BOOKS FOR CHILDREN: How do you know what's good?

While there are many places (especially on the internet) where you can read book reviews, how do you really know if it's a good book or not when a single book might receive anywhere from one to five stars?
The answer: read the reviews of a book-addicted teacher librarian.

** The age recommendations are guidelines only; whether or not a certain book is suitable for a particular child depends on multiple factors, including their maturity, reading level, interests, and in some cases their experiences.
** While the ratings are largely based on my own personal appreciation/enjoyment of the book, they are also influenced by my experiences as a teacher and the potential attraction for the target-aged child (acknowledging that what one child may love, another may find exceptionally boring). A rating of 5 indicates the book is likely to be popular with the majority.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

We All Fall Down

AUTHOR: Robert Cormier (Australia).

ISSUES: teenage alcoholism, extreme vandalism (home invasion), assault, sexual attraction/first love, divorce, abduction, murder. Quite graphic at times. Not recommended as a read-aloud.

NOTE: it is on some schools' "banned book" list.

PLOT: A gang breaks into a house and vandalises it. When a young girl returns home unexpectedly, she is assaulted and pushed down stairs, going into a coma. The story follows her sister, and one of the vandals.

AGES: Recommended for highschoolers, ages 15+, for mature audiences only/parental guidance recommended.

GENRE: Thriller. RATING: 5 stars.

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