“My mother is ruining my life,” notes fifth-grader Allie West.
Many kids come to that same conclusion, but Allie really can’t escape her mom, who is the principal of her elementary school. Allie is stuck at school all day, long after everyone else has headed home, which is why she’s such good friends with the kindly custodian.
Allie has several things on her mind, especially the fact that her best friend, Chloe, hasn’t spoken to her for months, ever since Allie mistakenly got her in big trouble—with the principal. Allie desperately wants to make things right and also hopes to be chosen for the school math team, of which Chloe just happens to be captain.
Confessions from the Principal’s Kid has plenty of heart and soul, especially since author Robin Mellom actually was a principal’s kid and weaves some of her own memories into the story. “This novel is not a memoir nor an autobiography,” she writes, “but it was inspired by my experiences as an After.” Afters are the handful of faculty kids forced to hang out after school while their parents finish up their duties. Not only do the Afters know every nook and cranny of the school, their bonds go deeper than Allie realizes, especially Allie’s friendship with a bullied boy named Graham.
Like Allie, this tale is full of fun, pluck and longing as she learns to navigate difficult social situations while discovering the true and sometimes tricky meanings of friendship and loyalty.