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Download Penny From Heaven Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Penny From Heaven Audiobook, by Jennifer L. Holm Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (3,104 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jennifer L. Holm Narrator: Amber Sealey Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2006 ISBN: 9780739331125
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It’s 1953 and eleven-year-old Penny dreams of a summer of butter pecan ice cream, swimming, and baseball. But nothing’s that easy in Penny’s family. For starters, she can’t go swimming because her mother’s afraid she’ll catch polio at the pool. To make matters worse, her dog, Scarlett O’Hara, is sick. Her favorite uncle is living in a car. Her best friend is turning into a criminal. And no one will tell Penny the truth about how her father died.

Inspired by three time Newbery Honor winner Jennifer Holm’s own Italian American family, Penny from Heaven is a story about families—about the things that tear them apart and the things that bring them back together.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Holm impressively wraps pathos with comedy in this coming-of-age story, populated by a cast of vivid characters.”

    Booklist

  • “Penny and her world are clearly drawn and eminently believable.”

    School Library Journal

  • “Penny’s present-tense narration is both earthy and observant, and her commentary on her families’ eccentricities sparkles.”

    Kirkus Reviews

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Wendy | 2/6/2014

    " Reminded me a little of Number the Stars. I wasn't expecting to like the book as much as I did. It looked like it might be a silly little book, but it turned out much deeper than I thought. Getting the non-fiction book that this author based her story on when I go to the library tomorrow. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sara | 2/5/2014

    " I listened to this book on CD. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Trimble | 2/5/2014

    " Such a cute little story, heartwarming and sweet. Everyone wants a family like Penny's. Great, clean read for 9+. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Angela | 2/2/2014

    " Reminded me of my own Italian relatives and growing up in New Jersey! Not sure some of my students would relate to life in the 50s for Italian Americans...we call it "gravy" still! Do you call it "sauce"? You may not make that connection! :) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Christy Connolly | 1/27/2014

    " What a great book to show kids fears and their culture. In this book, the character is Italian and has the fear of getting Cancer in the pool. This book would be great to start discussions for writing a personal diary to help focus on the students fears and how it is incorporated with their culture. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laura5 | 1/24/2014

    " Great audio version - the narrator has wonderful accents for Penny's Italian family members and Mr. Mulligan the Irish milkman. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brianna | 1/20/2014

    " I read a lot about discrimination toward Japanese American families during WWII, because that's mostly what we studied in school. This is the first book for young readers that I have encountered that looks at discrimination against Italian Americans. Penny from Heaven is a warm and loving look at two families struggling with a tragedy, with a bright and observant 12-year-old girl stuck in the middle. I enjoyed the rich detail of period food and clothing that the author sprinkled throughout the text, as well as the complex and realistic familial interactions. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alexis | 1/18/2014

    " I read this book a long time ago but I luv the description and ever-changing plot "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Natalie | 1/10/2014

    " I need to reread this. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Isabelle | 12/6/2013

    " it was AMAZING!!! sweet book "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kara | 11/16/2013

    " I really liked this book! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Shekinah | 10/22/2013

    " this book fits into the catorgie of a book written in 1956 "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Grace W 1st | 10/19/2013

    " it not really good so far but i keep hoping it will get better.... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrea | 10/16/2013

    " A cute story. Definitely a story female students will like. A good example of historical fiction. Usually you can't go wrong with a Newbery book, and this is no exception. The plot is mostly the trials and tribulations of a 11/12 year old part-Italian girl and her family. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elaine | 10/15/2013

    " I guess I can relate to Penny because I am half Italian, from NJ, and love baseball. There were parts of the story I loved like the crazy, overbearing Italian family but some parts were random like the arm incident. This book has a lot of accurate history about Italian internment. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Shanna Smith | 6/23/2013

    " Loved the family dynamic and the characterization. Fast read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Christi | 4/25/2013

    " I thought it was just okay at the beginning but as things tied in and as we saw more relationships develop, as we saw Penny grow up, it got a lot better. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Danni | 10/26/2012

    " This was such a great book. It is about an italian family. It reminded me so much of my family. The descriptions of the food were so good that I could smell it and my mouth would water. The main character penny has a "nonna" and so did I. This book had a warm fuzzy feel to it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jeanne Zydallis | 10/26/2012

    " This book was one of the best 'tween books Ive read. It gave me more of an understanding about what Italians Americans felt having to fight against Italy in WWII. I came away with such insight. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ss Ho | 4/21/2012

    " It is an awesome combo of sad and happy times that make it a heart melter. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Emilydodge | 10/29/2011

    " Cute and touching book. About a girl names Penny and her cousin who is always getting into trouble. It's kind of a historical fiction based on Italian Americans during and after WWII. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Loryn Hanson | 9/16/2011

    " I have read this 2 times "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jemmie | 5/9/2011

    " This book was very well written. Although there are several problems going on at once, it's easy enough for the reader to follow. When the author is trying to build up a suprise, it actually works. For a moment, the author actually caught me off guard. After that, I collected myself. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rob Jeremiah | 4/28/2011

    " The rather boring introductory chapters of the book act as a facade for the shattering climax and golden finale. Partly historical by nature, the book is, without doubt, a worthy recipient of the Newberry award. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Shekinah | 4/18/2011

    " this book fits into the catorgie of a book written in 1956 "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Hanasd96 | 3/1/2011

    " This was such an amazing book! I loved it TOO much. I could not put it down. Definitely recommended! I'm took an A.R. test on this. 100! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Danni | 2/20/2011

    " This was such a great book. It is about an italian family. It reminded me so much of my family. The descriptions of the food were so good that I could smell it and my mouth would water. The main character penny has a "nonna" and so did I. This book had a warm fuzzy feel to it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rebecca | 2/12/2011

    " this book is really good.it's funny,realistic,and awesome! i love this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alexis | 1/21/2011

    " I read this book a long time ago but I luv the description and ever-changing plot "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 ß???a??? | 12/9/2010

    " Really, really good. i should probably re-read this one...its been a loooong time. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Catharine | 12/7/2010

    " I enjoyed learning about Penny's life and her quirky relatives. "

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About the Author
Author Jennifer L. Holm

Jennifer L. Holm is the author of the 1999 Newberry Honor book, Our Only May Amelia. In addition to writing novels for young adults, she produces television commercials and lives in Brooklyn.