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Millicent Min, Girl Genius

Millicent Min, Girl Genius

4.4 37
by Lisa Yee

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Millicent Min is having a bad summer. Her fellow high school students hate her for setting the curve. Her fellow 11-year-olds hate her for going to high school. And her mother has arranged for her to tutor Stanford Wong, the poster boy for Chinese geekdom. But then Millie meets Emily. Emily doesn't know Millicent's IQ score. She actually thinks Millie is cool. And


Millicent Min is having a bad summer. Her fellow high school students hate her for setting the curve. Her fellow 11-year-olds hate her for going to high school. And her mother has arranged for her to tutor Stanford Wong, the poster boy for Chinese geekdom. But then Millie meets Emily. Emily doesn't know Millicent's IQ score. She actually thinks Millie is cool. And if Millie can hide her awards, ignore her grandmother's advice, swear her parents to silence, blackmail Stanford, and keep all her lies straight, she just might make her first friend.
What's it going to take? Sheer genius.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Praise for Millicent Min, Girl Genius

"An utterly charming debut, as well as being the kind of tour de force that leaves one breathless... Yee's mastery of the 'girl genius' voice is flawless, by turns hilarious and poignant." -- Boston Globe

*"A heartfelt story full of wit." -- Publishers Weekly, starred review

"Funny, charming, and heartwarming, with something to say about the virtues of trust and truth telling, this deserves an A." -- Kirkus Reviews

Publishers Weekly
An 11-year-old breezes through high school and college classes, but when it comes to making friends her own age, she's at a loss. "Readers don't have to share the heroine's IQ to empathize with the genius narrator of this energetic first novel," wrote PW in a starred review. Ages 9-12. (Sept.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
At the tender age of eleven, Millicent Min has completed her junior year of high school. Summer school is Millie's idea of fun, so she is excited that her parents are allowing her to take a college poetry course. But Millie soon concludes that college is "just like high school, only bigger." Even in a college classroom, she is far more earnest and dedicated than any of the other students, and she is still regarded as an oddball. Meanwhile her mother signs her up for volleyball "to give her a more normal and well-rounded childhood." Although Millie is a klutz on the volleyball court, there she meets Emily, who shares her dislike of sports. Fearing to lose this first real friend, Millie lies to Emily about her academic genius. Eventually Millie's deceptions catch up with her, and she is forced to apply herself to something other than homework: learning how to become a true friend. The tension between Millie's formal, overly intellectual way of expressing herself and her emotional immaturity makes her a very funny narrator. Millie's obsession with book learning goes far beyond the stereotypical studiousness of Asian Americans. Her laid-back father, artistic mother, and wise, warm-hearted grandmother all encourage Millie to put down her books and broaden her interests. Fellow Chinese student Stanford Wong prefers basketball to schoolwork, and mutters to Millie, "Because of you, teachers expect every Chinese kid to be a genius." Readers considerably older than Millicent's eleven years will enjoy this strong debut novel. VOYA Codes 4Q 4P M J (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to9). 2003, Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic, 248p., Ages 11 to 15.
—Walter Hogan
Children's Literature
Millicent Min is an atypical eleven-year-old girl who doesn't like boys, nail polish, stuffed animals, shopping, sports, or Stanford Wong, her archenemy. She is also taking a college poetry course the summer before her senior year in high school! Millicent is a genius, and her parents are proud, but they feel that she is missing her childhood. In an effort to help Millicent act like a preteen, her mother and best friend/grandmother, Maddie, enroll Millicent in a summer volleyball team and then volunteer her to tutor Stanford Wong. Millicent's last summer in Rancho Rosetta, California may be one that she will never forget. She has to tutor her nemesis, play on a volleyball team full of beautiful girls who hate her, and deal with her grandmother's move to another city. On top of all this, she thinks her mother is dying. With a summer like that, who needs the school year? But if Millicent will just stop analyzing her life and live it, she may find out that being a preteen volleyball player is as much fun as being a preteen genius. Lisa Yee uses the diary of a girl as the format for this novel. Her use of language allows readers to believe that they are reading the diary of a young girl, while the details remind the reader that the young girl is a genius. Yee's use of slang and simple English establishes a connection between Millicent and the reader. This mixture of language helps to show the reader the different dimensions of Millicent. Even though she has the brain of a genius, Millicent still has the heart of a child. 2003, Arthur A Levine Books, Ages 9 to 12.
—Michelle Wade
School Library Journal
Gr 5-8-Millie, an 11-year-old with a genius IQ, is taking a college poetry class and waiting for her high school senior year. Because she never hesitates to show how much she knows about a particular subject, her peers tend to stay away. Millie's social ineptitude is a cause of concern for her parents. Against her will, she is enrolled in summer volleyball and enlisted to tutor Stanford Wong, a friend of the family. Into this mix enters Emily, a volleyball teammate and typical preteen. The girls become friends but Millie neglects to tell Emily about her genius status. Eventually the truth surfaces and Emily feels betrayed. Millie thinks that Emily is angry because she is smart, never realizing that the betrayal comes from her lack of trust in their friendship. While some readers will have trouble identifying with Millie, her trials and tribulations result in a story that is both funny and heartwarming. A universal truth conveyed is that honesty and acceptance of oneself and of others requires a maturity measured not by IQ but by generosity of spirit.-Sharon Morrison, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Durant, OK Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
From Yee's first sentence-"I have been accused of being anal retentive, an overachiever, and a compulsive perfectionist, like those are bad things"-this perfectly captures the humor, unique voice, and dilemma of Millicent Min, its wunderkind heroine. For while there is no doubt that Millicent, an 11-year-old entering 12th grade, is a genius, her social and athletic skills leave something to be desired. In an effort to ameliorate the situation, her parents sign her up for a girls' volleyball league. There Millicent meets Emily, a potential friend, and to seem more normal decides to lie about her academic ability. Comic complications multiply when Millicent's parents induce her to tutor the son of a family friend, who also likes Emily and is delighted to let her think that he's the one doing the tutoring. Funny, charming, and heartwarming, with something to say about the virtues of trust and truth telling, this deserves an A. (Fiction. 9-13)

