I’m telling Mother about a new girl in school,and she suddenly looks up and says,“Who’re your two best friends?” I’m not sure what to say.I’ve been friends with Jill since I was three or so,and I really like Jaime,a friend in kindergarten.“Well,what about Karen and Cindy?” She seems upset,like I hurt her feelings.“But they’re my sisters.” “Yes,but they can still be your best friends.Friends may come and go,but your sisters will always be there for you.”

At the time,the idea of my two sisters being my closest friends seemed strange to me.We fought all the time over toys,food and attention.How could my sisters be my best friends?They weren’t the same age as I.We all had our own friends in school.But my mother never let the three of us forget it:Sisters are lifelong friends.Her wish was to give us something that she never had.Growing up an only child,she longed for siblings (兄弟姐妹).When she gave birth to three daughters,the fulfillment of her dream had only just begun.She’d given us each a gift and she wanted to make sure we did not take that gift for granted.She’d frequently tell us how lucky we were.She never showed favoritism to one daughter over the other.And when we were teenagers,Mom always punished us equally.

We didn’t always get along beautifully and fought just like any other siblings.But we realized that our mother was right.Today I share things with my sisters that I do with no one else.My sister Cindy and I ran the New York City Marathon together,side-by-side,even holding hands when we crossed the finish line.When my sister Karen got married,I was her maid of honor.The three of us trust each other with our greatest secrets.

It was twenty-three years ago that my mother first asked me who my two best friends were.Today she doesn’t have to.She already knows.

1.Why does Mother say that my sisters can be my best friends?

A. Because we fight over toys,food and attention.

B. Because my sisters are the same age as I.

C. Because my sisters will always be there for me.

D. Because we are always punished by Mother equally.

2.What’s the author’s greatest gift?

A. The friendship of her different friends.

B. What her mother did for her.

C. The love of her mother for her daughters.

D. Both of her sisters.

3.What made the author change her opinion about best friends?

A. What Mother said about the relationship between friends and sisters.

B. What Mother experienced because she had no siblings.

C. Her mother’s favoritism to one daughter over the other.

D. What the sisters shared only with each other.

4.Twenty-three years later,who became the author’s best friends?

A. My mother and father.

B. Jill and Jaime.

C. My sisters,Jim and Jaime.

D. Cindy and Karen.

It’ll soon be the birthday of one of my closest friends,Susie.I still cannot decide what to give her.She’s a rare friend because she has been there for me all the time whenever I need a friend to talk to.I can always depend on her to be the first to arrive to give me advice when I have problems.I guess I am so lucky to have her as a friend.

It’s more than seven years since I first met Susie in our school.I joined the theater group and she was a director then.At first I thought she was intimidating(令人生畏的) but in the end I realized that she needed to keep a strict image in order for her actors and actresses to take her seriously.And then during practice I got a chance to know her better.In fact,she was a friendly and warm?hearted person.Soon we become good friends.

I don’t know exactly what to give my friend on her birthday as I believe she has everything.So it’s really hard to buy her a gift she will like.This year I want something different and special but I don’t know what to give.One day I searched the Internet without any purpose and to my surprise there is a really lovely site where you can buy all kinds of gifts.

I scanned(浏览) some of their items and I found cool and exciting gifts.I chose a special personalized bracelet(手镯).I’m sure that this will look perfect on her.I put our names as part of the design of the bracelet so that it’ll remind us that we’ll forever be friends.I can’t wait to give her my gift but I won’t tell her yet.I don’t want to destroy the surprise.

1.Why does the author consider Susie as a rare friend?

A. Susie is good at solving problems.

B. She and the author have lots of things to talk about.

C. Susie is a friendly and warm?hearted person.

D. She can always offer help when the author is in need.

2.Finally the author found a nice gift for her friend .

A. with the help of somebody else

B. while going online

C. while doing shopping in a store

D. without difficulty

3.The author wanted to put her and her friend’s names in the bracelet in order to .

A. give her friend a big surprise

B. make the present more special

C. remind her friend of their difference between them

D. make her friend remember their friendship forever

I always feel sorry for world leaders busy dealing with fights between nations.When my three children were young,most days it was hard to keep my house from becoming a battlefield.

