Rules
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Rules

3.95 of 5 stars 3.95  ·  rating details  ·  24,772 ratings  ·  2,674 reviews
A heartfelt and witty debut about feeling different and finding acceptance--beyond the rules.

Twelve-year-old Catherine just wants a normal life. Which is near impossible when you have a brother with autism and a family that revolves around his disability. She's spent years trying to teach David the rules-from "a peach is not a funny-looking apple" to "keep your pants on in...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published April 1st 2006 by Scholastic Press
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Swee'tea
Dec 30, 2008 Swee'tea rated it 5 of 5 stars Recommends it for: kids who have relatives with autism
This is a quick read, I read it in about a week or so. It is a VERY good book! What I liked best about the book, is how Cynthia Lord(the author) really understands how it's like to live with people with autism. I know this because she came to my school, and I met her. I liked how the book was about a who has the same experiences that I do, having a sibling with autism. I don't just recommend only people with relatives with autism to read this, I recommend everyone reading it. I have shared it wi...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Me for TeensReadToo.com

You can always tell when you're reading a book that has a basis in truth. With RULES, author Cynthia Lord writes about what it's like to live with autism, and she should know, since she has an autistic child.

That ring of truth is there, in every word, when you read the story of twelve-year old Catherine and her autistic younger brother, David.David hates loud noises. If there's a cloud in the sky, he has to take his red umbrella with him. If his dad says he'll...more
Rebecca
I've been trying to think of the best way to talk about this book. I read it in a night and then forced it upon my mother -who hardly ever makes the time to read- and she finished it in a night. Someday, when my sister is ready, I will have her read it too. This book was so sweet, and at moments, heart-wrenching. It's a simple story about a young girl who wants to be known for herself - not David's sister. Her eight-year-old brother has autism and because of his special needs, often takes the at...more
Caris
Mar 12, 2010 Caris rated it 2 of 5 stars Recommends it for: People I do not like.
Shelves: 2010
This is fucked.

This book read like an after school special. All the makings for a good lesson in morality are there: the kid with the disability, the kid who makes fun of him, the kid who would learn to see beyond people’s limitations to find that, deep down, they’re just like everyone else…you know, the kind of thing you’d see on PBS or in your third grade homeroom. I was certainly okay with that, as it would make my job easier. I read this for a multicultural lit class, with the express intent...more
Nancy
"Rules", by Cynthia Lord, is told from the perspective of Catherine, the 12-year-old sister of David, an autistic 8-year-old. Catherine, at 12, is dealing with finding a place in a family that seems to be centered around coping with David's needs for comfort and development. Catherine's mom is divided between managing a home business (leaving Catherine to care for David) and providing David the care and developmental therapy he needs. Catherine's dad seems to be mostly coping with his own diffic...more
Moira
Well, this was a nice book - a story about a girl trying to come to grips with her autistic brother (and her parents who do everything for him and nothing for her) and her friendship with a boy with cerebral palsy. It kept my interest. But it seemed artifical - I mean, she is driven crazy by the brother, but she chooses to befriend the boy who is even more challenged? And the voice is that of a girl MUCH younger than the main character is supposed to be. Further, nothing is all that resolved, ex...more
Melissa
As a mom of "normal" (what does that even mean?!?) kids and then one child with autism, this book made me pause and think. The description that Cynthia Lord gave of David's autism were so spot on that in many instances I felt like I was reading about my own child.

I loved that it was told from the viewpoint of the sister, Catherine. A lot of times the focus is put on the child who struggles and, I am guilty of this, the other kids MUST be okay because they are functioning at a "normal" (again......more
Jim
Rules, by author Cynthia Lord, is a touching look at the life of a young girl, Catherine, who's coping with the conflicting emotions of living with her autistic brother, David. And I was coping with the conflicting emotions of annoyance and boredom of reading this book.

Catherine, a normal 12 year old girl, has a huge role and responsibility in the care-taking of her autistic brother, David. Catherine must balance the love and the responsibility she feels for David with the embarrassment and res...more
Mike Mullin
So, I've owned this book for more than a year but never gotten around to reading it. When I saw it had been challenged, I figured I'd read it to try to understand why.

