Gooney Bird Is So Absurd by Lois Lowry - Review

I consider myself a Lois Lowry uber-fan. I subscribe to her blog. I’ve written her. I’ve used her novels repeatedly in the classroom. Yet, I am ashamed to admit never having read her Gooney Bird series. I always thought it was a silly, primary level (not my thing) series. I should have never doubted Lowry. She is a master, even when writing silly, primary level stories.

Lowry’s child-like eyes are shining in Gooney Bird Is So Absurd. Gooney Bird is a second-grader, a unique second-grader. She wears odd clothing (like brain-warming ruffled under-panties on her head) and is prone to precociousness (to say the least). Her teacher, Mrs. Pidgeon, is teaching the class poetry when a tragedy strikes. Leave it to Lois Lowry to deftly navigate deep waters with a quirky and absurd protagonist.

Gooney Bird Is So Absurd is a MUST for first through fourth grade classrooms (of course, I say that about so many Lowry books). It covers themes of tolerance, uniqueness, death & aging, respect, kindness, and teamwork with a light hand that makes approaching the subjects much easier. The story is quickly engaging and would make a wonderful read aloud. Gooney Bird Is So Absurd also works as a stand alone, even though it is part of a series. It's also a fantastic addition or introduction to poetry units.

Highly recommended for independent readers, as a read aloud for K-4 and for all school libraries.

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Genre: Realistic Fiction. Age: Independent Elementary Readers. Pages: 112.

Themes: Strength of Character, Loss, Humor
Thanks to The Picnic Basket.
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin. Date: March 2009
ISBN-10: 0547119674 / ISBN-13: 978-0547119670

Buy Gooney Bird Is So Absurd Here

Gooney Bird's Page

Lois Lowry has lived all over the world. She had four children in four and half years and now has four grandchildren. She lives in Massachusetts and believes, ..."that our future depends upon our caring more, and doing more, for one another." You can read much more about her and see some wonderful family photos here. She has won The Newbery Medal twice.
© 2007-2009 Cheryl Vanatti for

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