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Van Draanen, Wendelin.
New York : A.A. Knopf, 2001.
IL 5-8, RL 5.9
ISBN 037591174X

(8 booktalks)

Booktalk #1

The first time she saw him, she flipped.

The first time he saw her, he ran.

Is this the basis for a solid relationship?

Ever since she saw Bryceís baby blue eyes in second grade, Julianna Baker has been completely smitten. Bryce, on the other hand, has always thought that Juli is weird.

In eighth grade, however, everything changes. After years of avoiding Juli, Bryce finally notices her, and is surprised to find that sheís actually kind of cool. Different, yesóbut in a sort of cool way. After all, she raises chickens and sits in trees. But when Juli finally looks beyond Bryceís pretty eyes, sheís not sure she likes what she sees.

The chapters alternate between the voices of Bryce and Juli, and slowly the story of their eighth grade year emergesóas well as some surprising similarities (and differences) in their families. If you like sweet, funny stories with quirky characters, chickens and trees, Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen is the book for you!  (by Aarene Storms of King County Library System for Evergreen Young Adult Book Award, 2003-2004.)

Booktalk #2

Bryce: "All I ever wanted was for Julie Baker to leave me alone ... she was dangerous!"

Julie: "The first day I met Bryce Loski, I flipped.  It was his eyes ... something in his eyes..."

Ever since Bryce moved in across the street from Julie, when they were both in second grade, there was chemistry, of one kind or another.  Julie pursued Bryce with unabashed passion, and he avoided here with equal devotion.  She was so weird about stuff, like that whole business with the chickens and the eggs in sixth grade; boy, did that hit the fan!  And their families were as different as night and day ... at least, that's what he thought.  But since that first meeting, many things had happened to change his mind.  Now they were in eighth grade, and the question was: Had she changed hers?  (New Hampshire Great Stone Face Committee)

Booktalk #3

                   Julianna: I canít believe how lucky I am to be living across from the most handsome boy in school! Bryce Loski and his family just moved in. The first time I saw him, I flipped! What beautiful blue eyes! Does he like me? Well, Iím not sure. Hmm, in fact he did go into his house and not come back out. No matter. I will keep trying.

                    Bryce: I canít believe we moved into a house across the street from the most annoying girl in the world. Juli Baker is good soccer player, true, and she seems really, really smart. But, once she climbed that big sycamore tree at our bus stop. What was that about? I am polite to her, but Iím trying to keep my distance.

                    Julianna: I was a little disappointed when Bryce didnít climb up the tree with me. The city came to chop it down. I have never been so sad. Didnít they know from up on the top you can see the entire block and the town? I can feel the wind in my face and smell the sunshine. Itís amazing up there. Iím trying to forget about it so I better go concentrate on my science fair project.

                    Bryce: Juli Baker won the science fair again. She hatched chickens from eggs. Now sheís decided to keep them as pets. My grandpa asks why I donít have Juli as my friend. He says she reminds him of Grandmaófull of life. Hmmm. Iím not sure if I see that. She sits behind me in science class though and Iíve noticed she smells my hair. I can hear her sniffing! Iím still not sure I understand Julie. I know her family has gone through some difficult times, well so has mine.

                    Will Juli and Bryce get together? This he said/she said follows Julie and Bryce from 2nd grade through 8th grade. Youíll flip for Flipped.  (Barbara Stewart Zinkovich,, USC library intern)

Booktalk #4
                    Have you ever wondered what the opposite sex is thinking?  In the story Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen you are able to see the story of a boy and girl from each characterís point-of-view.  In this amusing story you learn how two different people can see the same situations in very different ways.

                    Bryce first met Julianna when his family moved into the house across from hers.  Being only in second grade, Bryce reacted as most boys do to girls that ageÖhe hid.  Not only did he hide from Julianna during the second grade, but he also spent the rest of his elementary and most of his middle school years trying to avoid her.  On the other hand, Julianna fell in love with Bryce the minute she met him.  She stayed hopelessly in love with him during all of that time he tried to avoid her.

