The Uncivil War

The Uncivil War

3.6 3
by Sheila Solomon Klass

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Even with her father as principal, Asa Andersen is certain that sixth grade will be perfect, until a new boy in school starts making fun of her name and the baby her mother is expecting is born prematurely.


Even with her father as principal, Asa Andersen is certain that sixth grade will be perfect, until a new boy in school starts making fun of her name and the baby her mother is expecting is born prematurely.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Uma Krishnaswami
Asa Andersen's heritage and odd name are Scandinavian. She was born prematurely. Her father is the principal, and her mother rather obsessively overprotective. All these facts coalesce in Asa's major problem. She's overweight, on the verge of developing an eating disorder. Klass presents Asa's friendship with Felicia (Esperanza Aurora) Rodriguez, and her conflict with the new kid Robert E. Lee, with humor and lively dialogue. But attempted multiculturalism, alas, tarnishes what might otherwise have been a funny, true-to-life tale of sixth grade growth and change. The Asian characters are stereotypical cardboard caricatures, reeking of funny accents and deference, and they don't get better as the story moves along. Too bad, because otherwise this is a readable book.
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6While Asa Alfifa Andersen would give anything to have an ordinary name, a mother who didn't stuff her with food, and a father who wasn't principal of her middle school, she basically likes her life. Then Southerner Robert Edward Lee arrives in her class and calls her "Fatso," and she decides to make some changes. Through the advice of a therapist, she conquers her weight problem and, after conspiring with her best friend, she stands up to her tormentor and beats him at his own game of bullying. However, when her brother is born prematurely, Robert shows his true colors and, eventually, he and Asa come to an understanding and end their "uncivil" war. Klass's characters are well drawn and have child appeal. Asa is funny and nervy on the outside but unsure of herself on the inside, while Robert is a tease who really likes her but won't show it. Asa's parents are sometimes a bit eccentric but loving. The plot flows smoothly and the girl/boy "games" and the subplot of Asa's baby brother's health problems will interest preadolescents. While perhaps not as strong as Phyllis Naylor's The Agony of Alice (Atheneum, 1985) or Betsy Byars's Bingo Brown, Gypsy Lover (Viking, 1990), this book will find a ready audience among middle schoolers wanting to read about kids who face their problems with a little gumption and a lot of humor.Nancy Menaldi-Scanlan, LaSalle Academy, Providence, RI
Kirkus Reviews
From Klass (Shooting Star, 1996, etc.), the story of an ordinary girl overwhelmed by her parents' good intentions. Asa Anderson, 12, is feeling insecure: She's overweight and doesn't know how to tell her mother to stop feeding her. Robert Lee, a cute new student from the South, makes fun of Asa's unusual name and weight. But Asa's no wimp, and she declares war on both her motherþwho is pregnant and concerned that the new baby may be a "preemie," as Asa wasþand Robert Lee. For her mother, Asa finds inspiration in the tactics of Mahatma Ghandi and satyagraha; she gets her mother's attention with a hunger strike and procures medical backing to lose weight. A brush with tragedyþAsa's mother delivers the baby prematurely, as fearedþbrings out Robert Lee's true feelings for Asa. This readable, funny story is familiar, but will comfort those seeking lightweight fare about a heroine who knows her own mind. (Fiction. 8-12)

Product Details

Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
5.21(w) x 7.63(h) x 0.47(d)
580L (what's this?)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

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The Uncivil War 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A 12 year old girl named Asa Anderson has a few big problem. Inbatween her totally hot anamy, her overweightness, and her mom being pregnant. I new boy comes from the south and is totally hot, but when he sits behind her the fist thing he says is whut's up w/ your name, he calls her fatso and the uncivlil war is on!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is about a girl who's name in Asa Anderson. A new boy comes in and calls her fat and makes fun of her name. Will she get her revenge? The uncivil war is on! I think this was an amazing book with wonderful and breathtaking moments.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was about a girl named Asa Anderson. Her father was a principal at the school she went to. A new boy comes to school and teases her. Will Asa get her revenge? The uncivil war is on.