Get our latest staff recommendations, classroom reading guides and discover assets for your stores and social media channels. Receive the Children’s Bookseller newsletter to your inbox when you sign up, plus more from Simon & Schuster.If you are an independent bookseller in the U.S. and would like to be added to our independent bookseller newsletter, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
If This Were a Story
Table of Contents
About The Book
“An imaginative debut.” —Booklist
“Hannah’s growth is organic and well earned.” —Publishers Weekly
In the tradition of Crenshaw and The Thing About Jellyfish, ten-year-old Hannah copes with the bullies at school and troubles at home through the power of stories in this sweet and sincere debut.
Tenacious. That means strong-willed. My mother calls me that.
I wish I felt the same way.
If this were a story, I would discover I was a direct descendent of a famous soldier who won countless battles and protected hundreds of people. This resilience running through my veins wouldn’t be damaged by the notes; it would fight off bullies and prevent my parents from yelling at each other.
But this is not a story. This is real life. My life as ten-year-old Hannah Geller, who is the only girl in fifth grade to have little red bumps on her face, is unable to let the sad thoughts escape her mind, and leaves heads-up pennies wherever she can to spread good luck.
And who also finds magic in the most unlikely of places.
I measure how happy a day is with sounds. Happy days sound like a TV on low volume or birdcalls through a screen door. Sad days sound like dishes crashing into each other in the sink. Sad days sound like too-loud voices. Once a day is stained sad, it’s hard to make it happy again.
My class copies vocabulary into our notebooks. I write the words like an astronomer discovering a new planet, as if the definitions can unlock the secrets of outer space. “Instantaneous”: when something happens without any delay. “Iridescent”: the quality of changing colors when viewed from different angles. “Intention”: an aim or a plan.
The tip of my pencil breaks. I walk to the back of the room and shove my pencil into the sharpener. The grinding sound is a happy one. It means a new point, a shiny do-over.
On the way back to my desk, I see a small piece of paper crunched into a ball on the floor. I pick the paper up with the intention of throwing it away, but it looks like my name is written on it. I unravel the note and read the three words on a torn sheet of lined paper. The words fill my head with the sound of flying arrows, quiet and quick and aimed in my direction. A sad-day sound.
NOBODY LIKES HANNAH.
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (August 28, 2018)
- Length: 256 pages
- ISBN13: 9781534420618
- Grades: 3 - 7
- Ages: 8 - 12
- Lexile ® 660L The Lexile reading levels have been certified by the Lexile developer, MetaMetrics®
Browse Related Books
Raves and Reviews
"Hannah’s growth is organic and well earned."
– Publishers Weekly
"Like Ali Benjamin’s The Thing about Jellyfish (2015), Turley’s accomplished novel is deeply rooted in the imagination of its protagonist, whose hopes and fears are truthfully voiced. . . .An imaginative debut.”
Resources and Downloads
High Resolution Images
Book Cover Image (jpg): If This Were a Story
Author Photo (jpg): Beth Turley
Photograph by Janelle Medeiros(0.1 MB)
Any use of an author photo must include its respective photo credit
More to Explore
Our Summer Reading Recommendations
Red-hot romances, poolside fiction, and blockbuster picks, oh my! Start reading the hottest books of the summer.
This Month's New Releases
From heart-pounding thrillers to poignant memoirs and everything in between, check out what's new this month.