Ms. Bixby's Last Day

Ms. Bixby's Last Day

Book - 2016
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Loving their gifted teacher, three boys are dismayed when the teacher falls ill and leaves for the rest of the school year, a situation that compels them to share their stories while cutting class and journeying across town together on a fateful day.
Publisher: New York, NY :, Walden Pond Press, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers,, [2016]
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9780062338174
006233817X
Characteristics: 300 pages ; 22 cm

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b
BrownJerseyHen
Dec 11, 2017

If you've read "Wonder" and didn't know what to read next, I highly recommend "Ms. Bixby's Last Day."

r
royce1128
Sep 22, 2017

Very touching and will make you think about the people you know and love

JCLChrisK Apr 17, 2017

There are six types of teachers in the world:
- Zombies, who have been teaching for centuries;
- Caff-Adds, also known as Zuzzers because they talk so fast;
- Dungeon Masters, who revel in their oppressive power;
- Spielbergs, who show movies all the time;
- Noobs, who are fresh and bright for a year or two before they burn out into a different category; and
- the Good Ones.
Topher, Steve, and Brand know this because they are the ones who created the classification scheme.

Topher's the storyteller, inventing epic narratives for most everything, which he usually ends up writing or drawing. Steve is the genius with a near photographic memory, who generally has trouble with the illogical ways of others. Brand is the sociable one with common sense who knows how to take care of things--and people. And Ms. Bixby is one of the Good Ones, who has happened to become particularly meaningful to each of the three friends.

When her cancer diagnosis not only steals Ms. Bixby away before the end of the school year but sends her to the hospital even before her planned last day, when her class was to have a party with her, the boys decide to take matters into their own hands: they skip school to deliver, as closely as they can manage, Ms. Bixby's perfect last day to her. They know from the start that it's going to be a pretty big, risky quest, but have no idea just how epic chance and misfortune will make it.

The three sixth-graders take turns telling their story, and through their narration readers come to know them deeply. They are each sympathetic, endearing, and complex, young enough to be immature and silly--the book opens with them getting chased by a classmate for telling her she has cooties ("We've run tests. She came up positive on the cootometer, all red, off the charts")--while old enough to handle some very serious things. They are entirely believable, and their story nicely balances humor, tragedy, and drama. The obstacles they encounter and the course of their adventure are equally believable. Together, those ingredients make for one highly-enjoyable, quality book.

AL_ALYX Mar 12, 2017

I fell in love with Topher, Brand, and Steve. The novel switches between the three boys point of view, each distinct in character. This book will both make you laugh out loud and cry at the end. Readers will love the sometimes grotesque bathroom humor, as well as the heartwarming friendship the boys have for each other and for their teacher. It's not the last day that matters, but all of the days in between.

lindsay_r Feb 08, 2017

A sweet, sad, and funny story about friendship, family, and that one special teacher that changes your life.

b
brangwinn
Feb 05, 2017

Yes, you’ll cry at the end of this book but, you’ll also cheer and three good friends take off to visit their 6th grade teacher whose last-stage pancreatic cancer has forced her to take a leave from her teaching. Along the way, you’ll see how three very different boys have had their lives changed by a very special teacher. Their efforts to show her how much she meant to them are almost heroic in their planning and execution. Ms. Bixby is the kind of teacher who may leave your life, but she will never be forgotten.

c
carinmilburn
Dec 30, 2016

funny, not too sweet book. it would be a great read aloud for a class or parent. shows the positive impact one human (especially a teacher) can have on another human's life. enjoyed it.

w
wyenotgo
Nov 20, 2016

Wow! This book far exceeded my expectations.
First off, I refuse to classify this one as "Young Adult", although I'm sure it will be seen as such, centering as it does on the experiences of three twelve-year-old boys. The writing is wonderful and the story is one of universal appeal. I've rarely read anything as vibrantly REAL as Anderson's portrayal of these three boys, their inner lives, their mannerisms, the way in which they interact with the world around them, each in his own unique way, while at the same time being so closely in sync with each other as only very close friends can be.
Those among us who have been so very fortunate to have been touched by one of "the good ones" will instantly recognize and embrace Ms. Bixby; the rest of us can only envy their good fortune.

r
rosebud2112
Aug 27, 2016

Well written book dealing with the hard topic of cancer and death with enough levity mixed in to keep the tears away. While I found there to be references that the intended audience (middle grades) won't get, it creates some appeal for adults as well. I particularly enjoyed the glimpses into the 3 boys' family. I think this a great way to get kids to think beyond their own circumstances and realize that we can never know the situations of other people.

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PimaLib_JeanSC Jun 12, 2017

"Turns out real life isn't like the movies. Life doesn't come all the way back around again. It's not a straight line either. It angles and curves, shoots off a little, twists and turns, but it never gets right back to the place it started. Not that you would want it to. Then you wouldn't feel like you had gotten anywhere." -- Topher

Three sixth-graders go on an adventure of a lifetime to give a beloved teacher a day to remember.

JCLChrisK Apr 17, 2017

That's the difference between artists and the rest of us, I think. Artists know where to put the shadows.

JCLChrisK Apr 17, 2017

Everybody loves a good sob story, so long as it's not their story.

I don't know why. I'm not sure if people honestly care about other people or they just want a way to confirm that they've got it better than someone else.

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