Mick Harte Was Here

Mick Harte Was Here

4.8 103
by Barbara Park, Michener

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This is Phoebe's brilliantly told story about her younger brother and best friend, Mick, who dies in a bicycle accident. her struggle to accept his death and deal with her own grief is told in the touching, witty narrative of a 13-year-old girl taht will evoke both laughter and tears and will long be remembered.


This is Phoebe's brilliantly told story about her younger brother and best friend, Mick, who dies in a bicycle accident. her struggle to accept his death and deal with her own grief is told in the touching, witty narrative of a 13-year-old girl taht will evoke both laughter and tears and will long be remembered.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
"I don't want to make you cry. I just want to tell you about Mick. But I thought you should know right up front that he's not here anymore. I just thought that would be fair." Phoebe, the eighth-grade narrator of Park's (Buddies; Don't Make Me Smile) heart-wrenching novel, weaves together diverting anecdotes about her endearingly eccentric brother with her reactions, and those of her parents, to his death in a bicycle accident at the age of 12. The genius of this novel is Park's ability to make the events excruciatingly real while entirely avoiding the mawkish; likable Phoebe's frank, at times even funny narration will leave readers feeling as though they've known the girl-and Mick-for a very long time. Park's ability to convey so affectingly both the individual and collective pain of this family's members is remarkable. She focuses on small moments-the father closing the door to Mick's room upon returning from the hospital; the mother covering her ears because she cannot bear Phoebe's talk about her brother. But the novel has another crucial dimension in that it stresses the importance of wearing bike helmets. Midway through the story, in response to Phoebe's misplaced sense of guilt, Phoebe's father introduces the subject: "He heaved a God-awful sigh and whispered, `If only I had made him wear his helmet.'" The message is skillfully reprised toward the conclusion, in a powerful scene in which Phoebe overcomes her own pain and anger to participate in a school assembly on bicycle safety. An author's note at the end reinforces the message. To Park's great credit, the lesson never dominates-the story reads not as a cautionary tale, but as a full-fledged and fully convincing drama. Ages 8-12. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Jan Lieberman
Parks has written a sensitive story that is told by Mick's sister Phoebe. We learn about Mick, 12, from Phoebe's funny reminiscences. Mick was the kid who put a ceramic eye in a defrosted chicken; who dressed as Thomas Crapper, the inventor of the flush toilet, one Halloween. When he did a wild solo dance at school, he said it was because "the music got in is pants." If only Mick had worn his bicycle helmet, he might be alive now. This is a story with a message but it is Parks' humor and sensitivity that make the story so touching.
School Library Journal
Gr 4-8Thirteen-year-old Phoebe endures the wrenching shock of her brother's death due to a bike accident and then must cope with the slow, painful process of dealing with her grief and that of her parents. Told in an intimate first person narrative, this novel by Barbara Park (Knopf, 1995), although somber in theme, is not without humor and appealing details of everyday life in the '90's. "Mick was a surprise," Phoebe tells us. "He loved it, too. Being a surprise, I mean. He was always teasing my parents about it. Telling them that even before he existed, he could outsmart two chemistry majors with birth control pills." It is through memories like these, and by firmly insisting that they be mentioned frequently by family and friends, that Phoebe is able to grow beyond the pain of loss. The fresh-voiced narration of Dana Lubotsky, which is both clear and sounds genuinely like that of a young teenager, puts this short, intense novel across in virtuoso style. Shedding light on the world of emotions with honesty, this will make a thought-provoking addition to libraries as well as preparing its listeners for the losses we all must bear.Carol Katz, Harrison Public Library, NY
Ilene Cooper
Park turns her wry eye on a serious subject, the death of a sibling. With love, wit, and anger, 13-year-old Phoebe Harte describes her brother, Mick, and the effect his death has on the family. It is a bike accident that kills Mick, and Park does an excellent job of capturing the shock and dissociation that a sudden death can cause in survivors. There's so much here that rings true: what friends can (and cannot) do, the inevitable rantings against God, and the seesaw emotions experienced by the whole family. Where Park goes a bit over the top is in her description of Mick, a real wiseacre, who puts a ceramic eye in a defrosted chicken and goes trick-or-treating as Thomas Crapper, inventor of the toilet. Not that this isn't funny stuff, but Park's inflation of Mick oddly diminishes him. Still, there is a sea of real emotions here, and readers, whether they've been touched by death or not, will find themselves touched by this book. Park's author's-note plea for kids to wear bike helmets (such a helmet could have saved Mick) may now fall on responsive ears.
From the Publisher
"A full-fledged and fully convincing drama" (Publishers Weekly).  

