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Jolted: Newton Starker's rules for survival

3.6  ·  Rating Details ·  387 Ratings  ·  70 Reviews
The Starker family is infamous. They’ve been chronicled on blogs, profiled on TV and researched by paranormal investigators. They appear to be cursed: everyone of Starker blood has died after being struck by lightning. Fourteen-year-old Newton Starker is the last of his line—except for his great-grandmother, Enid, a woman as friendly as a pickled wolverine—and he’s determi ...more
Paperback, 227 pages
Published August 19th 2008
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Nov 23, 2008 Betty rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: age 8-14, but any age could enjoy it.
This book is Young Adult Fiction and I have rated it from that point of view.

Arthur Slade has given us a story about a 14-year old boy with a very unusual heritage. For over 200 years the Starker family have all been killed by lightning. Newton is the last male descendant and as such is extremely restricted in his lifestyle, something a lot of young people will relate to. His home is equivalent to living in a bunker.

I really enjoyed this book, and I’m sure it will appeal to this age-group. Ever
May 26, 2011 Bryan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya-read, middle-grade
If I could give this book 5000000 stars I would. Probably one of the best younger YA books I have read in a while. Jolted has a little bit of everything in it, from cooking, to survival to incredibly smart pigs. The humor kept me laughing in my office (much to the annoyance of my office mates) and the small bit of action near the end gave me just enough worry that not everyone may make it out ok.

What also made this so much fun were the numerous changes in writing style. Going from first person
Judith Weaver
Jan 31, 2011 Judith Weaver rated it really liked it
Yup, bought it. It took a bit to get into because this is a different book. But what a fun read this turned out to be. I have read the first few pages to classes and kids get hooked immediately. Usually I book talk the book, but have found that reading those first pages grab the kids more effectively with this book. It is pretty hard to talk the book and give the right tone to this very odd kid who lives in fear of death by lightning strike because of his family's history. How he faces the light ...more
Sep 17, 2010 LauraW rated it really liked it
Shelves: tween
I abandoned this and then picked it up again later - and ended up liking this one better than I expected to. I finished reading it on a day when I really needed something that wasn't quite as heavy as more serious fare. And, thinking about it, the voice of the main character, Newton, was actually pretty spot on middle school.
Josh Newhouse
Jan 30, 2011 Josh Newhouse rated it liked it
Odd. Disjointed. At times irresistible. Ending bleh. Slow start. Best part was josephine.
La Coccinelle
Jan 09, 2012 La Coccinelle rated it really liked it
Shelves: middle-grade
I wasn't quite sure what to expect from this one. I'd never heard of it, and I only bought it because I found it in the bargain bin and it looked vaguely interesting.

It was a relief to read something that was generally well written, though I would expect as much from a middle grade novel (it's the young adult stuff that usually has the writing/editing/grammar issues). While I'm pretty sure most 14-year-old boys don't talk the way Newton and his friends did, the style worked well enough in the co
amy kara
Jolted: Newton Starker's Rules for Survival is a book about a boy named Newton who lives by the rules he made so he wouldn’t die by getting hit by lightning as most Starkers have. When he sees Jerry Potts Academy for Higher Learning and Survival, he decides that he has to go there, but when he actually does, he has a lot of problems. For one thing, on his first day of school, his kilt (part of his uniform) drops in front of his classmates, which he blames on another student, Violet Quan. Despite ...more
Alan Mathew
Jun 07, 2016 Alan Mathew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
By: Arthur Stale
Reviewed by: Alan Cheriyan
Genre: Fantasy, Survival

Lightning has hunted for its prey, the Starkers for many centuries and only two remain. As it has killed every other member of the Starker family, even his mother. Will they be able to continue their bloodline or will they become extinct? Many awards have been awarded to this book including, The Silver Birch Award in 2010 and in 2008 it won The Fiction Book of the Year Award. This is probably because Arthur Slade has a unique wri
Sarah W
Sep 18, 2010 Sarah W rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, school, survival
Imagine living in fear of going outside because if you go out at the wrong time. This death wouldn't be at the hands of another person or the misfortune of an accident. You have to check the weather before you go out; it's essential to your survival. This has been proven in your family again, and again, and again. You don't live in Tornado Alley. You aren't in the path of a hurricane. A simple cloud can start your hair rising? What so governs your life? Lightning.

