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[PDF] ✍ The Naked Mole Rat Letters ✎ Mary Amato – Cravenjobs.co.uk

10 thoughts on “The Naked Mole Rat Letters

  1. says:

    Ages 9+

    Seventh grader Frankie is having a rough time. Living with her younger brothers, Skip and Nutter, is like living in a zoo. She learns that she didn't get the part she wanted in the school play. Worst of all, she recently discovered that her dad's secretly been emailing Ayanna, a zookeeper he met on a trip to Washington D.C. A zookeeper who takes care of naked mole rats - ew! Frankie is determined to put a stop to their communication. She starts sending her own emails to Ayanna, full of lies about her family to frighten the woman off. Before long, Frankie’s lying starts to creep into her everyday life and threatens to get out of control. What will happen when her dad finds out?

    Written entirely in Frankie's diary entries and her emails to and from Ayanna, this realistic and sometimes humorous story of growing up is for anyone who was ever afraid of change coming into their lives…and for anyone who later realized that those changes might not be so bad after all.

  2. says:

    The book The Naked Mole Rat Letters by Mary Amato is about a girl and her family without a mom. However, once her dad leaves on a business trip he meets a particular woman who manages the lives of rats at the National Zoo in Washington DC. In order, for the "ratlady" and her dad to not move forward in their relationship she tries to lie however, what ends up as one lie becomes a whole entire new story that comes to bite back in the future.

  3. says:

    Frankie discovers that her father is secretly corresponding with a mysterious woman – Ayanna Bayo, a.k.a. Ratlady – whom he met while he was at a conference in Washington D.C., and she’s completely horrified. Afraid that her dad is trying to replace her mom, Frankie does everything in her power to put Ayanna off. She deletes Ratlady’s emails to her father, erases her phone messages, and lies at every opportunity. Ratlady, however, sees through Frankie’s attempts. She tries to assuage Frankie’s fears by drawing parallels between what Frankie is feeling and how naked mole-rats experience the world (as that’s the subject she knows best). Frankie isn’t reassured. She sees her life changing completely and she’s scared. Because Frankie is so stressed out about Ratady, she doesn’t have time to do her homework, or study, or look after her brothers, or be in the play she tried out for - keeping track of all the lies she’s told is becoming a full-time job. Just as Frankie begins to open up to Ayanna about her feelings, however, the situation explodes (almost literally) and Frankie winds up in big trouble.

    I liked learning about the naked mole-rats (although, sometimes, it seems like Ayanna’s use of them to illustrate her points was just an excuse to demonstrate how much the author knows about naked mole-rats), and I really liked Ayanna and was hoping that Frankie’s father would bring her out and introduce her (properly) to the family. Frankie’s descent into deceit and petty crime was rather difficult to swallow – it started out being funny, because she was trying so hard to keep Ayanna at bay, but then it devolved into this huge mess that was so much bigger than it needed to be (plus, she was so unnecessarily mean to Ayanna). I guess things get out of hand when you don’t discuss your problems/feelings. There was also a sub-plot involving Johnny Nye, a boy in Frankie’s class at school, whom everyone sees as a trouble-maker. He’s really a sweet guy, talented, funny, kind, but very few people ever see that side of him. Unfortunately, Frankie’s friendship with Johnny gets thrown in right at the end of the book, and I wish it were something that had been developed right from the beginning, because the way it’s written there’s almost too much going on (for the space allotted). Despite being a little irritated with Frankie, I enjoyed reading this - especially the parts with Johnny Nye.

  4. says:

    I knew nothing of this book going into it. I was reading it so I can fill in at our school-age mother/caregiver-daughter book club this month. It is comprised of emails and diary entries, which I think helped the book read fast. (And it definitely was a fast read!) For a while, I was ready to shake Frankie because she got on my nerves so much. Very much a dramatic 12-year old. (And I could NEVER relate to that.) I knew that somewhere in the book, Frankie was going to figure out that all of her lying and plain ol' mean-ness was going to turn around and smack her. I think that was one reason I was into the book and hooked on reading--I wanted to see her change. And she did. And I really liked how Amato decided to bring about that change, since I wasn't sure how that would take place.

    I had an added experience with this book since I was reading with the mind-set that I would have to discuss it with the girls. Unfortunately, I don't know the girls at all. So I wasn't sure if there were any particular points that I should point out. Hopefully they (and all other readers) realize just how awful Frankie was being! I mean, she was horrid at times. My mouth was literally hanging open at some of the things she had the gall to do! Aside from the lying and invasion of privacy, I kept thinking that I just couldn't relate to this girl.

    But then I had to stop and reflect. As an adult, no I didn't relate because she bothers me with how selfish and audacious she can be. But reading her diary would probably be very similar to reading some of my journal and diary entries when I was her age: full of myself in some areas, feeling totally alone and misunderstood at times, always being the victim, misuse of vocabulary, not sure of who to be friends with. OK. So that could be applied to me today, but I really hope not! I hope I've learned from those awful teen years that I would never re-live even if you offered to pay off all my debt and send me on a month-long trip to England or China!

    Much food for my thoughts, which I'll be nibbling on as I prepare for the book club and what I'm going to say (or not say). I think initially I might have given this only 3 stars because of how much Frankie bothered me for 1/2 of the book. But as I think more on it and think of just how much I can share with these girls about to enter this part of life, I like it more.

  5. says:

    Frankie is in 7th grade, struggling with learning to be a middle schooler, and upset that her beloved dad (its another dead mother book!) just might have met someone special, a woman who is the naked mole rat keeper at the National Zoo. Her life starts spiraling out of control in a series of lies as she tries to sabotage her father's new friendship. Told in e-mails and diary entries, this is a fairly straightforward family story, and girls in 4th-5th grade who like family stories will like it. For me, Frankie is entirely unbelievable, from her idyllic new-agey small-town family life to her gratuitous self-corrected spelling. However, I am an adult and I don't know that kids will have the same reaction.

  6. says:

    Couldn't put it down!

    Frankie is worried when her father comes home from a business trip and she discovers that on the trip he Met A Woman! Frankie's mother passed away a few years ago, and she worries that her father will remarry now, and everything will change. In her fear, she starts to lie, to cheat on her homework, ignore her younger brothers, and email the woman in an effort to destroy the budding romance. As Frankie's life starts to spiral out of control, her father has to take notice of her, something he hasn't really done in quite while.

    This book was totally engaging. Even as I was disapproving of the things Frankie was doing, I understood her completely. Wonderful!

  7. says:

    Frankie finds out that her widowed father is developing a long-distance relationship with a zookeeper. The story, told through diary entries and email messages, focuses on Frankie's attempts to thwart the budding romance. Frankie's efforts are tiresome to read about (she starts lying, getting into trouble at school, neglecting her responsibilities at home, bottling her feelings, and alienating her friends), but they ultimately create a realistic intimacy and empathy for her character. Frankie and her father eventually learn to be more honest, to better communicate, and to trust each other in this heart-felt novel. Ages 10+.

  8. says:

    One of my favorites! See what trouble this girl, whose dad is starting to date, can get in.

  9. says:

    Couldn't stop reading. I love Frankie's whole family and love how absolutely imperfect she is.

    So glad I finally read this. Seven-hour layovers tend to give you some time to read. :-)

  10. says:

    I really enjoyed this book. I think it captured quite well what it's like to be Frankie's age, and the story was very enjoyable to go through. It's another one I read during work, so it took me a while, but it was good enough that I had to remind myself to keep working pretty often.

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