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One Big Happy Family

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Annie Barrows' bestselling chapter book series, Ivy & Bean, is a classroom favorite and has been keeping kids laughing–—and reading—for more than a decade! With more than 5 million copies in print, Ivy & Bean return with a brand-new book for a new generation! Ivy & Bean are back . . . and they are funnier than ever! Ivy's worried. She's read a lot of books about only childre Annie Barrows' bestselling chapter book series, Ivy & Bean, is a classroom favorite and has been keeping kids laughing–—and reading—for more than a decade! With more than 5 million copies in print, Ivy & Bean return with a brand-new book for a new generation! Ivy & Bean are back . . . and they are funnier than ever! Ivy's worried. She's read a lot of books about only children, so she knows that they are sometimes spoiled rotten. They don't share their toys. They never do any work. They scream and cry when they don't get their way. Spoiler alert! Ivy doesn't have any brothers or sisters. That's why she's worried. How can she keep from getting spoiled? She could give away all her clothes, but she'd probably get in trouble. She could give away all her toys, but she likes her toys. There's really only one solution: she needs a baby sister, on the double! Luckily, Ivy and Bean know just where to get one.


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Annie Barrows' bestselling chapter book series, Ivy & Bean, is a classroom favorite and has been keeping kids laughing–—and reading—for more than a decade! With more than 5 million copies in print, Ivy & Bean return with a brand-new book for a new generation! Ivy & Bean are back . . . and they are funnier than ever! Ivy's worried. She's read a lot of books about only childre Annie Barrows' bestselling chapter book series, Ivy & Bean, is a classroom favorite and has been keeping kids laughing–—and reading—for more than a decade! With more than 5 million copies in print, Ivy & Bean return with a brand-new book for a new generation! Ivy & Bean are back . . . and they are funnier than ever! Ivy's worried. She's read a lot of books about only children, so she knows that they are sometimes spoiled rotten. They don't share their toys. They never do any work. They scream and cry when they don't get their way. Spoiler alert! Ivy doesn't have any brothers or sisters. That's why she's worried. How can she keep from getting spoiled? She could give away all her clothes, but she'd probably get in trouble. She could give away all her toys, but she likes her toys. There's really only one solution: she needs a baby sister, on the double! Luckily, Ivy and Bean know just where to get one.

30 review for One Big Happy Family

  1. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    Copy provided by the publisher Ivy is told by classmate Vanessa that only children are spoiled, and takes it to heart. She doesn't want to be spoiled, so she takes steps so that she isn't. First, she has the great idea to give away her clothes and favorite headbands to her classmates, but her teacher, Ms. Aruba-Tate is NOT pleased with that idea and makes her take everything back. The girls try to bring Ivy's doll Zellaphine to life ala Frankenstein's monster by attaching her to eletricity, and w Copy provided by the publisher Ivy is told by classmate Vanessa that only children are spoiled, and takes it to heart. She doesn't want to be spoiled, so she takes steps so that she isn't. First, she has the great idea to give away her clothes and favorite headbands to her classmates, but her teacher, Ms. Aruba-Tate is NOT pleased with that idea and makes her take everything back. The girls try to bring Ivy's doll Zellaphine to life ala Frankenstein's monster by attaching her to eletricity, and when that doesn't work, they go to a park near their home to pray to the gods to deliver a baby brother or sister to Ivy. Their prayers are answered, although not in the way they imagined. Jean and Jean's baby, Kalia, is a good stand in for a while, and even though Ivy is covered in sticky baby goo, she doesn't feel less spoiled. She tries several other ways to prove to Vanessa that just because she is an only child, she doesn't have to be spoiled, and eventually gets her classmate to see her way. Strengths:These books are a fun size, with a good mix of pictures and text, and bright and attractive covers. Series are great for emergent readers because they can finish the books fairly quickly and know exactly what to read next. Sibling relationships are important at any age, and there aren't many books that talk about being an only child, so this is a nice change. I would definitely purchase this for early elementary school readers. Weaknesses: Bean is a sort of Junie B. Jones character-- not necessarily very pleasant. But then, I am an OLDER sister! What I really think: I have some of these books for my struggling readers (we have a "quick picks" shelf that I recommend to many different students), but this particular volume would do better in elementary school. Middle school students are not too concerned about being spoiled; being popular, not fighting with friends, and potential romances are a little more the speed even for 6th graders.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Katie R.

