Jason Kurtz's Reviews > When You Reach Me

When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
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Apr 27, 10

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bookshelves: middle-grade, speculative-fiction
Read in April, 2010

This book is neither fresh, original, nor special. Definitely not worthy of the recognition it has achieved by winning the 2010 Newbery award. I felt like I was reading a book that was written in the Eighties, not to mention it is set in the 1970's.

I understand that this is geared toward a younger (MG) audience, but I felt like it was just to... simple. I guess as a reader and teacher, I need books to be more original than this. I need books that show the reader a little more respect. This is a very traditional, "old school" read. After selecting The Graveyard Book last year, I thought maybe we were in for a new era of Newbery winners. I guess not.

For speculative fiction fair at this age level, give me British authorPhilip Pullman or Neil Gaiman any day...
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message 1: by Nicholle (last edited May 07, 2010 04:01AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Nicholle No doubt, this book was a disappointment. Actually, I felt the author was attempting to make her story be complex; trying to be complex and succeeding are two different things. The sense of place was awkward, the inclusion of the $25,000 Pyramid seemed unnecessary, and the sense of tension innate to good plot was too long in coming. Nothing compelling in the story occured until the middle of the book. I cannot imagine why a 6th grade student would feel the need to keep reading.


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