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*Bessica Lefter Bites Back* by Kristen Tracy - middle grades book review
Also by Kristen Tracy:

The Reinvention of Bessica Lefter

Camille McPhee Fell Under the Bus...
Bessica Lefter Bites Back
by Kristen Tracy
Ages 9-13 272 pages Delacorte March 2012 Hardcover    

Kristen Tracy picks up Bessica’s story where she left off in Bessica Lefter Bites Back. A sixth-grader in a new school and without her best friend, Sylvie, Bessica has just been chosen to share the school mascot job with Alice, a girl she definitely does not like.

Bessica really doesn’t know much about being a mascot. She’s missed the costume fitting and scheduling, and now she is stuck facing the notorious TJ the Tiger in her first game! She’s also burned some bridges with Sylvie and found herself in the midst of a rather nasty war of text messages. What’s more, her favorite grandmother is coming home with her new boyfriend, whom Bessica resents because of the time that her grandmother spends with him.

Almost everything Bessica does turns into a problem. Like many young middle school girls, she acts without thinking, hangs onto a crush on a high school neighbor, makes a big deal out of relatively small problems, and behaves as if the world revolves around her.

Girls in third through sixth grade will relate to Bessica and her problems. Like Bessica, they want to grow up and be accepted but end up making mistakes along the way. This sequel is best read after the first book, as the reader is thrown into Bessica’s school, family and friendship situations without any background.

This is a book to read just for fun, for girls who are over-anxious to grow up. The cover is very appealing with a photograph of a girl (with her head cut off in the picture) and a birthday cake. The plot is simple, the problems relatively mundane and the character development is flat. Bessica does learn from some mistakes, but does not make any significant gains in her growth toward maturity. Recommended for fans of the Bessica Lefter Bites Back.
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  Kristine Wildner/2012 for curled up with a good kid's book  

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