Synopses & Reviews
Beloved Newbery Medalist Jerry Spinelli, author of Maniac Magee
addresses issues of identity, belonging, family, and bullying in this humorous and heartfelt novel about twins.
Jake and Lily are twins. Despite their slightly different interests and temperaments, they feel exactly the same—like two halves of one person. But the year they turn eleven, everything changes. Their parents announce its time for separate bedrooms. Jake starts hanging out with a pack of boys on the block. And Lily is devastated, not to mention angry. Who is she without Jake? And as her brother falls under the influence of the neighborhood bully, he also must ask himself—who is the real Jake?
This is an often funny, poignant, and profound story of growing up, growing apart, and the difficult process of figuring out who you really are.
“Spinelli adroitly balances emotional tension with introspective moments in this smart and funny story.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Spinelli is a poet of the prepubescent…Nobody is better than Spinelli when it comes to creating the grade-school world of qualified innocenceand treading a fine line between challenge and reassurance.” New York Times Book Review
“Each character is portrayed with emotional subtlety and conviction, while their juxtaposed viewpoints bring the energy of opposing forces to the story.” Booklist
“Double the feelings, double the fun.” Kirkus Reviews
“Spinellis hallmark issuesindividuality, nonconformity, alienation, standing up for the little guyfigure prominently, and the messages are convincingly worked into the story.” Horn Book Magazine
Jake and Lily are twins.
Even though they seem pretty different, they feel exactly the same, almost like two halves of one person. When one of them gets hurt, the other can feel it. They can communicate without words. And mysteriously, every year on their birthday, they sleepwalk to a train station in the middle of the night.
But the year they turn eleven, everything changes. Their parents announce it's time for separate bedrooms, and Jake starts hanging out with a pack of boys on the block. Lily is devastated—not to mention really, really mad. And as she struggles to make friends and get a life apart from her twin, Jake finds himself dealing with a neighborhood bully and has to decide what kind of person he really is.
Clifford Allyn Abernathy III (just Cliff, for short) is the oldest of six kids in a family that does everything—fighting, laughing, playing, eating, telling stories, and celebrating the holidays—in a big, often outlandish, and sometimes poignant way.
Taking the family from Christmas to Christmas, the chapters of Fig Pudding, narrated by eleven-year-old Cliff, are complete short stories in themselves—full of quick-paced, hilarious action and the warmth and love of a close-knit family. This new edition includes an original story.
About the Author
Jerry Spinelli received the Newbery Medal for Maniac Magee and a Newbery Honor for Wringer. His other books include Smiles to Go, Loser, Space Station Seventh Grade, Who Put That Hair in My Toothbrush?, Dump Days, and Stargirl. His novels are recognized for their humor and poignancy, and his characters and situations are often drawn from his real-life experience as a father of six children. Jerry lives with his wife, Eileen, also a writer, in Wayne, Pennsylvania.