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No Choirboy: Murder, Violence, and Teenagers on Death Row
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No Choirboy: Murder, Violence, and Teenagers on Death Row

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3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  594 ratings  ·  185 reviews
No Choirboy takes readers inside America’s prisons, and allows inmates sentenced to death as teenagers to speak for themselves. In their own voices—raw and uncensored—they talk about their lives in prison, and share their thoughts and feelings about how they ended up there. Susan Kuklin also gets inside the system, exploring capital punishment itself and the intricacies an ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published August 5th 2008 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,565)
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Maria
Both of my grandparents died tragic deaths-one was murdered and the other was killed by a drunk driver. My parents believe in the death penalty, therefore, as a kid it seemed like a reasonable practice. As an adult, I have become interested in how "the system" works and I'm realizing that it is totally messed up.

One thing I like about No Choirboy, is that it represents various sides of the story. Although the subject matter is heavy and dark, I was surprised to find hope in some of the stories.
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Sarah
A compelling look at men who were sentenced to death for crimes they committed when they were only teens.

This book doesn't try to excuse the horrible crimes that the boys committed, nor does it try to claim that they are innocent. Instead, it asks why some people are sentenced to death while others are given life in prison and still others are allowed to walk free because of plea bargaining or testifying for the prosecution.

The last point was the one that really resonated with me. If there are
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Marjanne
This book is a short, quick look into the lives and experiences of men who are (or were) on Death Row and were given the sentence while still a teenager. There are a lot of sad things about this book, and maybe even a few things that will make some readers angry. The author has a definite cause she's trying to promote, but I think she did put effort into being fair about it. I liked that she included a section written by family members of a murder victim, but who also happen to support "the caus ...more
Christine
This book was amazing in a very sad way. For people who are against the death penalty, this book will reaffirm what you believe 100%. For people who support the death penalty, I'm not sure what you'll think, but I hope you give it a chance anyway. The teenagers in this book were all minors when they were convicted of their crimes, but they all served some time on death row, or were eventually executed. I'm glad that it's no longer legal to sentence someone to the death penalty if they were convi ...more
Angela Bailey
Title / Author / Publication Date:
No choirboy: murder, violence, and teenagers on death row. / Susan Kuklin. / 2008.

Genre: Young Adult Narrative Nonfiction - Interviews.

Format: Book - print. 198 pages.

