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  • Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing
  • Written by Judy Blume
    Read by Judy Blume
  • Format: Unabridged Compact Disc | ISBN: 9781400099184
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  • Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing
  • Written by Judy Blume
    Read by Judy Blume
  • Format: Unabridged Audiobook Download | ISBN: 9780739356548
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Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

Written by Judy BlumeAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Judy Blume
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Read by Judy Blume
On Sale: April 12, 2005
ISBN: 978-1-4000-9918-4
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Read by Judy Blume
On Sale: March 27, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-7393-5654-8
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Synopsis|Excerpt

Synopsis

Living with his little brother, Fudge, makes Peter Hatcher feel like a fourth grade nothing.

Whether Fudge is throwing a temper tantrum in a shoe store, smearing smashed potatoes on walls at Hamburger Heaven, or scribbling all over Peter's homework, he's never far from trouble. He's a two-year-old terror who gets away with everything—and Peter's had enough.

When Fudge walks off with Dribble, Peter's pet turtle, it's the last straw. Peter has put up with Fudge too long. How can he get his parents to pay attention to him for a change?


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Excerpt

The Big Winner
I won Dribble at Jimmy Fargo's birthday party. All the other guys got to take home goldfish in little plastic bags. I won him because I guessed there were three hundred and forty-eight jelly beans in Mrs. Fargo's jar. Really, there were four hundred and twenty-three, she told us later. Still, my guess was closest. "Peter Warren Hatcher is the big winner!" Mrs. Fargo announced.

At first I felt bad that I didn't get a goldfish too. Then Jimmy handed me a glass bowl. Inside there was some water and three rocks. A tiny green turtle was sleeping on the biggest rock. All the other guys looked at their goldfish. I knew what they were thinking. They wished they could have tiny green turtles too.

I named my turtle Dribble while I was walking home from Jimmy's party. I live at 25 West 68th Street. It's an old apartment building. But it's got one of the best elevators in New York City. There are mirrors all around. You can see yourself from every angle. There's a Soft, cushioned bench to sit on if you're too tired to stand. The elevator operator's name is Henry Bevelheimer. He lets us call him Henry because Bevelheimer's very hard to say.

Our apartment's on the twelfth floor. But I don't have to tell Henry. He already knows. He knows everybody in the building. He's that smart! He even knows I'm nine and in fourth grade.

I showed him Dribble right away. I won him at a birthday party," I said.

Henry smiled. "Your mother's going to be surprised."

Henry was right. My mother was really surprised. Her mouth opened when I said, "Just look at what I won at Jimmy Fargo's birthday party." I held up my tiny green turtle. "I've already named him . . . Dribble! Isn't that a great name for a turtle?"

My mother made a face. "I don't like the way he smells," she said.

"What do you mean?" I asked. I put my nose right down close to him. I didn't smell anything but turtle. So Dribble smells like turtle, I thought. Well, he's supposed to. That's what he is!

"And I'm not going to take care of him either," my mother added.

"Of course you're not," I told her. "He's my turtle. And I'm the one who's going to take care of him."

"You're going to change his water and clean out his bowl and feed him and all of that?" she asked.

"Yes," I said. "And even more. I'm going to see to it that he's happy!"

This time my mother made a funny noise. Like a groan.

I went into. my bedroom. I put Dribble on top of my dresser. I tried to pet him and tell him he would be happy living with me. But it isn't easy to pet a turtle. They aren't soft and furry and they don't lick you or anything. Still, I had my very own pet at last.

Later, when I sat down at the dinner table, my mother said, "I smell turtle. Peter, go and scrub your hands!"

Some people might think that my mother is my biggest problem. She doesn't like turtles and she's always telling me to scrub my hands. That doesn't mean just run them under the water. Scrub means I'm supposed to use soap and rub my hands together. Then I've got to rinse and dry them. I ought to know by now. I've heard it enough!

But my mother isn't my biggest problem. Neither is my father. He spends a lot of time watching commercials on TV. That's because he's in the advertising business. These days his favorite commercial is the one about Juicy-O. He wrote it himself. And the president of -the Juicy-O company liked it so much he sent my father a whole crate of Juicy-O for our family to drink. It tastes like a combination of oranges, pineapples, grapefruits, pears, and bananas. (And if you want to know the truth, I'm getting pretty sick of drinking it.) But Juicy-O isn't my biggest problem either.

My biggest problem is my brother, Farley Drexel Hatcher. He's two-and-a-half years old. Everybody calls him Fudge. I feel sorry for him if he's going to grow up with a name like Fudge, but I don't say a word. It's none of my business.

Fudge is always in my way. He messes up everything he sees. And when he gets mad he throws himself flat on the floor and he screams. And he kicks. And he bangs his fists. The only time I really like him is when he's sleeping. He sucks four fingers on his left hand and makes a slurping noise.

When Fudge saw Dribble he said, "Ohhhhh see!"

And I said, "That's my turtle, get it? Mine! You don't touch him."

Fudge said, "No touch." Then he laughed like crazy.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
Judy Blume

About Judy Blume

Judy Blume - Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

Photo © Sigrid Estrada

Judy Blume spent her childhood in Elizabeth, New Jersey, making up stories inside her head. She has spent her adult years in many places doing the same thing, only now she writes her stories down on paper. Adults as well as children will recognize such Blume titles as: Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret; Blubber; Just as Long as We're Together; and the five book series about the irrepressible Fudge. She has also written three novels for adults, Summer Sisters; Smart Women; and Wifey, all of them New York Times bestsellers. More than 80 million copies of her books have been sold, and her work has been translated into thirty-one languages. She receives thousands of letters a year from readers of all ages who share their feelings and concerns with her.

Judy received a B.S. in education from New York University in 1961, which named her a Distinguished Alumna in 1996, the same year the American Library Association honored her with the Margaret A. Edwards Award for Lifetime Achievement. In 2004 she received the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters.

She is the founder and trustee of The Kids Fund, a charitable and educational foundation. She serves on the boards of the Author's Guild; the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators; the Key West Literary Seminar; and the National Coalition Against Censorship.

Judy is a longtime advocate of intellectual freedom. Finding herself at the center of an organized book banning campaign in the 1980's she began to reach out to other writers, as well as teachers and librarians, who were under fire. Since then, she has worked tirelessly with the National Coalition Against Censorship to protect the freedom to read. She is the editor of Places I Never Meant To Be, Original Stories by Censored Writers.

Judy recently completed the final book in a series of four books for young readers, illustrated by New Yorker cartoonist James Stevenson which was published in May, 2009. The first, Soupy Saturdays with the Pain & the Great One, was published in September, 2007. The second, Cool Zone with the Pain & the Great One, was issued in May and Going, Going, Gone! with the Pain & the Great One, her third book in this series, was published August 12, 2008.

Judy and her husband George Cooper live on islands up and down the east coast. They have three grown children and one grandchild.
Praise

Praise

"Will bring a chorus of laughter from sympathetic readers." -- Publisher's Weekly.

Winner of The Great Stone Face Award.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

  • Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume
  • April 12, 2005
  • Juvenile Fiction
  • Listening Library (Audio)
  • $14.99
  • 9781400099184

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