Stand Tall

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Speak, Jun 6, 2005 - Juvenile Fiction - 182 pages
7 Reviews
In her heartfelt and humorous novel, Bauer (Hope Was Here) leaves teenage girl protagonists in favor of a middle-grade boy as she did also in Sticks (1996). But her fans won't be disappointed. At first, 12-year-old Tree, "six feet, three and a half inches and growing," only literally "stands tall." At school, Coach Glummer expects him to lead the basketball team (though he's not very athletic) and teachers expect him to act older than his age. On the home front which shifts weekly due to his parents' recent divorce and joint custody arrangement Tree is the glue of his family. He helps care for his Vietnam vet grandfather (who recently had a leg amputated) while worrying about his aging dog, Bradley, his two college-student brothers and his parents. Bolstered by his budding friendship with the outspoken new girl at school, Sophie, and by Grandpa, Tree finds an inner strength that helps him deal with just about anything including a natural disaster. Bauer once again creates a clan of believable characters scrambling to make the best of their particular brand of dysfunction. Her swiftly paced story artfully blends poignant and outright funny moments, resulting in a triumphant tale that will resonate with many young readers. Ages 10-up.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - ALelliott - LibraryThing

Tree gets his name from the fact that he is twelve years old and is six feet, three inches tall. Everyone who meets him can't help but comment on his height, and Tree is getting tired of it. But that ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Sandra305 - LibraryThing

Joan Bauer is becoming one of my favorite YA authors! I love the multi-layering in this book: Tree's relationships with his family and his peers, his grandfather with his Vietnam war experiences and ... Read full review


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About the author (2005)

Joan Bauer is the author of thirteen books for young readers.Joan's first novel, Squashed, won the Delacorte Prize for a First Young Adult Novel. Five novels for young adult readers have followed: ThwonkSticksRules of the Road (LA Times Book Prize and Golden Kite), Backwater and Hope was Here (Newbery Honor Medal). The Christopher Award was given to both Hope was Here and Close to Famous, which also received the Schneider Family Book Award. Joan is the recipient of numerous state awards voted by readers.

School Library Journal says, "When it comes to creating strong, independent, and funny characters, Bauer is in a class by herself."
Joan Bauer lives in Brooklyn, New York. Visit her at

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