It got worse as they grew older.Three years ago,Zack,then 16,couldn’t make it through a day without making his sisters,Alex 11 and Taryn 9,angry.

My husband and I tried to be understanding the boy at such an age.We reasoned,punished,and left heartfelt notes on his bed about how he was hurting our family.His answer was “I say it because it’s true.”

I even tried telling the girls to fight back.Bad idea.Now I had three children at war.Whatever I said to them,they paid no attention.When there was no way out,I told everything to my sister,Mary,in an e?mail.She replied,“Don’t e?mail me.E?mail him.”

Our son was online every day,mailing and talking with his friends.Maybe he would actually hear me this way.I didn’t say anything different,but e?mail just took the tension away.There’d be no shouting or door banging.Zack wouldn’t feel under attack.

Zack didn’t reply for days.When he finally did,his entire message was four small words.I smiled when I read them:“You’re right.I’m sorry.”

The children still fought,of course,but Zack changed.Best of all,I now have a better way to talk with not one but three of them.I like it that they don’t tune me out as much as they used to.They like not having to listen to me shouting to them.Or as Alex says,“You’re so much nicer online.”

All I know is that the house is quiet.But we’re talking.

1.What was the trouble before the online talk in the family?

A. The children couldn’t get along peacefully.

B. The writer failed to understand her daughters.

C. The family found it difficult to keep the house clean.

D. The parents were not willing to talk with their children.

2.The writer e?mailed her sister .

A. to escape from the problem

B. hoping she’d e?mail the boy

C. to tell her about the family problem

D. asking about child?raising

3.The underlined phrase “tuneme out” in the passage probably means “ ”.

A. pay no attention to me

B. get angry with me

C. quarrel with me

D. keep me out of their rooms

4.Why does the writer feel sorry for world leaders busy dealing with fights between nations?

A. Because she doesn’t think the leaders are successful.

B. Because she doesn’t think fights can be stopped.

C. Because she has nothing to do with the leaders.

D. Because she can understand that the leaders’ job is hard.

Once upon a time,there was a little boy who wanted to meet the king.He set off,walking towards the king’s castle.After many years of walking,the king’s castle came into his view.However,as the boy drew closer to the outside of the castle,the guards took notice of him.

“Get out of here!” commanded the guards.

Well,the little boy didnt have to be told twice.He turned...and ran right away.All he wanted to do was to tell the king wonderful things,and see all the beautiful things in the king’s house.But he couldn’t even get near the castle! The boy finally stopped running,sat down and cried.

A young man happened to be coming down the path at the very moment.He saw the little boy and came up.“What’s wrong,young man?” he asked.

“Sir,I walked and walked just to see the king.But these guards made me frightened.I wanted to tell the king how lovely everything is and just tell the king that I just wanted to see him!”

The man looked at the little boy thoughtfully.“Look,why don’t you try again.Don’t lose heart.I’ll come with you this time.”

The little boy got up and took the man’s hand.The king’s guards spotted them.

“Look,mister,we don’t have to do this...I don’t want you to get hurt.We can just turn around now.”

The man held the little boy’s hand and went on.The boy really thought the man might be crazy until he looked back up at the guards.They were all smiling now.The little boy was surprised.

“Who are you?” asked the little boy in surprise.

“Why,I’m the king’s son.You can enter the castle and be with the king,” said the man.

The little boy broke into a huge smile.

1.Why did the boy want to see the king?

A. To get some help from the king.

B. To invite the king to visit his beautiful village.

C. To share wonderful things with the king.

D. To ask the king to play with him.

2.What does the underlined sentence in the third paragraph mean?

A. The little boy didn’t understand the guards’ words at first.

B. The guards repeated the words to the boy.

C. The little boy understood the guards’ words right away.

D. The little boy had been to the castle twice.

3.Which of the following best suits the story’s lesson for us?

A. Anything is possible if one tried hard enough.

B. Never judge a book by its cover.

C. Life can sometimes be unfair.

D. Make new friends and keep the old.

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