Article

Stanford Wong Flunks Big-Time Booktalk

  • Grades: 6–8

Basketball camp is out, summer school is in, and Stanford Wong’s life may be over!

Standford Wong feels like his life is officially over. He flunked English, and is going to spend his summer at summer school instead of at basketball camp. If he doesn’t pass English, he’ll have to spend a second year in sixth grade, and instead of being the only seventh grader on the A basketball team, he won’t be on any team at all. Kids who flunk out aren’t allowed to play sports.

His dad’s ballistic about it, and is really on his case. In fact, Stanford’s book report with its big red F is posted on the refrigerator where everyone can see it! There’s no way Stanford or anyone else in the family is going to forget it. Stanford doesn’t dare tell his friends. He’s sure they’ll dump him for being such a loser. And Emily Ebers, the gorgeous new girl in town, won’t want to have anything to do with him if she finds out how dumb he is.

And then things go from just bad to totally terminal when his parents hire a tutor for him. But not just any tutor, they hire the one person Standford wants nothing to do with, Millicent Min, a certified girl genius who’s skipped so many grades she’s in high school, even if she’s only eleven. Their grandmothers are best friends, and they’ve known each other, and hated each other, all their lives. So now Standford has to not only avoid being seen at summer school, he has to avoid being seen with Millicent as well! But being around Millicent is the only way he’ll get to be around Emily, since she and Millicent are best friends. And even that’s complicated, since Emily thinks that Stanford is tutoring Millicent, not the other way around, and if she finds out the truth, she’ll think Stanford is just a dumb jock and Millicent is just a geeky freak.

And if all that isn’t enough to complicate his life, things are also falling apart at home. His dad is trying for a promotion, and does nothing but work ninety hours a week, and when he’s home, he’s either yelling at Stanford or fighting with Stanford’s mom. His grandmother had to go to a nursing home, and she’s miserable and wants Stanford to help her escape. And Stanford’s perfect sister Susan comes home over the Fourth of July and makes Stanford look even worse!

Can Stanford juggle summer school (including three book reports), tutoring, basketball, Emily, his friends and his family without dropping anything? He’s been a hero on the basketball court for years, but can he be a hero off the court as well?

 

 

  • Subjects:
    Family Life, Friends and Friendship
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