Trauma Queen (Mix Series)

Trauma Queen (Mix Series)

by Barbara Dee

Paperback(Original ed.)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781442409231
Publisher: Aladdin
Publication date: 04/19/2011
Series: Mix Series
Edition description: Original ed.
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 681,478
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.80(d)
Lexile: 660L (what's this?)
Age Range: 9 - 13 Years

About the Author

Barbara Dee is the author of several middle grade novels including Maybe He Just Likes You, Everything I Know About You, Halfway Normal, and Star-Crossed. Her books have received several starred reviews and been included on many best-of lists, including the ALA Rainbow List Top Ten, the Chicago Public Library Best of the Best, and the NCSS-CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People. Star-Crossed was also a Goodreads Choice Awards finalist. Barbara is one of the founders of the Chappaqua Children’s Book Festival. She lives with her family, including a naughty cat named Luna and a sweet rescue hound dog named Ripley, in Westchester County, New York.

Read an Excerpt

Trauma Queen


  • I am standing outside homeroom in yellow flannel monkey pajamas.

    Everyone else is dressed normally: jeans, track pants, sweaters, whatever.

    Apparently because today, Monday, February 23, is not Pajama Day at Crampton Middle School. Also apparently I am the only one who is celebrating Pajama Day, because I am the only one whose mother told her it was Pajama Day. After using the New Student Information Packet to line a dog crate for this one-eared beagle she’s babysitting.

    “Hey, Marigold,” some girl across the hall is calling. “That’s your name, right? Um, no offense, but why are you in your pj’s?”

    I don’t answer. That’s because my ears are burning and my eyebrows are sweating. It’s hard to say something casual and jokey like whoops, silly me with sweaty eyebrows. I dig my thumbnails into my palms, but I’m not waking up.

    Now this buzz-cut–headed eighth-grade boy is starting to laugh. And point. “Yo, New Girl. Yeah, you. Did you forget something? Like getting dressed?”

    That’s it; I’m done. I escape from homeroom. My poofy blue bedroom slippers skid on the waxy floor. “Excuse me, no running,” some office lady calls out from down the hallway. Which is when I start to run, seeing a mob of giggling girls turning the corner and coming toward me.

    I bang open the door to the girls’ room and hide myself in a stall. Then I yank my cell phone out of my backpack and speed-dial Mom.

    It rings five times. Six times means I’ll get her voice mail, which means she’ll never get my message, because she doesn’t ever check her voice mail. Pick up, I pray. Pick up, pickuppickuppickup.

    “Hello?” she finally shouts. “Marigold?”

    Then a truck honks. Right in my ear.

    “Mom?” I say.

    “Oh, sweetheart, what’s wrong? Are you okay?”

    “No.” I wipe my sweaty face on my flannel arm. “I’m wearing pajamas.”

    “I know. Those cute monkey ones.”

    “Because you said it was Pajama Day.”

    “Right, it is. I read it in the packet.”

    “Except it isn’t.”

    “It’s not Pajama Day? Are you sure? The first day of—what do they call it? Spirit Week?” I can hear dogs barking now. She must be downtown with her Morning Walkers.

    “No, it’s not,” I say loudly. “I’m the only one in the entire school wearing pj’s. I look like a total dork.”

    “I’m sure you don’t, baby.”

    “I’m sure I do. I’m coming home.”

    “Oh, Mari. You can’t.”

    “Why not?”

    “Because you just got there five minutes ago.”

    That’s so illogical I can’t even argue. “Okay, then can you please bring me some other clothes?”

    “Yes, of course.” She shouts this over yapping and arfing dogs. “But you’re going to have to wait a few minutes.”

    “How come?”

    “Because I’m not home. I’m at least a mile away, with three of my Walkers. And I’m supposed to pick up two new greyhounds by eight o’clock.”

    “But this is a major emergency.” I check my watch: three minutes until homeroom. “Can’t the greyhounds wait?”

    “Oh, come on now, Mari,” she says in a voice meant to be soothing. Except you can’t soothe when you’re shouting; it kind of spoils the effect. “So you’re wearing pajamas. Have fun with it; improvise. Pretend you’re sleepwalking.”

    “What?”

    “See where it takes you. Think of it as a costume.”

    “I don’t wear costumes.”

    “Oh, sure you do, baby. We all do. Every single day.”

    “Mom,” I say. “Can we please not have a big philosophical discussion about this?”

    “Sorry.” A truck honks. “Well, look at it this way. At least you’ll be comfortable.”

