Ten Ways to Make My Sister Disappear
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Ten Ways to Make My Sister Disappear

4.3 11
by Norma Fox Mazer
     
 

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Everything ten year-old Sprig wants, her older sister Dakota already has. Everything Sprig does, Dakota does better. And anytime Sprig complains, Dakota just grins and calls her a baby. It’s enough to make a kid wish her sister would disappear.

But in a year when Sprig’s father is away, her favorite neighbor is ill, and the class bully is acting almost

Overview

Everything ten year-old Sprig wants, her older sister Dakota already has. Everything Sprig does, Dakota does better. And anytime Sprig complains, Dakota just grins and calls her a baby. It’s enough to make a kid wish her sister would disappear.

But in a year when Sprig’s father is away, her favorite neighbor is ill, and the class bully is acting almost like, well, a boyfriend, Sprig discovers that allies come in unexpected shapes. Sometimes they’re even related to you.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Mazer's (What I Believe) engaging if somewhat familiar novel centers on a 10-year-old girl's mixed feelings for her older sister. Sprig and Dakota used to play and giggle together, "but when Dakota turned twelve in August? Boom, just like that, something fell out of the sky and hit her on the head, she also turned bossy and know-it-all." Sprig's resentment intensifies when their father, an architect/engineer, leaves on a lengthy business trip that later extends (without so much as a quick flight home) to a month or two in Afghanistan. Dakota chides Sprig for crying when she misses their father, and when Sprig worries out loud about the dangers of Kabul, Dakota tells her she's being stupid. And why does Dakota get to talk to Dad first each time he calls home? Mazer weaves in subplots that are slightly too neat-Sprig visits an elderly neighbor (whose attention the sisters compete for) at just the right moment to save her from a stroke; a fight, also well-timed, with her best friend teaches Sprig the perils of jealousy-and she wraps up the conflicts rather tidily. But the author excels at depicting the complexity of preteens' emotions and relationships, especially sibling relationships; many readers will recognize their own feelings here. Ages 9-12. (Sept.)

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School Library Journal

Gr 4-6 Sprig's world would be great if only she could make her older sister go away. Tired of Dakota's teasing and telling her how to behave, the 10-year-old copes by imagining creative ways to rid herself of her sibling, envisioning everything from baking her like a cookie to shipping her off to the Antarctic. Further distressing to her is the fact that her best friend is starting to notice boys, and this is leading to quarrels between them. Toss on top of that a father in Afghanistan and a neighbor who falls ill before her eyes-it's no wonder Sprig frequently breaks down in tears. Captured in these trying relationships are deeper understandings of the dynamics of friendship and sisterhood. Important lessons about decision-making and age-appropriate responsibility are effortlessly delivered. Sprig learns that jealousy and anger are poor companions and that seemingly insurmountable differences can sometimes lead to surprising unions. This entertaining and true-to-life book is an excellent introduction to the world of boys, sibling rivalry, and loyalty. Mazer's telling of age-old struggles will easily find a home with reluctant readers and sisters alike.-Erin Schirota, Bronxville Public Library, NY

Kirkus Reviews
Constantly upstaged by her older sister, ten-year-old Sprig enjoys imagining the ways she might get rid of her. Once her friend, 12-year-old Dakota seems to have become her personal tormentor. Perfectly capturing the constant bickering that is part of the daily life of siblings, each chapter describes incidents that both drive them apart and bring them together. But Sprig is bothered by more than sibling rivalry. She misses her traveling father, worries about his working in Afghanistan, doesn't care for the new long-term substitute teacher, quarrels and makes up with her best friend, tries to stop crying so often and begins to think about boys. Tween readers will recognize this stage of life, though the first friendly kisses and kissing games may surprise those who feel that fifth grade is early for these activities. A master at describing family dynamics, Mazer reveals the ups and downs of middle-school friendship, as well. This contemporary addition to her admirable body of work should bring new readers. (Fiction. 9-12)
From the Publisher

"Like Beverly Cleary before her, Mazer catches the intense love-hate relationship that can develop between siblings in the way they separate and reconnect; she also retains a pitch-perfect ear for the way siblings today speak to each other. . . . [T]he sisters’ reconciliation at the end rings completely true." -- Horn Book

"A master at describing family dynamics, Mazer reveals the ups and downs of middle-school friendship, as well. This contemporary addition to her admirable body of work should bring new readers." -- Kirkus Reviews

"The author excels at depicting the complexity of preteens' emotions and relationships, especially sibling relationships; many readers will recognize their own feelings here." -- Publishers Weekly

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780439839839
Publisher:
Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
09/01/2007
Pages:
160
Sales rank:
469,078
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 7.60(h) x 0.70(d)
Lexile:
690L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author


Norma Fox Mazer (1931-2009) grew up in Glens Falls, New York, in the foothills of the Adirondack Mountains. Norma was praised for her portrayal of characters with realistic problems and relationships that pull them out of struggles. Her books have received many awards, including a finalist for the National Book Award, a Lewis Carroll Shelf Award, the Christopher Medal, a Newbery Honor, and The Edgar.

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Ten Ways to Make My Sister Disappear 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a very good book! If you have an older sister than you can relate!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I liked this book. I got this book at the library and it was really good. I liked it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Sprig is only ten years old - but she has a ton of problems.

For one, her dad just left to go to Washington, D.C., on a business trip. Sprig absolutely hates it when her dad has to go away because she knows she will miss him every minute of the day. This time is worse then before, however, since he will be gone for six weeks.

Then there is Sprig's pesky older sister, Dakota, who thinks that because she just turned twelve, she can be the boss of Sprig. Always correcting Sprig, stealing her questions, and getting to talk to their dad first whenever he calls annoys Sprig very much.

It gets worse when Dakota befriends the very mean Krsytee, who Sprig knows is a bad influence on her sister.

What's Sprig to do to cope with her sibling situation? She comes up with a list of ten possible ways of Dakota disappearing. The list includes baking her sister into a cookie and crunching Dakota if she was a cucumber.

Sprig's adventures continue when she finds out her father has to travel all the way to another country that she knows isn't safe, she becomes a hero, a boy enters her life, problems with her best friend stir up, and she discovers that maybe her sister isn't so bad after all!

TEN WAYS TO MAKE MY SISTER DISAPPEAR was a very quick and easy read that contained so many wonderful events that made this novel heartwarming and well worth reading. Any child who has a family member away from home or a bossy older sibling can easily relate to what Sprig is going through. Mazer creates a story that the whole family can enjoy before bedtime.

The book definitely exceeded my expectations, and once it is read, you will definitely want more of Sprig!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just finshed this book it was awsome i think it was one of those books were you wanted it to go on forever
Guest More than 1 year ago
I like this book very much!! You should definitely spend your time to read 10 ways to make my sister dissapear. I feel bad for poor Sprig that Dakota is a bossy, ungrateful sister! I also can relate to how Sprig feels when her Dad goes away on buisness trips and how she feels because my Mom used to have to go on these kinds of trips. Overall, this is a great book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sprig is good a boy is a bly lik always if you like .me.kiss.mmy.ASS