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Breaking Point

3.62 of 5 stars 3.62  ·  rating details  ·  1,175 ratings  ·  134 reviews
How far would you go to fit in?

Paul is new to Gate, a school whose rich students make life miserable for anyone not like them. And Paul is definitely not like them. Then, something incredible happens. Charlie Good, a star student and athlete, invites Paul to join his elite inner circle. All Charlie wants is a few things in return—small things that Paul does willingly. Unti
Paperback, 256 pages
Published June 3rd 2003 by HarperTeen (first published May 1st 2002)
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23rd out of 115 books — 24 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,980)
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Marita Hansen
This is not a nice tale, but it is certainly a cautionary one that I think would be good for teens to read: a lesson about trust, manipulation, and right and wrong. It follows the character of Paul who isn't doing too well in his new wealthy high school. He's a bully's dream: he's not wealthy (he's there only because his mother has a job at the school), he's tall and gawky, and isn't adept at making friends since he was home-schooled prior to this. So, right from go he is picked on. But, a popul ...more
I did not like this. Normally I really enjoy Alex Flinn but this novel was emotionally draining and the characters were NOT likable at all. I know I was supposed to feel empathy for the narrator, Paul, but he just seemed so weak and gullible to me. I found his family drama to be annoying, not something I empathized with. I also really hated Charlie Good, possibly because I kept picturing Check from Gossip Girl in my head...
Breaking Point by Alex Flinn made me realize one very daunting fact... school is probably one of the most dangerous places to send our kids.

This book was far from being a fictional escape and more of a story about awareness and understanding with regards to school violence and why some kids resort to measures of destruction. Very scary and sad to say the least.

Paul Richmond is one of those privileged kids… if you can really consider him that. He is able to attend Gate Christian Academy on scho
Gloria Feit
One thing you can always count on in a Joe Pickett novel: The environment and topography of Wyoming plays a vital part in the plot. This book is no exception. “Breaking Point” starts with an actual true story as its foundation: the Sackett Case, by which the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 9-0 ruling, declared that the EPA had overstepped in its dealings with the Idaho family.

Similarly, the regional director of the EPA in Denver, began an action against Butch and Pam Roberson, acquaintances of Joe and
Paul, a new kid that moved to Miami, is constantly picked on because he's poor. Paul goes to this expensive private school called Gate-Bicknell Christian. Paul is there free because his mother works in the school office. The jocks mercilessly pick on Paul by shooting spit-wads in his hair, mooning him in the hall, tripping him in class, and pouring cola down the slats of his locker. His only friend is a funny-looking girl named Binky. After all the cruelty he's been through, he still thinks he ...more
Sarah (YA Love)

With the incredible popularity in my Y.A. Lit class of Alex Flinn’s other novel, Breathing Underwater, I knew I had to buy and read more of her novels. Breaking Point did not disappoint.

Just like in Breathing Underwater Alex Flinn has developed intense characters struggling with critical issues. Paul doesn’t fit in at Gate and no one lets him forget it. He’s tripped in the halls, his locker is vandalized, and he’s teased relentlessly. To top it off, his parents have divorced and his father acts
Destiny Myers-wise
The book "Breaking Point" is based on a High school student at Gate, a school for rich kids. Paul and his mother moved in town because his mother works for the school. He is extremely taller than everyone else but this one girl. She approaches him and they become acquaintances and she is his only friend. After a couple weeks of dreading his upcoming of the school he meets Charlie Good, a star tennis player who has everything he they think. Behind the scenes he is just like Paul or at l ...more
The violence in this book certainly will appeal to the male teenage mind, and the narrator's desperation to become part of the crowd is something that may students will find relatable. Knowing that I am not the intended demographic for this novel, I find the fact that the narrator is so compelled to do whatever it takes to stay friends with the "cool kids" very believable. What is unsatisfying and hard to rectify is the father-son relationship Flinn depicts. Certainly it catalyzes the decision-m ...more
Zowie Spicer
I picked the book Breaking Point for 2 reasons 1- my school library was giving away free books and 2- it sounded pretty interesting.

The setting takes place at his school Gate-Brickell Christian. Gate-Brickell is in Miami, his new town. He is standing in the registration line, squeaking the vinylized wood gym floor.