    This was the first chapter book I ever read by myself 👤.My mom and dad read me the first 10 books 👐. It took me a few weeks to read it 📖.Ivy and Bean are good friends and they remind me of me and my friends 👭.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Heidi

    I was thrilled when I heard that there was going to be another Ivy + Bean book. Normally ten would be enough, but who can get enough of this daring twosome? And I was right. This is another winning story for an already fabulous series. In this one, Ivy and Bean are attempting to find a way to get Ivy a sister so she doesn't become spoiled. A girl at school tells them that only children are spoiled and Ivy is afraid that it applies to her. Bean is rather skeptical but is always willing to help Iv I was thrilled when I heard that there was going to be another Ivy + Bean book. Normally ten would be enough, but who can get enough of this daring twosome? And I was right. This is another winning story for an already fabulous series. In this one, Ivy and Bean are attempting to find a way to get Ivy a sister so she doesn't become spoiled. A girl at school tells them that only children are spoiled and Ivy is afraid that it applies to her. Bean is rather skeptical but is always willing to help Ivy out. This leads to a rather amusing series of attempts at sisterhood. As in previous volumes, Sophie Blackall's black and white illustrations add the perfect touch, showing Ivy and Bean's antics with a deft hand.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Katie Fitzgerald

    I was glad to hear from Ivy and Bean again after a five-year hiatus. I remember feeling that the tenth book was an odd ending to the series, so this new addition was very welcome. I like the author's twist on the common early chapter book trope of a child wishing for a new sibling, and I found the two title characters to be as funny as ever, both in the text and in Sophie Blackall's wonderful illustrations. Though the series started over ten years ago now, the characters are still fresh, lively, I was glad to hear from Ivy and Bean again after a five-year hiatus. I remember feeling that the tenth book was an odd ending to the series, so this new addition was very welcome. I like the author's twist on the common early chapter book trope of a child wishing for a new sibling, and I found the two title characters to be as funny as ever, both in the text and in Sophie Blackall's wonderful illustrations. Though the series started over ten years ago now, the characters are still fresh, lively, and completely in tune with the mindset of early elementary readers. I hope there's a book 12 in the works!

  5. 4 out of 5

    KieraK

    Another delightful adventure with Ivy and Bean

  6. 4 out of 5

    Natasha

    The end of an era! We made it to the end. I'm a little sad there are no more but excited to be pushed to find something new for family reading time. The end of an era! We made it to the end. I'm a little sad there are no more but excited to be pushed to find something new for family reading time.

  7. 5 out of 5

    LitPick Book Reviews

    In the eleventh wonderful installment of Ivy and Bean, Ivy’s classmate, Vanessa, says that almost all only children are spoiled. Ivy doesn’t have any siblings, and she’s determined to prove to Vanessa, Bean, the entire classroom, and to herself that she is NOT spoiled. With the help of Bean, she decides to try out several crazy plans to show that she is a perfectly fine, nice child. Unfortunately, not many of their plans work out as they hope. And when Ivy decides that she’s going to have to get In the eleventh wonderful installment of Ivy and Bean, Ivy’s classmate, Vanessa, says that almost all only children are spoiled. Ivy doesn’t have any siblings, and she’s determined to prove to Vanessa, Bean, the entire classroom, and to herself that she is NOT spoiled. With the help of Bean, she decides to try out several crazy plans to show that she is a perfectly fine, nice child. Unfortunately, not many of their plans work out as they hope. And when Ivy decides that she’s going to have to get a sibling, no matter what, that’s when the real trouble begins… Opinion: Ivy and Bean was one of the first chapter books I ever read and was a big part of my childhood and is one of the reasons I love reading so much today. When I saw this new book on LitPick, I immediately remembered how much I loved this series as a child. I thought it would be interesting to review a book written for younger children as a twelve-year-old girl in middle school! I was not disappointed by this book at all. Ivy and Bean: One Big Happy Family retains its beautiful, simple charm and hilarity. I loved reading once more about all the crazy hijinks Bean and Ivy got up to in this book. It made me laugh and giggle so much. This book is such an amazing story, and it makes me happy to see Annie Barrows has not lost her special touch and that Sophie Blackall is still making beautiful illustrations. Another thing I love about this book is that you can read it as either a standalone book or an installation of the series. No matter what, this book is fabulous and there are no confusing references to other books in the series, so don’t worry if you haven’t read the others yet. Of course, if you haven’t yet, I would definitely recommend doing so! This book is best suited for younger children and reluctant readers. Reviewed by a LitPick student book reviewer, Age 12

