Read Eight Keys by Suzanne LaFleur Online


When twelve-year-old Elise, orphaned since age three, becomes disheartened by middle school, with its bullies, changing relationships, and higher expectations, keys to long-locked rooms and messages from her late father help her cope....

Title : Eight Keys
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780141342030
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 216 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Eight Keys Reviews

  • Kim
    2019-02-24 19:36

    I liked the book overall. I really like LaFleur's style with YA realistic fiction. However, I am very disappointed in the way the bullying situation was handled in this book. Elise tried telling two adults at school and her own guardians, to no avail. I hate that one of the messages sent in this book is when you go to an adult with an issue they will not listen to you. That is the wrong message. All children need to know they have an advocate in any adult when it comes to bullying. Adults should be their safety and in this book it was Elise and Franklin against the mean girl. She was really mean, too. The thing is the adults in Elise's life did care about her. She had tons of support. The message I took from this, from an educator's standpoint, is adults really aren't aware of what children and young adults are dealing with when it comes to bullying in the schools. LaFleur did not send the message to children to TELL AN ADULT when someone is bullying you. She had a perfect opportunity and platform. It was disappointing.

  • Stacey (prettybooks)
    2019-03-09 19:14

    Eight Keys is a truly beautiful book. I adore everything about the cover, that it’s a hardback without being too big to carry around, and, of course, the story. Eight Keys is an emotional, moving children's book about a 12-year-old girl's realistic experience of life.The main themes in this book are love, family, friendship, and bullying. Elise, our main character, is far from perfect but the reader cannot help but empathise and encourage her throughout her character development. Eight Keys explores many of the thoughts, feelings, insecurities and experiences that children go through in school, especially during that awkward stage between being a child and a teenager. A really interesting aspect of the story is what the book's title is derived from. Elise has lived with her aunt and uncle most of her life as her mother died giving birth and her father died of cancer shortly after. After Elise's 12th birthday, she discovers a key that unlocks one of the 8 rooms in her aunt and uncle's barn. She eventually unlocks each of the rooms that her father created especially for her. This was my favourite part of Eight Keys and it's also an extremely emotional part of the story. It was heartbreaking reading Elise say to herself that her existence wasn't worth her mother dying for. As for the bullying, it's something we've most likely all been through and I thought it was a realistic portrayal. Children often keep it to themselves if they're being bullied and Eight Keys recognises this, and the dilemma, whilst encouraging children to open up. I loved Eight Keys and I would most likely have loved it even more as a child (its target readership is children aged 9+). I'm looking forward to reading Suzanne LaFleur's debut novel Love, Aubrey.Thank you Puffin Books for sending me this book to review!I also reviewed this book over on Pretty Books.

  • Nadine Larter
    2019-03-09 16:29

    A relatively sweet read for younger kids. For a while I was disappointed in the attitude of the main character but she turns out ok. There was one point where her aunt tells her to never doubt a mother's love for a child and that sort of got me thinking. We say that a lot, don't we? Because it sounds nice and it should be true. But it isn't really true. Not always. And not nearly as often as it should be.

  • Jessica
    2019-03-06 18:26

    i love this book so much!!!! it has so much detail, and it explains everything so well! i would recommend this book to anyone who likes mystery books.

  • Emma
    2019-03-13 15:36

    Elise has just started middle school and things couldn’t be worst. Known for the scabs that covered her legs on the first day, Elise has been singled out by her locker mate, who teases Elise for being a baby. Elise’s best friend Franklin just makes everything worst, not knowing that there are certain things that cool sixth graders don’t talk about at school (like playing knights.) Elise lives with her aunt and uncle in an old farmhouse, her parents both having died when she was a baby. Adjusting to a new school becomes even harder when Elise has to adjust to a new baby in the house as well after her aunt moves in. More changes come when Elise receives the last birthday letter from her dad, who died when she was three but wrote letters to her while he was sick. But when Elise finds a key with her name on it, she realizes that it leads to one of the eight locked rooms above the barn, and that each room contains a message from her father. As Elise struggles with middle school, a world of homework and bullies, she also has to unlock her father’s puzzle, literally.Eight Keys is a coming of age story that is original and deals with a lot of important issues for young readers in a unique way. Elise has been friends with Franklin forever, but starting middle school puts a wedge in their relationship. While dealing with all the typical sixth grade things, Elise also has the pieces of a puzzle set out by her father while he was sick. This story was touching and provided a lot of life lessons through the rooms her father left for her to open. While Elise wasn’t always likeable, she grew as a character throughout the novel. I loved most of the characters, from Elise’s friends at school to the adults in her life. This book was a quick read, and the writing seemed to be specifically for twelve year olds, unlike some really great junior fiction books. I really enjoyed reading this book, and although a lot of the plot focuses on issues specific to being a preteen, it also contains life lessons that can apply to your life whether you’re twelve or twenty-two. 4/5

