Blabbermouth: Oops, I've done it again! by Chrissie Perry
Illus. by Pete Petrovic. Scholastic, 2019. ISBN: 9781760660956.
(Ages: 8-11) Recommended. Themes: Personality, Communication skills, Reputation. What happens when you're nervous and you can't help blurting things out, even other people's secrets? Chrissie Perry's Blabbermouth is a fun, easy to read story with lively and amusing cartoon illustrations that chronicle Amelie Anderson's life as she starts Year 5. The author captures the school dramas and friendship highs and lows of this super sparkly, friendly girl.
Amelie is very aware of her biggest problem; she's a blabbermouth, she just can't help it, it's embarrassing for herself and her friends. In her friendship circle Pepper, Charlie and Sophie understand her ways, even when she sometimes goes a little overboard. Meanwhile, one of her friends from Year 4 camp has changed, Paris has become her frenemy, choosing to ignore and not include her.
Being a Year 5 student means more responsibility, helping out with the little buddies at play time and also has the privileges of sitting on the west benches. All the girls like to watch Magnificent Miles Lancaster, who's the state high jump champion and Sophie's especially keen on him. When he reminds the girls about helping out with the younger students, only Amelie replies, everyone else is tongue tied!
Amelie seeks out an opportunity to prove she can change and secretly becomes Ava the advice columnist for the school newspaper. She learns to write with compassion and understanding developing her responses from knee-jerk reactions to more considered and caring responses. Everyone at school is surprised when they read the paper and try to discover who Ava is.
Blabbermouth explores emotional resilience, friendships and finding your place in the upper years of primary school. With different font styles and sizes and Pete Petrovic's fun characters - Amelie with a real zip on her lips - this a great novel for hi-lo readers. Perry worked with students from Years 4-6 to inspire her and she presents a genuine understanding of Amelie's personal growth and her willingness to change.