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Ten-year-old Samantha Hansen loves rocks. And bugs. And fossils. She keeps an organized notebook filled with lists about her favorite rocks, the rocks she hopes to find, what she knows about planets, butterflies, and anything else related to science. She also makes lists like why she’d trade in Jen, her older sister, for a turtle.

Samantha’s good at science. Jen is good at getting her sister in trouble. She messes with Samantha’s rock collection, but it’s Samantha who gets in trouble for yelling. Jen plays her music much too loudly for a hard-working, conscientious scientist, and when Samantha very nicely asks her to turn it down, she refuses. So, again, Samantha’s mom tells Samantha to count to ten to avoid losing her temper. Jen gets away with everything and Samantha’s always the one in trouble.

When Mom announces plans for a scientist’s dream vacation to the Grand Canyon, Samantha knows she’ll have to learn to control her temper or Mom will decide she can’t go. But when Richard Frey says she had rocks in her head, and trips her on purpose, Samantha loses it and gets sent home from school for kicking him back. She knows she’ll have to plan something big so her mom will still let her go to the Grand Canyon. But she’ll need Jen’s help.

SAMANTHA HANSEN HAS ROCKS IN HER HEAD by Nancy Viau is a delightful story. Samantha is full of energy and is on a quest to learn everything scientific. But on her trip to the Grand Canyon, she learns more than facts about rocks and fossils. Before she returns home, she’ll find a caring sister, discover a proud mother, and learn more about her list-making dad who she doesn’t remember.  And as a reader, don’t be surprised if you learn a little bit of science before you turn the last page. This is a terrific read for any 8-12 year old.

This review was originally posted at
#1 - July 16, 2008, 09:24 PM
« Last Edit: August 12, 2008, 05:57 PM by Cana »

#2 - July 17, 2008, 05:48 PM


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