[Reading] ➶ Close to Famous By Joan Bauer – Horse-zine.co.uk

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10 thoughts on “Close to Famous

  1. says:

    3.5 stars.A very heartfelt middle grade novel.Foster is unlike any twelve year old you ve ever met Although she lives in a small town, she has the big dream of one day having her own cooking reality show She is dedicated, determined and hopeful Even when times are hard, such as when her mama is the victim of domestic violence, Foster keeps her head on her shoulders She has to be strong for her mama and for herself Her daddy died at war, so she knows he won t save them from the evil Elvis impersonator who won t leave her family alone I think it s good that this novel deals with darker themes, while being an entertaining writing piece all the same I remember when I was around ten, the only novels I read were vampire and princess books and short contemporary friendship themed stories There wasn t anything really like this in my library s middle grade section.Strangely, though, the main character had a beautiful personality, but a voice that did not sound realistic to my ears Actually, she kept talking like a grown up, but acting like a child The whole town, actually, looked too good to be true It should have been focused on the town to fully develop this setting Blog Youtube Twitter Instagram Google Bloglovin


  2. says:

    Ok so I m pretty much a self proclaimed cupcake addict I mean come on, who doesn t love cupcakes Don t answer that because I probably wouldn t get along with someone who can t fathom the sweet goodness of cupcakes So why the rant about cupcakes Because my sister is baking something delectable and my mouth is watering, but mostly because the cover has finger lickin good cupcakes.Confession So that wasn t the only reason why I read this I ve been a long time follower of Bauer s work, and I wanted something that had a good feel to it, but dealt with some strong issues Bauer always does a good job of making characters you can root for, and the adults that surround them are always extraordinary.The story starts out with Foster and her mom running away from Elvis Or like a jerk who thinks he s Elvis because he sings Elvis songs and shakes his hips to get money Our twelve year old protagonist ends up in the small town of Culpepper The problem with that is how is she going to get discovered in a small town Foster has a dream to have her own cooking show, and she practices whenever she can She bakes and cooks about anything, but her specialty is, you guessed it, cupcakes The little town welcomes Foster and her mom with open arms, but that doesn t prevent Foster from dealing with some tough issues She has to learn how to live without her daddy that died in the Iraq war, worrying if her mom will have to deal with the Elvis jerk again, and coming to terms with her difficulty with reading With the help of a few friends, and her brilliant cupcakes Foster finds her spark.It was a refreshing change for me to read this book I d been reading somewhat darker books, and I loved how Foster was hard working and had regular twelve year old thoughts I would have liked to have seen a little character development, but I can t complain the book left me with a little smile on my face.Extra side note My sister finished baking her tiramisu macaroons, and they were insanely scrumptious People if you haven t had them you have to Seriously, highly highly recommended to try before you die.


  3. says:

    It is such bliss to have access to recently published books Especially to an author I am really coming to love I love her style I love the issues she brings up for the teens, the characters in the books especially the ones who uplift the main character , how the teens learn, and how the problems are resolved More and I regret that I did not buy one of her books and have her sign it when I met her a few years ago even though that was the first time I d really heard of her.So, on to the book This one begged me to read it it had CUPCAKES on the cover And all of that talk of baking reminded me of how much I love to bake , but never have time or money for ingredients And boy did she have me with all that muffin and cupcake talking, for half of the reason I love both would be because of their names Though I very much agree that cupcakes are so much better I mean, cupcake The word is as cute as my turtle Bob And I loved the little cupcake philosophies But now I have the biggest craving for cupcakes especially Hannah Swenson s fudge cupcakes.Oh yeah The story It was good, too It took me forever to figure out the girl s age I loved the small town, good folks feel and yes, you can get that in some of the towns in West V I liked the way the accents were written, because they were so true and yet did not detract from the reading And I loved how not only did the town affect Foster and her mother, but they had a great affect on the town Bauer writes such feel good, simple, happy stories that I don t think it is any wonder why I am loving her books.Would have been 4 stars, but all of that cupcaking makes it 5 4 17 13 2013 2014 Beehive nominee I liked the book, and there is much readers can get from it But they put this in children s Really It s gentle, yes, but I still think it s teen.


  4. says:

    Bauer specializes in feisty female teens who have tough challenges and manage to get through them In this one, Foster can t read, even though she has passed sixth grade Her Mom is a singer, living with a guy who is an Elvis impersonator and claims he can make her mother famous He also is abusive, both physically with her Mom and verbally with Foster After he hit her Mom in the eye, they ran for it They end up in a small town and grow to like a lot of the people there Even Miss Charleena is actually pretty nice ex Hollywood star Miss Charleena sees right away through Foster s claims of I forgot my glasses, etc and starts to teach her to read Once accepted by the townpeople, they start to form a good life but still have to resolve a lot of issues from their past How they do that, as well as help another family deal with their past is what makes the book pretty special There were a few weak points in the story such as when the escaped felon gives up his hostage after eating a cupcake The way to a man s heart may be through his stomach but I doubt that has much impact on hostage taking felons However, it is good to see a case of a female with reading problems Almost always it is boys, and there do seem to be boys with this issue but there are girls as well This is the book to give those kids And if the kid is interested in baking, this will be a winner


