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Freedman as Herself ☻ It S , And Sally J Freedman Is Full Of Wild Ideas She S Got Her Eye On Handsome Peter Horstein, The Latin Lover Of Her Dreams On Old Mr Zavodsky, Who Looks Suspiciously Like Hitler In Disguise And On Her Father, Who Sally Misses Terribly There Are So Many Things To Worry And Wonder About But What Ever Happens, Sally S School Year Will Certainly Be Exciting And Unforgettable So my mother found a stack of book reviews I did in elementary school as part of my class competition for who could read the most books in one year In her endless quest to clean out my paraphernalia from her house, they are now with me I guess there were shades of GR back then I won Here is a random book review from the middle of the pack Warning, I was a terrible and still am a terrible speller Thank goodness for spell check Otherwise I probably would have had to become an engineer Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself is my favorite book It s about ten year old Sally who moves to Maimi Beach for the winter since her brother has a kidney infection and needs to stay in warmth The book takes place in the post World War Two era The book doesn t really have a main conflict, but you see Sally encounter world conflicts through naive eyes She questions segregation a lot and she gets the same answers from adults That s just the way things are You also see Sally encounter everyday obstacles that continue today sibling rivalry, problems with bullies, friendship jealousy, etc That is probably my favorite thing about this book it doesn t have some unrealistic main problem that the book is all about It deals with small problems everyone has I also like that it takes place in another time, to show that some things never change and to show the similarities between two very different times. What a strange book From old ladies who look like Adolph Hitler to experiencing WWII from the safety of Florida, Starring Sally J Freedman As Herself is a wonderful but complicated coming of age tale. One of the first books I truly considered a favorite Judy Blume was in New York doing a reading my freshmen year of college not having my copy with me, I bought a new copy of this beloved favorite and had her sign it I couldn t stop gushing about how much I loved this book o Superb characters, this is a book that has always stuck with me I often think of and remember little bits and pieces from the story One of those books that seems to get better and better every time you re read it. I know that Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself supposedly is very much autobiographical in scope, and with this salient truth in mind, I do to a certain point very much applaud Judy Blume for not in any way sugar coating or attempting to make light of the fact that once Sally who is obviously based on the author herself , her mother and ailing older brother have moved to Florida because of Douglas nephritis , she absolutely despises her elderly neighbour Mr Zavodsky and actually believes he is Adolf Hitler in disguise simply because of his Central European looks and likely heavy foreign accent and even writes many poison pen accusatory letters to him, which she fortunately does not mail But the above all having been said, and even though I am now as an older adult able to at least somewhat appreciate Judy Blume s honesty and candour, I do have to admit that I absolutely and totally hated with every fibre of my being at that Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself when I read this novel in 1977, in grade five, as a brand new hardcover library book and only one year after our family s immigration to Canada from Germany, at the absolute height of me being constantly bullied and harassed by both students and even some of my teachers due to my German background and because I spoke English with a rather heavy accent In fact, I despised Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself to such an extent I even ended up writing a letter to Judy Blume, an emotional epistle accusing her of using pretty much the same rhetoric regarding ALL Germans as the National Socialists had used towards Jews, Gypsies etc a letter that I also never mailed and in fact tore into tiny shreds because I was feeling very ashamed and angry at myself, but yes, the novel did majorly rub me the wrong way, or rather, I should say that certain parts of Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself majorly rubbed me the wrong way, totally upset and angered eleven year old me, and made me feel very small, insignificant and perhaps even deserving of being bullied because of my German culture and background.And thus, when I was reading or rather when I was attempting to peruse Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself in grade five, I was most definitely focusing mainly on how Sally reacts or rather how she so often strangely overreacts , and personally felt only absolute and utter sympathy for poor Mr Zavodsky and the unfounded, nasty and just plain silly accusations being cast at him as well as rather intense albeit also guilt laden anger at Sally, at her antics and attitudes and yes, I absolutely did realise even then and totally understood the time and place, that Sally s aunt Rose and Rose s daughter Lila had been victims of the Holocaust, but that factoid did not and does NOT make me as a German automatically a potential Nazi and it does also NOT make Mr Zavodsky automatically Hitler in disguise, even if he might have somewhat physically resembled him and spoken with a German accent Further, from the scenes at the beginning of Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself where Sally and her friends are often playacting WWII , I was forced to conclude and perhaps even knew rather instinctively that if I had been a member of Sally s group of friends, I probably would have that is if Sally had even wanted a person of German background for a friend ALWAYS been forced to assume the role of Adolf Hitler or some other evil German character and that any and all refusal or argument on my part wouldthan likely have lead to at best a myriad of accusations.And finally, while this and most definitely it will be my one and only reread of Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself has indeed made me a bitappreciative of the fact that Judy Blume has been open with regard to her autobiography and that she has not shied away from depicting how truly nasty Sally often is towards Mr Zadovsky how she uses her overactive imagination to basically accuse him of being not only a potential National Socialist, but Adolf Hitler himself , I have still found Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself a very much and truly in many ways trying and painfully saddening reading experience even for me as an older adult , bringing to me as flashbacks ALL of the personal discomfort, sadness and anger I experienced in 1977 when I was reading Starring Sally J Freedman as Herself as an eleven year old recent German immigrant to Canada and also strongly reminding me of the near constant bullying I was experiencing at that time from many of my classmates and some of my teachers simply because I just happened to be German. Goodreads 2019 Summer Reading Challenge11 Past love Reread a book you loved when you were youngerI have the distinct memory of this being my second least favorite Judy Blume book when I was a kid in the 1970s, and re reading it again as an adult this week reminded me why because this is Blume s one and only historically autobiographical novel, set in the 1940s and concerning a Jewish girl in New Jersey whose family temporarily moves to Miami to help her brother recover from a kidney infection, such a huge disconnect from my own life at ten that I found it almost impossible to engage with it As an adult I was actually quietly charmed by all the hopelessly dated references Blume fondly looks back on here the protagonist s love of Esther Williams her insistence that Hitler escaped at the end of World War Two and is now living disguised in her apartment building the family s habit of preparing cow s tongue for dinners confusion over why colored people need their own drinking fountains, etc but all this was simply too much for me to deal with when I was a kid myself, a book I was never able to get fully into and a problem that your own kids might have too Recommended for Blume completists but if you re just dipping your toes into her work for the first time, you re better off with an undisputed classic like Are You There God It s Me, Margaret. Just re read this 30 years after my first read Timeless It s Judy Blume s most autobiographical novel one of her best, I think. a favorite from childhood Sally is such a fun character Love and other indoor sports Hilarious One of the best YA books out there. Sally J Freedman is a 12 13 year old girl who can best be described as having a creative imagination that runs wild The book is set in the late 1940s Sally and her mother and brother move to Florida for the winter, and Sally has managed to convince herself that an elderly man who lives in her apartment building is actually Adolf Hitler in disguise and he has come to Florida to retire.