    That’s when the door to the girls’ room creaks open. I can hear the sound of heels on the floor tiles, and then the sharp click of someone locking another stall door. “Just listen to me, okay?” I whisper desperately into my cell. “I won’t be comfortable. I’ll be the opposite of comfortable. I’ll be traumatized for the entire rest of my life. Just please, please bring me different clothes. Please. I’m begging you.”

    She processes. A dog arfs. Finally she says, “All right, I’ll be there in a few minutes. BEEZER, SIT. I’m not fooling, buddy. SIT. Good dog.”

    “Mom? MOM?”

    “Just try to hang in there, Mari, okay? First I need to get the greyhounds.”

    The line goes dead, as if everything’s settled. Whatever; at least I got through to her. Mom usually does better in person, but even then, normal back-and-forth conversations are definitely not her strong point.

    I leave my stall and check myself out in the mirror. Great. My cheeks are flushed, my eyes look huge and freaked-out, and my wavy brown hair is damp and limp.

    Plus, of course, there’s the jammie issue. Can’t forget that.

    I drown my face in freezing water, then crank out some paper towel. The other bathroom user shuffles her feet. Which, I suddenly notice, are in pointy-toe black leather boots. Scary boots. Get-out-of-my-face boots.

    I cram the paper towel into the trash can. “Well, bye,” I call out, so that at least Pointy Boots knows that I realize she’s an earwitness.

    “See you, Marigold,” Pointy Boots answers in a quiet, amused sort of voice.

