Move over, Ramona -- here comes Clementine.
Parents recommend

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Kind, loving parents (who also get frustrated) are there for Clementine as she learns more about her world. Clementine has a lot of indepedence to explore her community that many kids today don't have. Her curious nature may often be misunderstood as questionable mischief, but Clementine has good intentions as she attempts to help solve problems as best as she can.

Positive role models

Clementine, an artistically talented character, encourages readers to recognize their skills as gifts. She embraces her creativity and is open to thinking outside the box. Despite Clementine's tendency to find herself in trouble, she often acts with good intentions that seem to be misunderstood by authority figures. Clementine's parents are also very understanding of her personality and do not wish her to be any different.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the main character, Clementine, is a precocious third-grader who frequently gets into mischief, though with the good intention to solve problems. In one week she "fixes" her friend's hair by cutting it all off, helps out the principal by answering her phone, and pays attention in class by watching the janitor embrace the lunch lady. A wide age range will enjoy this book and enjoy reading it aloud, from the emergent kindergartner reader up to third graders.

What's the story?

CLEMENTINE covers one week in the life of the precocious third-grader Clementine. At school she \"helps\" Margaret, a friend and neighbor, by cutting and coloring her hair. Neither the principal nor the girl's mother are amused, and eventually the two girls stop speaking to each other.

At home Clementine helps her father battle pesky pigeons. Mourning the loss of her cat, she also is convinced her parents are going to trade her in. In the end, hair begins to grow back, friendships are mended, Clementine's parents address her fears and treat her to a big surprise.

Is it any good?


CLEMENTINE fits right in with Ramona, Sheila-the-Great, and Pippy Longstocking -- and Sara Pennypacker has mastered the art of believable dialogue out of the mouths of kids. Despite all of Clementine's challenges, the reader also knows that she'll land on her feet or more likely, in the arms of loving parents. What's more, pen-and-ink drawings by Marla Frazee beautifully complement both silly and tender passages.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how and why Clementine's good intentions lead her to the principal's office. Does she feel misunderstood? Is she frustrated with others around her who are frustrated with her? Parents can discuss the relationship between Margaret and Clementine. What was the reason for their disagreement and how did they arrive at forgiving each other? Parents can also point out Clementine's way of understanding what's happening around her through the process of sketching.

Book details

Author:Sara Pennypacker
Illustrator:Marla Frazee
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Hyperion Books for Children
Publication date:September 15, 2006
Number of pages:144
Publisher's recommended age(s):7 - 10
Read aloud:5

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Kid, 8 years old March 26, 2009

a must read book for everyone

it was great i loved it but for other people they may not understand the book
Parent of a 7, 10, and 14 year old Written bybeckyhall March 8, 2010

Sweet, funny, and unique!

Clementine is what I imagine Junie B Jones will be like when she hits 3rd grade. Imaginative, creative, and observant, Clementine pays attention to every detail of daily life - much to the dismay of her teachers, who keep telling her to pay attention in class! She's definitely a challenge for parents and teachers, and she doesn't always make the right decisions, but her lessons are great ones! I recommend the entire series. My 7yo daughter loves to read them aloud with me.
What other families should know
Great messages
Kid, 9 years old June 29, 2013

Buy It Now!!!

This Is a Series and It Is GREAT I Read This In 2nd Grade and Absolutely Loved It!!!! I Can Totally Relate To Clementine and It Teaches Great Lessons and Has Great Role Models.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models


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