Read The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson Online

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Watch out world!The Great Gilly Hopkins is looking for a home. She's a foster kid who's been angry, lonely, and hurting for so long that's she's always ready for a fight. Be on the lookout for her best barracuda smile, the one she saves for well-meaning social workers. Watch out for her most fearful look, a cross between Dracula and Godzilla, used especially to scare shy fWatch out world!The Great Gilly Hopkins is looking for a home. She's a foster kid who's been angry, lonely, and hurting for so long that's she's always ready for a fight. Be on the lookout for her best barracuda smile, the one she saves for well-meaning social workers. Watch out for her most fearful look, a cross between Dracula and Godzilla, used especially to scare shy foster brothers. Don't be fooled by her "Who me?" expression, guaranteed to trick foster parents, teachers, and anyone who gets in her way.It's Gilly Hopkins vs. the world! And so far, Gilly seems to be winning. But what she doesn't realize is that every time she wins, she really loses, until she discovers a love as formidable as any enemy she's ever known....

Title : The Great Gilly Hopkins
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780435124779
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 148 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Great Gilly Hopkins Reviews

  • K8
    2019-02-27 12:24

    What I really like: Paterson never takes the easy way out and it doesn't have a traditional 'happy ending.' There are things to be happy about in the end - Gilly has grown up and she learns to accept some emotional attachments. And she is smart.I can see where some stuffy readers wouldn't like Gilly's behavior. She's a foul-mouthed brat at the beginning of the book. She's damaged; she's been passed around several foster homes and, after an early disappointment, tries to sabotage each placement that follows. She's a racist. Well, she definitely is at the beginning of the book. She learns to accept Mr. Randolph, but we never learn if she has had some sort of "conversion." Which is probably a good thing - life's a whole lot more complicated than a now-I-see-the-light story.As I said, there isn't a traditional happy ending, but readers get the feeling that Gilly will be ok. And she seems to have learned a sense of grace - at least, in public. Her inner thoughts still mirror the girl we meet at the start of the story. But, she seems to learn how to control the impulse to act, having learned that acting in these ways doesn't always bring the desired consequences.I'm not sure how I would have read this as a kid, but I'm happy I've read such a wonderfully complicated story. (Full Disclosure: Paterson's Bridge to Terebithia was the first book to ever leave me in tears.)

  • Jennifer
    2019-02-21 20:18

    Good middle grade novel--its character driven, so for reluctant readers, you might have a struggle getting them into it. Boys may not find the female protagonist appealing (though she's a pretty tough & streetwise character for the time period it was written in.) We did it books on tape. My fourth grader loved it (the one that reads a Harry Potter novel in 6 hours); my six grader couldn't stand it (she's a tough one to get to read--it takes her three weeks to get through a Harry Potter novel and would rather get the movie or the book on tape.) The main character swears a lot, and calls the older black neighbor the "n" word--probably the main reason the book is not a school curriculum mainstay--though it is of that high caliber. As an adult, I can see where Paterson chose realism & didn't water the character down. I know many kids appreciate that too. And while the main character clearly starts out as a bigot, she's changed in a real and genuine way by the end of the story.It has some wonderful truths of life--that its not always a piece of cake to get by--but you make the best of what you can. Gilly, the main character is entering her third foster home when we meet her. She finally finds a permanent home, though it was hardly what she expected.

  • Calista
    2019-03-07 13:29

    This is a book with honesty and heart. Gilly is no angel - she's tough. She wants her mom. Gilly is in the foster care system and she feels you have to be tough to survive life; you can't need anyone's help. She is smart and capable and she knows it and she also knows how to use that as a weapon.This book was powerful and it moved me. I was brought into a way of life not my own. I think this is a fantastic book. Well written, strong characters and a subject matter would could all do with knowing more about.This is the best line from the book: "But I always thougth that when my mother cam...""My sweet baby, ain't no one ever told you yet? I reckon I thought you had that all figured out." "What?" "That all that stuff about happy endings is lies. The only ending in this world is death. Now that might or might not be happy, but either way you ain't ready to die, are you?"That is powerful writing right there. All laid out for us in plain language, boom. I say read this book, it will seep into you and leave something inside you.