Welcome to Newton Starker's life
Erin Forson
Nov 29, 2011 Erin Forson rated it it was ok
Jolted; Newton Starker's Rules for Survival
by Arthur Slade
When I was seven, my parents took me to a farm where I tried to feed an apple to a cow. I say tried because the fence I reached through was electrified. When the cow approached me and I jerked back a little because the cow was so big, my hand caught the fence and BAM! Just like that I felt a jolt of electricity go through my body to the rubber soles of my feet and back up again. It was the worst feeling ever. I know, I know, many of you h
Aug 17, 2011 Lisa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel had such an amazing plot. Imagine generations of the Starker family being killed by lightning. Newton is one of the last of his family members left and he is determined to survive. He has lived his life by the weather reports, always being scared to go outside. He decides it's time to concur his fears and fight his own battle by enrolling at Jerry Potts Academy for Survival.

This is a great novel for younger teens or tweens. It's cute and packed with small adventures. Though a lot of e
All his life Newton has had to be extremely careful. Constantly checking the weather forecast and keeping his famous Starker temper in check. After the death of his mother (by lightning) he enrolls at the Jerry Pots Academy of Higher Learning and Survival where he learns how to survive in any situation. He’s the second last surviving Starker in the world so Newton is trying everything he can to try to beat the odds.

Newton has had a pretty isolated childhood. He wasn’t allowed outside to play wi
An Odd1
Sep 02, 2011 An Odd1 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
"Jolted" is by Arthur Slade. Newton, 14 years old, last Starker alive from lighting strikes. The events are fun, but he doesn't seem to mature. Fine, but goes nowhere.
At Saskatchewan Survival School, he dons a kilt, gains a friend who writes a book in one long sentence, gets a girl and hope for future. His gourmet cooking skills are demonstrated in two recipes (I won't try), for the muffin part of Eggs Benedict, and truffle quiche. His French is lacking, so when he calls France for ingredients,
Oct 22, 2011 Helen rated it really liked it
" Jolted " is about a boy names Newton Starker. Everyone in his family who had Starker boold (including his mother) had dies from a lightning strike, except for Newton and his great-grandmother Enid. Newton goes to Jerry Potts Academy, which is a school for survival. He becomes friends with a boy named Jacob, and enemies with a girl named Violet. In this story, his main goals is to have his name in the Hall of Heroes for becoming first to find the talisman in the Expedition, and to find a way to ...more
P. Christopher Colter
Nov 26, 2012 P. Christopher Colter rated it it was amazing
It's been quite a while since I've picked up a young adult novel, but I struck gold with this one. I'll spare you the plot overview. Plenty of other reviews can supply that. Suffice it to say that Jolted is an original, quirky, witty, and charming adventure/coming-of-age novel about a likable teenager plagued by a very unusual family curse, on top of the normal obstacles that come with growing up.

I knew Arthur Slade was a terrific author after reading his novel Dust some time ago, and Jolted re
Jul 23, 2013 Amanda rated it liked it
Of the few books I have read by Arthur Slade this was not the best. It was fun, it made me cry, it made me laugh (once I think). It just wasn't great. Newton doesn't seem to be a very defined character. He is dealing with the lose of his mom and the fact that he is a walking lightning rod. His family, for some mysterious reason, is a perfect conductor for electricity. The story is suppose to be about how Newton deals with this. He attends a survival school where he makes a friend and possibly ge ...more
Newton Starker is the last of a long line of Starkers. For ages, his family has had a strange anomaly - every one has died from a lightening strike. Some think it's a curse, others think they're angels being taken down by Zeus, but either way, Newton has lived his life in fear and awareness of lightening. He is now starting at Jerry Potts Survival School in Canada, hoping that he can learn new skills to avoid the lightening. But a wilderness field trip will put what he's learned to the test...

Brenda Young
Newton Goddard Starker lives with a mysterious curse. Members of the Starker family attract lightning, and nearly all his relatives have died from lightning strikes.

Newton is determined to beat the odds, and he may have found the answer: Jerry Potts Academy for Survival, a boarding school in Moose Jaw, Canada. Its motto is: Survival Through Fierce Intelligence. Newton’s ready to learn, and to be remembered in the school’s Hall of Heroes.

