The Mother-Daughter Book Club

Book review by
Terreece Clarke, Common Sense Media
The Mother-Daughter Book Club Book Poster Image
Just the read to jump-start your own book club.
Popular with kids

Parents say

age 9+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 22 reviews

A lot or a little?

Parents' guide to what's in this book.

Positive messages

While there is a lot of mean-girl behavior, there are great examples of friendship, forgiveness, and open dialog between parents and their children.

Violence

Loud arguments between friends and a hockey player is injured.

Sex

Nothing risque here; just middle school crushes and first-dance magic.

Language

Mild name calling like "goat girl" and "heifer."

Consumerism

The novel is set in Concord, Mass. so there are references to famous authors who have lived there and town lore.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that there's not much to object to in this book. There are some examples of mean-girl attitudes and actions, but they lead to discussion and resolution of the feelings behind the aggression.

User Reviews

Parent of a 4, 9, and 10 year old Written bymockingbird72 January 19, 2011

Modern Age Little Women

Terrific! Wonderful book about 4 very different grils (and their moms) trying to navigate their way thru middle school. Some mean girl behavior, but book shows...
Teen, 13 years old Written bymngirl June 29, 2011

Great Books!

This is the first of the books. I've read all four of the books and they're all great! I don't know which one is my favorite!? My favorite is pro...
Kid, 12 years old August 11, 2011

Not as girly as it seems

This book was given to me a few years ago. The cover (all pink) and the title put me off. Then again, never judge a book by its cover, or title. It's defin...

What's the story?

Megan, Emma, Jess, and Cassidy can think of a million other things they'd rather do than be in a book club with their mothers, or with one another for that matter. But then a funny thing happens. As they explore the four girls of Little Women they learn more about themselves, their families, and one another. Will it be enough to counter all the other crazy things going on in their lives including crushes, secret dreams, real-life family drama, and all the drama of middle school?

Is it any good?

THE MOTHER-DAUGHTER BOOK CLUB is a stand-out novel because author Heather Frederick gives an authentic voice to her young characters. The four main girls -- Megan, Cassidy, Emma, and Jess -- with similarities to the March sisters in Little Women (the book they're reading), really develop as characters throughout the book. Megan especially. A classic mean girl, she torments several of the other girls and plays cruel pranks on them. When one prank goes too far she is forced to face the girls, their mothers, and the reasons behind her actions. The result is a very moving scene that gives great insight into why mean girls behave the way they do.

The active role that parents play in this novel is wonderful. They are engaged in and aware of what is going on in their kids' lives. This is a refreshing change to the more common narrative of absent or oblivious parents. Parents and kids should read this book together, not because of any questionable material, but because it has something for everyone. This is the type of book that can change the dialog in a mother-daughter relationship.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about ways to spend more time together. Besides starting a book club, what hobbies or activities can families do together to help build better relationships? How did the book club help with the girls' relationships with their parents? How did it help with their relationships with each other?

Book details

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