Cover image for The Sisters Club
The Sisters Club
McDonald, Megan.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
Middleton, Wisc. : American Girl, [2003]

Physical Description:
196 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm
In Acton, Oregon, sisters Alex, Stevie, and Joey tell about their lives, including their line of actor ancestors, creative family dinners, toe marshmallows, swearing in Shakespeare, and the Sisters Club.
Reading Level:
620 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 3.6 3.0 72270.

Reading Counts RC 3-5 4.1 7 Quiz: 36137 Guided reading level: R.
Geographic Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Newstead Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
Clearfield Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
Elma Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
Kenmore Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
Orchard Park Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
Anna M. Reinstein Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
Julia Boyer Reinstein Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
Audubon Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
East Aurora Library J FICTION Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
Riverside Branch Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
Crane Branch Library X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



The Sisters Club is a novel centering on three sisters.

Author Notes

Megan McDonald was born February 28, 1959, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She grew up in the 1960s the youngest of five girls - which later became the inspiration of the Sister's Club. She attended Oberlin College and received a B.A. in English, then she went on to receive a Library Science degree at Pittsburgh University in 1986. Before becoming a full-time writer, McDonald had a variety of jobs working in libraries, bookstores, museums, and even as a park ranger.She was children's librarian, working at Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Minneapolis Public Library and Adams Memorial Library in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. She has received various awards for her storytelling including a Judy Blume Contemporary Fiction Award, a Children's Choice Book award, and a Keystone State Award among others. McDonald has also written many picture books for younger children and continues to write. Her most recent work was the "Julie Albright" series of books for the American public. She currently resides in Sebastopol, California with her husband and pets.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Gr. 4-7. The three Reel sisters, ages 8 to almost 13, have acting in their blood. More than 100 years ago, their great-great-grandmother built the house in which they live and founded the Raven Theater next door. Their parents are actors, so it's no wonder that life in the Reel household pivots around auditions, rehearsals, set construction, and performances. Even the girls' daily interactions with one another are theatrical, thanks to author McDonald's flair for quick repartee and her skill at transforming preadolescent high jinks into hilarious episodes. McDonald even pokes fun at Shakespeare as this eclectically composed novel unfolds through middle-sister Stevie's narration, the journal entries of Joey, the youngest sister, and the light dramatic scenes scripted by Alex, the oldest. Some reflection on the impact of theater on audiences as well as on actors, examples of the girls' testing their self-reliance to help out in a two-working-parent household, and lots of genuine family affection surfaces among the flooding floors, disastrous dinners, and entertaining meetings of the Sisters Club. --Ellen Mandel Copyright 2003 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

The creator of the Judy Moody novels introduces a trio of similarly spunky girls, three sisters-ages eight, 10 and "123/4"-whose parents are both actors. Their mother lands a job as the host of a TV cooking show (though she has no culinary skills) and their father spends much of his time creating sets for a local theater. In this novel divided into four acts (plus an intermission), the three siblings take turns playing the role of narrator. The eldest, aspiring thespian Alex, offers her take on the goings-on through scripts sprinkled with sometimes acerbic asides. Joey, the youngest, relays her side of the story through chatty notebook entries, which include such sidebars as a list of her favorite stuffed animals and the reasons why she loves Jell-O. Occupying center stage is Stevie (whose only acting experience to date was a short, disastrous run as a human pinata) who reveals her fears that her position as middle child renders her invisible and calls herself "Plain old boring vanilla." Yet her father likens her to the vanilla middle of an Oreo ("You're the creamy center of the cookie that holds it all together. You're the glue"), and she proves him right. Stevie assumes the role of family chef (with comically calamitous results), acts as peacemaker and fills in for Alex on stage when she breaks her foot mid-performance. Featuring many madcap moments, McDonald's family comedy is both affecting and believable. Ages 10-up. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 4-6-The Sisters Club consists of three girls, ages 8, 10, and 12, whose family is heavily involved in local theater. The Club dissolves and reunites through episodes of family life over four "acts" (in place of chapters) and an intermission. The narrative is carried by Stevie, the middle sister, in conventional type, but the other two siblings contribute through interesting graphic formats. Alex, the eldest, writes plays about their family, and Joey, the youngest, offers handwritten, illustrated journal entries on lined paper. These short entries, along with small pages, plenty of white space, and painted toenails on the hot pink cover, should appeal to most girls. The packaging will probably be enough to make up for details that don't always ring true, such as an 8-year-old saving for a cornhusk doll kit or a 12-year-old inviting her crush to a family dinner when she is just getting to know him.-Laurie von Mehren, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Parma, OH (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



