The Not-Just-Anybody Family (Yearling Book)

by Betsy Byars

Paperback, 1987



Local notes

PB Bya




Yearling (1987), 160 pages


With a young brother in the hospital, a grandfather in jail, and their mother traveling with a rodeo, Maggie and Vern try to settle family problems.


Nebraska Golden Sower Award (Nominee — 1988)
Texas Bluebonnet Award (Nominee — 1989)
Sequoyah Book Award (Nominee — Children's — 1989)
Utah Beehive Book Award (Nominee — Children's Fiction — 1988)
Kentucky Bluegrass Award (Nominee — 1988)
Grand Canyon Reader Award (Nominee — 1991)
Maud Hart Lovelace Award (Nominee — 1991)

Original language


Original publication date


Physical description

160 p.; 5.13 inches

User reviews

LibraryThing member Cheryl_in_CC_NV
Clever, how this plays with tropes but without calling attention to them. One keeps being led to think that bad things are going to happen, that this is going to be one of those 'therapeutic' novels for kids, one in which kids can see that other kids have worse lives than they do so they (the
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reader) should be able to develop coping skills just like the protagonist.

But, no, this is isn't a morality play. It's a loving portrait of a happy family having some mostly funny adventures. Bigger adventures than most of us have, but nothing bleak. Thank goodness.

They both looked honest, respectable, and miserable. They couldn't wait to get out of court and look like themselves again."

Fried shredded wheat: soften the shredded wheat in hot milk, put a scoopful on the griddle, flatten, and fry. Best with lots of syrup.

I would have loved this whole series when I was a child, so I'm rounding up from 3.5 stars."
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LibraryThing member fuzzi
Fun read about a dysfunctional family with plenty of plot for an adult to enjoy. I finished it in one sitting by staying up late...for me, that's a compliment.




½ (19 ratings; 3.8)
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