Plot summary:
"In-depth interviews with teenage prisoners who have been sentenced to death and are awaiting execution on death row provides a powerful look at life behind bars, the effects their decisions have had on themselves and others, and their personal views on the death penalty itself" (Nov
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Lauren
The book “No Choirboy” by Susan Kuklin is a nonfiction book. It’s a documentary type book about men in prison who were sentenced to death row while they were still teenagers. No Choirboy also includes interviews from the families and Lawyers of the death row victims.
The settings of each story in this book were in Texas, Huntsville, Alabama, Virginia, Tennessee, New York, Chicago, and Las Angeles, during the 1980s-1990s. The main characters were Nanon Williams, Roy Burgess, and Mark Melvin. Willi
...more
JennyWalker
Do you believe in the death penalty? What about for teenagers? No Choirboy is a documentary-style book filled with real interviews that are compiled in attempt to give voices to some of American's teens that were put on death row or eventually executed by the state for crimes committed in their developing youth years. I appreciated the un-censored nature of the book as it provides raw perspectives of killers, victims, and the families of both. You meet an accused murderer who wrote and published ...more
Diana Fuerte
This book contains 5 different stories of young men that committed murders and were sentences to death row or life in prison. The young men were as young as 14 years old with regrets and heart ship. Some of these men were actually killed on death row. By the end of the stories every one of them wish they could take back what they did and deep down they were all good kids that were hanging out with the wrong people. In one of the stories a brother involves his little brother the main character i ...more
Julie
A fascinating and difficult look at teenagers on death row who have been found guilty of murder and punished as adults. The stories are painful and the topics, heavy. Kuklin does a brilliant job of analyzing young people on both sides of crime---the perpetrator and the siblings of a victim. This book really forces the reader to think.
Jason
This is a real eye opening book that contains incredible stories about teenagers who committed crimes, and went to jail at early ages, just to regret their actions when they enter and see the horrible conditions. Yet. they weren't sentenced to a few months or years in prison, they were sentenced to life and some even sent to death row. This book teaches teenagers what can happen to you when you don't listen to peoples advice and stay in the streets or doing something that you know is right but d ...more
Donna
Nov 17, 2008 Donna rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone!
Once you pick up this book it is very hard to put down! The author presents the death row inmates' fascinating stories in their own words. She also talked to inmates' family members, lawyers, and family members of a murder victim. Everyone's story is heartwrenching. I got through this book in a very short time. The book is really well researched, and includes lists of websites and other books for people who want to learn more about the death penalty, victims' rights, and inmates' rights. The aut ...more
Cameron Nicholson
No Choirboy by Susan Kuklin is nonfictional story about the death row for inmates who are teenagers in the US. Now it is illegal in today's law, but it takes you back in time into what life was like for these teenagers. This book tells you first-hand stories of teenagers on death row straight from them, their families and the victim's family. This books give gritty, raw details of prison at such a young age and shows you the difficulties that they had to endure. This book shows their beliefs on ...more
Nancy Horrell
Susan Kuklin, an award winning author of more than thirty books for young readers, is also a professional photographer. Her photographs have appeared in Time, Newsweek, and the New York Times. In No Choirboy: Murder, Violence, and Teenagers on Death Row, Kuklin presents, through an empathetic looking-glass, a word picture of the horrors of prison life.
We are introduced to Bryan Stevenson, a lawyer for death row cases of indigent people, whose brainchild became the Equal Justice Initiative of Ala
...more
Essence Myricks
Reading isn’t my favorite pastime; I’m more of a visual person. However, I have to say “No Choirboy: Murder, Violence, and Teenagers on Death Row” by Susan Kuklin is definitely a nail biter. The story is about multiple scenarios of teenagers all involved in drugs and/or violence. All of the stories are related in some shape, form or fashion. Some started because of issues at home and others from hanging with the wrong crowd. It’s no surprise the top four stories all involved males as the main ch ...more
Dianna Morales
Many books can talk about prisoners or prisoners on Death Row, but not many can give the insight from the point of view from a prisoner who was originally put on Death Row as a teenager, and it’s unlikely that any other than No Choirboy: Murder, Violent, and Teenagers on Death Row, a nonfiction book, can bring in such raw and true voices that the true-life “stories” will capture the reader in such a way, that they’ll be finished with the book before they can put it off to deal with other priorit ...more
Destiny Arriaga
-No ChoirBoy is a rough and honest outlook on the true lives of teenage inmates who were on death row. Each of the inmates are interviewed and each of them explain what they were like before they were arrested. The teens tell you what they did to get arrested, and they detail how the experience of being in jail changed them. The book gives outsiders a perspective of how unfair and discriminating our law system truly is.
-My favorite character of the book is Napoleon Beazley because I found his b
...more
Howie Kahekili
This uncensored book about teenage prisoners sentenced to death in the United States of American, one of the few countries that give the death sentences to people under the age of 18. The author, Susan Kuklin, goes deep into the lives of murderers and other teenagers who have done unspeakable crimes. Each teen discusses why they are there, their thoughts and feelings about being there, and any remorse they feel. The book is a very short and quick to read which does not encompass many filler part ...more
Wendy Heredia
In "No Choirboy: Murder, Violence, and Teenagers on Death Row" By Susan Kuklin the authors message is that Teenagers should not be eligible for death row if they are under 18. And to think about what you are going to do before you do it, so you wont end up like these teenagers. We understand this message through events such as when Nanon was executed for murder. Even though there was enough evidence to prove that he didn't do it, but he feels they are going to execute him because he's a differen ...more
Brandon
In my book no choirboy I have chosen this book because when Mr. Simpson had read me the cover of the book it caught my attention. It started off with murder, teens on death row, and life in prison. When I heard them words I had to read the book and when I started the book No Choirboy it started in suspense it had me wondering what’s going to happen next at all times. It started the book and when I got to the second page it was already talking about killing and violence that was already happening ...more
Lindsey
No choirboy, written by Susan Kuklin, is a story about different people who were sent to death row in the United States, who were under the age of 18. This story is written in a documentary style, and shows what it is like to live in the prisons for each of the inmates. This stories weakness is that it is very violent, and vulgar. There is information in this story that is not necessarily meant to be taught to children. It gives explicit details and information, which may scare children or they ...more
Mallori Allphin
No choirboy, written by Susan Kuklin, is a story about different people who were sent to death row in the United States, who were under the age of 18. This story is written in a documentary style, and shows what it is like to live in the prisons for each of the inmates. This stories weakness is that it is very violent, and vulgar. There is information in this story that is not necessarily meant to be taught to children. It gives explicit details and information, which may scare children or they ...more
Kristen
Kevin is sent to jail for killing a 16 year old boy because he wouldn’t drive down a path. That night, all of the kids in the car were high. They took the body and threw it into a blueberry orchard and took the car to an old shopping center . Kevin is being put on death by electrocution. In jail he has to face a lot of hard obstacles, mental break down, being around criminals, missing his teenage years, going to parties, the only upside was that he got to go to his high school graduation.

