January 4, 2009

Book Review: 11 Birthdays by Wendy Mass

Posted by at 9:31 am in Reads | Permalink


UPDATE: Don't miss two new books by Wendy Mass, called Finally and 13 Gifts.

Birthdays! Some people love them, some people hate them, and some people consider them just another regular day. For Amanda, birthdays were always her favorite days because she got to share them with her best friend, Leo. But then she turned 10 and had the worst birthday of her life. Will her 11th be any better?

That’s what Amanda faces in the intriguing and funny 11 Birthdays by Wendy Mass. The book starts out with a mysterious chapter set on the day Amanda and Leo were born, when a stranger with a cryptic message tells their parents that the two must always celebrate their birthdays together. And after an “accidental” mix-up on their first birthday, they do, and they become the best of friends!

But then Amanda overhears something she shouldn’t during their joint 10th birthday party, and the friendship ends. As Amanda faces new pressures from her friends at school and problems with her family at home, plus a competing birthday party with Leo on the same night, her 11th birthday ends up being miserable.

But at least it’s over, and that thought makes Amanda very relieved. Except . . . apparently no one else got the memo. Each day, Amanda wakes up to find it’s STILL her 11th birthday! No one else seems to notice that time is repeating itself – no one except for Leo.

11 Birthdays kept me hooked as I eagerly read on to find out what different decisions Amanda would make in order to try and stop her 11th birthday from repeating. Ultimately, she and Leo find out why time has stopped (I won’t give away the secret!) and what they need to do to set things right.

As a reader, I was worried the book would become repetitive — but it wasn’t at all, because each day Amanda thought up new plans to try and break the cycle she and Leo were in, resulting in new adventures. It was fun reading about all the birthday rituals the two had enjoyed, and I identified with the idea that, no matter how much you plan, there are some things you just can’t control. Amanda learned that lesson too.

11 Birthdays is out in stores, and I highly recommend it, whether you like birthdays or not!

— Morgan, Scholastic Staffer

  1. Crazy and Lazy

    I think 11 birthdays was great! I liked how Leo and Amanda finally made up, and went through the last few days or should I say Fridays together. I liked all the adventures they took and how they ended up having their 11th birthday together. I loved this book and would recommend this book to anyone. :)

  2. Teju


  3. Greg

    I hated this book cause it was so short
    i mean the story was really good but they didnt really show anything about this 11 Birthdays.
    wendy mass is cool though :)

  4. Lana

    I love this book i am doing it for a school project and i need some help because i can not put the book down wendy mass u did a great job keep writting u r my favorite author

  5. maddie

    I read the book Jeremy Fink and the meaning of life and i loved and i am reading 11 Birthdays for a book report for school. Just from reading the review i think it is going to be a great book

  6. Maddie

    READ THIS BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!=D

  7. Maddie

    Best book every i am in 5th grade.i want to read more of her books!thank to my best friend for telling me about it!=D

  8. Bookworm

    11 Birthdays is a very good book. I love all the excitement and all the detail. The beginning I didn’t fully understand, but when the started talking about her 1st B-Day, I L-O-V-E-D it!

  9. lenee

    this book had good discription.it made me feel like one of the charcters.if ypu are a person the has not read it you should READ 11 birthdays.

  10. SARAH

    READ MORE BOOKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. katie

    i definately agree with u. it was an AMAZING book! ilove every little heart-wrenching detail! Thanks!

  12. Julia

    This book is incredible i love!!!!!!!! it so much im getting a boy in my class to read he says its awesome and i think its outstanding i want to thank my library teacher you rock!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  13. Mollie

    I just finished today for a school book project. It’s so great! Read it, enjoyed it, and loved it! Thanks Mrs.P, you have a great selection of books for me!
    -Mollie P.

  14. Annie101

    i like how they get it trouble
    but the next day people don’t remember a thing because it starts all over again.

  15. warriorgurl

    I love Wendy Mass! She’s a good author. She wrote “A Mango-Shaped Space” and “Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life”, both of which I LOVED! I think I’ll check out this book, too.

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