  • Cathe Olson
    2019-03-13 17:20

    Elise is starting at middle school. Things start off badly as she is covered in scabs from a game of knights gone bad and becomes the target of her locker-mate Amanda. By not doing her homework, Elise antagonizes her teachers and she pushes away her best friend because his childishness is embarrassing to her. Thanks to her loving aunt and uncle, and mysterious notes and keys left by her dead father, she learns to be a butter person.Having a daughter who just started middle school, I was excited to read this title but for us, it really missed the mark. First, Elise and her friend Franklin--and really the language of the book seem much more 3rd or 4th grade than middle school -- things like a boy with star wars characters in his locker and playing knights seem really quite unlikely in 12 year-olds and I think even a fourth grader would have been embarassed. And was Franklin really that clueless? I just didn't buy it. And there were things like Elise wanting to be a good "homework bringer"-- that works for a 9 or 10-year-old, but not for a 12-year-old. The worst part however was that Elise was such an unlikeable character. It was really hard to feel any sympathy for her at all. I have no idea why Caroline wanted to be her friend--or even want her for a lab partner when she never did her homework and her assignments were such a mess.Other things that bothered me were the lack of research--maybe the target audience won't notice but that is no excuse. I couldn't believe that they were feeding a five-month-old baby her first solids and giving her 4 different foods at once. Any baby book will tell you to feed only one new food at a time to look for allergic reactions. And ice cream from an electric ice cream maker is ready to eat. You don't need to wait hours and hours to eat it.If this had been about 4th graders, I would have given it a higher rating, but as a middle school book, it just doesn't work.

  • Noella
    2019-03-06 23:21

    Eight Keys is a great story about self-discovery. There were so many things about this novel that reminded me of primary school, so the author did a really good job of portraying that period in time of a child's life when it felt like doing homework, being cool and liked and fitting in were a big deal.I didn't like Elise much. She was easy to relate to but not very likeable. I felt Franklin was underdeveloped because it was hard to imagine that he was unaware of what people thought of him or how he didn't care or have any of the insecurities Elise felt. The supporting characters of Elise's aunt and uncle and her father's best friend were a great bunch. I loved how they were always there to provide support and guidance. It was heartwarming to read the scenes where Elise spends time with them. I expected a huge mystery surrounding the 'eight keys' but the actual way in which Elise comes in possession of the keys and opens the doors was more realistic. Turns out I liked how the story didn't focus so much on the keys and doors but on Elise's growth as a person.

  • Anastasia
    2019-03-09 20:19

    Boring. Unrelatable. Main character pissed me off from start to finish.

  • Lo
    2019-03-13 20:33

    Based on my opinion of Love, Aubrey and the summary of this one, I decided to read this book.I think I would've enjoyed it a little better about three years ago. Elise, an orphan, has spent her life playing Pretend with her best friend Franklin and living without any parents. When she gets to six grade, her "locker buddy" Amanda squishes her lunch everyday. I know bullying is a big problem in a lot of schools, but Elise didn't even fight back. She didn't even attempt to. And when she tried telling a teacher, she gave up after one try and didn't say anything to her aunt or uncle, who she is very close too.Also, Elise seemed much younger than a twelve year old. In middle school you do not have "locker buddies," and her conversations with everyone seemed so one-sided and simple. When Caroline tells Amanda she didn't want to hang out with her anymore, it seemed so unrealistic and was basically the same thing as "I don't wanna be your friend anymore."Elise also seems really ditzy. Why does she care so much of what Amanda says? She's always saying, "it isn't cool," and how can she let someone she hates so much like Amanda can make her change so quickly? I'd get it if she feared Amanda, but she doesn't.This book actually made me question myself whether I really did like Love, Aubrey as much as I thought I did.

