Saturday, July 04, 2009

ALSO KNOWN AS HARPER by Ann Haywood Leal

After reading Bill's review of ALSO KNOWN AS HARPER by Bill at Literate Lives, I had to put it at the top of my stack. I finished the book this week and LOVED it! I agree completely with Bill. This is a great read. One that I am happy to have put on the top of my stack.

Harper Lee Morgan is named after her mother's favorite writer, Harper Lee. Harper loves writing and loves school. But when her father leaves and her family gets evicted from their home, lots changes for Harper.

This is the worst time for things to fall apart--Harper has been anxiously awaiting this year's poetry contest at school. Now, with nowhere to live, Harper can't go to school for a few days.

While Harper's mother goes to work and tries to get the family back on its feet, Harper takes care of her younger brother, Hemingway. She also meets new people and continues her writing.

Harper is a great character--one that you want only the best for throughout the book. Her writing that is spread throughout the book gives her character even more voice. She is definitely a character who writes to make sense of the world. She doesn't just write. She truly lives her life as a writer and impacts others with her words.

The story is about homelessness, but more importantly about family and growing up. Harper learns a lot about herself and what is important. This book would be a great one for middle grade students.


  1. So many people like this book -- i MUST get it soon!

  2. Now everyone will want to name their daughter after mine: Harper. I got it from Lasky's Memoirs of a Bookbat, but when people ask about Harper Lee I just nod because that's cool too.

  3. I also have this book in my to read pile. I will have to move it to the top of mine too!

  4. I just bought this book the other night when I went to pick up my "Commemorative" Michael Jackson Time issue! LOL... I had too, I was a child of the 80s!
    Anyway, I am excited to read it!

  5. Sounds like a good book. Would you recommend this for a good read aloud for a first grade class? The topics you mentioned are real life. Many of my students could relate to the family issues.

  6. Kristin--I'm thinking it is not a great read for 1st grade. i was thinking 4th/5th when I read it. The issues are really about the older sister (Harper) dealing with things that are kind of age-specific for intermediate grades. It is a great book! Hope you like it.

  7. I agree Franki, definitely not for first grade.


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