Lola Levine Is Not Mean! By Monica Brown, illustrated by Angela Dominguez

Published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers 

Summary:  Dolores “Lola” Levine is an athletic second grader who loves playing soccer, writing in her diary, and hanging out with her best friend, Josh, who is also the school principal’s son.  When she makes an aggressive play during a recess soccer game, a boy in her class gets hurt, and she is banned from playing soccer.  Worst of all, some of the girls in her class start calling her Mean Lola Levine.  After suffering a few days in silence, Lola confides in her family, and together they figure out a way for Lola to resolve her problems.  96 pages; grades 1-3.

Pros:  With a Jewish father and Peruvian mother, Lola is a multicultural successor to Judy Moody and Junie B. Jones.  She incorporates aspects of both cultures into her strong, feisty personality.

Cons: Not a particularly groundbreaking entry into the early chapter book genre.

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