Fractions = Trouble!(Sequel to 7 x 9 = Trouble! )

Illustrated by G. Brian Karas. Ages 7 to 10. Farrar Straus Giroux. 978-0-374-36716-9

Junior Library Guild Selection
Chicago Public Library Best of the Best

How I Came to Write This Book:

It took me ten years to come up with the sequel for 7 x 9 = Trouble!, when I finally hit upon the idea of letting Wilson move on from agonizing over multiplication to struggling with times tables. Of course, as with the previous book, I had to come up with a subplot, to relieve the focus on math woes, and I decided to revisit favorite subject matter that I explored in Losers, Inc.: the science fair. To get the inspiration for the projects in this book, I went back to the science fair at Mesa Elementary, my boys’ former school, to find the funniest, weirdest, coolest projects. Luckily, one boy had set himself the task of answering the following question: “At what temperature does a pickle explode?” Bingo! Then, of course, I had to set myself the task of trying to answer that question first hand. Let me just say: one microwave was sacrificed in the process. . . .

Published: 2011

Fractions = Trouble!(Sequel to 7 x 9 = Trouble! )


Third-grader Wilson Williams knows he'll never learn fractions: “Multiplication was hard enough,” he tells his pet hamster, Pip. Worse, his parents have arranged for a math tutor. Just the idea of a tutor is embarrassing, but sympathetic Mrs. Tucker uses his love for hamsters to help him understand the math, and soon he's quite clear about the difference between the Nice Numerator and the Dumb Denominator. At the same time, Pip becomes the basis for a successful science-fair project. Not only does Wilson have some academic success, he makes his little brother happy. Though only in kindergarten, Kipper has a science-fair project too. In the process of Kipper's investigations, one of his favorite stuffed animals disappears. Big brother Wilson comes to the rescue. Most satisfying of all, he discovers that others—even his very best friend—are tutored, too. The short chapters have believable dialogue and plenty of reader appeal. Familiar school concerns, nicely resolved, make this another excellent selection for early chapter-book readers.
- Kirkus Reviews

Perfect for new chapter-book readers. Students having difficulty with math will relate to this lighthearted story.
- School Library Journal

Whether math-challenged or math whizzes, readers will look forward to the further adventures of the sympathetic Wilson.
- Horn Book, Martha V. Parravano