Elyse Bradley's Reviews > Whirligig

Whirligig by Paul Fleischman
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F_50x66
's review
Dec 10, 09

bookshelves: english-420
Read in December, 2009

Genre: Drama/Suicide/Restitution/Forgiveness

Fleischman's contemporary novel relates a story about a teenage boy named Brent who attempts to end his life one night and kills an innocent girl instead. In order to make restitution to the family of the victim, Brent travels across the country to place memorials and finds himself along the way. Told through multiple perspectives, this novel emphasizes various themes ranging from depression and forgiveness to emigrant struggles and American capitalism. I think Paul Fleischman does an excellent job of creating a story that weaves the lives of strangers together in order to bring out the idea that there is always hope no matter what circumstances we find ourselves in. Because of the intense subject matter, I would recommend this novel for readers 16 years old and up, and would even suggest it to be used in high school classrooms.
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