  • Samantha Ange
    2019-03-03 15:24

    Parents dead, mysterious notes are found, bullied at school and a key that can open a door that will help or hold back.In the book “Eight Keys” by Suzanne Lafleur, incoming sixth grader Elise Bertrand has her ups and downs entering sixth grade. On top of this drama she finds mysterious letters and a special key left from her father before his death….Her classmate and best friend, Franklin is there for Elise every step of the way. Franklin and Elise hung out most of their summer vacation. There main hangout in the summer was the woods. When the last day of summer vacation came, her and Franklin played their last game of knights. During their play time Elise fell down a hill and scraped up both her legs, all the way from her knee down. On her first day of sixth grade she met some new faces. Meeting new people can be fun, but not always. Elises locker neighbor, Amanda Betterman noticed her scabs, as a group formed around Amanda’s locker. She rudely commented “Oh, gag. I have to share with the Bloody Queen of Scabs.” These little scraps on her leg haunted her with mean nicknames at school that stuck. Amanda is a popular bratty mean girl. She thinks she can just control everyone, and likes to make people feel bad about themselves. It seems like her main victim is Elise.Elise lives with her Aunt Bessie and Uncle Hugh. Elise loves living with them and gets lots of love and care from the both of them. Elise’s mother died when she was born and her father was gone when she was three. After the doctor told her father that he had a year or two to live, he wrote Elise a bunch of birthday letters so that she can hear from him once a year. In the middle of the book Elise finds a mysterious key labeled with her name. This key can open one of the eight doors in Uncle Hugh’s barn above the workshop. This mysterious key was left by her father before his death. Which door could it open, what will be behind it and will it help or not...Suzanne Lafleur did a great job of leaving me in suspense. The main emotions of this book was sadness and curiosity. It was so heartbreaking to hear what had happened to Elise’s parents. To top off these events she is getting bullied by this mean girl at school. I think her dad’s letters cheers her up and sets her mind off of all the negative things in life and makes her remember the positive.

  • Chris
    2019-03-21 17:39

    This is such a wonderful book for tweens. It's about a young girl's journey of self-discovery and beautifully done. Discussion of interesting topics such as entering middle school, bullying, self-esteem. I would definitely recommend it for that age group, or people interacting with them.

  • Cathy
    2019-03-06 18:11

    I'd give this 3.5 if I could. I liked the characters and I LOVED what the dad did for his daughter. I loved her exploration into herself and her family's past. I loved her self-realizations. I cried through most of the second half of the book. It is a great read for middle schoolers. I saw myself at that age a lot in Elise. That need to be accepted, and the unkind things that we do to others in order to be accepted is a shared experience I have with Elise at that age and many middle schoolers now. She brought back uncomfortable memories. I couldn't go higher because I felt like -- I don't know -- everything moved too quickly. Still, a book I'd recommend to my students.

  • Jen
    2019-02-26 17:25

    The bullying subject matter was difficult to read. Having gone through being bullied, it wasn't easy to kind of re-live. Though I hear they have no-tolerancy rules now, so one bully might be easier to vanquish now. Not a bad book, but LOTS of drama. With friends, with bullies, with dead parents, it almost seemed like too much for the poor MC. Not a bad book, but it could be difficult for a child who is being bullied to read. 3 solid stars.

  • Giteeka
    2019-02-22 19:20

    Yeah so... I finished this book a long time ago, but I never updated that I was done. Oops. Anyway, I really liked how it was a mystery, but it was also not really like a murder mystery. There was suspense, but not like the scary type. I would have liked it a little bit more I think, if some of the keys were not as rushed. The first key took forever to get to Elise, but the rest of the keys seemed more rushed. The book was super short, so it might not have been as rushed if it was longer.

  • Danielle
    2019-02-23 23:15

    I liked parts of this book - I liked Elise's family and I liked the setting. I liked that she had a friendship with her Dad's best buddy. I even liked Franklin, as young as he seemed. He was funny and I think I would totally want to be his friend. I liked that her dad made plans to have things for her after he passed away - that was really sweet. Unfortunately, I didn't must care for Elise.First of all, the middle school characters all seemed way too young. The words they used reminded me of how the third grade students talk at my school. I know part of the point was that Elise and Franklin acted younger than their peers, but that much younger? And the other middle schoolers in the book didn't really ring true for me either. The narrator's voice in this audio book was sooo young - perhaps that didn't help. Elise was also not a terribly likable person. Now, I get it - sometimes when you are down in the dumps you don't want to do your homework and you don't want to talk to anyone. But she had such a great support system in her aunt and uncle and Leonard that I really wanted her to open up. The teachers in this book disappointed me as well. If a child tells you that her lunch was smashed in her locker, the first time it was maybe an accident, but if it happens again, maybe try to figure out the problem. Probably if Elise has told her teacher more than twice that her lunch was smashed instead of assuming that she didn't care it would have solved her problem.

