Elementary: Trends Younger

Lola Levine Is Not Mean!

Monica Brown
2015

Friendship

Fun!

Resilience

Racial Diversity

Lola Levine is a confident 2nd grader with lots of winning qualities. She loves soccer, jumping on her bed, writing in her diary, painting, kittens, and eating all the delicious foods from her mixed heritage. She also loves writing notes to her friends, family, and teachers, and those notes are key to this heartwarming story.

Sometimes Lola has a little trouble fitting in at school. She just doesn’t understand why some people don’t think a girl can be best friends with a boy! When a schoolmate taunts her for being “half-and-half” because her mother is Catholic and her father is Jewish, her parents help her understand that she is “whole just the way I am.”

Lola runs into trouble when her brand of soccer competitiveness gets the best of her. A slide tackle during a recess game of soccer injures a friend and leads to an unfortunate nickname – Mean Lola Levine. Luckily, her best friend Josh sticks by her. Ultimately, she is eventually able to transform the accusation “Lola Levine is mean!” into a new proud nickname – Lola Levine, Soccer Queen.

Lola’s chapters are brisk, full of action and information. Do you know what shalom means? Or what Lola’s real name, Dolores, means? Or how to play doorway soccer? That’s just the first chapter! There’s much more as you continue through the 88 pages of this fun book, including worm farming, guinea pig wrangling, and staying true to yourself.

Lola’s pace and brevity coupled with Angela Dominguez’s delightful illustrations make Lola Levine Is Not Mean! a perfect title to introduce reading aloud as a family to your school community.

Read Lola together and see if your families are not clamoring to read the 5 sequels for the chance to hang out longer with Lola Levine, Soccer Queen.