  • Rain Misoa
    2019-03-15 13:24

    The pain! Oh, the pain! I cannot begin to tell you how much this book hurts me. I just... can't even begin to understand why such a book was written in the first place. It's so depressing... and not in a good way! The message in the book is just so horrible to be given to children that I don't think any child should read this! This can literally break a child's spirit! That's how bad the message of this book is! I didn't enjoy this book at all!Paterson's books, and I do mean all of them, are so depressing that I don't want to pick up another one ever again! They all have the same meaning of how life isn't fair, we have to deal with our problems, there's no such thing as happy endings, etc. I hate these books for being so pessimistic! Why must we think of life as "it sucks, deal with it"? It makes no sense to me. I don't like that message and I don't agree with it! The only good thing I can say about this book is the fact that Paterson's writing improved greatly! There are no longer chunks of the book that are missing. It's all there and you don't have to re-read anything. Thank God because I wouldn't want to read any parts of this book again!I can appreciate wanting to write a story about foster care children and how it's rough on them but that doesn't mean you have to make it seem completely hopeless for them! Gilly, the main character, was a foster child that was taken from home to home and it effected her in such a way that she turned into a bratty girl who sweared, got into fights, was a racist, and a thief! Not to mention a big manipulator. These things don't bother me as much because in the novel, you see her grow into a better person. However, her ending was just horrible. I know not everything is suppose to have a happy ending but what kind of ending was that!? The message written there was nothing but pure hopelessness! How horrible it must be for children to read this and get that sense out of life!I would have to say that I did enjoy some of the other characters. Trotter was Gilly's foster mother and she was so sweet and caring. She looked out for both Gilly and William Ernest. The only thing I hate about her was the fact Paterson used her to convey her "message." William Ernest was such a cute little boy! Very intelligent and I loved how he said "Pow!" all the time! Mr. Randolph: Adorable! Simply adorable! I could read to him all day! Miss Harris, her teacher, was fierce! Don't mess with her or she'll tear you a new one! XD The one character that I hated, other than Gilly at the beginning, was her mother, Courtney. It's because of her that Gilly turned out so messed up. She never cared for the child and that's why Gilly's life was torn in two. I feel sorry for the girl...I suppose the book could be enjoyed by some... well, very few. It's just a horrible book, in all honesty. I don't like it. I'm not sure why things must be looked upon in such a negative light. I understand not everything is all sugar and rainbows... but there should have been another meaning in the book other than, "You ruined your life and there's nothing else you can do about it." I could have handle the sad ending a bit better if there was some positivity to it. But no. None whatsoever. I wanted to give this book a two star rating because I did enjoy some of the characters but I just cannot overlook the ending. Perhaps people who are more stone-stomach than I can handle this book. If not, then skip it. You are not missing out on much.

  • Josiah
    2019-03-01 18:28

    Katherine Paterson, a year after writing her classic, "Bridge to Terabithia", once again blew my mind and amazed me with this book. The feeling in The Great Gilly Hopkins is just so stark and so easy to identify with, and the sharp mind of Gilly herself brings her situations into clear and germane focus. Her situation may be somewhat unusual, but the feelings that Gilly has can be understood by anyone, and these feelings are available in both abundance and quality to the reader. I don't know if I have ever read more wonderfully heartening material than the interactions between Gilly and William Earnest, and in turn each one of Gilly's relationships was special in a totally unique way. The Great Gilly Hopkins made me laugh out loud and brought me to tears; it echoed within my heart and soul and grounded me with its uncompromising reality. 1979 was a loaded Newbery year, with Robin McKinley's "Beauty" and Ellen Raskin's "The Westing Game" in the mix, in addition to this book. I loved "The Westing Game", and gave it five stars here on Goodreads, but my Newbery Medal for that year would have gone to The Great Gilly Hopkins. Inspiring and wonderful.

  • Jerry
    2019-03-21 13:22

    Terrible. Excessive profanity, a misbehaving main character, religion bashing, and an ending that was way too pat.