Here's why RULES got challenged: some people are effing crazy. This is a beautifully written, touching story about a family that happens to include an autistic kid. Catherine, the 12-year-old protagonist, is portrayed realistically, with a pitch-perfect kid's voice. She grows through the story, coming to better accept the differenc...more
AnnaBnana
I thought this book was really incredible. I read it in one sitting. I was glad that Lord didn't shy away Catherine's difficult and conflicted feeling about having an autistic brother. I thought the relationship she built between Catherine and Jason was natural and touching.

I think Catherine is also a really relate-able character on a more general level. I haven't experienced any of what went on in Catherine's family life, but her propensity for daydreaming and getting her hopes up about a frie...more
Marynna
Such delight! This touching, funny story -- a quick, compelling read for a sunny afternoon -- is both respectful and adorably irreverent. Catherine is the voice of a wise, practical observer whose perspective has been sharpened by life with her autistic brother and her disabled friend.

There is nothing here which is inappropriate for any reader of any age; and there is much here that is valuable for everyone, whether or not they know or are related to people who have autism or any other physical...more
Moe
Apr 09, 2012 Moe rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Moe by: My Extended ELA teacher
I love when teachers make you read books that you can't choose to read. I guess that its good for kids who don't read at all. But hate to break it to you, this book...

Sucked.

If they're trying to get kids to read, you just made it sure they won't read another word except "pizza" or "video games".I can not believe I am wasting my precious time on this book. Go and read it. See what I mean. Out of all the fabulous books like Harry Potter or Hunger Games they had to pick a book about a girl who can'...more
Amitha
I wasn't sure I would like this book at first because it is an "issues" book. I thought it would be about a girl who learns to accept her brother's disabilities, and while this is true, it was more a learning-to-fit-in-and-be-comfortable-with-yourself book. I'm still making it sound cheesy, but it really wasn't. Rather, it was hilarious and well-written. The main character, a twelve-year-old girl named Catherine, is highly relatable, and draws you in from the first chapter by telling you all abo...more
Mina
The fourth book I read this summer was rules by Cynthia lord, I personally found this book well written interesting with authenticity to it. This book was about a girl Catherine and her younger brother David who is autistic. Catharine is much like any ordinary girl and all she desires for is for David to wake up one day and for is autism to disappear, but Catharine knows that wish will never come true. Through out portions of the book Catharine feel that her world revolves around David, she has...more
Susan P
I've been meaning to read this ever since my coworker Kristi booktalked it years ago. Then I got to hear the author speak at ALA last summer (she has an autistic son) so that made me want to read it even more. I'm so glad I finally did. This is a good one for anyone interested in autism. 12-year-old Catherine's younger brother David is autistic. This means that he gets a lot more attention from their parents than she does, and also that Catherine shoulders a lot more responsibility than many kid...more
Daisy Johnson
This book was absolutely inspiring. I thought Catherine so brave for handling her brother's autism with more understanding and grace than I believe the average 12 year old would have. She shows a combination of kindness and frustration because she is torn between instilling her younger autistic brother with rules for life and being a normal pre-teen. I believe her relationship with Jason teaches her one of the most important lessons in life. That lesson is that some people don't know how to deal...more
Jillian Tullish
Rules is a chapter book that centers around Catherine, an artistic 12 year old ,whose little brother, David, has autism. Catherine struggles to find her own identity and have a relationship that doesn't center around David. Catherine deals with the responsibility of watching and caring for her brother by creating a list of social rules for him to follow, but this summer is different as she makes two very different friends. Jason is a patient at her brothers occupational therapist and Kristi is h...more
Kate
I just finished reading RULES for the second time, and I loved the characters even more this time around. This is a funny, touching book about a girl coming to terms with her brother's disability and what it means to their family life. It's a fantastic book for the classroom, with lots of opportunities for extension activities and discussion (and in the September Scholastic Book Order for $3.95).
Jaqui
Feb 19, 2010 Jaqui added it
I read this for a book club book and it was about a girl whose brother had autism and he was very embarrasing. (at least to her) it taught me some lessons about honestly and much more!
Taylor Miller
Rules by Cynthia Lord was a touching book about kids who has autism. The book takes place in the summertime by the ocean. The book doesn't give me a specific year but I'm guessing it was not to long ago because of the way they dress and how they talk.