  • Asuka0278
    2019-03-11 15:41

    I fell in love with this book. I've read some of the comments where people didn't like how the main character behaved for most of the book, but I think that was the point of the book. Here is Elise, turning 12, entering a big new middle school with a swarm of new kids feeding into it from other schools. Here's her best friend Franklin who is a geek and totally proud of it. On the first day of school he embarrasses her and then it just goes downhill from there. Elise's parents have been dead for a long time; her mother from giving birth to Elise, her father from cancer not too long after that. She's raised in a loving home by her Aunt and Uncle. Her other Aunt and her infant come to live with them and add to her support network. She also has her dad's best friend that she leans on as well. This book basically deals with that awkward transition from elementary school. Elise learns about making new friends, taking personal responsibility for herself, bullies, and finding ways to repair broken friendships. The biggest lesson she learns is finding the way to her own path and the type of person she wants to become. I would definitely recommend this book to any kid entering middle school or even maybe to parents because Ms. LaFleur does a fabulous job at capturing the way a pre-teen's mind works.

  • babyhippoface
    2019-03-08 22:26

    I may have liked this more if I had read it as a young girl. I know the mystery of the keys and the locked doors would have intrigued me. As it was, it was fine, but I didn't love it.Even though I understood most of what she was feeling, Elise made it pretty tough for me to keep liking her. She was mean to Franklin, let Amanda treat her like garbage (sorry, but I would've been telling the teacher or principal or somebody every single day she wrecked my lunch), and she never did her homework just because she didn't want to. Good thing for her she had interminably patient family and friends, because a lot of kids would've dumped her, and a lot of adults would've disciplined her for her laziness. Tha said, I didn't dislike her as much as it sounds from that paragraph. I just wanted her to shape up. Franklin, I liked, and Caroline, too. Both were good kids who just wanted Elise to be happy. And I liked Uncle Hugh and Aunt Bessie, too (pretty idyllic surrogate parents there), but unrealistic in their response to finding out Elise was doing none of her homework.

  • Shainna
    2019-03-10 23:28

    There is this girl name, Elise. She was playing with her friend Franklin, her best friend, but as middle school came, everything wasn't the same between them. Anyways, she lives with her Uncle and Auntie, her parents died. When she was in the house, she went to her father's office and found 8 different keys in each room, she explored the 7 doors, but one thing that was mysterious is the 8th door, the 8th door is a secret room that she and her Uncle and Auntie didn't know. She then explored the room and was surprised..

  • Lejla
    2019-03-23 18:39

    Ok I just don't get this story. It feels too much like the book Jeremy fink and the meaning of life except really bad. The girl doesn't even have to look for the keys they just "appear".And the main character was also annoying. She was a total *** to everyone and she was a dead beat in school and when all the doors were open everyone suddenly forgave her- totally unrealistic. Really bad story!

  • Rachel Peden
    2019-03-22 15:35

    My thoughts about this book are that this book is good for all ages it gives a mystery and a good background story. This is a very good book and I definitely reomemend it.

  • Emily16
    2019-03-09 18:19

    I loved the book a lot!!

  • Audrey Williamson
    2019-02-26 17:11

    Overall I think 8 Keys was a good book but could have been a little more interesting. I thought it was a bit boring at times. 8 keys was about a girl named Elise who lost her mom from her being born and her dad to cancer. Even though this happened Elise still chooses to be happy about the whole situation and makes the best of it. In this book Elise tells her story of how she found the 8 keys and what they lead to. But that’s not it, with all this happening Elise is having trouble at school with a bully. Franklin her best friend since when they were really little tries to help her out. This doesn’t end well though, they end up in a big fight and she is on her own to try to fix things with him or find a new friend. But remember she still has to figure out the whole mystery about the 8 keys and the doors they unlock. Read to find out what the 8 keys unlock and who left them. I think this book was well written but was a little boring sometimes. I wasn’t always flipping the page wondering what was going to happen. But I did think this book had a great story line. I really liked how the keys were left mysteriously. I wish the end was more eventful and a little less boring though. I thought the ending was going to be different, it kind of left me on a cliff hanger. All my questions didn’t get answered I feel like. Overall I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it to someone who likes a lower key book.

