"I write contemporary realism -- put simply - I write stories."
Charlie narrates seven stories that take place during her family's first summer on Magnolia Street. Charlie is mischievous and creative and she finds her match in Billy, who quickly becomes her best friend.
Now that Charlie has settled into her new neighborhood, she is only too delighted to observe all the goings-on, including the arrival of two teenage girls and their father, a magician (the kind who saws people in half).
"When Charlene (aka Charlie) first moves to Magnolia Street, she is apprehensive. There seem to be no kids around, and her brother claims they have all been stolen by the maniac monkeys that inhabit the willow trees on the street. But Charlie, full of spunk, immediately finds a kindred spirit on the block named Billy. Together they discover the secrets and treasures of the neighborhood. . . . In a series of connected stories, Johnson brings Magnolia Street to life through the ever-curious Charlie, who is always open to the small wonders around her. Newly independent readers will enjoy Charlie's escapades as she makes herself at home on her new street."
It's summertime, and that means more adventures for Charlie and her friends on Magnolia Street in this collection of short stories by the author of Maniac Monkeys on Magnolia Street. There are lots of comings and goings on the block this summer. One family disappears, while another--the Magic Family--appears from nowhere. Charlie's best friends, Billy and Lump, go off to camp and have their own adventures, and Charlie meets Ashley, a girl who likes to grow things. But perhaps most amazing of all is that Charlie and her practical-joker older brother, Sid (her nemesis), actually join forces to help a neighbor in trouble.
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