The main character is Catherine who is a teenage girl who loves to draw. David is her younger brother and he is diagnosed with autism. She has to go through everyday not knowing what he will do next.Catherine gained a new neighbor in the beginning...more
Karen
I finally got my hands on RULES by Cynthia Lord, and I read it in one sitting. The narrator, Catherine, genuinely seems twelve. Her mannerisms and thoughts ring true, especially her artistic view on life and her lists of rules to help both herself and her autistic brother David. Catherine has more than shallow run-of-the-mill problems to deal with, and yet she's easy to identify with. In less capable hands, the story could have come across saccharine or depressing. Lord pulls it off in a way tha...more
Laura Noto
Summary-
Rules is a chapter book for readers in 4th to 8th grade. It is about a 12-year-old girl named Catherine who has a younger brother, David, with Autism. She worries about what others think of her a lot and she struggles with accepting her brother. Throughout the book she talks about how she makes rules for David to help him understand the world. She tries to make him “normal” so he won’t embarrass her. She gets a new neighbor who she wants to impress, but it is difficult due to her family...more
Laura Rumohr
Summary-
This book was written for kids upper elementary school and junior high. Rules is a story about a young girl, Catherine, who has a brother, David, with Autism. The book is written from her point of view and Catherine honestly shares her responsibilities, embarrassments, and frustrations of having a brother with a disability.

One day when Catherine went with David to occupational therapy. There she becomes friends with Jason, a non-verbal boy in a wheelchair. He communicates using word car...more
Angie
Mar 27, 2010 Angie rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Angie by: Scholastic Book Order and Deb
This book being a 2007 Newbery Honor, I've got to read the winner for that year and see how it compares, because this is a wonderful book. Lord beautifully uses this idea of "rules" (stemming from the narrator's rules for her autistic brother, who doesn't learn them from observation) throughout the novel. I love what the rules say about our proprieties. The rules are sometimes funny, sometimes sad, but they all say something about how human beings operate. For example: "If you don't want to do s...more
Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)
When we think about children with special needs we often think about how they may struggle or how hard it is for them. We often think how hard it is for their parents. However, we often forget their siblings. We forget what a sibling (with a brother or sister with special needs) has to do. They have to grow up faster. They have to be a role model. They have to often times be the perfect one. The one that gets good grades and does well in school and doesn't get into trouble because their parents...more
Wendy
I was torn between giving the book three stars or four stars. I must be feeling generous tonight, because I decided to go with four.

Catherine has a younger brother diagnosed with Autism. She struggles with how embarrassing some of his behaviors can be when they are out in public, and how much his diagnoses affects her life. Like any twelve year old with a little brother, she is beyond frustrated with him and can be very inpatient. Yet, she also struggles with her desire to defend and help him a...more
Zion Martin-hayes
The author of the Rules is Cynthia Lord one other book that Cynthia wrote was touch blue. The genre of this book is fiction and the sub-genre is historical fiction the book was humorous and and serious and the main character Catharine was the narrorator the point of view is first person it affected the story because Catharine said it was all about David but the but the whole story was based on her.
The book was about Catharine’s summer and how she had to deal with her autistic brother named David...more
Jessica
Appeal Characteristics family, autism, occupational therapy, rules, coming of age, identity, friendship, relationships

I love Claudia. I mean all those rules...she sounds like me! Anyway, I think what I thought was the most heart touching story was her relationship with Jason. There was something precious about how they developed into something that doesn't need to be defined--whether it could be friendship or more... I just loved their interactions. I just loved how realistic she was with her st...more
Maria Nesmith
Rules by Cynthia Lord is about a girl named Catherine and her brother David who has Autism. The book goes on to tell the story of how Catherine and her family live their life with David. Catherine does not always like living in the world of special needs but she is surprised when she becomes friends with a boy named Jason who also has special needs. Catherine writes rules down for David that help her and him survive. The rules are ones that typical children learn without being taught. Throughout...more
Lauren Brown
I really enjoyed reading this book. She was always so worried about what other people were thinking of her family because of her brother, David. She was embarrassed but yet she stood up for him when people were picking on him. She was a really good sister and tried to help David as much as she could. I think that her parents depended on her too much with her brother. It seemed like she took on most of the responsibility with babysitting and helping explain rules to her brother. I like how she ma...more
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UNC Children's Li...: Discussion Prompt for Rules 30 25 Feb 26, 2014 10:17AM  
what should I read once I am done the book RULES ???? 37 108 Feb 16, 2014 12:34PM  
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Class of 2014: Rules book review 1 4 Jan 04, 2014 07:25PM  
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Rules 2 8 Dec 21, 2013 01:37PM  
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