My Name Is Bertha

( 13 )


Dear Bertha,

Falling in the hole must have been painful. I know it hurt a lot when I broke my arm playing baseball. You were brave to stay in the hole all night and not...

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My Name is Bertha

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Dear Bertha,

Falling in the hole must have been painful. I know it hurt a lot when I broke my arm playing baseball. You were brave to stay in the hole all night and not get too scared.

Love, Casey

Dear Bertha,

I am so sorry that you could not dance. I am not so great either.

Love, Dani

Dear Bertha,

So what if you will never be an Olympic skater. You are really smart in school. That instructor needs to learn to be nicer to his students.

Love, DJ

Dear Bertha,

You see, there are nice boys in the world that judge girls not by how they look but by how nice they are. Just like you!

Love, Katie and Carly and Cade

Dear Bertha,

You are a great puncher. Who cares if you can't run fast you always get a homerun. Good Job.

Love, Josh and Jake

Hi! I'm Bertha, Thank you for your encouragement. I am ten years old and not matter what I do I can never get it right. Whether it is dancing lessons, ice skating or just playing punch ball, I poor Bertha can never win. Either I would fall down, trip over my feet or want to hide under the covers and never come out. Dancing lessons were a nightmare because standing on toe shoes required 5 people to hold me up to prevent me from falling. Skating lessons were hazardous to the instructor and even trying to convince my mother to let me my own outfit for my first dance took all of my powers of persuasion and a whole lot more. These are stories of me ten year Bertha who had a tough time growing up. I was over weight, not very pretty and got teased and picked on. For anyone who has ever had someone make fun of them, I hope you will learn from me Bertha that who you are inside makes the person, not what you look like on the outside. Love, Bertha

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781425795535
  • Publisher: Xlibris Corporation
  • Publication date: 9/22/2008
  • Pages: 64
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.15 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 13 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    trouble but triumph too

    Can you imagine how you would feel if you were ten or eleven years old, stood taller than anyone else in your class, and weighed 160 pounds? That is the situation with a girl named Bertha, who lives in New York City with her parents and siblings. She is a good student in school and gets good grades, and she is also a good musician. But because she is overweight, she is somewhat inept at physical activities. The six stories in this book, which author Fran Lewis says are based on true events, tell about Bertha's trials with ice skating, punch ball at camp, falling into a huge pothole, a school dance, taking dancing lessons, and bowling, all the while trying to lose weight and make friends. Will she ever be able to accomplish her goals? Most of us know that there are times when kids--and adults too--can be cruel. All children who have ever been teased, tormented, or mistreated because of something that makes them different will be able to identify with Bertha and her problems. Bertha does seem to whine and complain a lot. Not only is she frustrated when her schoolmates act mean but also she is sometimes upset with her parents for not letting her be more updated and "cool." However, as the father of two sons, I can testify that children do tend to whine and complain. Parents who are concerned about society's pressure on kids to grow up too fast will want to be aware that in one story Bertha, who is just eleven, prepares for a school dance by getting her hair restyled, wearing lipstick, using some makeup, and finding a date. Fran says that she tried to write the book as if as child was expressing her opinion, but as far as the typos go, the print on demand company had to redo the book several times and they never seemed to get it right. At the same time, aside from these small criticisms, I believe that there is a benefit for children in reading My Name Is Bertha. First, it will aid in understanding the feelings of people who are in Bertha's circumstances so that we can strive to be more tolerant. Each of us needs to remember that there are things which we are good at and things which we are not so good at. It is best to accept people for who they are. Also, seeing how Bertha learns from her mistakes and seeks to share what she has learned with the reader can be instructive. And the drawings by illustrator Jamie Miller, who is the author's niece, help to portray things from a child's point of view. There is some definite trouble here to make us think, but there is some triumph too.

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  • Posted April 6, 2009

    Needs more readers: great First book by a new author

    My Name is Bertha is a great example of what a new author can do when she wants to send out a positive message to all kids when dealing with bullies and family members that do not understand how it feels to have a weight problem. You need to buy this for every child that has ever had a weight problem and you need to buy her second book too Bertha Speaks Out. They are both humorous and true to life and inspirational.

