Frindle is set in Westfield, New Hampshire. The geographical setting only affects the action occasionally but sometimes in unusal ways. For example, the New Hampshire winters spark Nick's first creative rebellion. He makes his third-grade class into a tropical island. Socially, the setting of Westfield matters for a few reasons. First, it is clearly a small town. The kids walk to school, Nick can hear voices he knows playing outside when he is stuck inside studying, and there is just the one school mentioned. Second, Westfield has its own coherent traditions. For example, brother after brother, and even generation after generation, have faced Mrs. Granger, and have been challenged by her rigorous standards. What is more, almost everyone knows everyone else's business. This is what allows the story of the frindle to travel so quickly and explains why the principal and school superintendent become so concerned about the controversy. Finally, geography matters because although it is small, Westfield is connected to other nearby New England towns. The findle story spreads easily to the next town and on to Boston, precisely because of proximity.

Within the larger setting of Westfield, there are a few other minor settings, and one major setting. The Allens' home is not described in detail, but is clearly a comfortable place, one where a family lives, and a family with traditions; you can see this in how Nick has to study just as his older brother did. Another minor setting is the Penny Pantry store, where Nick and his friends first truly test out the use of the name "frindle” to mean pen.

The most specific and detailed setting is Lincoln Elementary School. These details range from what the palm trees were made of during Nick's third-grade adventure to broad organizational details like how many students there are in fifth grade (150) and how old the school building is (six years). Above all, though, Clements pours his attention...

(The entire section is 520 words.)

Frindle Bibliography

Lodge, Sally. "Andrew Clements. (Spring Attractions)." Publishers Weekly, 249.13 (April 1, 2002): 25(2). This article blends interview, biographical sketch, and an overview of Clements' career.

Morden, Paul. "Students Are Nutty About Big Words." Observer, October 5, 2005, p. B1. This article discusses a class's response to Frindle, including class competitions to create the best new words.

Novelli, Joan. "Fact vs. Opinion (Teaching of Critical Thinking)." Instructor, March 1999, pp. 45-46. This article discusses how to use Frindle to teach critical thinking.

Smith, Dawnell. "Frindle Will Appeal to the Young and Literate" Anchorage Daily News, April 25, 2008, p. D3. This article discusses a stage version of Frindle.

Sorensen, Marilou. "Clements' Popular Book 'Frindle' Reaches the Pulse of Young Readers." Deseret News. Salt Lake City, Utah: May 3, 2005, p. C01. This article sketches the publication history of Frindle.

Warrell, Beth et al. "It Should Have Won a Newbury!" Book Links, April/May 2002, Volume 11 Issue 5, p. 15. This article discusses a number of books that the authors believe should have won Newbury awards (the top award in young adult fiction), and it praises Frindle as one of them.

Watson, Elizabeth S. "Frindle." Horn Book Magazine, November/December 1996, Volume 72, Issue 6, pp. 732-733. Watson offers a highly positive review of the novel.

Weisman, Kay. "Frindle." Booklist, September 1, 1996, p. 125. Largely a summary, this review explains the novel's appeal through its invention and gentle resolution.

Zipp, Yvonne. "Made-Up Stories of Real Life: Interview With Children's Author Andrew Clements." Christian Science Monitor, July 3, 2001, p. 22. This article combines biographical information on Clements with a brief publication history of Frindle.