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Okay for Now

by

Okay for Now Cover

ISBN13: 9780547152608
ISBN10: 0547152604
Condition: Student Owned
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Synopses & Reviews

Please note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.

Publisher Comments:

As a fourteen-year-old who just moved to a new town, with no friends and a louse for an older brother, Doug Swieteck has all the stats stacked against him.

So begins a coming-of-age masterwork full of equal parts comedy and tragedy from Newbery Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt. As Doug struggles to be more than the “skinny thug” that his teachers and the police think him to be, he finds an unlikely ally in Lil Spicer — a fiery young lady who "smelled like daisies would smell if they were growing in a big field under a clearing sky after a rain." In Lil, Doug finds the strength to endure an abusive father, the suspicions of a whole town, and the return of his oldest brother, forever scarred, from Vietnam. Together, they find a safe haven in the local library, inspiration in learning about the plates of John James Audubon's birds, and a hilarious adventure on a Broadway stage.

In this stunning novel, Schmidt expertly weaves multiple themes of loss and recovery in a story teeming with distinctive, unusual characters and invaluable lessons about love, creativity, and survival.

Review:

"This companion to The Wednesday Wars follows the formula of Schmidt's Newbery Honor winner with less success. Doug Swieteck, a prankster in the previous book, has graver problems than Holling Hoodhood did, making the interplay of pathos and slapstick humor an uneasy fit. In summer 1968, the Swietecks leave Long Island for the Catskills, where Doug's father has found work. Doug's mother (like Holling's) is kind but ineffectual; Mr. Swieteck is a brutish jerk. His abuse of his three sons, one of whom is currently in Vietnam, happens mostly offstage, but one episode of unthinkable cruelty is recounted as a flashback to explain why Doug refuses to take off his shirt in gym class. Doug does make two key friends: Lil, whose father owns the deli for which Doug becomes delivery boy, and the less fleshed-out Mr. Powell, a librarian who instantly sees Doug's potential as an artist. There are lovely moments, but the late addition of an implausible subplot in which Lil, who has never shown an interest in acting, is drafted for a role in a Broadway play, seems desultory considering the story's weightier elements. Ages 10 — 14. (Apr.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWxyz LLC)

Review:

"This is Schmidt's best novel yet — darker than The Wednesday Wars and written with more restraint, but with the same expert attention to voice, character and big ideas." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)

Review:

"Readers will miss Doug and his world when they're done, and will feel richer for having experienced his engaging, tough, and endearing story." School Library Journal (Starred Review)

Review:

"The book is exceptionally well written. Schmidt creates characters that will remain with the reader long after the book is done. Doug's voice is unforgettable as he tries to help and protect his mom....While there is much stacked against him, he is a character filled with hope that the reader cannot help but root for. Push this one on readers; they will not be sorry....Schmidt writes a journal-type story with a sharp attention to detail, patterns in the story line, and an unexpected twist at the end." VOYA

Synopsis:

In this stunning novel, Newbery Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt expertly weaves multiple themes of loss and recovery in a story teeming with distinctive, unusual characters and invaluable lessons about love, creativity, and survival.

Synopsis:

It is the mid-eighteenth century, and young British subject Anson Granville Staplyton has traveled to Ireland, where his regiment has been sent to keep the king's peace. Anson has waited all his life for the day he would follow his father to serve His Majesty in the Staffordshire Fencibles. But the young drummer's notions of glory are shaken when he witnesses the violent injustices thrust upon the Irish people. Anson is torn even further when he meets an Irish hedge master who secretly teaches children the lilting language and history of their won country-lessons that it is Anson's duty to silence. Torn between family honor and his ever-changing sense of justice, Anson struggles to choose his own way in beautiful yet turbulent Ireland.

Synopsis:

In this Newbery Honor-winning novel, Gary D. Schmidt offers an unforgettable antihero. The Wednesday Wars is a wonderfully witty and compelling story about a teenage boys mishaps and adventures over the course of the 1967-68 school year in Long Island, New York.

