Great Illustrated Books

Ivy and Bean Make the Rules (Book 9)

Ivy and Bean Make the Rules (Book 9)

Chronicle Books, 2012
Pages : 125
Suggested Ages: 6-9
ISBN: 1452102953

Ivy and Bean were never meant to be friends. Ivy is intellectual, quiet, and loves to read books and wear skirts and dresses. Bean is rambunctious, adventurous, and even devious at times, and she hates dresses. But when Bean learns that Ivy is secretly studying to be a witch, she is intrigued, to say the least. And when these eight year olds cross paths at just the right time, it's the start of a terrific friendship that has been chronicled in this spunky series of beginner chapter books by author Annie Barrows.

In the ninth book in the Ivy & Bean series, Bean's older sister Nancy is going to Girl Power 4-Ever Camp, open to girls eleven and up. Bean is only eight... but she doesn't want to go to that stupid camp, anyway. Or does she? Only when Bean's mom and Nancy are safely out of earshot, does Bean show the Girl Power 4-Ever Camp brochure to Ivy and admit that she, too, wants to do all of those fun things: crafts, nature study, mind/body strength training, drama, first aid, dance, social skills, and learn about women's history. That's when Bean gets an idea: she and Ivy will make their own camp. They'll all it Camp Flaming Arrow.

When Counselor Bean and Counselor Ivy report for duty, the fun begins -- fun in traditional Ivy and Bean fashion that is. The girls recruit a motley crew of kids they find playing in the park as their campers, and things take off from there. Using Nancy's nightly camp reports, Bean tries to re-imagine the things the campers at Girl Power 4-Ever are doing. But friendship bracelets become a knotted mess; nature study turns into spying on a neighboring soccer camp; a tap-dance routine consists of thumbtacks on a wash-tub; first aid morphs into zombie-patrol (complete with plenty of fake blood), and learning about women in history consists of a reenactment of a Roman battle scene that ends up being a fittingly grand finale to the week. Despite the fact that things don't go quite as planned, when Camp Flaming Arrow draws to a close, Ivy & Bean's campers are already asking to sign up again next year!

Keeping in the tradition of the previous books in the series, Annie Barrows delights and entertains in ways that are simply perfect for her audience. Beginner chapter book readers will appreciate the humor and folly and will also recognize the types of trials and tribulations they often face themselves. The smattering of fabulous illustrations by Sophie Blackall will help readers who are just moving away from picture books. Ivy & Bean are realistic characters, and the fact that they are so opposite of one another gives the series and even greater appeal. Even as a grown up, I am glad to know that Annie Barrows will continue to write these fun, spunky, and spot-on tales for young readers!

Reviewed by : KSD


If you love this book, then try:

DiCamillo, Kate, Allison McGhee. Bink and Gollie. Candlewick, 2012.

McMullan, Kate. Pearl and Wagner: Two Good Friends. Dial, 2003.

Ries, Lori. Aggie Gets Lost (Aggie and Ben series). Charlesbridge Publishing, 2011.

Critics have said

"Will make their devoted fans very happy campers indeed."
The Horn Book Magazine