  8. 4 out of 5

    Ameya

    Their teacher asks the class to draw their important people. As expected, Ivy’s and Bean’s ideas are always more lateral than literal. Bean draws her family, a cousin’s pet alligator, her teacher and Ivy. Ivy draws her adult family members, Bean and a whole lot of historical figures. When a classmate who has several siblings says that only children are generally spoilt, Ivy takes this to heart. Bullying in one of its forms is lightly depicted here. The book follows Ivy and Bean creating a sibling Their teacher asks the class to draw their important people. As expected, Ivy’s and Bean’s ideas are always more lateral than literal. Bean draws her family, a cousin’s pet alligator, her teacher and Ivy. Ivy draws her adult family members, Bean and a whole lot of historical figures. When a classmate who has several siblings says that only children are generally spoilt, Ivy takes this to heart. Bullying in one of its forms is lightly depicted here. The book follows Ivy and Bean creating a sibling for Ivy, while taking a great deal of creative licence. Bean’s ideas will appeal to Ivy and Bean fans. As an adult reader, I wondered whether 6 or 7-year-olds would get the intended humour. The idea of electrifying a baby doll to life appears both a bit scientific for children that age and potentially dangerous if the young reader were to try to replicate it. The other ideas just appear daft, and again I wondered whether kids got it, then decided that Ivy and Bean fans probably realise that it is supposed to be a joke – or their parents/ teachers explain this to them. I think the appeal of Ivy and Bean to (mostly?) girls of around 6-8 years old is the camaraderie between the two girls and their adventures as they try to solve adult-sounding problems in their 7-year-old way of thinking. I wonder, do boys read Ivy and Bean? For me, it is interesting to read what appeals to children and try to understand the fascination. Moderately interesting, not very humorous this time.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*

    One Big Happy Family (Ivy + Bean #11) by Annie Barrows, illustrated by Sophie Blackall, 120 pages. CHAPTER BOOK. Chronicle Books, 2018. $15. Language: G (0 swears); Mature Content: G; Violence: G BUYING ADVISORY: EL (K-3) - OPTIONAL. AUDIENCE APPEAL: HIGH Ivy hears someone in her class say that people with no siblings are ofttimes spoiled and this fuels a determination in her to prove that she is not spoiled. Ivy begins by trying to give away her clothing, but is blocked in this effort so she tur One Big Happy Family (Ivy + Bean #11) by Annie Barrows, illustrated by Sophie Blackall, 120 pages. CHAPTER BOOK. Chronicle Books, 2018. $15. Language: G (0 swears); Mature Content: G; Violence: G BUYING ADVISORY: EL (K-3) - OPTIONAL. AUDIENCE APPEAL: HIGH Ivy hears someone in her class say that people with no siblings are ofttimes spoiled and this fuels a determination in her to prove that she is not spoiled. Ivy begins by trying to give away her clothing, but is blocked in this effort so she turns to trying to make her babydoll into a real life baby. This is less than successful and in their final attempt her and Bean try to turn into twins by standing right by each other at all times. When Ivy realizes her parents would miss her on the days she would be with Bean’s family she ends the attempt out of compassion for her parents. In so doing realizes that she really is not spoiled. I usually like Ivy and Bean but I found this story forced and boring. I also found their attempts to turn the doll into baby a bit creepy and the chanting to bring a baby from heaven a little extreme. Of course, if kids are already reading Ivy and Bean, this is a good addition to the series to keep them reading. Jen Wecker, HS English Teacher https://kissthebookjr.blogspot.com/20...

  10. 4 out of 5

    sarah diehl

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. @kidlitexchange #partner Siblings are a pain; Bossy Nancy always pesters Bean! Good thing Ivy is an only child… When Ivy and Bean’s teacher instructs them to draw their Important People, Bean draws her family, a cousin’s pet alligator, her teacher - and Ivy. Ivy draws her adult family members - and Bean - along with: Abraham Lincoln, Mary Anning, Boudicca, and a gorilla. A classmate, who draws her several siblings, explains that that only children are almost always spoiled. Ivy determines to get u @kidlitexchange #partner Siblings are a pain; Bossy Nancy always pesters Bean! Good thing Ivy is an only child… When Ivy and Bean’s teacher instructs them to draw their Important People, Bean draws her family, a cousin’s pet alligator, her teacher - and Ivy. Ivy draws her adult family members - and Bean - along with: Abraham Lincoln, Mary Anning, Boudicca, and a gorilla. A classmate, who draws her several siblings, explains that that only children are almost always spoiled. Ivy determines to get unspoiled; Ultimately, deciding that she requires a sibling. Will her mom have another baby? “Absolutely Not.” With the help of brain food, Ivy and Bean attempt: using electricity to bring a doll to life, begging the gods for a baby to fall from sky, and growing their skins together to become twins. The shenanigans are fruitless; however, Bean helps her friend realize that Ivy isn’t selfish because she cares about others. Zero siblings - or five, it doesn’t matter as long as Ivy treats others kindly. A good friend - a chosen sister - is all Ivy needed to realize this! Appropriate for ages 6-10. Recommended for: Ivy and Bean fans eagerly awaiting book 11, kiddos with or without siblings, and fans of Bink and Gollie looking for more of a challenge!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Cindy Hudson