In the beginning of the story Paul/ Einstein was bullied by charlie and his friends. Later in the story he becomes friends with Charlie but then charlie is making Einstein do all thes
Mar 29, 2009 Thomas rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Fans of Alex Flinn
This book was as intriguing as it was disturbing. It's about a teenager who moves to a new school and doesn't have any friends, and who eventually gets bullied and pressured into joining a rich kid gang. But, there's a price as well. The plot of this book sincerely touched me towards the end, but it also really weirded me out. At times I felt that the story completely jumped the shark, but otherwise it was a decent read and Alex Flinn doesn't dissapoint.
I tried to like this. Really I did, but good grief. There was not one person in this book that I liked. Everyone (except for Binky) was absolutely detestable. I listened to it and I kept stopping it and listened to the radio, just to gather my strength to start listening again.

What a exhausting book.

I know that Alex Flinn is a popular author. This is the first of her books that I've read. I'll try again.
Jonathan Gillaspie

Paul Rickmond
Binky Lopez-Nande
Charlie Good

This book Breaking Point by Alex Flinn was intense. This book about boy name Paul Richmond that home schools. Then Paul Rickmond want to a fancy private school. After his father has an affair want his teacher mother, then got a divorces. He meets a girl named binky and a boy name d Charlie good. Paul father has a new wife and baby, and he ignores his calls. There kids at school look down on paul because his mom is a teacher.

Paul has been home-schooled most of his life. He is new to Gate High School, a school where well-off spoiled students make life miserable for anyone who isn't like them. Paul struggles to fit in and is constantly picked on by his peers; that is until Charlie Good a model student and star athlete invites Paul to join his group of friends. Throughout the novel Charlie asks Paul for some small favors which Paul accepts, until one day Charlie comes up with an absurd idea that could change Paul's lif ...more
Franco Danino
Breaking point by Alex Flinn overall was a good book. Im not going to say much about this book but Paul, the protagonist has a harsh life. Paul lives at home with his mom and little sibling, in a poor environment. His mother is a teacher at a new school he attends to and his dad... well, lets say he isn't around. Just as Paul attends his new posh and rich people school, he has some hard and interesting times as a student. He later finds himself being used in a manipulative way, and doing things ...more
This book was REALLY good!! this is the most recent book that ive read and it was really good. Alex Flinn has a very good was of taking everyday situations and then putting them into a story and making it interesting. This book got me think about peer pressure in real life and if i would do all the things that the main character was pressured into doing. This book was really cool. It made me think about how far people would really go to keep friends around. If you are a kid in either high school ...more
Richie Partington
3 April 2002 BREAKING POINT by Alex Flinn, Harper Tempest, May 2002

"...I remembered what David had said: You'll be next. I knew it was true."

BREAKING POINT is the latest important teen tale to present a scenario of what may occur when a system condones horrific abuse of outcasts in school. In this case, Paul Richmond, the narrator and main character, is a kid who cannot stop himself from repeatedly taking the bait offered by the golden boy at an exclusive Christian school Paul attends as a resul
This book was amazing! I finished it in one day, again....I am so glad that I picked this book up....

This book was so good and I am so glad that I read it sooner rather then later. This book is about violence in schools...bullying, but yet so much more.

