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The Un-Friendship Bracelet

Illustrated by Xindi Yan

In the first book of the Craftily Ever After chapter book series, a new student gets between best friends Emily and Maddie—and changes the meaning of their friendship bracelets!

Emily Adams, Maddie Wilson, Bella Diaz, and Sam Sharma are eight-year-olds with one special thing in common: they love to create. They each have unique talents, too! Emily is great at constructing and building; Maddie has an eye for fashion, fabrics, and sewing; Bella is a gadget whiz; and Sam is a gifted artist. Together, these four crafty friends dream up new projects to design, build, and create and through their experiences, they’ll learn how to handle various obstacles at school and in their everyday eight-year-old lives.

In the first Craftily Ever After book, best friends Emily and Maddie are so close that they spend most of their free time together, and wear matching friendship bracelets, too! One day, a new student named Bella Diaz shows up at Mason Creek Elementary. Maddie immediately befriends her, discovering that she too is really crafty. As Maddie and Bella spend more time together, Emily finds herself spending more time alone…until she realizes that the boy who’s been sitting next to her in class this whole time loves to draw and create just like she does. When Emily’s friendship bracelet falls off and Maddie doesn’t even notice, Emily begins to think that maybe it was an un-friendship bracelet after all.

With easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, the Craftily Ever After chapter books are perfect for emerging readers.

The Un-Friendship Bracelet Chapter 1 Meet MAD-ILY


“Emily! I missed you so much!”

Maddie Wilson ran across the classroom and swept Emily Adams into a huge hug. Emily had only been away at her grandparents’ house for the weekend, but for best friends who called themselves “MAD-ILY,” two days could feel like forever.

“You too!” Emily said. She pulled back and looked Maddie up and down. “Did you get new . . . everything?” she asked.

Maddie laughed. “Nope, I just made some updates. Remember my ‘painting pants’?”



Emily nodded. She and Maddie had clothing they always wore when they were crafting.

Maddie spun in a circle. “Ta-da!”

Emily couldn’t believe it. The jeans that used to have streaks and splotches of paint all over were now bright green. And instead of the streaks and splotches, there were now patches and buttons! Maddie explained that she had bleached the jeans, dyed them green, and then sewn on all the accessories.



“So cool,” Emily replied.

Unlike Maddie, Emily was happiest in her overalls. Instead of accessories, they had a million pockets for her tools and tidbits.

Although their outfits were different, they had one thing in common: matching friendship bracelets. The girls had made them together, and they never took the bracelets off their wrists.





Just then the bell rang. Emily and Maddie scrambled to take their seats. Emily sat between Maddie and a boy named Sam Sharma. Sam was pretty quiet, but Emily knew he liked to draw. She knew because occasionally she’d peek over at his notebook. It was always filled with doodles and drawings. He drew everything from robots to giraffes to spaceships—he even created entire worlds.



Emily was about to tell Sam she loved the forest he was drawing when Ms. Gibbons, their teacher, entered the room.

With her was a girl Emily and Maddie had never seen before. The girl had short dark hair, big brown eyes, and a purple backpack that had numbers and symbols written all over it.



“Class,” said Ms. Gibbons, “I’d like you to meet Isabella Diaz. She’s a new student here at Birding Creek Elementary, and she’ll be joining our class. Let’s all do our best to make Isabella feel welcome.”

The new girl smiled shyly and then whispered something to Ms. Gibbons.



“Of course,” replied Ms. Gibbons. “Isabella just told me that she goes by Bella, so please, everyone, make Bella feel welcome. Bella, why don’t you take the seat next to Maddie? Raise your hand, Maddie.”

Maddie waved enthusiastically, and Bella went to sit down. “Cool backpack,” Emily heard Maddie whisper. “And I love your key chain.”

Emily was about to chime in when she heard Bella whisper back, “Thanks. I made it.”

“No way,” said Maddie. “Can you show me how?”



“Sure!” said Bella.

Emily looked down at her friendship bracelet and twirled it on her wrist. She knew Maddie was just being friendly and doing what Ms. Gibbons had asked. And Bella seemed nice enough.

No one could come between MAD-ILY . . . right?

Martha Maker is a dedicated crafter who is always working on a project—or several! When she’s not writing books, you can often find her at her favorite community garden with her paint set. She lives in Washington, DC, with her family, which includes two kids, two dogs, and two guinea pigs.

Xindi Yan left behind a small city in China to realize her dream of being a published artist. Having always wanted to illustrate children’s books, she buried herself in countless books and drawings, collecting them even today. Xindi currently lives in Brooklyn with her husband and dreams about having a puppy in the near future.

  • Chicago Public Library's Best of the Best
  • Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year Selection Title

More books from this author: Martha Maker

More books from this illustrator: Xindi Yan

More books in this series: Craftily Ever After