Extra Credit (Junior Library Guild Selection)

Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grades 4 - 6Q5.329843
It isn’t that Abby Carson can’t do her schoolwork. She just doesn’t like doing it. And in February a warning letter arrives at her home. Abby will have to repeat sixth grade—unless she meets some specific conditions, including taking on an extra-credit project to find a pen pal in a distant country. Seems simple enough. But when Abby’s first letter arrives at a small school in Afghanistan, the village elders agree that any letters going back to America must be written well. In English. And the only qualified student is a boy, Sadeed Bayat. Except in this village, it is not proper for a boy to correspond with a girl. So Sadeed’s younger sister will write the letters. Except she knows hardly any English. So Sadeed must write the letters. For his sister to sign. But what about the villagers who believe that girls should not be anywhere near a school? And what about those who believe that any contact with Americans is . . . unhealthy? Not so simple. But as letters flow back and forth—between the prairies of Illinois and the mountains of central Asia, across cultural and religious divides, through the minefields of different lifestyles and traditions—a small group of children begin to speak and listen to one another. And in just a few short weeks, they make important discoveries about their communities, about their world, and most of all, about themselves.
Hardcover, 192 pages
Published on June 23, 2009 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers
ISBN-10: 1416949291
ISBN-13: 9781416949299
15 Book Reviews
  • inmemoryofcpr
    inmemoryofcprover 2 years44 stars
    This book by Andrew Clement was also pretty good but it was just weird that they started to like each other after only like, TWO letters? I think they could have skipped the romance and without it everything would have been much better. But overall, really good and interesting to read.
    • hymapuloja
      hymapulojaabout 4 years55 stars
      This book was so so good it was probably tied with Save me a seat. This book was interesting because a girl from aAmerica was sending letters to a brother and sister in Afghanistan. At the end of the book it was a little scary.
      • memoiloveit
        memoiloveitover 5 years55 stars
        I like that this book shows that through one bad thing, like Abby having to do an extra-credit assignment, can lead to a relationship and discovering more about yourself, which is good.
        • justiny20
          justiny20over 5 years
          The story is about a girl who doesn't like to do her homework. The girl is called Addy and the boy is called Sadeed. One day she received a email, that she is going to repeat sixth grade, so Sadeed pops out. Addy runs into a problem of needed a pen pal to make up the extra credit project. Addy is my favorite character, because she is trying to hard to make the extra credit and also the she tries to find the pen pal and the end they also discover different story in their community. I think this book is good, because it has a good describing of the adventure of both of the main characters.
          • audreyjohnson
            audreyjohnsonabout 7 years55 stars
            I really enjoyed this book! The main character, named Abby, had low grades so she did an extra credit assignment to improve her grades. The extra credit assignment she chose was to become a pen-pal with someone in Afghanistan. She became great friends with her pen-pal, named Sadeed.
            • amaeder
              amaederabout 7 years
              This is an interesting story about a girl who is failing 6th grade and needs an extra credit assignment. She is assigned a pen pal in Afghanistan and needs to find out what is going on over there and tell them about her to get credit.
              • pretty224
                pretty224over 7 years44 stars
                Abby Carson is failing sixth grade. It isn't that Abby can't do her schoolwork, it's just that she doesn't like doing it. When a warning letter is sent home, Abby realizes that all of her slacking off could cause her to be held back-for real! Unless she meets some specific conditions, including taking an extra-credit project: find a pen pal in a foreign country. Simply enough (even for a girl who hates homework). When Abby's first letter arrives at a small school in Afghanistan, Sadded Bayat is chosen to be her pen pal..... Well, kind of. He is the best writer, but he is also a boy, and in his village it is not appropriate for a boy to correspond with a girl. So, hi younger sister dictates and signs the letter-until Sadded decides what his sister is telling Abby isn't what he'd like Abby to know. As letters flow back and forth between Illinois and Afghanistan, Abby and Sadeed discover that their letters are crossing more than an ocean. They are crossing a huge cultural divide and a minefield of different life-styles and traditions. Their growing friendship is also becoming a growing problem for both communities, and some people are not happy. Suddenly things are not simple!
                • ikyra_marie
                  ikyra_marieover 7 years
                  Could not put this book down.Totally addicted to Andrew Clements books
                  • imavip
                    imavipabout 8 years33 stars
                    I think this book is an okay book. right now I am reading it. it is about two students who exchange lettersfrom different countries. I will reccamend it if you aren't that picky with books. imean its a good book its not bad but ill give it three stars. <3
                    • susie
                      susieover 8 years55 stars
                      it is very inspiring. awesome book!