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Extended Audio Sample Bluish, by Virginia Hamilton Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (127 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Virginia Hamilton Narrator: Lisa Reneé Pitt Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Friendship isn’t always easy.

Natalie is different from the other kids in Dreenie’s fifth-grade class. She comes to school in a wheelchair. She always wears a knitted hat. And she’s allowed to bring her puppy to class. The kids in the class call Natalie “Bluish” because her skin is tinted blue from chemotherapy.

Dreenie is fascinated by Bluish and a little scared of her, too. She watches Bluish and writes about her in her journal. Slowly, the two girls become good friends. But Dreenie still struggles with Bluish’s illness. Bluish is weak and frail, but she also wants to be independent. How do you act around a girl like that?

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Readers will come to cherish Dreenie’s openheartedness, just as Dreenie comes to cherish her newfound friend.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Lisa Renee Pitts’s fully voiced narration is well paced and generally successful at indicating the various ethnicities of the class.”


  • “Hamilton gets the way kids talk…she makes us ‘stop and look.’ Many readers will be caught by the jumpy, edgy story of sorrow and hope, of kids trying to be friends.”


  • “The handling of Bluish’s illness and her classmates’ concern is genuine and unsentimental, and the friends’ patience with and unity against that illness is simply but effectively depicted…This novel transcends genre labels with its honest and masterful depiction of the rewards and difficulties of friendship.” 

    Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

  • “The complexities of friendship among three fifth-grade girls are eloquently explored in this short, accessible novel…Hamilton is right on target with her depiction of the speech and mannerisms of fifth graders.”

    Horn Book

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Kaytlin | 12/5/2013

    " this book was ok but it taught me that people will treat you differt if you look diffrent then they will point it out "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Megan | 11/18/2013

    " this was a ok book. it was sad. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 by Therealstargirl | 6/6/2013

    " I really really dislike this book. All kids are mean to this girl because she has CANCER, and is all alone. They think cancer is contagious (these are fifth graders) and never get near or talk to her "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Laura | 3/10/2013

    " A cute book, but not of the caliber you're used to from Virginia Hamilton. "

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About the Author
Author Virginia Hamilton

Virginia Hamilton (1936–2002) grew up in rural Ohio among an extended family and generations of storytellers. Her grandfather, Levi Perry, was brought by his mother from Virginia slavery to Ohio via the Underground Railroad. She received nearly every award in the field of children’s literature, including the Hans Christian Andersen Medal, the Newbery Medal, the Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal, and the Coretta Scott King Award.