  • Rebecca McNutt
    2019-03-07 16:37

    Any kid who's a fan of books like Madeline, The Wonderful Adventures of Suzuki Beane or The Water and the Wild will definitely love this short novel; Gilly is a rebellious, defiant, witty and creative character and her time as a foster child and her refusal to be loved by any foster parent is well-written and a coming of age story that's at times sad and at other times deeply intelligent for a kid's book.

  • Cait (Paper Fury)
    2019-03-15 14:35

    There’s something bittersweet about Katherine Paterson’s books. The endings are so…unsatisfying. The author draws you into her world, weaves words together so simply, so beautifully, that you can’t help but swallow them whole—and then, just when the story is beginning, the words run out. That leaves you feeling strange. Half in the book, half out. And, afterwards, you’re never really happy.My favourite of her books has to be The Bridge to Terebithia, but The Great Gilly Hopkins follows pretty close. It’s a thin book. One sitting and you’re finished. Words are splashed around without laborious detail or never-ending explanations. When you open the book, you’re in the author’s world. No delay. You can see it all. Touch it. Taste it. Smell it. Feel it. That’s the sign of a good book. That’s the sign of a good author.I love the characters. Gilly (or Galadriel) Hopkins. Trotter (the foster mother). Mr. Randolph (the blind neighbour). Miss Harris (the teacher). Even Agnes Stokes (aka Rumpelstiltskin). Their relationships are amazing. Gilly’s a bit racist at the beginning—towards her “coloured” teacher, Miss Harris, and the neighbour, Mr. Randolph. But, with her spiky nature, that disappears.But Gilly’s my favourite. She’s tough. She’s fierce. She’s gruesome and horrible and mean. And that’s all covering her soft, "warm jello”, vulnerable, hurting insides. She’s just a little girl, eleven years old, fighting to believe that her mother wants her. She’s strong, independent, and refuses help. In her mind, “help” is a terrible word. But she wants to be loved, have a home, have a family.The characters are real. The book is written simply, with a firm voice, in flowing prose. The story is painted with colours so bold, so dazzlingly, you have to swallow them in one gulp. It’s one of my favourite books. Why? Because it’s so real.The problems? The book's finished.

  • Lisa Rathbun
    2019-03-01 15:42

    Gilly has moved from one foster home to another for years and is tough and angry. She hides her mother's picture in her suitcase and longs to be with her. She uses a lot of bad language (no f-bombs; this is a kid's book), but by the end of the book, the ugliness isn't Gilly's vocabulary or the blind old man next door or her hugely obese, sloppy, and loving foster mother. What is truly ugly is Courtney, over whose beautiful picture Gilly has been yearning all her life. We get so little information on her, but what little shows her as selfish, cold, and uncaring. Important themes to discuss would be how appearances can be deceiving and what a true family is (those who are there to love you) and that life is not easy but hard and challenging. Also I think there's a lesson to be learned about not yearning for the unattainable but to look around you and appreciate what you have. To me, Gilly is not loveable, but she deserves to be loved! When she learns to accept the love that is given and give it back, I cried!

  • Hillary
    2019-03-08 14:43

    I liked this book for 3 reasons. 1. Paterson beautifully illustrates raw anger with remarkable accuracy. 2. It reminds you of the worth of a soul, rich or poor, black or white skinny or large almost everyone has a significant contribution to make to people. And 3. Just when you thought that your role as a mother was limited or reduced to cooking and cleaning, this book reminds you just how much kids need mothers and how much they love and value them. This book is juvenile fiction and you should be able to finish it in a day, but when I am in-between books and I need a distraction I turn to Newberry winners in the Young adult and juvenile fiction category. I have yet to be disappointed. My favorite quote from this book is: "Nothing to make you happy like doing good on a tough job, now is there?"

  • Elizabeth
    2019-03-08 12:33

    Man, it has been a long time since I have read this. It was a great listen today at work. Listening today as an adult, my favorite line in this heart wrenching book is when Gilly finally sees the mother who abandoned her and thinks to herself that her dreams of her mother are shattered and her mother is nothing more than a "a flower child gone to seed." God Bless Gilly and all the children in the world out there who are living in her same circumstances.

