot stop breathing, because then I would be dead, and how would you like that?"

I decide not to answer his question because Mom has taught me if you can't think of anything nice to say, then sometimes it is better to say nothing at all. You see, I am trying really hard to keep it zipped in class, and I don't even utter a single word when I hear Grace Grapello telling Cindy Fisher that I am a duh-brain because I spelled photo with an f.

Mrs. Wilberton didn't tell her off even; she just said, "Clarice Bean, your spelling leaves a lot to be desired."

Anyway, at the end, when time is up, I hand in my test and Mrs. Wilberton says,

"Oh deary dear, it looks as if a spider has been dipped in ink and struggled across the page!"

I wish someone would dip her in ink.

Then she says, "I have some exciting news. I have arranged for the whole school to take part in a spelling bee."

Spelling bee is just a fancy way of saying test, but you have to stand there in front of the whole school and spell words out loud on the spot without writing them down. It is interesting that for Mrs. Wilberton giving a spelling test is the most fun she can ever have and for me it is a very good reason to tell Mrs. Marse, the school secretary, that I have a terrible case of a tummy upset and I need to go home as soon as possible, on the double, don't even bother to call my mom.

Anyway, I have been wondering, who is the person who gets to decide what is important?

Because I wish it was me.

Meet the Author

Lauren Child was absolutely utterly never in trouble when she was at school. Ever. And if she was, it was usually for a very good reason. And nearly always not her fault. The author-illustrator of the acclaimed UTTERLY ME, CLARICE BEAN, the first full-length fiction adventure starring Clarice Bean, Lauren Child has also created several picture books about this popular character. In addition, Lauren Child is the creator of a series of picture books about the lovable sibling pair Charlie and Lola, including I WILL NEVER NOT EVER EAT A TOMATO, which was awarded the prestigious Kate Greenaway Medal. Lauren Child lives and works in London.

From the Hardcover edition.

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Clarice Bean Spells Trouble 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed my daughter's pleasure with these books! She received the entire series, and was only disappointed with the end of the series. The illustrations were great and even though the lessons discussed were very well understood, she still found the series entertaining. When a child understands lessons at a very young age, it is difficult to find good reading material for them without getting them bored. This series was great. I would love to see another round of Clarice Bean!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Once again, Lauren Child takes us into the life of young Clarice Bean, and the antics she gets into are funnier and wilder than the last book. I loved every minute of reading this book and I'm hoping there's another one to follow.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book is about a girl named clarice beans she has a little trouble with spelling.and her teacher mrs.wilberton does a spelling bee at the end ofthe school year.alsothis kid karl wrenbury known to be the naughtiest kid in school does grafitti and clarice gets accused of doing it so this play coming up she can`t go because of what they accused her.i really wish i can tell you the rest but i can`t figure the rest out!
RoseinbloomNC More than 1 year ago
My son really like this book and did really well on his ar test on it! good book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was fantastic, funny, and an excellent read. Great book Mrs. Lauren!
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chemwife More than 1 year ago
Our 6 year old has read quite a few chapter books and loves Charlie & Lola. This was not at all what she was expecting.