See You at Harry's

See You at Harry's

by Jo Knowles


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“Completely, tragically believable situations elevate this sad, gripping tale to a must-read level.” — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Starting middle school brings all the usual challenges for twelve-year-old Fern. She feels invisible — until the unthinkable happens, and Fern feels not only more alone than ever, but also responsible for the tragedy that has wrenched her family apart. Nothing will ever be the same — but can Fern and her family find a way to heal?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780763654078
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Publication date: 05/08/2012
Pages: 310
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 7.80(h) x 1.20(d)
Lexile: HL600L (what's this?)
Age Range: 10 - 14 Years

About the Author

Jo Knowles is the author of the YA novels Lessons from a Dead Girl and Jumping Off Swings. The recipient of the 2005 PEN Literary Award, she lives in Vermont.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Sit back in a comfortable chair, bring on the Kleenex and cry your heart out... Prescient writing, fully developed characters and completely, tragically believable situations elevate this sad, gripping tale to a must-read level.
—Kirkus Reviews

SEE YOU AT HARRY'S offers, on the one hand, a deft and delicate handling of commonplace traumas — how to negotiate bullying on the school bus, what it means for everyone in a family when a teenager comes to terms with his sexuality — and, on the other, the enormous and mercifully rare drama of a child’s accidental death. And while the distinction between these narrative elements — their disparate weights — may seem to an adult huge, Knowles is aware that a child’s perspective is somewhat different.
—The New York Times

This novel is reminiscent of classics like LITTLE WOMEN in its exploration of the often difficult, always powerful bond among siblings. Despite its classic, timeless themes, however, it also touches on such contemporary issues as the dangers of bullying and sexual orientation... Young readers will eagerly turn the pages of this perfectly paced novel and will care deeply about what happens to Fern and her siblings. The story is so authentic and captivating that readers will come to love Fern’s family and feel a part of it. When tragedy strikes, readers will feel the blow almost as intensely as the family does. Readers will savor every bite of this bittersweet novel.

Sometimes your heart has to break before it can heal. SEE YOU AT HARRY'S will make you weep, but it will also fill your soul with the extravagant gift of love. This may be the most beautiful book ever.
—Lauren Myracle

Heart-breaking, soul-sustaining, and all-around beautiful.
—Rebecca Stead

SEE YOU AT HARRY'S is one of the most beautiful, moving books I've ever read. Full of laughter, love, and tears, it will break your heart and put it back together again, with a little more light, a little more hope than there was before.
—Kate Messner

This story of an imperfect but loving family and how it holds together through shattering tragedy as well as everyday complications is full of true heart. Jo Knowles' love for her characters shines through on every page.
—Sara Zarr

SEE YOU AT HARRY'S is a beautiful, deeply moving story-one never shying from the flawed truths that come from being part of a big, messy family. I finished the book the way I do every Jo Knowles novel: holding it close, not wanting to let go.
—Nova Ren Suma

Jo Knowles writes a family you know in your bones-their routines, rituals, petty gripes, recurring jokes-which is why it about kills you when something equally real and terribly unexpected threatens their very existence as a family. Thankfully, Knowles brings hope-first a flicker, then a big, booming beacon of it. I loved it.
—Linda Urban

Jo Knowles has crafted a shimmering, pitch-perfect novel of love, loss, and resilience which finds the beauty in the small joys of everyday living, the comfort in the often-infuriating bonds of family, and the gentle hope that grows from the heartbreak of tragedy. Beautiful and life-affirming.
—Libba Bray