  • Tory C.
    2019-03-20 16:23

    There are books, written decades ago, that are so good you wonder how it is possible you haven’t read them sooner. For me, The Great Gilly Hopkins is one of those books. That fact that I haven’t discovered this book is even more interesting considering I read Katherine Paterson’s award winning Jacob Have I Loved and Bridge to Terabithia when I was a kid. Both of those books deeply moved me. I think The Great Gilly Hopkins is the best of them. Coming across Gilly after all these years is like finding a $100 bill in the pocket of a suit coat you haven’t worn for ages.What strikes me the most about Gilly is that Paterson does so much with so little. She takes the most ordinary, unheroic, unremarkable characters and changes your life with them. You have Trotter, an extra-large, nearly illiterate woman who smells like sweat and baby powder. You have a blind, shriveled, black man who knows how to compliment good cooking. There is William Earnest, an irritatingly timid little boy who is slow to boot. There are others, but all of them are just as ordinary as those I’ve already mentioned. I shouldn’t forget to mention Gilly, herself. After all it is Gilly who drives all the other characters and brings out their colors. Paterson shows a mastery of character development through Gilly. She is smart and she is angry. It’s in the shadow of her intelligence and anger that we see her vulnerability.That cans it, thought Gilly. At least nobody had accused Mr. or Mr. Nevins, her most recent foster parents, of being “nice.” Mrs. Richmond, the one with the bad nerves, had been “nice.” The Newman family, who couldn’t keep a five-year-old who wet her bed, had been “nice.” Well, I’m eleven now, folks, and, in case you haven’t heard, I don’t wet my bed anymore. Bt I am not nice. I am brilliant. I am famous across this entire county. Nobody wants to tangle with the great Galadriel Hopkins. I am too clever and too hard to manage. Gruesome Gilly, they call me. She leaned back comfortably. Here I come, Maime baby, ready or not.Paterson takes this ordinary foster child whose only claim to county-wide fame is being smart and hard to manage, and pits her against a slow, loving, fat woman; a sweet, blind, shriveled old man, a defenseless special needs boy, and a shrewd teacher who, Gilly notes, happens to be black. At the beginning of the book the question is how will these characters survive Gilly? Gilly is smart and she is mean. My imagination, as I’m sure Paterson intended, brought Gilly into my own life and I was afraid. Gilly is a person who will bring you down.A masterful touch was a side character named Agnes Stokes. Paterson does not make use of plot twists to power the reader’s interest and neither does she use stock characters. You think you know what Agnes is going to be in the story, but you will be wrong. In the end you will recognize Agnes, but find no comfort in her. Paterson’s brilliant use of Gilly’s voice eventually has her make this observation about Agnes:Poor Agnes, what would become of her? Would she stomp herself angrily through the floor, or would someone’s kiss turn her magically into a princess? Alas, Agnes, the world is woefully short on frog smoochers.Perhaps what impresses me most in The Great Gilly Hopkins is Paterson’s compelling use of narrative voice. The book has a third person narrator, but that narrator is never far from, and often melds into, Gilly’s voice. You will find the usual third person in things like, “After supper Gilly did her homework . . .” and right next to it you will have:If you mean “never” trotter, say so. Is that it? Will I never see the three of you again? Are you going to stand by and let them rip me out and fold me up and fly me away? Leave me a string, Trotter, a thread, at least. Dammit.Gilly isn’t speaking. I’m not even sure she is thinking these words, but they are an effective expression of her feelings that let us feel the state of her soul.The great Gilly loses to these unlikely characters. The beauty of the writing is that you aren’t quite sure where it was that she lost. You may think this is a spoiler, but it isn’t. You can know the ending of this book (which I haven’t given you) and lose none of the joy of reading it. Paterson brought my reading experience to a kind of ecstasy when the eleven-year-old Gilly realizes that “She had thrown away her whole life for a stinking lie.” When the ending came, exactly when it should have, it was one of the happiest saddest endings I have ever read.

