At Emerson Charter School in Maple Heights, five best friends—Maya, Lola, Pia, Jesse, and Amy—brainstorm for the perfect idea. Mrs. Norton's slide show of previous prizewinners gives the entire class motivation to create an eye-boggling masterpiece that will surely win first prize in the art show. All except Pia are enthusiastic to form groups or work solo to get a good start in the competition. "‘Yikes! Pia sounded downright snippy. That definitely wasn't like her at all! What in the world was wrong with Pia?' thought Amy." Inspired by her scrapbook, Amy has an idea "to do something called "Living Art," since the theme is ‘Living with Art.' Everyone loves the idea of a 3-D, life size, face cutout, scrapbook page except Pia, who storms away from her friends after insulting Amy's great idea. Amy discovers why Pia has been so upset lately when she shares with her a huge secret. When Amy mistrustfully shares Pia's secret with Lola, the entire school soon finds out what Amy has promised not to share with anyone. Ultimately Amy and her friends learn how to forgive in order to mutually receive forgiveness. By the end of the day, one has to take responsibility for his or her actions, whether it is a secret to help a friend or a jealous action to sabotage another. The reader understands how "friends sometimes make mistakes, and we have to learn to forgive one another." Reviewer: Erika Clark
The Secret's Out (Amy Hodgepodge #5)
By Kim Wayans (Author), Kevin Knotts (Author), Soo Jeonge (Illustrator)
Paperback: 112 pages
Age Range: 7 - 9 years
Grade Level: 2 - 4
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