Readers, meet Bobby. Bobby, meet trouble!
All of Bobby Ellis-Chan’s problems in life can be summed up in one word: GIRLS.
There’s his sister Casey, who has a weird obsession with Bobby’s goldfish, Rover.
There’s Jillian Zarr, who gets mad every time a boy even looks at her.
Most of all, there’s Holly Harper, Bobby’s ex-best friend. Who is now, for some reason, Jillian’s best friend. She used to like frogs and rolling down the hill in a tire; now she wears dresses and straightens her hair. Holly’s running against Bobby for Student Council representative. She knows all of Bobby’s secrets… and she just might spill.
It’s Bobby vs. Holly, boys vs. girls, in the biggest battle ever to rock Rancho Rosetta!
Reviews and Awards
New York Public Library’s One Hundred Titles for Reading and Sharing, 2009
⋆ "Those clamoring for fiction with nonwhite or biracial characters in which race is not the focus will welcome nine-year-old Bobby Ellis-Chan. Bobby and Holly have been best friends since babyhood, but they’ve learned over the last couple of years to keep their friendship secret. When Holly, rather than joining Bobby for their annual rock-hunting trip the last day of summer vacation, chooses instead to go shopping (gasp!) with Jillian Zarr, Bobby senses the end is near, and indeed it is. The story of how Bobby and Holly lose and then rediscover their friendship is told with plenty of Yee’s trademark humor: Bobby’s retired-football-star father is now a stay-at-home dad, severely laundry-challenged and with stunningly bad cooking skills; his mom’s job is to come up with “new products for Go Girly Girl, Inc., the country’s largest maker of sparkly items”; a field trip leaves Bobby with an unusually close attachment to a tree in a scene that manages to be both poignant and funny. While Yee remains loyal to the boy point of view for a large portion of the story, both boys and girls will find much to relate to here. This chapter book (for a younger audience than Yee’s earlier trio of books that began with Millicent Min, Girl Genius, rev. 9/03) features frequent full-page illustrations and a nicely spacious page layout." - Horn Book, starred review
“Yee really understands children’s thought processes and presents them with tact and good humor. Bobby’s dilemmas and adventures, however wild and out of control, remain totally believable. Santat’s drawings manage the fine line between cartoon and realism and add dimension to the events. Readers will recognize themselves and learn some gentle lessons about relationships while they are laughing at the antics.” - Kirkus Reviews
“Using humor and relatable situations, Yee shows how the two friends manage to support each other, despite peer pressure. . . . Santat's expressive b&w illustrations evoke the energy of Saturday morning cartoons, and Yee's occasional inclusion of some over-the-top moments (several nervous parents hide in the bushes on the first day of school to see their kids off) only drives the feeling home. The bright prose, concise chapters and gratifying resolutions are likely to please even reluctant readers.” - Publishers Weekly
"Funny and smart dialogue describes perfectly the interaction that makes the battle of the sexes ring true.... Kids will identify with much of this interplay since Yee's situations and clever text are so accurate." - School Library Journal
“Yee, author of Millicent Min, Girl Genius, deftly navigates the dynamics of a late elementary boy/girl friendship; Bobby and Holly are both fully developed characters, and the details of their friendship (and its failures) are both thoughtful and believable.... A solid ending and a strong male point of view... make this a good selection for the middle-grades set." - Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
Trim Size: 5 1/2" x 7 1/2"
Page Count: 176
Foreign Rights: Scholastic
Translation Rights: Writers House
Rights Available? yes