  • Libby May
    2019-03-02 20:29

    Second time reading this book. I liked it. Elise was a brat, just like the author meant her to be. But she changed, and she did a good job, just like the author meant it to be. Characters:Elise, Uncle Hugh, Aunt Bessie, Franklin, Caroline, Annie and baby Ava. All very real, all very alive, and there. 4 stars, because I didn't love Elise at the beginning. Plot. The plot was really well worked out. It progressed and developed slowly through the whole book and finished well. The eight keys and the gift that her dad left her. So special and so nice! Very thoughtful and super creative and I really enjoyed each new room. The way that the thoughts behind each room were not immediately explained but allowed time for the reader to think on them, that was well done too. Language: None. Some mild name calling from kids. Violence/gore: None. Elise scraps her knees and is called "Scabular" several times. Smut: None. Recommend to girls 10-15

  • Ashley
    2019-03-18 15:11

    I absolutely loved this book. It was written very well and also written in good detail. I'm going to write the cons first and then the pros. The cons of this book is that there could have been a little more detail in how she found the keys, where she found them, and when she found them. The pros of this book is that it is very well written and it gives some detail about her past so you actually understand what happened to her parents. I would say this book is for all ages so there's not any offensive parts. My favorite part of this books was the scene at the beginning where they're playing pirates and running through the woods.

  • Eva
    2019-03-06 22:12

    A fairly run of the mill 'i must choose my destiny/will i still be friends with my old friends in middle school' type of book.

  • Lyndsif
    2019-03-20 16:33

    Summary of NovelThis book is about how this 11 year old girl named Elise and she finds keys everywhere she goes. The keys opens doors to the doors in the barn.She thinks that her mom and dad left them for her to have memories of her mom and dad. Her mom and dad died at early age. She has a best friend named Franklin. When they were little they would always play dragons together. One day they went to school and they got made fun of because that person saw them playing the game dragons. There is this mean bully and her name is Amanda. She always smashes Elise's lunch because they share a locker and Elise puts her lunch on the top shelf. Elise got so mad at Amanda her and Franklin did something to Amanda's lunch. They put shaving cream in Elise's lunch bag. Elise, Franklin and Amanda went to the office. Amanda accused Elise of doing it but she denied and said no. Franklin took the blame and punishment for what Elise did. Franklin got mad at her and wouldn't talk to her.Elise felt horrible for what she did. She knew what it felt like for not having a best friend. At lunch Franklin wouldn't sit by Elise. Elise ended up say sorry and gave a letter to Franklin for what she did.Franklin forgave Elise for what she did. Main CharactersElise- she has blonde hair, brown eyes, loves to play with her best friend Franklin. Franklin-short brown hair, good at making swords, best friends with Elise.Aunt Bessie- hair is dull orange and pepper gray,loves to cook,likes talking to people.Uncle Hugh-great at building things out of wood, has blue eyes, loves talking to people.Setting- it is a summer day and it take place usually at her house, school, her barn, bus stop, Lenordes shop.Conflict and Resolution- the main problem is that Elise's dad, mom, Uncle Hugh, Aunt Bessie, And Lenord are leaving these keys for her. The keys open to the barn doors in the barn. She get mad because she wants to know how and who is leaving the keys for her. She finds them everywhere in her room, in her bag, and in letters. At the end of the book every body tells her that her dad was the one who left them for her. He wanted her to have things to remember her dad.Opinion of the book- I think this book is a really good book. It connects to a book that i have read in class called Jeremy Fink. In the book Jeremy Fink this little boy his dad died and he left him keys to find to open a box. Then so that why i like the book because it has kinda like a mystery.Recommendation-I would recommend this book to anybody who loves kinda like a mystery. It is a really good book. I think adults and teenagers would like this.

