Written By: Katherine Paterson
The Great Gilly Hopkins is an Eleven year old foster child who is determined to be against the world. She is brilliantly smart, but uses her smarts to get what she wants and to get herself booted from several different foster homes. As a frim last resort, Gilly's social worker sends her to live with a loving, wonderful, albeit illiterate and very overweight woman and a little boy who also lives there, William Ernest. Through different actions, such as stealing, swearing and being harmfully mean and racist. Gilly's (Galadriel) greatest wish is to be rescued by her mother. Gilly ends up writing a riduclously embellished letter about the conditions at her new foster home to her mother and it gets way out of hand. Gilly never expected to come to lover Trotter and William Ernest but she does and when she does, her grandmother comes to take her away permantly, believing the outlandish lies in Gilly's Letter. Gilly is sorely disappointed when she discovers what her mother is really like and is devastated because she has built her up so much. But in order to make Trotter proud Gilly puts on a stiff upper lip and confidently goes forward with what life has given her. " 'Sorry to make you wait...I'm ready to go home now.' No clouds of glory, perhaps, but Trotter would be proud.' "
Who Would Benefit from reading this book?
I think despite some of it's content and Gilly's attitude, that every child would benefit from reading this book. I think this because it shows that life is just not all fun and games, it has trials too, but those trials don't keep you from enjoying life and that you can work to get what you want. It teaches children good values.
What problems do you see this book causing?
Gilly is not like a typical eleven year old. She speaks her mind regardless of what situation she's in and does what she likes and says what she likes with no respect to authority. Children might get the wrong idea and copy Gilly's attitude.
What was your reaction from this book?
Despite my surprise at reading this book for the first time, I grew to enjoy it as I read it. It made me laugh and I love Gilly's brovado and cavalier and confident attitude.