Product Details

Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.38(w) x 10.36(h) x 0.64(d)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Lisa Yee's novels include Millicent Min, Girl Genius; Stanford Wong Flunks Big-Time (an ALA Notable Book); the Bobby chapter book series, and most recently, Warp Speed. She is also the author of the American Girl books, Good Luck, Ivy, Aloha Kanani and Good Job, Kanani. Please visit her website at www.lisayee.com.

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Millicent Min, Girl Genius 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 38 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book had no action whatsoever, and the made a mountain out of a molehill just to create conflict. Usually a book about anyone under age 13 isn't interesting for people older than that because it has no romance, and the characters had childish ways that we couldn't relate to, so this book is for young readers.
Lovz-Books More than 1 year ago
Millicent is an 11-year old genius! Unfortunately, she’s also a dork (signing a yearbook in Latin?) Of course, being a genius also means having no friends. She’s also a very naïve and gullible girl because people use her for her brains but she doesn’t figure it out soon enough. When she meets Emily, Millicent concludes that this is her shot to get a real friend…if she can hide her brilliant smarts. This follows the mantra: To gain another, you must lose yourself. “Yet in Emily’s eyes I was a normal girl. And normal girls don’t talk about those sort of things. Normal girls talk about…well, just what do they talk about? I’m going to have to research that.” (71) She’s so adorable! “I love blank pages, they hold so much promise.” (55) I loved that she loved to learn and read (just like ME!) And, like me, she overthinks and overanalyzes, and she’s not into boys or childish antics. “I wish I could walk into Bob’s Hardware Store and buy a shut off valve for my brain. At bedtime, my mind races. Thoughts pour out and dance around. Numbers add up and divide. Lists begin and never end. Songs without names taunt me. If my head can only be as empty as [the boys], I would be able to slip into the delicious, deep sleep that eludes me.” (190) “What my parents kept failing to understand was how happy I was when I was alone with my books. There was no pressure to perform or be cute, and books never disappoint—unless, of course, you’ve chosen a bad one. But then, you can always put it down and pick up another one without any repercussions.” (98) “I hate shopping. To me, malls are monolithic icons of mass consumption and capitalism.” (29) Totally agree! Absolutely smart! Love her! “I didn’t know what to say. Was I supposed to congratulate her or tell her I was sorry? I don’t suppose there’s a Hallmark card for this sort of thing. I mean, what would it read? ‘A standing ovation for your first ovulation!” (133) Hilarious! “Last night, Emily and I had a huge argument over the definition of ‘attractive.’ She seems to think it has a lot to do with good hair, sparkling eyes, and the ability to make a person melt. Me, I believe that it encompasses the ability to communicate (the written word, as well as spoken), high intelligence, and a firm grasp of current events.” (107) “True, I have led a somewhat solitary life and have on rare occasion wondered what it would be like to be popular. But it is not as if I sat alone in my room all day brooding. My life was so full with my studies and endless projects that there really wasn’t time for friendships. And if there wasn’t time for friendships, then wouldn’t it follow that there wasn’t time for loneliness?” (120) Witty, funny, and smart!
code7r More than 1 year ago
Millicent Min, Girl Genius, is the debut novel of Lisa Yee. It is the story of an 11 year old girl who is finishing her junior year of high school. She decides to take a college course over the summer and also ends up tutoring a boy named Stanford, whom she has known her whole life and does not like. She doesn't have any friends until a new girl moves in the neighborhood named Emily. Millicent hides her genius from Emily because she thinks that Emily will not want to be her friend if she knows she is a genius. Also, Millicent's mother signs her up for volleyball to try and help Millicent feel more like a kid, something that Millicent feels is not needed. Thus ensues the very interesting summer of Millicent Min. Lisa Yee did a great job on her debut novel. Writing about an 11 year old in high school would see impossible to make realistic, but I feel that Lisa did a great job of bringing life to Millicent Min. The reader begins to see that being a genius may not be all its cracked up to be. I recommend this book for kids of all ages. It can help them see through the eyes of someone who is "different" and maybe gleen a better understanding that being different can be okay.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book. It's comical yet serious. Lisa Yee kept me in depth theoughout the entire book. I would recommend this to friends and relatives between the ages of 9-13. It is also a good book if you are a volleyball fan.
ShaymarKeepsItReal More than 1 year ago
This book is about an 11 year old girl name Millicent. She is only 11 years old and has a really high IQ for her age. She's 11 and going to senior year in high school. AH-MAZING! She had no friends,well except for one but that didn't turn out to well. The only friends she used to have was her grandma. She found a friend but she messed up. She didn't tell her the truth. I think Millicent is awesome and highly confident and happy with the life she lives so she's like a star in my world. I loved this book because it was so descriptive and it was written in diary form. It seemed like a real person something that happens in real life and not just a story in a book. You should read this book. its AWESOME and it just shows to say that sometimes when you don't tell someone something maybe its not because of the content but because of the fact that you didn't tell them.
