Saturday, January 8, 2011

I, Emma Freke

I, Emma Freke (Exceptional Reading & Language Arts Titles for Intermediate)Author: Elizabeth Atkinson
ISBN: 978-0-7613-5604-2
Publisher: Carolrhoda Books
Source: BookPleasures

"I, Emma Freke, am not a freak. Or maybe I am. I just don't know."

What's in a name? I, Emma Freke is a charming search-for-identity story about Emma―the only "normal" member of her quirky family. Her flighty, New Age mom seems to barely have time for a daughter, especially one who annoyingly spoils her mom's youthful fa├žade. Emma's well-meaning grandpa is clueless. And her only friends are the local librarian and a precocious 10-year old adopted by the two old ladies next door.

Smart, shy, and nearly six feet tall, Emma struggles to fit in at school, so she jumps at the opportunity to "home school" until that too turns into another of mom's half-baked ideas.

The real crisis comes when she gets an invitation to The Freke Family Reunion, and her fellow Frekes aren't at all what she expects. While Emma desperately tries to find her niche, she discovers that perhaps it's better to be her own "freak" than someone else's Freke.

If you haven’t already chuckled at the title of this book you soon will. “ I, Emma Freke” had many comical moments that made me laugh out loud. It is a delightful novel about a twelve year old girl who finds her “joylah” and herself in the process. Emma has reached that horrible point in life where children become adolescents, better known as pre-teen, and are uncomfortable and awkward in their own bodies. The novel chronicles a couple months of change in Emma’s life as she goes from uncertain and unnoticed to confident and content.

Emma has her share of oddities that contribute to her discomfort. She is quite tall for her age, making it impossible for people to believe she is twelve. In fact, most adults think she is significantly older. Emma has a mother who refuses to be called mom, really she refuses to be a mom and lets Emma do whatever she pleases without notice or question. Her preference is that others see Emma as a worker in their store “Freke Beads & More” rather than knowing she is her daughter. Emma has never met her father or his side of the family, though her vibrant red hair seems to be a trait passed on by them. Through a series of events Emma is given the opportunity to meet the Freke Clan. The experience is life changing as Emma finally realizes where she belongs, who her friends are and most importantly, who she is.

This book was an excellent read. I recommend it for adolescent readers ages 10 -13. I enjoyed the book and found it comical as well as educational in regards to the thoughts and feelings kids Emma’s age may experience. I felt many readers Emma’s age would be able to relate to her thoughts and feelings as I was reminded of my adolescence and coming of age. Overall, this novel was a good read with comical bits that relates to its intended audience. Readers of many ages will be able to sit back, relax and enjoy “I, Emma Freke”.



  1. "I, Emma Freke" sounds like a book I can relate to. I am also one of those girls who is "too tall for her age." My entire life I was also the kid standing in the far back of a class picture or the one standing on hands and knees carrying the smaller kids on my back. I was always the giant....still am at almost 6 ft. I am going to put this on my TBR list.

  2. Just wanted to say thank you for sharing.

    I really appreciate that you include the isbn and publishing info so that I can request it for my local library or find online.

  3. Aw, this one sounds like a quick, fun & cute read. I feel sorry for the poor girl with Freke as a last name!

    And just wanted to say - I like your rating system based on whether you stayed up reading it or fell asleep, LOL :D

    A Tapestry of Words


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