  5. says:

    I ve really loved a lot of Bauer s other novels Rules of the Road , Hope Was Here I ve been excited to share them with students and have always looked forward to her new books I was disappointed by this book, though It may be because the book was written for a younger audience upper elementary instead of middle early high school but I felt that Bauer barreled through events and character development, paying them lip service without getting into anything resembling the depth she usually does with her books for older readers Perhaps she thought for example that a depiction of an unhealthy adult relationship and its effect on the daughter of one of the participants would be too much for younger readers I disagree, and wish that the novel, like protagonist Foster McFee s muffins, was a little denser and satisfying.


  6. says:

    This was a sweet and fast read about Foster, a 12 year old with reading disability and who bakes wonderfully She, along with her mother, moves to a new town. It s all then about the people in the town and the way Foster cooks, and learns to read


  7. says:

    I m not sure how I feel about this book This story seemed to be a mish mash of a thousand different things it felt like it didn t have a focus The story is about a 12 year old girl named Foster She is desperate to become a famous cook on the Food Network and is obsessed with a tv personality named Sonny The story begins as she and her mother are fleeing her mother s abusive boyfriend, Huck an Elvis impersonator They move to a new small town and meet a wide array of people There s the little boy who wants to be a documentary film maker that works as a personal assistant for an eccentric movie star who has moved to get away from Hollywood and her cheating ex husband There s the local restauranteur Angry Wayne who reluctantly agrees to sell Foster s baked goods There s the local teenage boy who likes to run and that s really his whole character There s the hardware store where Foster s mother who is secretly a fantastic singer gets a job, and where the owner s daughter is trying to sell new cool tools to drum up business There s Perseverance Wilson who is desperately trying to hang on to an old church that was sold to a Taco fast food restaurant Then there s the new prison in town It was built a few years ago and the builders told the town it would create tons of jobsbut all it seems to do is put prisoners in their town when they get out on work release One such prisoner escapes and tries to come after his ex wife but Foster manages to distract him by baking cupcakes There s also the local Helping Hands building where prisoner s families can stay while they come to visit their loved ones in prison but they re running out of moneyand the children are hungry Then Huck finds out where they are and comes after thembut it s not a vert climactic scene when he finds them And to top it all offFoster can t read.Sound confusing It is.Overall, there were too many characters, too many plot lines, too many issues It s like 20 After School Specials bad children s stories put together abuse, illiteracy, poverty, escaped convicts, reality TV, eccentric lady who lives in town, restauranteur with a heart of stone that eventually melts when Foster convinces him to give money to the children who can t eat I think this story was too much it felt like there were too many things happening, and there were too many ancillary characters most of whom were not fully developed enough to contribute anything to the story.


  8. says:

    Alright, already I admit it I am such a sucker for a story where folks come to the rescue of those in need and a story where the ending is sweet and worth cheering for I just can t help it I guess it is so unlike real life any that I find I need books that make me feel good I ve tried all sorts of genressome creep me out, some drive me crazy, some make me think too much Now, class, what do you think the author meant by that statement Ummm, don t care and some give me nightmares for days Give me a story with cupcakes Ohand I guess I can handle SOME flies in the frostingrunning away from an abusive man to find a better life, a young girl who can t read and has been put down because of itbut in the end, I need to be able to shout Hooray You did it Everything turned out in the end I know.fiction Oh Did I say how much I really liked this book I really liked this book Nowto bake some cupcakes..


  9. says:

    Two weeks ago I was walking through the Young Adult section of my library, on my way to pick up another book, when this one caught my eye It was the picture of the cupcakes on the front that drew me in and after a quick scan of the front flap I decided to grab it and give it a go Oh how I loved this book The main character loves to bake and actually sees baking as a means to making the world a better place mind you she is a 12 year old girl living in a tiny town in WV My kind of thinking There were quotes in this book that could be my mantra Here I am, World, and I have baked goods when she was new in town, and the last line of the book changing the world, one cupcake at a time Ah, yes This book was right up my alley I also liked that each of the characters was struggling to overcome something and in the end, they all at least made progress Loved it Not saying that I think any of my friends would love it as much as I did, but for me it was perfect.


  10. says:

    Close to Famous is about a 12 year old girl, Foster, who loves cooking The story takes you through her road trip to a new home in West Virginia There she meets many people who take part in her life and together they learn valuable life lessons from each other.This books isn t a favorite of mine, but it did have some valuable lessons and a strong theme that I think would be fairly easy for middle school children to understand One such theme is simply never give up as much of a cliche as that might be.Recommended for 6ht grade middle school age students especially however, anyone who can take a simple story and learn about family, friends, and life itself might enjoy this read.


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