Raymie Nightingale

Raymie Nightingale

Book - 2016 | First edition
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Hoping that if she wins a local beauty pageant her father will come home, Raymie practices twirling a baton and performing good deeds as she is drawn into an unlikely friendship with a drama queen and a saboteur.
Publisher: Somerville, Massachusetts :, Candlewick Press,, 2016
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780763681173
Branch Call Number: J DIC
Characteristics: 263 pages ; 21 cm


From the critics

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Nov 02, 2020

Ahhh, simply divine novel with young characters written to written to showcase their age in their inner thoughts, their naivety, and their adaption to hardships in life and developing frienships. Each of the three main characters are written to distinguish their personalities (the tough one, the anxious one, the eccentric but loving one) allowing the readers to obviously pick a favourite (we all do it, doesn't matter our age). It's a good thing for young readers allowing them to often personally relate to a character. DiCamillio, as usual, does a splendid job of this. Louisiana is my favourite, especially her way of mixing up and mispronouncing words/names.

An excellent choice for more mature or stronger readers of the 9-12 age group in my opinion.

ArapahoeKati Aug 04, 2020

This would make a fantastic read aloud because it's funny, honest, poignant and relatable. Loved the 1970's Florida setting vibe too.

Jun 27, 2020

This is a quick middle-grade novel about a mature, sensitive young girl who is going through a rough time. It humanizes and provides words for feeling lonely, hollow, and deeply sad, which I know I could have used in elementary school. The series focuses on unlikely friends, the Three Rancheros, who protect one another while each navigating their own difficult family situations.

s33meread Aug 09, 2019

Kate writes in a way that is readable for her young audience, but she also respects their ability to manage the harder things in life. She has that funny sense of humor which helps break the tension, but always...always telling the truth. By far, my favorite contemporary children's author.

OLATHEAllisonA Jun 03, 2019

Another great story by Kate DiCamillo, "Raymie Nightingale" follows a trio of girls - Raymie, Louisiana, and Beverly - who meet while taking baton twirling lessons in preparation for the 1975 Little Miss Central Florida Tire contest. Each girl bears her own heartache that she is hoping to heal by winning the contest. Raymie, Louisiana, and Beverly are wonderful fully dimensional characters. As she often does in her other books, DiCamillo strikes a great balance between gentle humor and sobering reflections on life that made me both laugh out loud and say "hmmm" in response. Although one aspect of the plot ties up way too neatly at the end, there is still some messiness remaining at the end that will show readers there are not always easy answers to difficult problems. Overall, this is a great story of female friendship and community that unfolds through a series of entertaining summer adventures.

Apr 14, 2019

I love the unique characters and the interesting way Miss Decamillo writes, so simple but with meaning. I definitely reccomend this to children and parents. And I didn't have to say bye to my favorite character because she has a whole other book!

Sep 27, 2018

A beautiful story of self-discovery and friendship. Female comrades at their very best.

Jul 22, 2018

I thought that Raymie Nightingale was a great book that was an inspiring book about Raymie Clark being put in tough situation and her new friendship helping her. All the different characters had a backstory the really made you understand and care for them. I could not stop reading it once I started. It is a great book!

Jul 17, 2018

WARNING: Once you open this book, it is impossible to close it!
This extremely well written book is by far one of my favourite's this year!
It is so detailed and at some points very upsetting because.... (Readddd the book to find out!)
rating: 10/10
Age group: 8 +

Jun 19, 2018

Raymie Nightingale is a great book when I started reading it I just couldn't stop.I Iiked this book, but it kind of left you hanging.
I liked the character Louisiana, because she is always happy no matter what.
This is a fantastic book.
I would rate it 4 stars.

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Age Suitability

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Nov 09, 2017

blue_dog_31911 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 9 and 13

Aug 06, 2016

jmli thinks this title is suitable for 9 years and over

Apr 20, 2016

chelseasc thinks this title is suitable for 8 years and over


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Jan 18, 2017

Louisiana smiled a very big smiled and opened her arms wide, and Raymie walked toward her, stepping on both white and green tiles (even though someone told her stepping on the white ones was bad luck.) She didn't care anymore. She stepped on all the tiles because bad things happened all the time, no matter what color tile you stepped on.
[Page 146]

Aug 06, 2016

"You never know what's going to happen next. It keeps you on your toes.”

“It was the strangest thing, how happiness came out of nowhere and inflated your soul.”

Jul 25, 2016

"Flex your toes and isolate your objectives."


Add a Summary
Aug 13, 2016

Three girls each has a unique reason (and secrets of their own story) in why they want to win the Little Miss Central Florida Tire competition, but in the end, their friendship teaches them much more valuable things than winning a contest.

SPL_Kids Jun 22, 2016

Raymie’s actual surname isn’t “Nightingale”. It’s “Clarke”. However, like Florence Nightingale, she manages to accomplish some very big “good deeds” in this book – including saving a life.
Raymie’s father has recently left town with a dental hygienist. Raymie’s mother is in shock. Raymie wants her father back home, and her response is to come up with a far-fetched plan. If she can win the Little Miss Central Florida Tire Competition, her father will surely see her picture in the newspaper, recognize that he has a very talented daughter, and promptly return home.
Does life ever go according to plan?
As the competition draws nearer, Raymie forms an unlikely friendship with two other competitors: Louisiana (an orphan who lives in poverty with her grandmother) and Beverly, whose father left home some years ago.
Soon each girl is challenged to come to the rescue of someone in an unexpected way. And each will rise to the challenge with help from their new friends.
Life is full of the unexpected, and it is this fact that author Kate DiCamillo has highlighted so well in this gentle, middle-grade novel. As Louisiana’s grandmother says, “It’s important to be on your toes because you just never know what might happen next in this world.”
Inspired by the author’s own childhood (in a single-parent family, in small-town Florida), Raymie Nightingale explores some very large, fundamental universal truths about life. The plot is not fast-paced, nor is it meant to be (in fact this is part of its charm), but the characters (some of them quite quirky) are endearing, and the fittingly unanticipated ending will make readers smile.
** Recommended for ages 9 years and up.


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