But for a boy who’s spent most of his life in a protective
Jul 29, 2011 Jen rated it it was ok
This book has an intriguing premise: a boy whose entire family has been done away with by lightning. The chapters are short, and chock-a-block with weird survival tips and facts. It was not as satisfying a read as I'd hoped, due mostly to the tangents that were taken by the author as he stream-of -consciousnessed the main character's thoughts. At first, this strategy was endearing, but it rapidly became tedious as it felt as though the story was being delayed by the tangents rather than furthere ...more
I go back and forth about how I feel about this book. On occasion, I think that the story falls a little flat and doesn't quite meet expectations. But most of the time, I really think I liked it. It's a fun premise and I really like the idea of survival school and the Newton's family's quirky problem with lightning. I also now would really love to have a small pet pig named Josephine. And the more I sit on this book, the more I like how the story ended and how Newton comes to terms with his fami ...more
May 04, 2014 Lillian rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 17, 2011 Angela rated it liked it
Shelves: kidsbooks
Interesting premise. The members of the Starker family line all die by lightning strikes. Newton knows this and has grown up with a set of survival rules for avoiding the fateful strike. Now that the lightning has claimed his mom he is trying to find an answer to why this happens to his family and how he can beat it. To do this he enrolls in a survival-based school in the Canadian wilds. The school is a hoot and Newton is a very sympathetic character. I expect that there's a sequel and would be ...more
Oct 24, 2011 Mittica added it
Shelves: action-weather
i think that people that like the weather and wilderness will like this book. Newton is trying to survive the lighting at a new school while he makes friends,(his family is apparently attracted to lighting), at the end newton went to his moms grave (she died from lighting) to visit and there was a mark on the top as if the lighting didn't stop coming after her even after she died Renee Brown 10/24/11 per. 7
May 30, 2013 Natalie rated it liked it
Read this book about 5 years ago. Great kids book! Had a great storyline that had followed throughout the story. Many problems rose during this story which intrigued the reader wondering how the characters could over come theme each time.

This is a book about a boy whom is cursed. Every person in his family has died by being struck by lightning and Newton is constantly running away from any possibilities of this happening.

Great book! I would recommend it as an easy read.
Jan 26, 2009 James rated it really liked it
Arthur Slade’s Jolted is an easy read, which hides the fact that it is actually quite a deep novel. You will laugh at various turns of phrase and at Newton’s pigheadedness, but you will be thinking about this tale for weeks after you put the book down. It doesn’t hit you like a bolt from the blue, but its effect is still electric.

For the full review, visit my blog.
Debra Gastelum
Jun 21, 2011 Debra Gastelum rated it it was ok
Shelves: ssyra-titles
I finished this book this morning. So far, it's my least favorite of the SSYRA titles. However, I don't want to discourage anyone from reading it just because I didn't really like it. It does have its entertaining parts. But by the end, I still wasn't sure what the "message" was meant to be since the basic conflict was never resolved. If your goal is to read all 15 books, my advice is to get this one over with ASAP so you can move on to some of the better, more interesting titles.
Apr 13, 2009 Janet rated it really liked it
Arthur Slade is always an entertaining read and this title is no exception. From the bizarre Jerry Potts Academy for Survival and its unique course offerings to Newton Goddard Starker himself (whose every family member seems cursed to be struck by lightening) to the simply adorable and strangely intelligent, truffle hunting pig Josephine - this is a fast-paced, witty ride. I do hope Newton returns to the Academy for Year Two.
Jun 05, 2010 B rated it really liked it
2010-2011 Blackeyed Susan nominee, 6th-9th grade
The premise is very different..14 year old Newton is attending a private school,the Jerry Potts Academy of Survival because he wants to learn how to survive something that has afflicted and killed his entire family going back many generations: lightning strikes. Partially sad, partially funny and very engaging.
Christian Brian
Feb 04, 2014 Christian Brian rated it it was amazing
Borrowed this from the library. Didn't get a chance to read it till when it was due to be returned. Finished it in almost 5 hours. Easy to read with short, clinching, humor-whipped chapters that will drive you to flipping a page to the next. I recommend this to all young (and young at heart) readers out there.
Nov 03, 2008 Karen rated it really liked it
This was a fun read. I enjoyed the main character, Newton, and his many quirks. He was surrounded by a cast of equally interesting characters which added to the fun factor.

The setting of southern Saskatchewan was well realized. I liked how Slade wove in snippets of Moose Jaw's history without ever turning it into a lecture. Rather, it made me want to visit the town.
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How did you like it? 1 3 May 16, 2013 02:36PM  
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Arthur Slade was raised in the Cypress Hills of southwest Saskatchewan and began writing at an early age. He is the author of the bestselling The Hunchback Assignments series of books, Dust (which won the Governor General's award), Tribes and Jolted. He lives in Saskatoon, Canada (which really is a real place). Join his creative & somewhat clever newsletter at: what a zany newsletter!
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