Product Details

Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.57(h) x 0.51(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

BARBARA PARK is best known as the author of the wildly popular New York Times bestselling Junie B. Jones series, which has kept kids (and their grown-ups) laughing—and reading—for over two decades. Beloved by millions, the Junie B. Jones books have been translated into multiple languages and are a time-honored staple in elementary school classrooms around the world. Every bit as funny as her best-known character, Barbara once said, “There are those who believe that the value of a children’s book can be measured only in terms of the moral lessons it tries to impose or the perfect role models it offers. Personally, I happen to think that a book is of extraordinary value if it gives the reader nothing more than a smile or two. In fact, I happen to think that’s huge.”

Barbara Park is also the author of award-winning middle grade novels and bestselling picture books, including Skinnybones, Mick Harte Was Here, and The Kid in the Red Jacket.

Barbara Park was born in New Jersey in 1947 and spent most of her adult life in Arizona, where she and her husband, Richard, raised two sons. Barbara died in 2013, but her legacy lives on in the laughter her books give to readers all over the world.

Brief Biography

Scottsdale, Arizona
Date of Birth:
April 21, 1947
Place of Birth:
Mt. Holly, New Jersey
B.S., University of Alabama, 1969

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Mick Harte Was Here 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 103 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
My daughter who is 10 and I both received alot of blessings from this book...We both enjoyed it through our laughter and tears...Anyone who has ever lost someone they love can relate to the many unanswered questions we all have...It helped us get through some of our own pain...A true blessing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Omg i cried! I cried so hard! It was beautiful and amazing. I ended up getting this book as an assaignment and then read it 32 times again. Hah great read!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book i've read 2 times i just love it i'd highly recommend it.I found it a lesson even if somthing goes wrong in your life you should keep on moving and don't egnor it but don't beat your self up for it either.This book is told by a young girl that her brother died in a bycyicle accedent and how her Aunt i beleive, came and set everything straight i guess even though i'm 11 i'm gonna try to buy it and keep it forever so if you haven't read the book you should!
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book was a wonderful book and also a book that people could learn a lesson from, especially children. This is a very heart-warming story, i read this book in school with my class, and i have a lot to say about it, but there are way to many wonderful things that i could share, some of them are, it teachs children a very good lesson, it deffinetly taught me to ware a helment.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best book ever! MUST READ!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the best book in the whole world i balled and balled!!!! I read this at school not on the nook but it is really good it is so worth the money!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good book ,so far but i,m not finised yet.This book so fsr is paked with drama,humor,and i say FIVE STARS ,so far!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The most thrilling book of the year
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really love this book! I read it with my friends and it was so good. I recomend this book and you have to buy it!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sad but awesome
Joseph Petruzzo More than 1 year ago
this book made me cry every page! it was a touching story about a girl whos brother would still be alive if he had only worn his bike helmet. this made me want to wear my helmet even if i am an expert rider. this book is amazing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A touching story with an important message. Mick Hart's tragic death becomes even more poignant when the reader begins to understand how avoidable it was. Motorcyclist in many states are required to wear helmets by law while allowing our children to ride bicycles with no protection. Mick Hart drives home a pointed message that is too often ignored by children and adults.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am 10 and I found this book hard to but down. When I retuned it to the libray I had to get it again. It is a great book by a great arthor. I had to read it over and over.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read it twice an still not bored! Lov eit u should totally read,if ur 11 like me you will llllllllllooooooooovvvvvvvvvveeeeeeeee It:)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Why would ypu make a book like this i love this book but why like you should give more details thats my opioion and also i think this book was great and i always wanted to meet the aurthor
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Will someone be my nook friend u can give me your email or ill give i mine
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thumbs up
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this in the 3rd grade. Great book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a great book to use a novel study.Ihope this will get you to watch it!!!!! I would recommend this to a 3rd-6th grade student!! -From Brianna E.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sad and emotional book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a good so good bok i thib Nk so
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was one of the best books i have ever read