The School Story, by Andrew Clements

The School Story

The School Story was written by Andrew Clements. This school story takes place in New York and contains 196 pages.

This book is about a girl named Natalie Nelson. Her mom works at Shipley Junior, a publishing company. One day, on the way home from work, Mrs. Nelson mentions that the company needs more school stories. Natalie thinks, “Who knows more about school than someone who’s right there, five days a week, nine months a year? I bet I could write a school story.” So she writes a book, called The Cheater.

Natalie shows her book to her friend, Zoe Reisman, who thinks of an idea. The girls could publish the book! With the help of an English teacher, Zoe’s dad, and Natalie’s uncle, they get it published.

The Cheater is edited by Natalie’s mom, so Natalie uses the pen name Cassandra Day. Zoe pretends to be a literary agent named Zee Zee Reisman. This is a cool book!

One thing I learned from this book is about the publishing world. I never really knew how it worked, and I learned a lot about it in this book, from literary agencies to editors. The School Story also inspired me to write a book of my own. It isn’t done yet, but I’m working on it!

The following passage is my favorite in the book. It is when Natalie comes to a publishing party in her honor, and when her mom learns who Cassandra Day really is.

        “Putting her arm around Natalie’s waist, Zoe said, ‘This is Cassandra Day. That’s her pen name. Cassandra Day is Natalie Nelson.’

The camera operator saw it all. As the tape rolled she thought, It doesn’t get better than this. And she was right.

        The camera saw everything so clearly. It saw the woman look at the girl, completely   baffled. It saw the mother’s eyes widen, her eyebrows furrow into a question mark and then smooth to under standing. It recorded the ballet of emotions that danced across both faces.

The microphone heard the woman’s sharp intake of breath, almost a gasp, and then the long breathing out, almost a sigh. And it heard the girl whisper,’It’s true, Mom.’

Mother and daughter looked at each other for a long moment, and when they hugged, the people and the room and the building and the city around them disappeared.”

  One of the best things about this book is Zoe, Natalie’s friend. Even when Natalie gets discouraged, Zoe is always there to encourage her. This is a highlight of the story.

This is a very good book. I highly recommend it.

This book is not in a series, but Andrew Clements, the author, has written many school stories. I wouldn’t recommend many of them, but some of them are good.

This book is published by Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers. It’s ISBN is: 0-689-82594-3

Written By Leona G., 11 yrs.


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