All member reviews for Ivy + Bean: Book 1

Common Sense Media says

A sure hit with kids starting chapter books.

Users say

(out of 18 reviews)
age 6+
Review this title!
Parent of a 9 year old Written by1970 dad March 20, 2011

great if you like witchcraft not for my girl

Yes i agree this book is about a friendship, but.. this book is strongly based on witchcraft. Some of the content is not what I would want my 9 year old exposed to, and the girls do seem to have a rather sassy attitude towards others not a role model for my girl for sure.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Adult Written bykeeslerkids April 9, 2008

Daughter loved IT!

My daughter received this book as a gift from a third grade teacher, she sat down with it and I didn't see her again until she was done! I asked how she liked it and she said she loved it. She is seven and going into second grade.
Parent of a 4, 6, and 8 year old Written byericandles January 18, 2011


This is an excellent read aloud for a family. Our three children enjoyed these books together (ages 4-8).
Parent Written bycoffeeandbooks January 1, 2015

Mean-spirited, disrespectful protagonist

My 6-year-old daughter received 5 of these books from my mother as a Christmas gift. She chose them because of their popularity and positive reviews and did not read them. I do agree that the format is ideal for young readers transitioning to chapter books. The illustrations help break up the text, and the chapters are short enough to be read without being too taxing for an emerging reader. The premise of finding a surprisingly satisfying friendship in an unexpected someone is appealing. But I was really bothered by the unrelenting selfishness and meanness of spirit displayed by Bean. She does have one brief moment of feeling sorry for her sister only to quickly return with an even greater enmity toward her. Reading this to my 6-year-old, I found myself having to answer lots of questions about the abundant deviousness-- stealing $20 from her sister, staging a run away from home to try to avoid punishment and get sympathy desert, planning to cast a bad spell on her sister. I am stymied at all the positive reviews this book receives. Bean uses a lot of language I find unacceptable ("dork", "stupid", "boring") and both Ivy and Bean have disrespectful attitudes toward adults and cruel ones toward siblings. The mothers of each girl appear peripherally and show little to no disapproval of their daughter's tricks. My daughter said out loud, "I wonder why Grandma bought this book for me"
Parent of a 3 and 7 year old Written bynicemom13 August 29, 2009

awesome book

It's funny because they say they won't like each other.
What other families should know
Great role models
Parent of a 1, 4, and 6 year old Written bylaurak84 February 14, 2016

These 2 Are Not Role Models

This series was recommended to us by our children's librarian. My just turned six year old plowed through them quickly and seemed to enjoy the first two. However upon reading through a few chapters of the first book, I was VERY disappointed in seeing how much name calling there was, and how many poor decisions Bean and then also Ivy made. Bean is rude and mean. I understand sisters don't always get along, but it went further than needs to illustrate that she and her older sister Nancy didn't get along. I also thought it was unnecessary for Ivy to have her face painted to look like it had blood on it. What did that have to do with being a witch? (Even if it's a pretend one.) Some small points for creativity for Ivy's solid imagination and also doing some crafting on her robe and the wand. The writing is good and the illustrations are fun, but overall not exactly two "role models" like others have said.
Kid, 10 years old September 7, 2011


this book i can read every day and i have it
What other families should know
Great messages
Parent of a 2 and 5 year old Written byBCmom April 23, 2010

Great for reading together

We have spent an hour on the couch with this because my 5 year old daughter kept jumping up at the end of each chapter begging for "just ONE MORE chapter!"...until it was finished. This series is helping her want to learn to read on her own because when I stop reading, she keeps looking at the book to see what happens next. I recommend this as a very fun read-aloud for an emergent reader.
Parent Written byllibres October 2, 2012

Very entertaining collection

My daughter really liked the books in this collection. She thinks they were very entertaining. Would recommend it to mostly girls.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Parent of a 3 and 5 year old Written byStaciJ November 9, 2010

Great First Read Aloud Chapter Books

The was our first read-aloud series after a few Ramona books. My 5-year-old LOVED all of these books. My concern listed above is just that they use the word 'stupid' every once in ahwile which we aren't allowed to use in our house. But other than that, super fun, fast reads. My daughter is anxioulsy awating the next one!
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Educational value
Parent Written bycommonsensek July 1, 2015

Ivy and Bean Fan

The book was good. I liked the characters because they were funny. My cousin also loved the book, and she gave it to me and I loved it too.
Teen, 15 years old Written byhollyhorsey June 5, 2012

Love it

Very cute book.
Kid, 9 years old November 1, 2010


It`s funny and fun!
Adult Written byAbracadebra April 9, 2008

Terrific Series

My daughter and I both loved the spunky heroines of this book. The books (there are three in the series, and a fourth in the works) are laugh-out-loud funny, but not crude. The vocabulary can be challenging. We are big fans of various books about Mary Anning, an 18th century archaeologist, and the girls talk about her in the third book of the series, so we really enjoyed that. Highly recommended. My daughter read these books at 7, when she was ready for chapters and demanding vocabulary, but not ready to give up illustrations and largish type.
Parent of a 5 and 8 year old Written byKerryM 1 February 13, 2015

Great story & good writing!

Not only is this a series with a fun and engaging story line, but it's well written too, which unfortunately isn't that common with chapter books for this age. My daughter tore through them reading each in 2-3 days, and I even enjoyed the story line, when she read them aloud to me.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Kid, 8 years old April 21, 2014


good book
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Parent of a 6 year old Written byhousmore November 23, 2010
Parent Written byFeministMama July 3, 2016

Mean Girls Strike Again

This book is about two little girls who go on an adventure, so I thought it would be empowering. It was not, and here is why. It starts off with one little girl, Bean, immediately judging the other little girl, calling her "boring" several times. Next it launches right into a horrible sibling relationship. I would be absolutely devastated if my children treated each other the way the sisters in this book treat each other. Name calling (tightwad, pain, pest, booger-head, stupid, crummy, faker, big turkey, bean breath, burp head) , even a mild amount of violence (kicking, throwing worms in her sister's face and mouth). There is also mean trick playing, taking money from a purse, sneaking out of the house, and hoping a frog dies so they can use it in a witch's potion. The whole read was disappointing, but the most profoundly disturbing aspect was the way the sisters are pitted against each other in the story. Kids need to be taught to be kind to each other, and girls especially need to learn to empower and support each other. I was going to give this to my 8 year old niece as a gift and I am glad I read it first, because I won't be gifting or recommending this book to anyone.