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  • Posted February 27, 2009

    A great book for children!

    My Name is Bertha is about an overweight young girl. The teasing, name calling and problems that are associated with her weight problem are typical for a young person in her position. But the real problem isn't just her peers teasing her it's also the lack of help from some of the adults she encounters.

    As a child, I too was overweight, so the pain that Bertha feels through her stories in this book hit home with me. I feel this is a wonderfully written book that would be helpful not just for young people who are overweight but also for those who look at a person, no matter the age, call them names, shun them and refuse to accept them as they are. This is a great book of moral teachings for young children and even some adults.

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  • Posted December 1, 2008

    Bertha is an inspiration to everyone: Young and Old

    My Name is Bertha should be in every school's library. It is heartwarming, true to the problems children face today. Bertha is tenacious, she is sassy, she is funny and she is sweet. She cannot dance, or sing or even ice skate, but she is smart. She cannot do what her sister Tillie can do and she learns after a while that she does not care. Tillie is thin, pretty and is athletic. Bertha is a total klutz. Her parents figure out ways to try and help her to lose weight but they fail. Her mom thinks that dancing and ice skating lessons will make her more graceful. Instead, they only draw attention to her clumsiness and her lack of grace. Poor Bertha cannot win. She even tries to devise a way to get her parents to give her a phone of her own that she does not have to share with her sister. This plan does not work either. But, she is resourceful and she is smart. A must have and read for everyone.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2008

    My Name Is Bertha

    Bertha is special. She might not be pretty but she is clever and smart. Just the way she figured out how to get out of her dance recital using her musical skills on the piano was really ingenous. She might not be pretty on the outside but she is beautiful on the inside and that comes through loud and clear. She might not be able to dance or ice skate, but she can get all A's in school. She is spunky, she is sassy and she has a sense of humor that really helps her to deal with real life issues children face in schools and at home today. A must have and must read for teachers, parents and children of all ages.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 27, 2008

    My Name Is Bertha

    Fran Lewis is an inspiration to anyone who has ever had a weight problem or a problem with low self-esteem. Every child in every school must read this book. Every organization that deals with food disorders should use this book as a research tool to help youngsters deal with that problem.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2008

    My Name Is Bertha

    This book is a great way to get kids to want to learn about getting along with others. Children today need to learn how to deal with difficult situtions in life. They need to understand that not everyone is going to be a model or a contestant on Dancing with the Stars or American Idol. I can't sing or dance very well. I can identify with Bertha. She is smart, sassy and clever. She knows how to make a point and get the message across. Way to go BERTHA! Be proud of yourself!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2008

    My Name Is Bertha

    Fran Lewis is taking children's books by storm with her new book My Name Is Bertha. Everyone story is true and every story teaches both children and adults a lesson about life and how people need to tolerant and understanding of people and their differences. Bertha is not very pretty or too coordinated, but she is bright and has a great head on her shoulders. She uses her brain and her kind heart to make her point and show everyone that name calling and inappropriate rude behavior to others is wrong. This is a must read for anyone that has every gotten picked on in school or had trouble losing weight. Learn from BERTHA!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2008

    Amazing Stories

    I came across the book at a friend's house and couldn't put it down. I had to buy my own and started reading from the beginning again. I finsihed the book and then read it again with my kids. It's a very well written family book, the illustations were fanatsatic and conveyed the idea of the story. Impressive...I look forward to the next book in the series. A Must Read!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2008

    very cute

    I found this book very funny and entertaining for my children. I brought it to my daghters school and they loved it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2008

    My Name Is Bertha

    I am a teenager and I just love reading about the adventures of poor Bertha. She might not be pretty or very agile, but she is smart. She uses her head to get out of situations that most adults would get angry over. This book teaches everyone that it is okay to be yourself as long as you try hard.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2008


    This book is a must have! The character of Bertha comes alive in all the stories. You walk away feeling like you know her and you experienced everything with her.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 6, 2008

    My Name Is Bertha

    Bertha is a ten year old girl who warms the heart of her readers. She is everyone's scapegoat and yet she is smart in her own right. She might not be very coordinated and not able to dance or do sports, but her intelligence and good heart make up for it.

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