  • Customer Reviews

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    Trauma Queen 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 28 reviews.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    This was an amazung book. It was funny but serious too. Loved it
    missypants More than 1 year ago
    Trauma Queen is a book about a girl named Marigold that had to move to a new city and school while moving away from her very good friend Emma. Marigold meets new friends and maybe enemies. A normal book right? Well not really. Marigold’s mom is an acting teacher at her school and things can get a little out of hand and crazy. For example, the mom pours canola oil all over herself and drinks it. How gross is that! They also don’t get along very well too. They get in fights all the time and even once, the mom, Becca Bailey, told Marigold that it was pajama day. But hears the thing, it wasn’t. She wore pajamas and everyone laughed at her. She was probably thinking, what a great way to start her new school. Conclusion, they don’t always get along, but they always love each other. My opinion of the book, was that it was a sweet and hilarious book and everyone will love it. At least I hope.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    My review:Marigold's mom is a preformance artist,and she tends to stir things up everywhere they go.Marigold is determined that this time she will keep a low profile at her new school.She might actually succeed too,but then her mom decides to teach....at her school!What mayhem will her mom cause this time?
    TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
    Attending three schools in four years isn't easy, so try adding a performance artist mother into the mix. For Marigold, this nightmare is her reality as she begins 7th grade at Samuel J. Crompton Middle School. Her new school seems to be filled with one disaster after another, like wearing pj's to school on the very first day. Things go from bad to worse when her mother decides to teach an improv class at her school. Can Marigold and her friendships survive her mother? Find out in TRAUMA QUEEN! Barbara Dee presents readers with a fun and fluffy novel that proves how true the statement "you can't pick your family" is. Using likeable characters and mortifying, embarrassing circumstances, this novel will resonate with middle school girls and their mothers alike.
    jasmine2 More than 1 year ago
    Author Barbara Dee's newest has a great plot, characters I came to care about, and lots and lots of laughs. If you're already a Barbara Dee fan, as I am, you'll want to read Trauma Queen right away. If you haven't read any of her novels yet, you can start right here by ordering Trauma Queen. Once you're a fan -- and I know you will be -- you can read the rest! They're all terrific!
    Savanna Douglas More than 1 year ago
    I've read a ton of books, but this was one of my absoulte favorites! Very entertaining, love it!
    GRgenius on LibraryThing 10 months ago
    With an easy flowing writing style, this book falls into the "quick read" category perfect for a weekend reminder of what being a family truly means. I saw a lot of my own mother in Ms. Bailey, ironically enough...especially in the opening scenes with Marigold's wardrobe malfunction (her mother thought it was Spirit Week making it Pajama Day and whoops....it wasn't...). Her mother rushes to her rescue, just not quite the way Mari would have liked. You can see that her mother sincerely loves her but in all the embarrassment of the moment her eyes are blinded to her efforts. I think that happens a lot as we are growing up to each and every one of us. We love our parents but we never truly appreciate them for all that they do until time passes and we can see those old situations in a new light. Grant it, they never truly shed their embarrassing undertones, but they do help us gain a new insight into the love shared within a family. Aside from the mother daughter aspect of the story that takes most of the center stage, there was much more to be pondered. On the fun side, I loved the theater aspects woven into the story. You really got a feel of what life as a performance artist would be like...as well as learned a few fascinating techinques to try on your own time. On a more serious note, I really appreciated the way that her friend Emma was portrayed. Her feelings were really hurt by what happened and the fading away for a time was realistic to what might have occurred in real life should the same situation be encountered. Often times things of this nature are glossed over for the stories sake but here it was used as a lesson to be learned from and built upon. Also, the family structure wasn't all good nor all bad. There was a real history of that initial spark and its being extinguished over time as well as fireworks (not always the good kind) upon future meetings. Again, it reflected real life and makes it that much more accessible to readers as it showed love in its many forms. In the end, it was a heart felt story about growing up and seeing your family for all its worth not just what you want it to be. Acceptance of all our supposed flaws for better or worse, and understanding that our parents more often than not are simply doing the best that they can. It's not like we were born with an instruction manual you know, though I'm certain they'd love it if we were. Some are better prepared than others, but it doesn't mean that the "free spirit" can't be the parent of your dreams. Love goes a long way in healing those unintentional wounds caused by merely trying to get things right...as does a little understanding.Recommended read for young readers through adults. It touches on issues of growing up and family from a realistic point of view without an inclusion of controversial topics or language. Happy reading....
    EdGoldberg on LibraryThing 10 months ago
    What¿s worse than being named after a flower and having a little sister named after a dead president? Yep, having a free-spirit, performance artist mother who doesn¿t understand you. And that¿s just what thirteen-year-old Marigold Bailey has. This is her third school in four years because whenever her mom, Becca, gets disgusted, they move.So, it¿s February 23, Mari¿s first day at Samuel J. Crampton Middle School, and she¿s standing outside her homeroom wearing yellow flannel monkey pajamas. Why, you might ask? Because Becca thought the newspaper she used to line Beezer, the dog¿s cage, said it was Pajama Day. Well, it¿s not. So, Mari¿s being called Banana by classmate Brody, being pitied by head clique girl Jada and what does Becca suggest? Exchange clothes. There is no thirteen-year-old girl who is going to wear her mother¿s sweats. It¿s just not going to happen. The alternative, go to the nurse¿s office and pick out some clothes from the `just in case¿ pile. Unfortunately, that alternative isn¿t any better; seventies pants and a pink polka dot top which makes Mari look like she has the chicken pox. Day One at Crampton Middle School was not a rousing success.A few more things to note as you read Trauma Queen by Barbara Dee. 1. Becca has performed a few odd pieces, such as wrapping herself in Saran Wrap for a piece called Plastic Surgery or ¿¿sitting onstage with a huge gooey chocolate cake, which she either eats or doesn¿t eat, depending on her mood.¿ 2. Mari left her best friend, Emma, behind when she moved. Becca did an improve performance about Emma¿s mother, Trisha, who is up-tight, domineering and opinionated. Trisha was insulted and, in return, started bad-mouthing Becca. It turned into an ugly scene, prompting Becca to pack up. Trisha won¿t let Emma speak to Mari. Embarrassing, to say the least. 3. And, now, to make life worse, Becca is starting an after-school improve club at Mari¿s school and all her friends are going to join. What else can go wrong? That you have to find out for yourself by reading Trauma Queen, but be assured something else will. Barbara Dee¿s characters are endearing, especially Mari¿s Gram, the voice of reason, and even Becca herself, at times. The predicaments that Mari finds herself in are funny. Mari has an interesting outlook on life and it seems that embarrassment follows her wherever her mother goes. After chuckling through the book, you¿ll be glad that Becca isn¿t your mother¿or will you? For a fun look at seventh grade, Trauma Queen is my recommendation.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    A must read
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    I love this book sooooo much. I read it ober and over when i get the chance.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    This book is the perfect lol book =]=]=]=]=] <3
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Omg!!! I. Love? This Book. It is AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Good book, not the best book ive ever read, but its a good book
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    The person who wrote the i shall read it review you r soooooo funny you must b class clown well any way very good book :) smiley face
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Sounds really good! How long is it?
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Omg. You dont get the title! Wow.... trauma means horrifing things and instead of it saying drama queen (do you know what that means?) It says trauma queen meaning bad thing always happen to her. Shes the qyeen of trauma. This is an amazing book. Get it.
    Anonymous More than 1 year ago
    Its a great book