Now that Elisa's in second grade, she's taking charge of whatever comes her way from a baby-sitter who doesn't know how to change a diaper to an airplane trip without her parents.
Of course, it's not easy taking charge when your big brother thinks you're too little and your little brother runs amok! But Elisa is determined to make everything work out in the end. And what better way to celebrate being seven and a half than a day of eating nothing but chocolate. Chocolate cookies, chocolate milk, chocolate bars . . . chocolate and more chocolate, from morning to night.
With these delicious new episodes from the whirlwind life of Elisa Michaels, Johanna Hurwitz entertains us once again with a vivid portrayal of family life as seen from four feet tall.
About the Author
Johanna Hurwitz is the award-winning author of more than sixty popular books for young readers, including Faraway Summer; Dear Emma; Elisa Michaels, Bigger & Better; Class Clown; Fourth-Grade Fuss; and Rip-Roaring Russell, an American Library Association Notable Book. Her work has won many child-chosen state awards. A former school librarian, she frequently visits schools around the country to talk about her books. Mrs. Hurwitz and her husband divide their time between Great Neck, New York, and Wilmington, Vermont.
Read an Excerpt
Elisa Michaels, Bigger & Better
Breakfast With Grandma
It was the first week of September, and Elisa Michaels was sitting at the kitchen table doing her homework. She was writing a report for her second-grade class. Whenever she came to a hard word, she asked her mother for help.
There are five people in my family, she wrote.
I have a big brother and a little brother. My big brother is named Russell. He is eleven years old. My little brother is Marshall. I call him Marshie because be's soft like a marshmallow. He is two years old I have a mommy and a daddy. I don't know how old they are.
Elisa put down her pencil. "Mommy, how old are you?" she asked.
"Why do you want to know that?" Mrs. Michaels inquired. She was standing nearby ironing.
"I need the information for my report."
"Are you writing a report about me?" Mrs. Michaels asked, sounding surprised.
"I am writing about our whole family."
"You can skip the part about my age," Mrs. Michaels told her. "Tell about your brothers and yourself."
Elisa looked at Marshall, who was sitting on the kitchen floor with his pacifier in his mouth and happily rolling a ball toward the wall. When the ball returned to him, he rolled it again. Elisa liked to play with him.
Everyone who saw Marshall commented on what a good toddler he was and how well he could entertain himself. Elisa didn't want to write about that. And she didn't want to write about Russell, who was growing so big that soon he would be as tall as their mother. Sometimes Russell teased Elisa. Sometimes he was mean. Mostly, though, she thought he was a good brother. She could say that, but she didn't want to.
Elisa pushed her eyeglasses up on her nose. She could say that she wore glasses, but everyone who saw her would already know that. She could say that she was seven years old, but everyone in second grade was seven or going to have a birthday very soon. She could say that she'd lost her two top teeth, but everyone could see that, too. Then she got another idea.
I have two cousins. One is Howie. He is almost the same age as Russell The other cousin is Artie. He is nine years old Their real names are Howard and Arthur. No one ever calls them that. I have three grandparents. I don't see them very much, because they live far away. I am glad my mommy and daddy don't live far away.
Mrs. Michaels looked over Elisa's shoulder. "Very good," she said. "How much did the teacher say you had to write?"
"One page," said Elisa. The words she had written almost covered the paper in front of her.
"I am going to copy it over to make it neater," she told her mother. "If I write a little bigger, it will be just right."
"You didn't tell anything about your grandparents. How they come to visit, the gifts they send even when it isn't your birthday, the special things you do with them." "I wrote enough, " said Elisa. "Writing is hard work."
"Welcome to the real world," said Russell, coming into into the kitchen. "And if you think second grade is hard, wait until you get as old as I am."
"Will you help me with my homework when I'm in sixth grade?" Elisa asked.
"Fat chance," said Russell. "When you're in sixth grade, I'll be in high school. I'm not going to have time to help you."
"I wouldn't worry about sixth grade now," said Mrs. Michaels as she folded up the ironing board and put it away. "And you're doing just fine in second grade."
"Anyhow, what's for supper?" asked Russell. "I'm starving."
"Look," said his mother, pulling a pan out of the refrigerator.
"Lasagna! My favorite," Russell shouted when he saw it. "Hurry and put it in the oven."
"Who wants to help me cut up vegetables for a salad?" she asked.
"Not me," said Russell. "I've got tons of homework. I just came to check on supper."
"I'll help," said Elisa. "I can copy my homework later."
"Then put your papers away and wash your hands," said her mother.
As Elisa tore the lettuce leaves into small pieces, she said, "I wish Grandma could come and visit. I haven't seen her in a long, long, long time."
Grandma was what Elisa called her mother's mother. Nana was what she called her other grandmother.
"Grandma is planning to come here in April," Mrs. Michaels said.
Elisa stopped tearing the lettuce leaves and counted out the months on her fingers: "Eight months," she said. "That's too long to wait."
"Eight months is a long time," agreed Mrs. Michaels ...Elisa Michaels, Bigger & Better. Copyright © by Johanna Hurwitz. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Table of Contents
|Breakfast with Grandma||11|
|What Marshall Needed||53|
|Chocolate All Day Long||69|
|Marshall Makes Mischief||89|
|From Riverside to Lakeside||107|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book was about a seven year-old girl named Elisa Michaels. She does a lot of crazy things. She eats chocolate all day because it is her seven and a half birthday. Her older brother Russell thinks she can't eat chocolate all day. But Russell went to dinner with his friend Phil. So she tells her mom she doesn't want to eat chocolate anymore. Then her youger brother Marshall loves pacifiers. But they say he is getting too old for them. So they go to the zoo and see a baby gorillia. They tell Marshall to ask the zookeeper if he can give his pacifiers to the gorillia.