Qioko More than 1 year ago
This book Girl Genius is about having a bad summer and her High school students hate her for setting the curve
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
bookaholic123 More than 1 year ago
Lisa Yee makes Millie easy to relate to, so through her bad mistakes, friendship, and lies, you stick with her and root her through it the whole time. This book can relate to the every day life of a pre-teen (which is why it's so easy for them to relate to it), and so can the writing style, and the voice of this book. I read this book a few years ago, and it was so memorable, I'm still in love with it! The author's writing style also contributes to the quality of this book, and makes it flow easily. This book is definitely a must read for people looking to stop worrying about their lives, or just plain relax and have a good read. I recommend this book to all ages! This book is so great, I feel as though I still didn't do it justice in describing how great it was.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
this book ia great and is really focused on kids around 9-13. since i am 12 i can relate to what milli is going through with her social problems. the author did a great job with this book and a highly recomend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
11 year old Millicent Min is in high school, and is taking a college class. In this book the author tells a story about a young girl who knows just about everything. She¿s tutoring, playing volleyball, and other things her mom is making her do to be more social. The author does a marvelous job of grasping the readers, around the ages of 10-14, into the book. The author, Lisa Yee, carefully wrote this book so pre-teens and young adults could comprehend it. She made the information easy to understand, but some of the content has some big words in it to express the main characters thoughts and feelings. Because the author uses a serious and realistic tone, readers could make this book seem like everyday life. She also uses a little bit of humor. Some of the chapters may seem a little boring at first because of the tone and emotions from that author. Though this book has great sentence structure, it still has some words that you may not know. This book is presented fairly. It includes plenty of information, even the exact date and place. It is organized very well. She also stays on topic which is a great thing to do. Readers will love this book and may also relate to some of the characters and events. It teaches a lesson to young readers. The lesson is that you should treat everybody the same no matter how smart or dumb they are.
Guest More than 1 year ago
My 8th grade s loved this book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Millecent Min is such a interesting book and i felt a little bad for her at times too.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the best book i have read!! it compares to what it feels like to be left out which i have felt and it is very funny and exciting, keep making more of these kinds Lisa Yee!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book is great! i read it in my 5th grade class and loved it! i would recommend it to 10-12 year olds.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved this book, after I started reading it, I couldnt put it down! I recommend this book to mostly kids 4-7, and even 8. A really, really good book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was great.I read it about a year ago.It's nice to see a book out there about a girl who is smart because these days it's all about romance and fashion in books.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this when I was in fourth grade! I loved it so much!!! Well I think it is ment to be for 4 th grade through 7th grade! I t is one outstanding book! I loved it then and I still love it now! It is one of my favorite books!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is really good. You should buy it!!!!!! I read it for my bookclub, after that I urge my mom to buy it for me... Now i read it over and over again... BUY IT!!! IT IS WORTH YOUR MONEY!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was original in its own way. For some weird reason, most young readers should be able to relate to an 11-year-old genius. Millicent Min is definitely a memorable character. For every difference she has, there's a similarity. She may have skipped middle school, but she still struggles to make friends. She may have appeared on Jay Leno, but she still gets embarrassed when her grandma does karate in front of her class. Although there wasn't the bucket-load of suspense or action that most of us enjoy, there was a touching story with a special character. I loved this book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think this book would interest the minds of a 5th,6th,or7th grader. Millicent Min is an 11 year old genius, who just finished her junior year in high school. During her summer she takes a college poetry summer class just for fun. Her parents then enroll her on a volleyball team, because they have been told that Millie has to enjoy her childhood and not keep her face stuffed in books or homework. So when she goes to volleyball practice she meets a girl named Emily. She doesnt want to tell Emily her IQ because then she thinks she would think shes a 'GEEK'. So Millie has to lie to her 'BEST' friend,enjoy volleyball, study for school, and take the advice from her friend/grandmother, Maddie.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Millicent wasn't worried what other people thought which makes her soo outstanding!