    When Vanessa calls Ivy spoiled because she’s an only child, Ivy comes up with the solution to change that: get a baby sister. But things don’t go well when she and Bean encourage her mom to have another baby. Ivy comes up with increasingly wild ways to get a sibling, which is how she ends up in a park pretending that the neighbor’s daughter is a gift from heaven. Ivy + Bean: One Big Happy Family is a funny look at siblings: wanting them, not wanting them, having them, and borrowing them. Parents When Vanessa calls Ivy spoiled because she’s an only child, Ivy comes up with the solution to change that: get a baby sister. But things don’t go well when she and Bean encourage her mom to have another baby. Ivy comes up with increasingly wild ways to get a sibling, which is how she ends up in a park pretending that the neighbor’s daughter is a gift from heaven. Ivy + Bean: One Big Happy Family is a funny look at siblings: wanting them, not wanting them, having them, and borrowing them. Parents and children are sure to get a kick out of the ways Ivy and Bean interact with each other and their friends and the laugh-out-loud ways they decided to solve their problems. It’s a great addition to the Ivy + Bean series. The publisher provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    After a classmate asserts that children who are the only child in their families tend to be spoiled, Ivy takes her comments to heart and worries that she might be spoiled. She decides that maybe she should give away some of her clothes or even consider giving away her toys, but neither idea really works. Thank goodness for Bean since she knows where they can find just the right little sibling. Young readers will smile as they read about the antics of these two friends and how they plan to tie th After a classmate asserts that children who are the only child in their families tend to be spoiled, Ivy takes her comments to heart and worries that she might be spoiled. She decides that maybe she should give away some of her clothes or even consider giving away her toys, but neither idea really works. Thank goodness for Bean since she knows where they can find just the right little sibling. Young readers will smile as they read about the antics of these two friends and how they plan to tie themselves together so that they can become twins, something I'm sure many best friends have considered. The only problem is sorting out whose house they'll stay in. Complemented with illustrations drawn in Chinese ink, this book--the eleventh in the series--shows that the creators of this series are not likely to run out of ideas anytime soon.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Mary Beth (tinybookfort)

    The kids and I have been excited about this book for a year. We were finally able to read it (our own copy, even), and I am so disappointed. Sibling relationships don't have to be toxic, and this book predicts, normalizes, and gives very vivid examples (in an uncritical way) of toxic sibling relationships. Bean and her sister don't really get along at the best of times, and it's been a meh part of the series, but not a hill I'm going to die on. This installment, though, just grooms readers for u The kids and I have been excited about this book for a year. We were finally able to read it (our own copy, even), and I am so disappointed. Sibling relationships don't have to be toxic, and this book predicts, normalizes, and gives very vivid examples (in an uncritical way) of toxic sibling relationships. Bean and her sister don't really get along at the best of times, and it's been a meh part of the series, but not a hill I'm going to die on. This installment, though, just grooms readers for unhealthy relationships, sibling and otherwise. I wish I'd read this one by myself first because I probably wouldn't have wasted our time reading it aloud, and I definitely wouldn't have bought our own copy.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Ivy Li

    I read Ivy and Bean book 11.It was about Ivy getting spoiled by selling all her clothing.Vanessa saids that Ivy is spoiled because she is a only child.Bean and Ivy decided to put a plug into a baby dolls mouth.They thought the doll would come alive but it didn't.Ivy prayed the gods for a baby but that didn't work.Ivy got Kalia instead.Ivy learned that having a baby sister is not better than a older one.Ivy and Bean decided to be twins.They tied a piece of string to their wrists.But then Ivy coul I read Ivy and Bean book 11.It was about Ivy getting spoiled by selling all her clothing.Vanessa saids that Ivy is spoiled because she is a only child.Bean and Ivy decided to put a plug into a baby dolls mouth.They thought the doll would come alive but it didn't.Ivy prayed the gods for a baby but that didn't work.Ivy got Kalia instead.Ivy learned that having a baby sister is not better than a older one.Ivy and Bean decided to be twins.They tied a piece of string to their wrists.But then Ivy couldn't do the things she liked to do and Bean couldn't do the things she liked to do.They decided just to be friends.I liked this book because I thought it was funny when Kalia screamed MAMAMAMAM and when she left brown marks on Ivy and Bean.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    The kids and I have been waiting for this latest Ivy + Bean book to be published (on my daughter's 7th birthday!) and it did not disappoint. Bean and Ivy get into their typical shenanigans and it is delightful. My four-year-old could not stop laughing, particularly when Ivy and Bean decide to eat "brain food" to help them think un-normal thoughts. My seven-year-old loved Bean's obsession with Ivy's jiggly man and thought it was very funny when Ivy's mother, in response to Ivy asking for a little The kids and I have been waiting for this latest Ivy + Bean book to be published (on my daughter's 7th birthday!) and it did not disappoint. Bean and Ivy get into their typical shenanigans and it is delightful. My four-year-old could not stop laughing, particularly when Ivy and Bean decide to eat "brain food" to help them think un-normal thoughts. My seven-year-old loved Bean's obsession with Ivy's jiggly man and thought it was very funny when Ivy's mother, in response to Ivy asking for a little sister, began singing "Old Grey Mare." This book was such a treat and well worth the wait.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Nothing But Kids Books