  • Tina
    2019-02-20 20:45

    This was one of the few books I owned as a child (borrowed most of my books from libraries), so that was probably the reason why I read it over and over, even though I never fell in love with it completely. (view spoiler)[ Hated the book the first time I read it, and just couldn't understand why she was so mean, and why she would do horrible things like stealing bills from a blind man who was kind to her, be angry and defensive to her new foster mother, treat her new foster brother so badly, etc.(hide spoiler)] But by the second or third reading, I started relating to Gilly more, and came to understand that the toughness she shows is a kind of armor to protect her from being hurt and abandoned once again by the people she loves.Although pretty short, this book is not an easy read emotionally, as Gilly does her best to make you dislike her during most of the story. I would still recommend this read, because it gives insight into the world of a foster child who was abandoned, and who put up a pretense of toughness to escape hurt, but who in the end just needed a home and someone who would always love her.

  • Karen
    2019-02-27 16:43

    Gilly is a hard headed little brat focused on making things difficult for people around her but she soon realizes that life is actually hard, and what you want, may not be what you really need.This is a children's book but it does not adhere to the traditional - 'And they all lived happily ever after..' - and that's one of the main reasons I like it. The characterization in too is done well and you can actually feel Gilly's anger at her circumstances through the writing. Recommended reading for middle grade children

  • Christopher Hicks
    2019-03-15 20:39

    This book was so completely depressing. At first I couldn't stand this little girl. She was so mean and horrible. Then I realized hurting people hurt people so I felt sorry for her and hoped someone would love her. It showed a glimmer of hope that she would be Happy then it all went downhill. I read this for a Y A book club. I would Never recommend this book to any child. It's just a waste of time.

  • Olivia (The Candid Cover)
    2019-03-11 17:23

    I am really curious as to how this will be presented on the screen. Really looking forward to finding out!Review to come!

  • Eve
    2019-03-14 12:41

    Did this one make you cry, too? Ugh.

  • Serena (Cioccolato e Libri)
    2019-03-19 12:34

    In realtà 4.5.Dopo aver letto ed amato "Un ponte per Terabithia", non potevo non dare un'occasione anche a questo romanzo di Katherine Paterson.La storia di Gilly Hopkins è particolare, profonda e soprattutto da comprendere. La nostra protagonista è un'orfana e passa da una famiglia ad un'altra con la stessa facilità con la quale si cambia i vestiti. Dice sempre che non le importa, che le piace cambiare, ma il suo disagio è palese a tutti.Una bambina come Gilly ha semplicemente bisogno di attenzioni, di qualcuno che la ami, di smetterla di fantasticare che sua madre - quella vera, secondo lei - un giorno arrivi a salvarla dalle famiglie adottive.I personaggi che incontrerà nel corso della storia sono quei tipici personaggi che possiamo solo amare. In particolare Trotter è davvero una persona meravigliosa, dolce e con una pazienza fuori dal comune. A volte cerco di pensare "Se fossi stata al posto di questo personaggio, cosa avrei fatto?" ed in questo caso non riesco a darmi una risposta. Non ho un cuore buono come il suo.Lo stile di scrittura è fluido e scorrevole, in più il libro è abbastanza corto. Il risultato che si ottiene dalla combinazione di questi fattori è una perfetta storia per ragazzi da leggere nel corso di una giornata per ricordarsi che al mondo quello che conta non è il facile lieto fine, ma la lotta che si compie per arrivarci.

  • Erin
    2019-02-21 15:16

    I wasn't a fan of this kids book. I like other books by Katherine Paterson but this book disappointed me. The story was interesting but the language was bad and the whole book was a little too coarse for my liking. I wouldn't recommend this book for young readers.

  • Anne Snyder
    2019-03-15 13:19

    Touching story about a foster child and how important that humans not be just disposable.

