I Can Read Books Series, Harper, 2001, 64 Pages
Poor Emma! She has it all planned. Her parents are adopting a four year old boy named Max. Emma is convinced he'll be little and sweet, and it will be wonderful having a brother. When she tells her friend Sally that Max is coming to visit, Sally warns her that little brothers can be pests. Emma won't listen.
Her expectations take a blow from reality when Max comes to visit. He isn't little and he isn't friendly. Max tells Emma the cookies she made him are "yucky." When Emma's friend Sally comes over, Max plays with Sally and her little brother, Josh. When Max leaves, he doesn't even say good-bye to Emma.
In spite of reassurance from her parents, Emma feels hurt; Max doesn't like her or her cookies and likes Sally best. In fact, Emma is mad, shouting, "...I don't need a brother. Brothers are nothing but pests!" Things do not improve when Max comes for the weekend. He wants to play with Sally and calls Emma "Yucky Emma." Max misses his foster mother, Jane, and cries for her.
As Emma sees how unhappy Max is, she begins to soften towards him. Reassurance from her parents as to their love for her helps. However, when Max moves in, he is still belligerent towards Emma and keeps calling her "Yucky Emma." Emma realizes that Sally was right; sometimes a brother can be a pest. When Max runs away after accidentally breaking her doll, Emma realizes how much she cares for him. When Emma finally finds Max, her little brother realizes he can depend on her when he needs help. When Sally congratulates "Yucky Emma" for finding Max, Max corrects her, saying, "Emma isn't yucky. She's my sister."