    Review questions for this book are available in the Nothing But Kids Books store on TpT! TpT | Pinterest | Similar Titles | Series Review Review questions for this book are available in the Nothing But Kids Books store on TpT! TpT | Pinterest | Similar Titles | Series Review

  17. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    It's exciting to have a new Ivy and Bean book, but One Big Happy Family is not the best in the series. The concept is amusing but a little weird, and the title doesn't make sense with the story. The illustrations are a little weird-looking, too--is Blackall trying to reinvent her style? Ivy's extensive gods-summoning ritual is sure to raise some conservative eyebrows--I'm not sure if I like it more because of that or if I am also eyebrow-raise-y about it. It's exciting to have a new Ivy and Bean book, but One Big Happy Family is not the best in the series. The concept is amusing but a little weird, and the title doesn't make sense with the story. The illustrations are a little weird-looking, too--is Blackall trying to reinvent her style? Ivy's extensive gods-summoning ritual is sure to raise some conservative eyebrows--I'm not sure if I like it more because of that or if I am also eyebrow-raise-y about it.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Erica

    Another fun Ivy & Bean book. Ivy is called "spoiled" at school. She and Bean try all sorts of solutions to make Ivy less "spoiled." They try to plug-in a doll to make her come alive, borrow a baby at the park, and tie themselves up together to be twins. All very second grade ideas. Kids who love the Ivy & Bean series won't be disappointed. Another fun Ivy & Bean book. Ivy is called "spoiled" at school. She and Bean try all sorts of solutions to make Ivy less "spoiled." They try to plug-in a doll to make her come alive, borrow a baby at the park, and tie themselves up together to be twins. All very second grade ideas. Kids who love the Ivy & Bean series won't be disappointed.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Erika

    As the parent of an only child - I was thrilled to read a book with my son where one of the main characters was an only child who wanted a sibling. And didn't get one. Rather, she learned to value the family she had. YAY! As the parent of an only child - I was thrilled to read a book with my son where one of the main characters was an only child who wanted a sibling. And didn't get one. Rather, she learned to value the family she had. YAY!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Karol

    I was so excited when I heard Ivy & Bean #11 was available. It was great to have more time in the life of these entertaining best friends. I love that the Ivy & Bean chapter books are illustrated all the way through.

  21. 4 out of 5

    emyrose8

    Still as delightful as ever! Such great dialogue!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Renee

    Glad to have another book in this series. Always makes me laugh. Thought this one should have a different titles though after finishing it.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lisa D

    Cute finish to this great series! Met this author recently! What a nice lady! Loved this Book!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    Laughed my head off, as usual.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Keith Feldman

    I H I I I I I I I I I II I I I I I I I si I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I. I I I I I I I I I I. I I si I I I II I I I I I I II I I I I am going

  26. 5 out of 5

    Patti

    The 2nd grader says 4.5 stars for this latest installment of Ivy and Bean! She’s waiting for me to finish it so we can discuss the rating.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    Elizabeth asked me to get this from the library for her so I read it too. It’s a nice regular Ivy+Bean, which is an excellent series.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    Definitely one of my favorite Ivy and Bean books. I haven’t laughed so hard in a while.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Alyssa Mostyn

    I loved it! I loved the jiggly man. I loved that he made a greasy mark. Ivy wanted to get unspoiled so they tried lots of silly things to unspoil her. It's really a good book! I loved it! I loved the jiggly man. I loved that he made a greasy mark. Ivy wanted to get unspoiled so they tried lots of silly things to unspoil her. It's really a good book!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Whitney

    My 9 year old says he has outgrown Ivy and Bean, but luckily, I have not! I was so happy to read a further book in their exploits.

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