Meet Holling Hoodhood, a seventh-grader at Camillo Junior High, who must spend Wednesday afternoons with his teacher, Mrs. Baker, while the rest of the class has religious instruction. Mrs. Baker doesnt like Holling—hes sure of it. Why else would she make him read the plays of William Shakespeare outside class? But everyone has bigger things to worry about, like Vietnam. His father wants Holling and his sister to be on their best behavior: the success of his business depends on it. But how can Holling stay out of trouble when he has so much to contend with? A bully demanding cream puffs; angry rats; and a baseball hero signing autographs the very same night Holling has to appear in a play in yellow tights! As fate sneaks up on him again and again, Holling finds Motivation—the Big M—in the most unexpected places and musters up the courage to embrace his destiny, in spite of himself.

Synopsis:

It only takes a few hours for Turner Buckminster to start hating Phippsburg, Maine. No one in town will let him forget that he's a minister's son, even if he doesn't act like one. But then he meets Lizzie Bright Griffin, a smart and sassy girl from a poor nearby island community founded by former slaves. Despite his father's-and the town's-disapproval of their friendship, Turner spends time with Lizzie, and it opens up a whole new world to him, filled with the mystery and wonder of Maine's rocky coast. The two soon discover that the town elders, along with Turner's father, want to force the people to leave Lizzie's island so that Phippsburg can start a lucrative tourist trade there. Turner gets caught up in a spiral of disasters that alter his life-but also lead him to new levels of acceptance and maturity. This sensitively written historical novel, based on the true story of a community's destruction, highlights a unique friendship during a time of change. Author's note.

Synopsis:

What fills a hand fuller than a skein of gold? By order of the king, two boys, Tousle and Innes, must find the answer to this puzzling riddle within seven days or be killed. A former nursemaid to the queens child tells the boys that the banished queen may have the answer they seek. Danger presents itself at every turn, for the boys are pursued by the Great Barons, who are secretly plotting against the king. Another pursuer, the greedy Kings Grip, reveals a strange story of a little man who once spun straw into gold of incredible beauty for the queen but then disappeared with her firstborn son. Tousle realizes that the man he calls Da is the strange little man and, even more amazing, that he himself may be the lost prince. Or could it be Innes, who although cruelly blinded can hear the music of the dawn?

This skillful blend of fantasy and adventure reveals what might have happened before the queen makes her third and last guess and the story of Rumpelstiltskin—as we know it—ends.

Synopsis:

“Henry Smiths father told him that if you build your house far enough away from Trouble, then Trouble will never find you.”

But Trouble comes careening down the road one night in the form of a pickup truck that strikes Henrys older brother, Franklin. In the truck is Chay Chouan, a young Cambodian from Franklins preparatory school, and the accident sparks racial tensions in the school—and in the well-established town where Henrys family has lived for generations. Caught between anger and grief, Henry sets out to do the only thing he can think of: climb Mt. Katahdin, the highest mountain in Maine, which he and Franklin were going to climb together. Along with Black Dog, whom Henry has rescued from drowning, and a friend, Henry leaves without his parents knowledge. The journey, both exhilarating and dangerous, turns into an odyssey of discovery about himself, his older sister, Louisa, his ancestry, and why one can never escape from Trouble.

Video

About the Author

Gary D. Schmidt is the bestselling author of Okay For Now, the Newbery Honor and Printz Honor book Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy, and the Newbery Honor book The Wednesday Wars. He is a professor of English at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 9 comments:

Beverly B, August 4, 2013 (view all comments by Beverly B)
Okay For Now is a dark, sometimes sad, often witty, very realistic coming of age story with an optimistic ending. The relationships between protagonist, Doug, and the townspeople he meets on his daily grocery deliveries are engaging and entertaining, especially his humorous relationship with the town's notorious grumpy old lady, Mrs. Windermere. Doug is the youngest son of a violently abusive alcoholic father and an enabling mother. After his father gets fired from yet another job, the family moves to a small factory town and into a run down house on the wrong side of the tracks. The secrets he thinks he must keep, and the lies he thinks he must tell, make it almost impossible for Doug to fit in or make friends. Like many children of alcoholics, Doug uses anger and bitterness to keep people from getting too close and maybe discovering his secrets. Luckily for Doug, there are a couple people in town who persevere through his anger to connect with him - classmate, Lillian and librarian, Mr. Powell. Readers of Gary D. Schmidt's companion novel, The Wednesday Wars, know what will follow. Mr. Powell recognizes Doug's great talent for drawing and takes Doug on as an art student. Lil recognizes that Doug isn't really mean, just lonely, and gets him a job at her Dad's store. She also recognizes that his snarky comments reveal him to be almost as smart as she is which she sees as an entertaining challenge. Although the writing style is appropriate for middle grade readers, the beautiful symbolism of John James Audubon's drawings will be way over their heads, and the excellent descriptions of Audubon's masterful technique will probably bore them. What will keep even reluctant readers engaged is determination to create a happy life for himself, even if the universe is out to stop him. The surprise twist in the crisis event will have many laughing out loud.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
amywick, January 30, 2012 (view all comments by amywick)
Loved this even more than Wednesday Wars. Tied up a bit to neat at the end, but I do like a happy ending!
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
Diane E, January 20, 2012 (view all comments by Diane E)
A beautiful book - engaging, exciting, and funny. I wept and laughed out loud. Well-crafted characters and an art lesson as well!
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 9 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780547152608
Author:
Schmidt, Gary D.
Publisher:
Clarion Books
Author:
Fleming, David
Author:
Pitchford, Dean
Author:
Levine, Kristin
Author:
Phillips, Gin
Subject:
Historical - Europe
Subject:
Fairy Tales & Folklore - Single Title
Subject:
Historical - United States - General
Subject:
Family - General
Subject:
Historical - United States - 20th Century
Subject:
Animals - Birds
Subject:
General Juvenile Fiction
Subject:
Children s Young Adult-Social Issue Fiction-General
Subject:
Children s Young Adult-Social Issue Fiction
Subject:
Situations / Friendship
Subject:
Family - Parents
Subject:
Children s-Historical Fiction-U.S. 20th Century
Subject:
Mysteries & Detective Stories
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20110431
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
from 5 up to 9
Language:
English
Illustrations:
b+w illustrations
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 0.88 lb
Age Level:
08-12

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Related Subjects


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Young Adult » General

Okay for Now Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.00 In Stock
Product details 368 pages Clarion Books - English 9780547152608 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "This companion to The Wednesday Wars follows the formula of Schmidt's Newbery Honor winner with less success. Doug Swieteck, a prankster in the previous book, has graver problems than Holling Hoodhood did, making the interplay of pathos and slapstick humor an uneasy fit. In summer 1968, the Swietecks leave Long Island for the Catskills, where Doug's father has found work. Doug's mother (like Holling's) is kind but ineffectual; Mr. Swieteck is a brutish jerk. His abuse of his three sons, one of whom is currently in Vietnam, happens mostly offstage, but one episode of unthinkable cruelty is recounted as a flashback to explain why Doug refuses to take off his shirt in gym class. Doug does make two key friends: Lil, whose father owns the deli for which Doug becomes delivery boy, and the less fleshed-out Mr. Powell, a librarian who instantly sees Doug's potential as an artist. There are lovely moments, but the late addition of an implausible subplot in which Lil, who has never shown an interest in acting, is drafted for a role in a Broadway play, seems desultory considering the story's weightier elements. Ages 10 — 14. (Apr.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWxyz LLC)
"Review" by , "This is Schmidt's best novel yet — darker than The Wednesday Wars and written with more restraint, but with the same expert attention to voice, character and big ideas." (Starred Review)
"Review" by , "Readers will miss Doug and his world when they're done, and will feel richer for having experienced his engaging, tough, and endearing story." (Starred Review)
"Review" by , "The book is exceptionally well written. Schmidt creates characters that will remain with the reader long after the book is done. Doug's voice is unforgettable as he tries to help and protect his mom....While there is much stacked against him, he is a character filled with hope that the reader cannot help but root for. Push this one on readers; they will not be sorry....Schmidt writes a journal-type story with a sharp attention to detail, patterns in the story line, and an unexpected twist at the end."
"Synopsis" by , In this stunning novel, Newbery Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt expertly weaves multiple themes of loss and recovery in a story teeming with distinctive, unusual characters and invaluable lessons about love, creativity, and survival.
"Synopsis" by ,
It is the mid-eighteenth century, and young British subject Anson Granville Staplyton has traveled to Ireland, where his regiment has been sent to keep the king's peace. Anson has waited all his life for the day he would follow his father to serve His Majesty in the Staffordshire Fencibles. But the young drummer's notions of glory are shaken when he witnesses the violent injustices thrust upon the Irish people. Anson is torn even further when he meets an Irish hedge master who secretly teaches children the lilting language and history of their won country-lessons that it is Anson's duty to silence. Torn between family honor and his ever-changing sense of justice, Anson struggles to choose his own way in beautiful yet turbulent Ireland.
"Synopsis" by , In this Newbery Honor-winning novel, Gary D. Schmidt offers an unforgettable antihero. The Wednesday Wars is a wonderfully witty and compelling story about a teenage boys mishaps and adventures over the course of the 1967-68 school year in Long Island, New York.

