The Friendship War by Andrew Clements

The Friendship War by Andrew Clements
February 22, 2020 Alexandra Adlawan

5th Grade and Up

(First Published 2019)

Grace and Ellie have been best friends since second grade. Ellie’s always right in the center of everything–and Grace is usually happy to be Ellie’s sidekick. But what happens when everything changes? This time it’s Grace who suddenly has everyone’s attention when she accidentally starts a new fad at school. It’s a fad that has first her class, then her grade, and then the entire school collecting and trading and even fighting over . . . buttons?! A fad that might also get her in major trouble and could even be the end of Grace and Ellie’s friendship. Because Ellie’s not used to being one-upped by anybody. There’s only one thing for Grace to do. With the help of Hank – the biggest button collector in the sixth grade – she will have to figure out a way to end the fad once and for all. But once a fad starts, can it be stopped?

 

Fad(noun): an intense and widely shared enthusiasm for something, especially one that is short-lived and without basis in the object’s qualities.

 

When I first read the summary of this story, I didn’t understand how buttons could become so popular. But unlike trends like Beanie Babies and Pokémon cards, buttons actually have a purpose. A button can always do what it was made to do, and you keep them around because you might need them.

 

This story included a scientific look into how a fad starts and how it grows while also going into in-depth detail about the history of buttons and what a button can be made out of. After reading this book, I’ll never look at buttons the same way again.

 

I was impressed by all the creative things the kids in the story did with the buttons. They made up games, traded and collected, made necklaces, bracelets, and other arts and crafts.

 

There have been so many funny fads over the years. Some of my favorites are:

 

Pet rock:An egg-shaped rock in a cardboard box. Newsweek called it “One of the most ridiculously successful marketing schemes in history.”

 

Making your own slime: I remember the slime fad very well because my niece went crazy for the stuff. She filled every plastic container in her house with different variations of slime. It drove my sister crazy.

 

Beanie Babies:I miss the old beanie babies. The newer ones with the huge eyes just aren’t as cute.

 

This story reminded me of an old episode of Arthurwhere cute toys called Woogles become popular and Arthur tries to get one. If you’re interested in watching this episode, click on the YouTube link below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ge2EErWonIU

 

This weeks’ Weird but True Fact about Buttons

Buttons for clothing were a sign of wealth in the Middle Ages and became so valued that you could pay a debt with one.

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