  • J.C.
    2019-03-13 23:35

    Eight Keys by Suzanne Lafleur is a beautiful book with a great writing style⎯but what book by Suzanne Lafleur isn’t? I just finished re-reading it for like the hundredth time and it currently is my favorite book! **SPOILERS AHEAD**The story is about a girl named Elise. Elise’s parents died when she was young, so she lives with her Aunt Bessie and Uncle Hugh. In the beginning of the book, Elise starts middle school, and suddenly everything is different. After an unfortunate incident in the woods, she has become the target for bullying and teasing at her new school, particularly by her locker partner, who finds immense fun in ruining her lunch every day. Elise always had her best friend Franklin to turn to, but now, to Elise, he seems babyish and is unintentionally embarrassing her. At the same time, her aunt’s sister Annie and her baby daughter Ava move into Elise’s house, seeming to interrupt and sometimes ruin her wonderful life with her aunt and uncle. Things just keep getting worse⎯until Elise finds a key. A key with her name on it. A key that starts an adventure of discoveries. A key that unlocks one of the upstairs rooms in the barn, rooms that have been locked up for as long as Elise can remember....I was reading reviews on this book and it seemed to me like one thing people didn’t like was that it seemed to them like the message going over was “Telling an adult about a bully doesn’t help.” They didn’t like that message. However, I don’t see that message at all. When Elise tells her teacher, I can agree that her teacher doesn’t seem to care the first and second times; but when she tells her aunt and uncle, they DO do something about it— they give her advice on how to handle it. Maybe some readers wanted Aunt Bessie and Uncle Hugh to go storm to the school and demand Elise be treated fairly. But in reality, maybe they wanted Elise to try to manage it herself, for her to have courage to stand up for herself. And that is a definite message that is sent.Personally, I can not find anything I do not like about this book! Everything Elise endures—whether it’s good or bad—winds together and twists together to create one unforgettable story of mystery, friendships, and a few keys that happen to unlock secrets from the past. I can guarantee this is a book you will never regret reading.Like my reviews? Follow my blog:

  • SJH (A Dream of Books)
    2019-03-11 19:24

    ‘Eight Keys’ is the first book I’ve read by Suzanne LaFleur but it certainly won’t be the last! I’d heard fantastic things about LaFleur’s debut novel ‘Love, Aubrey’ so I was really excited to read her second book which sounded wonderfully intriguing.Aimed at a slightly younger teen audience, ‘Eight Keys’ absolutely captured my heart. It was a quick read but it’s one that stayed with me long after reading the final page. Some bits had me absolutely sobbing and I found the story incredibly moving and touching.Eleven year old Elise lives with her Aunt and Uncle. Her parents both died when she was young but she’s grown up with no shortage of loving people around her. She’s known her best friend Franklin forever and indeed he seems to spend more time at her house than his own. When she starts at a new school she thinks everything will continue the way it always has but she has a lot of lessons to learn as she turns twelve and discovers a secret mystery about her family’s past.The beauty of this book is that the story is quite simplistic but this allows the focus to be placed solely on the characters and the themes which are interwoven throughout. I absolutely loved the friendship between Elise and Franklin and the way that it comes full circle by the end of the story. They’ve shared so many landmark moments as they’ve grown up together and that’s depicted as a being a gift in itself. Not many people have someone like that in their lives and this is something to be treasured. The book also touches upon life lessons and the process of growing-up, which can sometimes be difficult and painful, but which always shapes us into the people we are today. I liked the device of the eight keys and the mystery surrounding them and I was as excited as Elise to find out what they were going to lead to. ‘Eight Keys’ was an emotional and hugely enjoyable read. What came across for me from the story is that the things to be treasured most in life are the family and friends we have around us. I will definitely be recommending this book to people I know and will be eagerly looking out for anything else by Suzanne LaFleur in the future.

  • Jennifer Mangler
    2019-02-23 17:13

    Eight Keys is a beautiful book about growing up and self-discovery. I very much enjoyed reading it and had a hard time putting it down.

  • Linda Lin
    2019-03-19 18:41

    This book is about Elise who lost her parents and her relationship with her best friend Franklin goes downhill. Annie, also her aunt moves in with the new born baby Ava to the home where she lives with Uncle Hugh and Aunt Bessie. In her new year of school, she arrives to school with scraped knees. As she was playing with Franklin, she fell and hurt herself. Her locker partner, Amanda bullies her and people begin to call her "Scabular". Every day, Amanda squishes her lunch. Amanda believes that it is Franklin's fault that she gets bullied and she does not want to play their "childish" games anymore. Her grades are low because she does not do her homework and she is late often. She does not want to go to school in fear of Amanda. In their barn one day, Elise sees a key with her name on it. She takes the key and unlocks one of the eight doors above Uncle Hugh's workshop. In there, she finds a letter from her father and the teddy bear she had once played with. New keys appear mysteriously and no one living with Elise seems to be giving her the keys. As more rooms are discovered, Elise learns that she should appreciate herself and to not let her parents and guardians down. She speaks up to Amanda at last and Amanda stops bothering her and her locker is changed. She becomes friends with Franklin again. She does better in school. She makes new friends with Caroline, one of Amanda's old friend. One of the rooms she discovered was completely empty. Elise had wondered why her father would make an empty room. She realized it was because it was for Elise to decorate and create. It was made so that it could be anything Elise wanted it to be. She realized that she also could be anything she wanted to be.