  • Dolly
    2019-03-18 13:33

    This is one of the 'classic' children's books that was first published when I was young, yet I don't remember ever reading it. I'm always looking for classic books for the children's book club I facilitate at our local library, as I often include a couple of them on our reading list.I first tried reading a paperback edition of this book back in 2014, but I never got around to finishing it. So as I was trying to go back and finish some of my 'currently reading' books, I rediscovered this book. (I should really get around to creating a 'never finished' or 'put aside' folder and put most of the books from my 'currently reading' folder in that, since I'm really only currently reading a couple of books at any given time.)In any case, I finally borrowed the audiobook version from our local library's OverDrive website and finished it in the span of an afternoon. I love that I can listen to the audiobooks at a faster speed than the recording calls for, so a 4-hour audiobook can take as little as two hours to finish. The audiobook was adeptly narrated by Alyssa Bresnahan and I really enjoyed listening to the story. It's a fast read and certainly helps to convey the myriad emotions experienced by foster children and some of the realities of life in the foster system.interesting quotes (page numbers from the paperback edition with ISBN13 9780064402019):"It seemed to Gilly that everything in this world that you can’t stand to wait one extra minute for is always late." (p. 144)"Gilly was crying now. She couldn't help herself. 'Trotter, it's all wrong. Nothing turned out the way it's supposed to.''How you mean supposed to? Life ain't supposed to be nothing, 'cept maybe tough.''But I always thought that when my mother came...''My sweet baby, ain't no one ever told you yet? I reckon I thought you had that all figured out.''What?''That all that stuff about happy endings is lies. The only ending in this world is death. Now that might or might not be happy, but either way you ain't ready to die, are you?'" (p. 147)"'If life is so bad, how come you're so happy?''Did I say bad? I said it was tough. Nothing to make you happy like doing good on a tough job, now is there?'" (p. 148)

  • Amanda
    2019-03-20 13:44

    You know when a book is super good but you don't LOVE it? That's this book. Seriously, this book has everything that I love and should love, but I only really liked it. Maybe I just couldn't fully click with it or something?All of the characters in this book are wonderfully amazing. Gilly herself grows so much throughout the course of this one small book. (Her full name is Galadriel. How cool is that, right?) She starts out as a sassy, sharp girl who wants to get back to her mother, but ends as a sassy, hopeful girl who knows that that door is closed to her, but she can learn to find another life with people who care about her.Lovely, hopeful ending. Life isn't easy, but maybe that's why it's worth it.

  • Susanchitter
    2019-03-12 18:30

    Gilly, a very intelligent child, who has been in the system for years going from foster home to foster home, making her angry and a brat. She is determined to be with her mother who she believes loves her and wants her. She finds herself with Maime Trotter, the fat widow. William Earnest, 7, a mentally challenged boy along with the blind, black elderly man next door. The reader watches her grow both emotionally and socially. However, the story ends unsatisfactorily for me but I suppose realistically.

  • Nmck
    2019-03-20 19:19

    I am a fifth grade teacher, and read this book while teaching from it to one of my reading groups. I have used it every year since, and it gets better with each reading. Katherine Paterson's storytelling and descriptive qualities are top-notch. Her characters become so real to the readers, and the storyline unfolds to a greater depth on each page. This book will not disappoint, whether read by a child or an adult!

  • Kris Patrick
    2019-03-14 16:16

    Should say written by The Great Katherine Paterson.I have to wonder would Gilly get published today? I love her foul mouth. When she says, "Dammit, Trotter. Don't try to make a stinking Christian out of me." I about died! That has to be one children literature's all time best lines.

  • Cynthia Egbert
    2019-02-24 14:44

    This is a sweet story about a brilliant young lady but it broke my heart and I am desperately trolling around now trying to find a book to read that will make me feel better.

  • Raevyn Oswald
    2019-03-14 12:19

    This book broke my heart, both on its own merits and due to personal reasons. 4.5 stars

  • - ̗̀ sab ̖́-
    2019-03-12 15:18

    Two words, soul. Crushing.

  • Josiphine/Tessa
    2019-03-11 16:19

    2.5I only finished it because it's short. I didn't really like the characters, plot, or writing. I'll probably still try the movie though.

  • stefania
    2019-03-06 20:18

    2,5/5and the best mom award goes to...