                    Yet as boys and girls grow up, feelings often change.  Just when Julianna decides she is through with Bryce, he can't stop thinking about her. Will it be too late for Bryce or will Julianna forgive him for all the years of running and give him a chance? Read Flipped to find out what causes each character to change his or her feelings and what really happens between a boy and a girl.  (Sandra M. Brundage,, USC MLIS Student)

Booktalk #5

From second grade to middle school, Juli Baker has had a crush on Bryce Loski. Unfortunately, Bryce does not feel the same way and, frankly, he thinks Juli is weird. The two teens alternately tell their stories and share their feelings and thoughts about one another as well as other serious problems. There are lots of egg jokes and humor in this novel, interspersed with realistic dialogue and social commentary. This fast-paced romantic comedy will be a sure hit with all young teens.  (Sunshine State Young Readerís Award Program, 2004-2005)

Booktalk #6

When Juli met her new neighbor Bryce, in second grade, she fell in love and he felt exactly the opposite. She loved his bright blue eyes and long black hair. He was the most popular guys in school.  He hated her 'know-it-all attitude' and thought she was just plain weird.  She knew the answer to everything and raised chickens in her backyard. For the past five years Juli has been chasing after Bryce while he has been avoiding her. Then everything flips. Bryce does some things that he regrets and causes Juli to hate him. Juli says, "I felt a cold, hard knot tighten in my heart. I was through with Bryce." At the same time Bryce falls in love with Juli and  realizes there's more to her than meets the eye.  Bryce says, " I'd spent so many years avoiding Juli that I never really looked at her, but now I couldn't stop." Will they end up together or will she hate him forever? Find out in Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen.  (Anja, student)

Booktalk #7

"Some of us get dipped in flat, some in stain, some in gloss... But every once in a while you find someone who's iridescent, and when you do, nothing will ever compare."  (p. 96) Bryce's grandfather could see that Juli was iridescent well before Bryce could.  Bryce was mostly annoyed with Juli, who attached herself to him when his family moved to her neighborhood just before second grade.  Bryce was embarrassed at her clear crush on him and how odd she was.  Bryce said, "Flat, glossy, iridescent.  What was up with that?  Juli Baker had always seemed just plain dusty to me."  (p. 97)  But then there was an incident with the eggs and the tree that got cut down and right about the time Juli looses interest in Bryce, he starts to notice her more and more.

This is a quiet romance, filled with humor and poignant thought.  Juli is a beautiful character who is comfortable marching to her own drummer.  Bryce, well, Bryce.  Could he ever be iridescent too?  (Book Talk Author: Jenna Obee, The Colorado Blue Spruce Award nominee 2012)

Booktalk #8

When seven-year-old Bryce moves into Juliís neighborhood, she is smitten. She says, "The day I first met Bryce Loski, I flipped. Honestly, one look at him and I became a lunatic. It's his eyes." However, Bryce thinks sheís the most annoying person on the planet. ďAll I've ever wanted is for Juli Baker to leave me alone." As she constantly pursues him, Bryce dodges her attentions, even though his grandfather, who finds her uniquely delightful, tells him, "Every once in a while you'll find someone iridescent, and when you do, nothing will ever compare."

Six years later, they are eighth graders, and their opinions have flipped.  When Juli begins a campaign to save a huge sycamore in their neighborhood, Bryce begins to admire her spunk and tenacity. He canít seem to get her off his mind.  However, Juli has finally had it with Bryceís self absorbed behavior and realizes his character matters much more than his appearance. In alternating ďhe said Ė she saidĒ chapters, the story of Bryce and Juliís relationship unfolds. Will Bryce be able to undo the damage his thoughtless behavior has done to their relationship over the years?  (Book Talk Author: Sharon Nehls, The Colorado Blue Spruce Award nominee 2012)

SUBJECTS:     Teenagers -- Fiction.
                        Interpersonal relations -- Fiction.
                        Conduct of life -- Fiction.
                        Family life -- Fiction.
                        Self-perception -- Fiction.


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