Someday Angeline

Someday Angeline

4.2 18
by Louis Sachar, Barbara Samuels
     
 

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Nobody understands why Angeline is so smart. She could read the first time she picked up a book, she can play the piano without ever having had a lesson, and she even knows what the weather is going to be. But being smart is causing Angeline nothing but trouble. The mean kids in school call her a freak, her teacher finds her troublesome, and even her own father… See more details below

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Overview

Nobody understands why Angeline is so smart. She could read the first time she picked up a book, she can play the piano without ever having had a lesson, and she even knows what the weather is going to be. But being smart is causing Angeline nothing but trouble. The mean kids in school call her a freak, her teacher finds her troublesome, and even her own father doesn't know what to do with an eight-year-old girl who seems to be a genius. Angeline doesn't want to be either a genius or a freak. She just wants the chance to be herself and be happy. But it's only when she makes friends with a boy the kids call "Goon" and the teacher they call "Mr. Bone" that Angeline gets that chance.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Karen Porter
Eight-year-old Angeline is the smartest person in her school. She is in the sixth grade and knows all the answers, though her social skills are far behind those of her classmates. Her teacher is insecure and critical. Her father, a garbage collector, feels unworthy to raise a genius. The death of Angeline's mother five years before has left its mark. Angeline befriends a fifth grader named Gary, himself a social outcast. Angeline laughs at his jokes and joins him in helping his teacher set up a classroom aquarium. When Angeline's traumatic classroom experiences become too much for her, she begins to skip school, first to go to the aquarium, and then to spend a day at the beach. When she allows herself to fall off the end of the pier, her father, Gary, Gary's teacher, and her father's good friend all gather at the hospital, where Angeline makes an unexplained recovery. The story has more plot than most books for children this age, but lacks the character development needed to support the story line.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780380834440
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
05/28/1983
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
192
Sales rank:
353,585
Product dimensions:
5.28(w) x 7.60(h) x 0.41(d)
Lexile:
610L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

How Abel
Smells

Angeline lay on the floor of the living room with her feet up on the sofa, reading a book. The living room was also her bedroom. The sofa folded out into a bed.

It was a book about a sailor who was in love with a beautiful lady who didn't love him back, which was why he became a sailor — to forget her.Only he couldn't forget her, but he was an excellent sailor and he fought a pirate with one eye.

Nobody tried to figure out anymore how Angeline knew all the stuff she knew, the stuff she knew before she was born. Instead, they called her a name. They called her "a genius." And even though it really didn't explain anything, everybody considered it a satisfactory explanation. Like the way she always knew what tomorrow's weather would be. "How does she do it?" someone might ask. "She's a genius" they'd be told, and somehow that would explain it. And that way, nobody ever had to really try to understand.

She heard her father outside the apartment door. She bent the page in her book to mark her place and jumped up to greet him as he opened it.

"Don't hug me until I take a shower," he said, pushing her away. "I smell like garbage."

"I like the way you smell," said Angeline.

"You like the smell of garbage?" asked Abel.

"I do," said Angeline.

She watched him walk into the bathroom and almost immediately she heard the shower running. "I bet he can take off his clothes faster than anyone in the world!" she thought.

He worked for the sanitation department. He drove a garbage truck.

In an odd way, he was afraid of Angeline. He remembered the time they went into a music store where she sat down and played the piano without ever having had a lesson. Everybody in the store stopped and listened to her. It was so pretty it scared him. He hadn't taken her back there since.

More likely, he wasn't as afraid of her as he was afraid of himself. He was afraid he was going to somehow blow it for her. "How's an idiot like me supposed to raise a genius?" he often wondered. Probably if they didn't call her that name, a genius, he wouldn't have been half as scared.

He put on his pajamas and robe. It wasn't even six o'clock but he was already dressed for bed. He never went out at night. He hadn't gone out for over five years, not since Nina died. He stepped into the living room. "Now you can hug me," he said.

Angeline hugged and kissed her father. "I liked the way you smelled before better," she told him.

She followed him into the kitchen and watched him cook dinner. "Tomorrow, will you take me on the garbage truck with you?" she asked.

He sighed. "No," he said firmly. "You know you don't belong on a garbage truck. Besides, you have school tomorrow."

"I hate school," said Angeline.

"Why does she always want to ride on that filthy truck?" Abel wondered. He hated the garbage truck. The only reason he still worked at that stinking job was for Angeline, so that he could make enough money to send her to college someday. Someday buy her a piano. Buy her nice clothes because someday she was going to be a famous scientist, or a concert, pianist, or President of the United States. "Someday, Angeline . . . " he thought.

"Well then, how about on a holiday when school's closed?" she asked. "Then can I ride in the garbage truck?"

"Someday, Angeline," he said.

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