Meet Holling Hoodhood, a seventh-grader at Camillo Junior High, who must spend Wednesday afternoons with his teacher, Mrs. Baker, while the rest of the class has religious instruction. Mrs. Baker doesnt like Holling—hes sure of it. Why else would she make him read the plays of William Shakespeare outside class? But everyone has bigger things to worry about, like Vietnam. His father wants Holling and his sister to be on their best behavior: the success of his business depends on it. But how can Holling stay out of trouble when he has so much to contend with? A bully demanding cream puffs; angry rats; and a baseball hero signing autographs the very same night Holling has to appear in a play in yellow tights! As fate sneaks up on him again and again, Holling finds Motivation—the Big M—in the most unexpected places and musters up the courage to embrace his destiny, in spite of himself.

"Synopsis" by ,
It only takes a few hours for Turner Buckminster to start hating Phippsburg, Maine. No one in town will let him forget that he's a minister's son, even if he doesn't act like one. But then he meets Lizzie Bright Griffin, a smart and sassy girl from a poor nearby island community founded by former slaves. Despite his father's-and the town's-disapproval of their friendship, Turner spends time with Lizzie, and it opens up a whole new world to him, filled with the mystery and wonder of Maine's rocky coast. The two soon discover that the town elders, along with Turner's father, want to force the people to leave Lizzie's island so that Phippsburg can start a lucrative tourist trade there. Turner gets caught up in a spiral of disasters that alter his life-but also lead him to new levels of acceptance and maturity. This sensitively written historical novel, based on the true story of a community's destruction, highlights a unique friendship during a time of change. Author's note.

"Synopsis" by ,
What fills a hand fuller than a skein of gold? By order of the king, two boys, Tousle and Innes, must find the answer to this puzzling riddle within seven days or be killed. A former nursemaid to the queens child tells the boys that the banished queen may have the answer they seek. Danger presents itself at every turn, for the boys are pursued by the Great Barons, who are secretly plotting against the king. Another pursuer, the greedy Kings Grip, reveals a strange story of a little man who once spun straw into gold of incredible beauty for the queen but then disappeared with her firstborn son. Tousle realizes that the man he calls Da is the strange little man and, even more amazing, that he himself may be the lost prince. Or could it be Innes, who although cruelly blinded can hear the music of the dawn?

This skillful blend of fantasy and adventure reveals what might have happened before the queen makes her third and last guess and the story of Rumpelstiltskin—as we know it—ends.

"Synopsis" by ,

“Henry Smiths father told him that if you build your house far enough away from Trouble, then Trouble will never find you.”

But Trouble comes careening down the road one night in the form of a pickup truck that strikes Henrys older brother, Franklin. In the truck is Chay Chouan, a young Cambodian from Franklins preparatory school, and the accident sparks racial tensions in the school—and in the well-established town where Henrys family has lived for generations. Caught between anger and grief, Henry sets out to do the only thing he can think of: climb Mt. Katahdin, the highest mountain in Maine, which he and Franklin were going to climb together. Along with Black Dog, whom Henry has rescued from drowning, and a friend, Henry leaves without his parents knowledge. The journey, both exhilarating and dangerous, turns into an odyssey of discovery about himself, his older sister, Louisa, his ancestry, and why one can never escape from Trouble.

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