Make Way for Dyamonde Daniel [NOOK Book]


Dyamonde Daniel may be new in town, but that doesn't stop her from making a place for herself in a jiffy. With her can-do attitude and awesome brain power she takes the whole neighborhood by storm. The only thing puzzling her is the other new kid in her class. He's awfully grouchy - but Dyamonde's determined to get to the bottom of his frowning attitude and make a friend. Readers will fall in love with Dyamonde Daniel, the spirited star of a new series by Nikki Grimes. With her upbeat, take-charge attitude, ...
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Make Way for Dyamonde Daniel

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Dyamonde Daniel may be new in town, but that doesn't stop her from making a place for herself in a jiffy. With her can-do attitude and awesome brain power she takes the whole neighborhood by storm. The only thing puzzling her is the other new kid in her class. He's awfully grouchy - but Dyamonde's determined to get to the bottom of his frowning attitude and make a friend. Readers will fall in love with Dyamonde Daniel, the spirited star of a new series by Nikki Grimes. With her upbeat, take-charge attitude, Dyamonde is a character to cheer for - and the fun, accessible storytelling will hook kids from the first page.
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Editorial Reviews

Julie Just
Dyamonde, a third grader, has "wild-crazy hair," is "skinnier than half a toothpick" and is more than equal to the challenge of entering the crowded field of confident grade school heroines.
—The New York Times
Children's Literature - Maggie Chase
Dyamonde Daniel is a lively, confidant, somewhat forward third grader who, despite her best intentions to think positively, pines for her best friend, the old neighborhood, and her parents as a married couple (without all the fighting of course). Dyamonde is also very smart, as the author reminds us again and again, and as such is not content to let problems go unfixed. So when a new, very grumpy boy named Free is welcomed into the class, Dyamonde cannot help but wonder why he is so surly to everyone and outright mean to younger children. When she confronts him with a demanding "What is your problem?" Free is taken aback by her assertive personality but cannot resist nor escape her persistence. Eventually, they discover the many things they have in common and begin to explore their urban setting together. Grimes' writing is accessible, appropriately descriptive, and clearly conveys Dyamonde's strong voice and character. Dyamonde's love of math provides a recurring motif throughout the book, as in this example after her parents divorced, when she "hated math because all she could see was subtraction. Mom's voice minus Dad's. Two for breakfast instead of three. Monday night TV minus the football." Many scenes would make great readers' theater interpretations. With large print, only seventy-two pages, and expressive line drawings, this will serve as a great transition chapter book for second and fourth graders. Reviewer: Maggie Chase
School Library Journal
Gr 2-3–“What’s the matter with the new boy?” wonders third grader Dyamonde Daniel. Free always looks angry and never talks in class, only communicating in grunts. Dyamonde knows what it feels like to be new: her parents’ divorce caused her to relocate from Brooklyn to Washington Heights. Yet her friendly overtures are rebuffed each time. When Free scares one of the little kids in the lunchroom, Dyamonde has had enough and confronts him about his grouchy behavior. It turns out that the classmates have much in common, including their unusual names and a longing for their old schools and friends. Dyamonde, smart, assertive, wild-haired, and “skinnier than half a toothpick,” is a memorable main character, though she sometimes sounds too mature for her years. Yet her actions and feelings ring true. Christie’s illustrations flesh out the characters, and along with patterned page borders, contribute child appeal. This is a promising start to a new series of transitional chapter books; suggest it to readers who enjoyed Karen English’s Nikki & Deja (Clarion, 2008), another early chapter book about the ups and downs of friendship between two African-American students.–Jackie Partch, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR
Kirkus Reviews
Third grader Dyamonde Daniel, transplanted from Brooklyn to Washington Heights because of her parents' divorce, is looking for a best friend. She is smart in school, especially when it comes to numbers, and sometimes her bravado makes her seem cocky. Deep down, Dyamonde is like most other kids: She wants a friend and she wants to belong. But as her new friend Free, also newly relocated because of family issues, says, "Wow! You're amazing . . . .You really don't care what people think." He hides his fondness for reading from the other children and is grouchy and belligerent to the little kids until Dyamonde calls him on his attitude, cementing their friendship. City youngsters will welcome a story set in their world-the world of small businesses, nosy old folks, small apartments and people from many cultures, and new readers will welcome the familiar situations, large font and ample white space. Gregory's familiar black-and-white sketches add a hip, urban feel to the tale. Here's hoping this series kick-off leads to many more stories about best friends Dyamonde and Free. (Fiction. 7-10)
School Library Journal
Gr 2–4—Dyamonde, a third grader, is still coping with her parents' divorce and the subsequent move to a new neighborhood. She misses old friends and is trying to find her spot in a new school. When a new boy, Free, joins her class, she tries to be friendly, but is quickly shut down. What's going on with that boy? It's like he's trying to make everyone hate him. Dyamonde is a take-charge kind of girl who isn't willing to take "no" for an answer. Over time, the two African-American children discover common threads in their lives and gradually become friends in Nikki Grimes's beginning chapter book (Puffin, 2010), the first title in a projected series. Read by the author with gentle humor, this delightful book will find an audience with the Junie B. Jones and Clementine set.—Teresa Bateman. Brigadoon Elementary School, Federal Way, WA
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101657393
  • Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
  • Publication date: 3/4/2010
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 112
  • Sales rank: 513,472
  • Age range: 7 - 9 Years
  • Lexile: 620L (what's this?)
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Nikki Grimes is the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of dozens of children’s and young adult books as well as a poet and journalist.


