Muggie Maggie

Written by Beverly Cleary
Illustrated by Alan Tiegreen

Reviewed by Kaitlin C. (age 9) and Stephanie C. (age 8)

Oh no! Can Maggie survive cursive writing? Maggie comes home from school one day disappointed because her class was going to start writing cursive. All those loops and curves and swirls and curls are driving her crazy. Now Maggie is in a humongous mess. When she tried to write her name in cursive, she didn't close her "A's" and they ended up looking like "U's." "Your name isn't Muggie Maggie," her teacher would say. Now Maggie is known as Muggie Maggie - the kid who wouldn't write cursive.

One day Mrs. Leeper, Maggie's teacher, picked her to be messenger. "Give this note to Mr. Galloway," she said. So Maggie started for the principals office. In the hallway Maggie noticed that the note wasn't sealed. "I guess it won't hurt to look," she said to herself. She opened the note. CURSIVE, just as she had expected. She saw the question mark at the end. Mrs. Leeper is probably asking for some math papers or something, she decided.

She walked into the principal's office and handed Mr. Galloway the note. "Mmmmm...Hhhmm." He said as he wrote something on the back. "Thank you Maggie," he said handing her the note. She walked out of the office and quickly opened the envelope. She looked at the letter written in messy cursive and was able to make out her name. That's an "M" - most definitely. "I think that's an "A" and that's probably a "G" because they both look the same so that must be another "G." "That's enough! What are they saying about me?"

She quickly shoved the note back into the envelope and walked down the hallway with a steamy, red, embarrassed, face. And then, and then - oh we want to say more but you will have to read the rest of the book to find out what the teachers are saying about Maggie.

The big idea in this book is that you should not say you do not like something until you have actually tried it.

Kay Life did her sketches in black ink. And even though they are drawings they look so real.

I (Kaitlin C.) liked this book because every time I read it it makes me feel like I'm in the story. I can actually picture it happening in our own school. It also reminds me of my little cousin, Danielle, because she says I don't want to all the time, just like Maggie.

I (Stephanie C.) like this book because it had me wondering in many parts. Like when Maggie was looking at the notes, I wondered what they said and what the teacher's thought. It reminds me of when we started writing cursive because I thought I wasn't going to like it, but then I did! Our favorite part was when Maggie was in the hallway reading the notes, because she was reading things about herself. Our favorite character is Maggie because she is open minded and independent.

We recommend this book to people who like fiction books that could really happen in life. We also recommend this book to people who don't like writing in cursive because you could change your mind.

We think this book is good for grades two and three because you can understand what Beverly Cleary is trying to say. We also think it is good for these particular grades because it would be a comfortable read for children of this age.

Kaitlin C. and Stephanie C. are students in Class C123
2002-2003