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About the Author
Lin Oliver is a writer and producer of movies, books, and television series for children and families. She has written more than twenty-five novels for children, and one hundred episodes of television. She is cofounder and executive director of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, an international organization of twenty thousand authors and illustrators of children's books. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Alan. They have three sons named Theo, Ollie, and Cole. She loves tuna melts, curious kids, any sport that involves a racket, and children's book writers everywhere.
Read an Excerpt
“Today is a very special Wednesday,” Ms. Flowers said to our class. “Can anyone tell me why?”
My hand shot up high in the air. “Because I changed my underpants this morning!” I shouted out proudly, without even waiting to be called on.
The whole class burst out laughing.
“As you can see, Hank,” Ms. Flowers said, “we are all very pleased for you. But your underpants are not exactly what I had in mind.”
Before she could call on anyone else, our classroom door swung open, and Principal Love came in. He was carrying a tall glass tank with a bunch of leafy green plants at the bottom. As usual, he was wearing his Velcro sneakers, which squeaked when he walked in.
“Class, everyone say hello to Principal Love,” Ms. Flowers said.
“Good morning, Principal Love,” we all said at the same time.
“And don’t forget to say good morning to Fred,” he answered, pointing to the tank. “Fred’s a little sleepyhead in the morning, aren’t you, buddy?”
I squinted my eyes and looked at the tank. Who or what was Fred? Suddenly, a green blob with a pinkish belly and white spots on its back sprang out from behind a plastic log and attached itself to the side of the glass.
“There you are, you little froggy,” Principal Love said. Then, turning to us, he added, “He wants to say hello because he’s going to be a member of your class until next Monday.”
“Does he know that we have a big spelling test this Friday?” my best friend Ashley Wong asked.
“Yeah, it’s full of hard words like ‘beautiful,’” my other best friend Frankie Townsend added.
“That’s not a hard word for him,” Principal Love said, “because he is such a beautiful frog.”
“You call that thing beautiful?” Nick McKelty snickered. “It’s all green and bumpy.”
“Green is my favorite color,” Katie Sperling said. “And besides, I think frogs are cute.”
“I like to watch them suck bugs right out of the air and swallow them whole,” Luke Whitman said. That didn’t surprise me, because Luke likes everything gross. The grosser the better.
“Well, my pal Fred here likes to dine on crickets,” Principal Love said. Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out a plastic container that had a whole bunch of crickets hopping around inside.
“Since I’m going to be away at a conference, Ms. Flowers has kindly agreed to have Fred stay in your classroom until I return. So I’ve brought him enough dinner to keep his tummy nice and full while I’m gone.”
“Eeuuwww,” Katie Sperling said. “I can’t believe he wants to eat those gross things.”
“He probably thinks cheeseburgers are gross,” Ashley pointed out to her.
Everyone laughed. It was going to be fun to have a frog in our class. I especially liked having him there because it meant that I wasn’t going to be the slowest reader anymore. I’m not very good at reading, but even I can read better than a frog.
“I promised Principal Love that we would all take very good care of Fred,” Ms. Flowers said.
“He is my special pet, a White’s tree frog,” the principal explained. “I’ve had him for eight years.”
“That makes him exactly our age,” Frankie said.