Among the many accolades she has received are the Golden Dolphin Award (2005),the NCTE Award for Excellence in Poetry for Children (2006), the Coretta Scott King Award (2003) for Bronx Masquerade, and the Horace Mann Upstanders Award (2011) for Almost Zero: A Dyamonde Daniel Book. Additionally, her book Barack Obama: Son of Promise, Child of Hope (illustrated by Bryan Collier) was a New York Times bestseller, and she was acknowledged as an NAACP Image Award Finalist in 1993 for her book Malcolm X: a Force for Change. Her books Meet Danitra Brown (illustrated by Floyd Cooper), Jazmin's NotebookTalkin' About Bessie (illustrated by E.B. Lewis), Dark Sons, The Road to Paris, and Words with Wings were each awarded Coretta Scott King Honors. Visit her online at
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Dyamonde is Dynamite!

    This book ROCKS!!

    I try to find books that I think my 'reading buddy' can relate to and will enjoy. Both she and I loved this book so much - we are eagerly anticipating the next in the series - 'Rich'.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 12, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Add This To Your Classroom Library!

    I'm not going to write a synopsis of the book as this has already been done quite well by the experts. I just had to alert other teachers to this book. Most teachers are aware of the beautiful poetry that Nikki Grimes has written, but I was surprised to see that she had also written this book and the 2nd Dyamonde Daniel book, "Rich." I teach 4th grade in an urban setting in downtown Albany, NY and all of my students are of African-American descent. The girls just LOVED this book. It is not a high action book but the setting and characters are ones that my students can relate to. There are so few contemporary books that my students can connect to and I was thrilled to see that an author of Nikki Grimes' caliber decided to try her hand at writing in this genre. I have assigned it a Guided Reading Level of M and it is a high interest book for older readers reading at this lower level. Several of my girls struggle to find books that they like to read during silent reading time. "Make Way for Dyamonde Daniel" and "Rich" have had my readers engrossed for hours! They can't wait for Nikki Grimes to write another Dyamonde Daniel book and neither can I! (Some of my boys are waiting to get their hands on my two classroom copies of this book so they can see what all the girls are fussing about!)

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 20, 2009

    Fun Reading

    Dyamonde has a special personality, which you will quickly find out as you start reading this book. Building a friendship with someone new just like herself eases the fear for both Dyamonde and Free. Looking forward to reading the next Dyamonde Daniel book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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