don’t call me ishmael!

“There’s no easy way to put this, so I’ll say it straight out. It’s time I faced up to the truth. I’m fourteen years old and I have Ishmael Leseur’s Syndrome. There is no cure.”

And there is no cure for not fitting in. But that won’t stop Ishmael and his intrepid band of misfits from taking on bullies, bugs, babes, the Beatles, debating and the great White whale in the toughest, the weirdest, the most embarrassingly awful … and the best year of their lives.

REVIEWS:

Somehow my brain refuses to produce the appropriate superlative for this book. “Absolutely hilarious” is altogether too feeble (CBCA SA Branch Newsletter)

Highly recommended for anyone who has been in, or is approaching, Grade 9. (Magpies) 

This second novel by the 2005 CBC award winner should come with a health warning: To save embarrassment don’t read this book on the bus. A wonderful book about friendship and being 14 and falling for (and on) girls, with characters that burst off the page and dialogue to die for. (The Advertiser)

This is an incredibly well structured and intelligent book by the author of The Running Man. The language is clever, cheeky and humorous. The characters are original and convincing and the tone is light-hearted throughout. The story has strong themes; coping with bullying is an important issue for today’s youth and is addressed with reality and truth. (Goodreading – 5 Star review) 

Don’t Call Me Ishmael! is hugely entertaining, delightfully funny and enormously insightful …Not to be missed by readers aged 11 and up. (Sunday Tasmanian) 

(A) delightful account of a boy’s journey through year nine. This is a humorous book that will have readers laughing out loud. Teen readers will love Ishmael and his friends and this book is sure to win accolades. (YA Review)

There are laughs and lots of them. I suspect the author will reach an even wider audience with this charming, breezy novel. The Michael Bauer Syndrome continues to have appealing side effects (Viewpoint) 

One could roar laughing at the comic accidents and the hilarious reactions to the several crises which occur. (An) excellent school story told close-to-life with warmth and hearty humour. Highly recommended to any reader, particularly to those reluctant readers. (Reading Time) 

Bauer wonderfully captures the enclosed and all-important world that school represents for most 14 year olds. It’s an engrossing read – a good recommendation for boys in particular – with plenty of themes for discussion. (Bookseller & Publisher) 

This novel had some of the funniest scenes I have read in ages, while still dealing with serious issues. (Abbey’s Books)

 This book is perfect for 11 to 13-year-old boys and girls and is a motivating and hilarious read. (Newcastle Herald)

Wildly different: comic and colourful. (Weekend Australian) 

This … is teenage angst but written with a flair and vigour of language which is invigorating and very, very funny. There is a vibrancy about this book and a love for words, both spoken and written which is infectious. (Austral Ed Book News)

Truthful, life-affirming and devastatingly funny. Don’t Call Me Ishmael is a triumphant coming-of-age novel. (Booktrust.org.uk)

See German video review by BiBukimi here.

EDITIONS:

      

Original Aust Edition                  Updated Aust Edition                        Italian Edition

    

German Edition                                   USA Edition                        Czechoslovakian Edition

    

French Edition  (2011)                   UK Edition (2012)              Italian School Edition

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Hebrew Edition (2013)

AWARDS AND SHORTLISTINGS:

  • Children’s Book Council of Australia: Book of the Year Older Readers: Shortlisted (2007)
  • Children’s Book Council of Australia: Junior Judges Award: Winner (2007)
  • Children’s Peace Literature Award: Winner (2007)
  • NSW Premier’s Literary Awards: Shortlisted (2007)
  • South Australian Festival Awards for Children’s Literature: Winner (2008)
  • Finalist in the Premio Cento di Letteratura per Ragazzi (Centro Award for Children’s Literature) middle school category (2010)
  • Honour Book Michigan Thumbs Up! Award (2008)

TEACHERS NOTES: Scholastic Australia

25 Responses to don’t call me ishmael!

  1. tahlia says:

    love this book

  2. kelsey says:

    Met Michael at school today! hes funny! luv the book!

  3. Jessie says:

    Really liked this book just finished reading it at school!

  4. Excellent book (series)! — hilariously charming, or rather, charmingly hilarious ;)

  5. BookWorm says:

    Love the entire series! I almost fell off my chair once laughing. The other time, I was laughing so much that my mum came into my room thinking I’d gone mad. Thanks Michael, it’s a definitely a book that I could never get tired of :)

    • mgbauer says:

      Thanks so much! I had great fun writing the series and it’s lovely to hear that you enjoyed it as well. Cheers Michael

  6. Joanna says:

    I don’t know what to write for an essay on teenage issues within the book. WRITERS BLOCK!

  7. tommi civili says:

    I’m from Marist and at the english info night Michael came and was really funny.

  8. TIMB1234 says:

    IS THERE GOING TO BE A NUMBER 3 PLEASE DO ONE

  9. TIMB1234 says:

    OHHHHHHH THX

  10. Nancy says:

    My kids and I love the book!! Hope Scholastic Book Club will sell the whole series (3 books in one box) to the School kids.

  11. Nancy says:

    My kids are so happy to see your reply. My older boy is in Year 8 and after reading your Ishmael series, he chose the Ishmael and the hoops of steel for his English assignment. I’m reading Don’t call me Ishmael and don’t want to finish it quickly cause it’s so funny. I will definitely recommend your books to others. Looking forward to reading more funny books from you.

  12. Nancy says:

    Hi, it’s Nancy here again. Thanks for your reply. Now my younger son is also reading your Ishmael series. He loves it. It’s so funny that we all laugh out loud. My older son has chosen “Ishmael and the Hoops of Steel” to do his English assignment (your own choice of book to do a book summary in PowerPoint). Thanks for your books to bring the whole family laughter! I was the first to read the book but last to finish (Hee…busy mother…but mainly because I enjoy so much that I want to read it slowly). About the box set, I seriously hope Scholastic will consider and sell it in the book club (Hee.. in a good price!!). So more people can enjoy your books!

    Cheers
    Nancy
    Oatley, Sydney

    • mgbauer says:

      Hi Nancy
      The family that reads together, succeeds together! Wish your son the best of luck on his assignment. Tell him I’m sure it will be, in the words of Razz, ‘totally rigid!’
      I must keep mentioning the box set idea to my publishers!
      Cheers
      Michael

  13. Samantha says:

    This book was never what I expected ( 1st one ) We got it handed to us for our assessment, at first it didn’t seem all to exciting. But after the first chapter I was hooked! Seriously funny and suspenseful. We have to write a diary entry about an event that happened as a character other than Ishmael. I have chosen Barry Bagsley; over the incident where James Scobie and Barry Bagsley banter when the teacher is out. I think it should turn out great! Defiantly a great read!

    ~ Sam
    ( Grade Eight )

    • Josh says:

      Hey! I have the same situation. You define the book like you took the words out of my mouth. But also I would like to add the ‘difficulties’ Ismael come across are very comedic and just plain hilarious! Thanks for the read, one of the best ever

      Josh
      ( Grade 9 )

      • mgbauer says:

        Thanks so much Josh. Glad you enjoyed it. And thanks for writing to let me know. Cheers Michael

    • mgbauer says:

      Hi Sam. Thanks! Hope the diary entry goes well for you.
      Cheers
      Michael

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