Out of Order

Betty Hicks

Square Fish

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“We'll have fun,” Mom pleaded. “You've always wanted a brother--” “A younger brother,” said Parker. “I wanted a younger brother.” “But Eric is great. He’ll-“ “You don't get it, Mom. I've always been the youngest. Now I'm going to be even younger!”

Before her mom remarried, Lily was the eldest; now she has dropped to second from the bottom. Her 13-year-old stepsister, V, is brilliant, popular, and seriously beautiful, but “lately she's been toxic waste.” That, however, is only Lily's viewpoint. Hicks tells her uproarious story in fast, alternating narratives from the four stepsiblings, who suddenly find themselves together in a blended family. Along with all the jealousy and hurt, they still have fun, as when they hold a rock-paper-scissors competition for a neighborhood fund-raiser. There's also a little puzzle. Who has destroyed the tomatoes that V has been growing to raise money to send soccer balls to kids in Iraq? Without heavy message, the switching viewpoints make readers privy to the family secrets and the lies, as the combination of farce and tenderness in daily life brings home both the struggle and the fun.—Booklist

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Reviews

Praise for Out of Order

“. . . both humorous and compelling.”—The Horn Book Magazine

“With much humor, Hicks captures the squabbles but also the closeness of the challenges of family life through the eyes of these participants.”—Voices of Youth Advocates

“Humorous and insightful moments in Hicks’s novel leaven subtle and affecting messages about communication, identity, honesty and forgiveness.”—Publishers Weekly

“A captivating and timely novel.”—School Library Journal

“The switching viewpoints make readers privy to the family secrets and the lies, as the combination of farce and tenderness in daily life brings home both the struggle and the fun. A great choice for readers’ theater.”—Booklist

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About the Author

Betty Hicks

“Everything about this novel was out of order,” says Betty Hicks. She adds, “The family itself, their problems, their fun. I even found myself writing it out of order. It was wild. The only thing never in doubt was the title.” Betty Hicks is the author of I Smell Like Ham, Animal House and Iz, and Busted! She lives in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Betty Hicks

Betty Hicks

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Available Formats and Book Details

Out of Order
Betty Hicks

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
Square Fish
October 2007
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9780312373559
ISBN10: 0312373554
Middle-Grade Fiction
5 3/16 x 7 5/8 inches, 176 pages
Age Range: 8 to 12
Grade Range: 3 to 7 Information for Librarians

Information for Librarians


Lexile: 680LL
AR Quiz Number: 102396
AR Points: 4

$7.99
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Square Fish

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