The th
...more
Carrie
This book was really not at all what I expected. I'm not really sure WHAT I expected, but it wasn't a book that highlighted just a handful of teens and told their specific stories of murder, violence, and death row. I guess I expected more of a collective-experience type of thing, a book that talked generally about teens on death row, the violence that is landing them there, the conditions they live in, etc. Something specific but general (if that makes sense), like "Our America: Life and Death ...more
Madison Lakey
May 02, 2015 Madison Lakey added it
Shelves: t-l-307
This book explores the true depths of what life is like for teenage inmates who are sentenced to death. The book explores different individuals who tell their stories of what their lives are like now, and how they ended up in their positions of life sentencing. This book dives into the reality of what the justice system is like, and how the author looks into why some people get sentenced in certain ways, comparative to others. The author goes into deeper depths than simply interviewing the inmat ...more
Ella Swinney
"Before he was executed, he said, 'It's been so strange. More people have asked what they can do to help me in the last days of my life than in the last nineteen years of my life.' And then he was executed. What does it mean to marginalize a person for so many years and then execute him?"

No Choirboy is a thought-provoking Y.A. nonfiction book that discusses the death penalty through the thoughts and stories of prisoners who had been on death row while being under eighteen years old. It also inc
...more
Heather Hilliker
This story illustrates what prison culture is all about. This book is a composition of firsthand accounts told by inmates about how they ended up in prison, and their feelings or circumstances within the jail and justice system. This book is raw, and each inmate has been charged with death row, so it is interesting to read about their experiences as extreme criminals, as well as their emotional sides. The structure of this novel is a series of interviews, and each piece of this book is unique si ...more
Kristen Carson
Book Information:
The genre of this book is nonfiction and the reading level is ages fourteen-seventeen.
Summary:
This story illustrates what prison culture is all about. This book is a composition of firsthand accounts told by inmates about how they ended up in prison, and their feelings or circumstances within the jail and justice system. This book is raw, and each inmate has been charged with death row, so it is interesting to read about their experiences as extreme criminals, as well as their e
...more
Barbara Bjelke-Wahlberg
This book is one of the best nonfiction young adult books I have read in years. It makes the hair stand up on the back of your neck. I read it for the Rhode Island Teen Book Awards. My students were asking me about it as I was reading (I have reading time in my classroom, and I read, too.) These are the stories of young men who have been on death row since they were minors. True stories from their point of view. Harrowing and sad!
Sarah Herman
this is a book inside of america’s prisons. It allows the inmates of death row who are teenagers to reach out and speak of their true struggles in prison. It also allows for their voice to be heard and how even though they committed a crime, how it is effecting them personally. Another aspect of the book is hearing from the families of the deceased. It is interesting to hear the perspective of the families that are effected by these murders and hear how they feel about death sentencing, and life ...more
Charlotte
While this novel has not yet made it into my 'favorites' section, I greatly enjoyed it and have already recommended it! I read this novel as a school assignment over Winter Break, and was surprised at how fast I went through it. This is one of those books that just invites you to continue reading and makes it oh so difficult to turn away! (I really should have learned by now to bring more books with me when traveling.) The book was a delight; while not a delightful subject, it was intensely inte ...more
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