Reading/Interest Level: Primary, Intermediate
Author: Judy Blume
Illustrator: Debbie Ridpath Ohi
Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Andrew wishes that he had freckles so that he wouldn't have to wash his neck and ears every morning before school. Sharon hears Andrew asking Nicky about his freckles and convinces Andrew that she has a secret recipe for freckle juice. Andrew makes this concoction and drinks it, but it makes him very ill. Andrew doesn't want Sharon to know that it didn't work, so he grabs a blue marker and draws freckles on his face before school the next day. His teacher sees that he desperately wants freckles, so she gives him a secret recipe of her own and helps Andrew recognize that he looks best without freckles.
The message of the story is that we are each different and we look best when we are ourselves and not trying to be someone else. Andrew wants so badly to be like Nicky and have hundreds of freckles, but it takes getting a very bad stomach ache and a secret formula from his teacher for him to realize this that he is best looking like himself. Many readers will relate to Andrew's character. Most people wish they could change something about their physical appearance. By reading this book we can learn a simple life lesson from Andrew: you look better when you look like yourself.