The main character, Paul, has moved to a new state with his mom and is now attending a new private school because his mom works in the office and so he can attend there. Because of this he is an outsider from the very first minute. Because of this
Paul is going to a new school ... uniforms ... clicks ... girls ... puberty ... fitting in ... all take place here . but Paul has always been different ... an outcast kinda ..Paul meets binky and they get along pretty well . . Paul gets knocked down by two guys while signing up for classes and Charlie good comes and helps him up .. that's the beginning of the end. Paul want to be his friend badly .. Charlie is very popular ... Paul and Charlie start to hang out.. play video games ... laugh .. Pa ...more
Paul is new to GATE high school, a private school where his mom has gotten a teaching job. He is bullied and picked on until he becomes friends with a boy named Charlie. Charlie seems like the perfect child. He doesn’t get in trouble at school, he gets good grades, he is very popular with the students and the teachers, and he is in athletics. When Paul starts hanging out with Charlie everyone becomes his friend. He begins drinking, causing minor destruction like knocking over mail boxes, and lea ...more
Breaking Point, by Alex Flinn, was an amazing book. I didn't want to give this book a chance, as I had never read anything from this author, and I chose the book at random from my school library. I am very glad I actually gave this book a chance. This story is about a kid, named Paul Richmond, who joins a new school, and is constantly bullied by everyone. He gets mixed up with the wrong crowd, and gets into some serious trouble. I got so interested in this book, because I can relate to it so muc ...more
Feb 11, 2008 Lucy rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: teen
Paul is your average outcast in a snooty rich private school. He grew up an army brat, moving from neighborhood to neighborhood and school to school along with his father’s postings, until his smothering mother decided to homeschool him. Now, his parents are divorced, his mother’s gotten a job in the office at a ritzy private school, and Paul has to face school with a bunch of obnoxious rich kids. All he wants is a friend, but it’s worse than that. As the scholarship kid, he’s constantly picked ...more
Wow, alright, so, this is a very real-world book about bullying in school and the true definition of a sociopath. I'm angry with the ending however any other ending would have been fake, created just for the sake of having a "happy ending" when the truth of the matter is a happy ending was impossible.

But let's get to the nitty gritty -I disliked all the characters in this story and not just the antagonist who is aptly named Charlie (anybody else picture Charles Mansen the whole time?). Paul was
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kole Morrissey
Alex Flinn does it again. She throws another book out there that teases the mind and make you predict the ending. As before her book takes you on a wild ride from being a nobody in a place full of somebody's. Paul Richmond the protagonist finds out that being a nobody will bring him farther in life then following the "cool" crowd. Changing grades, stealing bagels, and even plating a bomb. Flinn shows the way through a private Christian school. This in nothing like you expect it to be.
Jamie Moschella
The plot of this book is pretty interesting, but the writing takes too much away from it. It is written from the main character's point of view, but it gives too much of what he's thinking at the moment, and makes him seem to be influenced very easily, since he gives no serious thought to his decisions before or after he makes them. He makes many decision that cause problems, but because his reasoning behind his decisions is never any good, the reader can predict that something bad will happen t ...more
Heather Taylor
Depressing. I couldn't even finish it. A story about a boy being bullied, his mom depressed and his dad abandoning him. I read a review and I think it gets worse. No thanks, I read to escape not to bum myself out. Too bad because this authors remake on fairy tales are some of my favorite books.
Payton M
This book was ok. The reason it was not my favorite is because it was really hard to connect with the main character because he is very hard to feel sympathetic for because he makes lots of bad decisions throughout the book. But i think the reason I couldn't connect with the character is probably because he is very different from me so it might be a really good book to others
Dustin C
How far can you go until you reach your Breaking point? This book is an exelent book for all ages. you follow the life of Paul a nerdy sorta boy with a beat down self esteem and it does't help him when he moves to a spoiled rich private school. This book shows a perfect example of a diffrent kind of bullying the bullying thats not physical but mental. It has a moral that everyone in one way or another can connect with. With intresting polt twist and turns and its compelling story this book is su ...more

For a YA book, and considering Alex Flinn's other books I am quite impressed.

Why? I've enjoyed the other books by Flinn that I've read. But this one was totally different from what I was expecting.

I borrowed several ebooks from a neighboring library by Flinn. This was the first one I read that wasn't a spin off a classic fairytale.

Well put together and thought out. You think you have an idea of how twisted things are, only to find out that they were twisted far beyond what you could imag
Justin Juarez

Paul is new to a school rich students that make life miserable for people that are not like them and Paul is not like them. Then something good happens to Paul. Charlie Good, a good star and athlete invites Paul to join his inner circle. But Charlie needs some things in retun that Paul needs to do. Until Charlie wants something big.
I think the book is negative because it has bad language. I also think the book is negative because it seemed boring to me. It seemed boring to me because there was
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I was born in a log cabin in the Big Woods of . . . okay, maybe not. I was born on Long Island, New York. When I was five years old, my mom said that I should be an author. I guess I must have nodded or something because, from that point on, every poem I ever wrote in school was submitted to Highlights or Cricket magazine. I was collecting rejection slips at age seven!

I learned to read early. But
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