Customer Reviews

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See You at Harry's 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 37 reviews.
ReadingCorner More than 1 year ago
This is really a great read that I think a lot of MG readers will enjoy. It deals with a lot of the emotions of being a 12 year old just starting middle school, family dynamics, and the grieving process. When I started this one, I don't think I was fully prepared for the emotional roller coaster ride that it was going to take me on. So, while I definitely don't want to spoil anything for you (and I hope you don't find spoilers anywhere else), definitely be prepared for a few moments of truly devastating grief. Fern is a very realistically written 12-year-old, with the common insecurities that many kids feel at that age. Older siblings create havoc that gets them notices; younger siblings get all the love and attention. New schools, new people, changing friends. It's easy to feel invisible. I thought Fern gave readers a very realistic look at the emotions that you deal with at that age--you do a lot of growing up right around the time in life. The tragedy that rocks Fern's family--I didn't see that coming at all! I mean, obviously you knew that something was going to happen, but the tragic event really creeps up on you. It is the kind of event that is accompanied by painful emotions and tears (well, if you're like me, then there are probably at least a new tears). The character development and family dynamics shift in unexpected ways as a result and it added a whole extra layer to the story. See You At Harry's tackles the topic of dealing with tragedy quite masterfully. While this isn't the sort of book that every 10-12 year old will thoroughly enjoy, I think that there are probably a decent number of middle grade age kids dealing with these types of emotions and this book would be a perfect companion.
chapterxchapter More than 1 year ago
This book killed me…KILLED ME! I seriously could not stop crying. Even after finishing the book, and getting ready to fall asleep, I was still crying. This is one book that will remain in my mind and heart for a while. Basically, it’s a coming of age story that revolves around the life of 12 year old Fern, who has to deal with a work obsessed father, a mother who isn’t really present, and a brother who is just coming out of the closet. We follow Fern and watch as she deals with the dilemmas in her family, and experience what she is going through. The first half of the book builds the backdrop of what Fern goes through oh a day to day basis. Not only do we see what she is feeling and going through, but we also get to see Fern experience the duress her brother Holden goes through on a daily basis from fellow school mates due to the fact that he is gay. After deciding to stick up for her brother, Fern has to now go through the teasing and violence that Holden goes through. We also watch as Fern is pretty much the one who is responsible for the care of her little 3 year old brother, Charlie. We see the love of a family and the pressure of responsibility, and its toll it takes on this family. After a devastating and tragic incident, we see how much it affects Fern and her family, and the strength that they will need to find to pull through together. It was at this point, which is about half way through the book, where I pretty much lost it. I cried at pretty much every chapter. Once I thought that the tears were over, something else would happen or would be said, and I would cry all over again. The writing style of Jo Knowles is unforgettable. Knowles’ character building and story building had me so engrossed that I felt as though I were part of this family, and experiencing everything with them. Knowles broke my heart over and over again. I think what made it all the more “real” for me was the fact that Fern and Charlie were pretty much the same age gap as my two kids, and just reading their interactions and the emotion that poured out of the words was just too much for me. I broke down. To read Fern’s pleas to her mother were heart wrenching. I could literally hear the strain and desperation in her voice as I read. I could picture every detail in vivid detail. If you are looking for a quick read that will remain embedded in your heart, I would recommend grabbing a copy of See You At Harry’s.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really felt like I was the character. The way she described her family is really nice. Her personality is nice also
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This isa great/emotional book. I have read it twice and I dont have it on my nook but my teacher has it and she let me read it and OMG I cryed my eyes out! So If you like to read emotional books, then this is for you.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The tragic event was that the little boy charlie dies he gets really really sick and dies because he almost got run iver by a car and that ruined the blood going to hi head :(
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book so much! It broke my heart then put it back together in stunning beauty. I loved this book, and while it was sad, a must read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Don't read this with no tissues by your side.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This goes to the person that spoiled the book for everyone. Some people actually like to read and you spoiled it for everyone so thanks a lot.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very good book. It was full of heart felt at the end. It had me crying. This was truly a graet book. Recomended for 4-9 graders because of some situation that most people would take imaturely.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
i read this book in 5th grade and i loved it so much i read it again in 6th grade BEST BOOK EVER
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was crying throughout mist of the book. Its also my new favorite book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I recomend this book to every one! It is my new favorite book! But be prepared to cry!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book I must say is a true "book" some people say Twighlight is the " best book ever " but See You at Harrys is a real book. It warms everyones hearts and moves me inside the book. 5 stars all the way Jo Knowles you have tried and sucseeded . You stole everyones hearts by writing a few words about a girl... Fern, an average 12 year old girl who is going through exactly what im going through. We both just started Midd. school and we both have the same feelings.we conect in so many ways possible. This book is nothing compared to, twilight, the sister hood of the traveling pants, hunger games. wanna know why? this book has meaning.... a TRUE meaning. Now when your reading this book remember to slowly let it sink in. Youd be suprised how this book connects with you!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book so much!! It was SO sad and you definatly feel the charcters emotions. I recommend this book to middle schoolers or 3rd-4rth grade kids. Plus this book is on the 2013-2014 DCF list!! Highly recommended!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved everything about this book and it still made me cry. See you at Hawee's!!!
EdGoldberg on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Twelve year old Fern was her mother's favorite until her three year old brother, Charlie, came along. Now she feels neglected, invisible. Her mother is too busy with Harry's Restaurant or meditating. Her 18 year old sister Sara is taking a 'gap' year and working at the restaurant. Her 14 year old brother, Holden, is grappling with his sexuality. That leaves Fern as the responsible one, minding Charlie, with no time to figure out where she fits into the world.See You at Harry's is a 'nice' book. It is issue driven, some of which I won't reveal. But, in my opinion, there are too many issues. Knowles should have narrowed the scope down. Fern and her friends Ram and Cassie are likeable characters. Sara and Holden are good siblings. Unfortunately, the book didn't grab me.
ken1952 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
What a gem! What else can I say about this funny, warm and heart-wrenching novel? Wow!
saffron12 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is not a long read (for an adult or a fast reader such I was as a kid), but it produces many emotions! I do not want to give too much away, but the book was not really about what I thought it was going to be about at first. I thought another person in the family would pass away for another reason, on first impression. What really happened left me shocked and I cried through most of the remainder of the book. I sympathized with the emotions of the various family members in the aftermath. I understood (my older son died as an infant from heart and lung defects - not what happened in this book) what they were experiencing and feel that author did a great job with this on a level for middle-grade students.
ChristianR on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It takes a while for the tragedy in See You at Harry's to appear -- because Fern's older brother is struggling with being gay, I wasn't sure if it would involve him or their baby brother Charlie. Turned out to be Charlie, who died in his sleep after banging his head the day before. While the second half of the book is about the family dealing with his death, I think it moved them along a little too quickly in accepting their loss. But this is for young teens, so I understand the reasoning. It's a solid offering, but not without its flaws.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is truly amazing. Believe me you will not regret buying it
WLM77 More than 1 year ago
Jo Knowles' book, See You at Harry's, was very well written and engrossing. The conversations between the characters are natural, and the descriptions give you a real sense of what they felt, smelled, and tasted. Knowles paints some powerful images. She really captured the protagonist's desperation. Emotional and heartfelt, this is a good book to read in the rain, so you can hide your tears.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is really good b
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is the best book I have ever read.Ican make alot of connections.My first conection is my brother had died too and I just started Middle School too.I have an Ice cream shop too.I can make so much more connectons too.Hope u liked the book too :) <3