The Middle Being in the middle is like being invisible. Especially when you're the middle sister in a family with three girls. Think about it. The middle of a story is not the beginning or the end. The middle of a train is not the caboose or the engine. The middle of a play is intermission. The middle of Monkey in the Middle is a monkey. The middle of Neapolitan ice cream is . . . vanilla. "I'm vanilla!" I shouted one day to anybody who would listen. Plain old boring vanilla. Nobody listened.Alex, my older sister, ignored me. She just kept writing stuff in the margins of her play script (what else is new!) and muttering the lines under her breath. Easy for her. She's strawberry. I was sick of it, so I told my family how I hate being the middle. Middle, middle, middle. "Hey! The middle of 'Farmer in the Dell' is the cheese!" Joey, my younger sister, reminded me. "The cheese stands alone," I reminded her back. Alex looked up. "There's a book about that, you know. I Am the Cheese." Yeah. My autobiography, I thought. "Wait. You think you're cheese or something?" Joey asked. I ignored her. They just don't get it. I mean, the middle of a year is, what, Flag Day? The middle of a life is a midlife crisis! I told my dad I was having a midlife crisis. "You're going to give me a midlife crisis if you don't get over this," Dad said. I asked him to name one middle that is a good thing. Dad had to think. He thought and thought and didn't say anything. Then finally he told me, "The middle of an apple is the core." "Um-hmm. The yucky part people throw away," I said. "How about the middle of the night? That's an interesting time, when people see things differently." I pointed out that most people sleep through the middle of the night. Then he shouted like he had a super-brainy Einstein idea. "The middle of an Oreo cookie is the sweet, creamy, best part. You can't argue with that." He was right. I couldn't argue. If I had to be a middle, that's the best middle to be. "See? You're the peanut butter in the sandwich," said Dad. "You're the creamy center of the cookie that holds it all together. You're the glue." I'm the glue? Maybe Dad's right. After all, I'm the one who came up with the (brilliant!) idea for the Sisters Club, back when I was Joey's age. Alex gets to be the Boss Queen, of course, so she runs the meetings. Joey (a.k.a. Madam Secretary/Treasurer) takes the notes and collects dues (if we had any money). I keep the peace. I am the glue! The Sisters Club Charter by Joey Reel CLUBHOUSE: Alex's room MEMBERS: Reel sisters only UNIFORM: Pj's are good. Plaid is bad. Except when it's pj's. MASCOT: Alex's sock monkey, named Sock Monkey (I wish it was Hedgie, my hedgehog.) LOGO: Three sock monkeys arm in arm ALTERNATE LOGO: Troll doll with the "no" sign over it SECRET SIGN OR HANDSHAKE: Hook pinkies together while saying, "Sisters, Blisters, and Tongue Twisters." SECRET KNOCK: I don't know how to write it! I just know how to do it. Sounds like: Da-da-da, da-dee-dee-doh. PASSWORD: Shakespeare (Shh! Don't tell!) ACTIVITIES: Tell secrets and scary stories, eat popcorn and ice cream, stay up late, have sleepovers in Alex's room (I mean the clubhouse!). DUES: Only if we need popcorn or ice cream and we're out of them. RULES: No throwing pillows or other objects, except in an official pillow fight.No putting crumbs in Alex's bed on purpose. No using Alex's brush to brush your hair . No taking stuff from Alex's room (especially anything with glitter). Excerpted from The Sisters Club by Megan McDonald All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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