Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Goodreads: As a fourteen-year-old boy who just moved to a new town, with no friends and a louse for an older brother, Doug Swieteck has all the stats stacked against him. So begins a coming-of-age masterwork full of equal parts comedy and tragedy from Newberry Honor winner Gary D. Schmidt. As Doug struggles to be more than the "skinny thug" that his teachers and the police think him to be, he finds an unlikely ally in Lil Spicer - a fiery young lady who "smelled like daisies would smell if they were growing in a big field under a clearing sky after a rain." In Lil, Doug finds the strength to endure an abusive father, the suspicions of a whole town, and the return of his oldest brother, forever scarred, from Vietnam. Together, they find a safe haven in the local library, inspiration in learning about the plates of John James Audubon's birds, and a hilarious adventure on a Broadway stage.


Kritters Thoughts: What a great YA read. A wonderful little novel told from the perspective of a young man who is caught in a very interesting family. Although, I don't usually read YA, I like the break from my normal reads to take me out of my comfort zone and this took me out a little more because it was from the thoughts of a young boy on the verge of high school. I am definitely a typical female lead in a book reader.

Ok back to the review - I loved this read. The range of emotions from laughing, crying to utter shock, this book was deep yet not unrealistic. I could picture this family and everything that this young boy went through, I could see it happening. The writing was something to get used to, but I felt as though Doug was really speaking - not someone speaking for him.

I would only pass this book onto those who already read YA books, as this may be a little out of reach for readers who don't already read this genre.
Rating: definitely a good read, but can't read two in a row

Pages: 368

Cover Challenge Jan-March: LOL

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