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4.20  ·  Rating details ·  31,204 ratings  ·  4,555 reviews
In Caitlin’s world, everything is black or white. Things are good or bad. Anything in between is confusing. That’s the stuff Caitlin’s older brother, Devon, has always explained. But now Devon’s dead and Dad is no help at all. Caitlin wants to get over it, but as an eleven-year-old girl with Asperger’s, she doesn’t know how. When she reads the definition of closure, she re ...more
Hardcover, 235 pages
Published April 15th 2010 by Philomel Books (first published 2010)
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Kaylan closure (well, at least how they use it in the book) means a sense of conclusion, resolution or satisfaction at the end of an event/artistic work

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Average rating 4.20  · 
Rating details
 ·  31,204 ratings  ·  4,555 reviews

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Nicola Mansfield
May 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Reason for Reading: I have Asperger's and when I saw a book that featured a female protagonist with Asperger's I was elated and HAD to read the book.

I came away from this book very satisfied. As a female with Asperger's I felt that Caitlin was portrayed realistically. There can be wide differences in how males and females present and I think the author managed to bring those out in Caitlin, though the intense plot does put Caitlin in a situation above and beyond normal everyday life.

A small town
Sep 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult
"Books are not like people. Books are safe."

For a girl with Asperger's who has lost her brother in a school shooting, safety is a luxury she can't reach while people keep staring at her and while her father is in deepest grief. Finding "Closure" is her mission, and as her world is literal and doesn't contain the complexity of different underlying meanings, she goes by her beloved dictionary's definition of closure to start with. In a process that requires incredible bravery, she manages to deve
Oct 14, 2009 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
C.G. Drews
Edit 9/2020: I forgot I even reviewed this book until a comment notification reminded me of it, and the instant flash of frustration and belittlement I got from being reminded it exists. It's been 5 years, I won't pretend to remember this book entirely. But it is an absolute resounding example of "autism moms" writing about how much they secretly resent their children. The book is ableist and portrays autism as a flaw and a burden. And yes, I know, because I am autistic :) There's a difference b ...more
Feb 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars.

A moving story about an eleven-year-old girl with Asperger’s syndrome whose older brother dies in a school shooting and the steps she takes to get closure. Kathryn Erskine pulls this poignant tale off wonderfully – it is sad, but sad in a way that gives the reader hope.

Throughout the novel I had to remind myself that Caitlin was eleven as opposed to five or six; this isn’t a bad thing, and in fact it shows Erskine’s talent for character development. To see her grow by learning about em
Oct 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
The age range for this book is a bit of an enigma. I can’t properly review this without acknowledging my own personal stake in it and giving that backstory, so here it is: My daughter got this book out of her elementary school library when she was ten. It kept her awake at night, caused her anxiety, and she “hated” it. I encouraged (then forced) her to write a reading response about it (because that was the requirement and because she wouldn’t discuss the book with me, though she was visibly ups ...more
This book doesn't lose its beauty or heart for me, no matter how many times I read it. It still gets me, every time.

"'How did you get to be so smart?'

I shrug. 'I'm really working hard on finesse.'

Then he takes my hands in his and I don't even pull them away because he is looking at my cuts closely and I would want to do that too if I saw cuts on somebody's hands so I let him look.

'Do you still really want to do this?'

I don't know if he means to keep cutting the oak tree or work on the chest but
Dave Schaafsma
Sep 28, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-autism
This was inspired by the Virginia Tech campus murders and uses To Kill a Mockingbird as a kind of lens to view the situation. The main character and narrator is Caitlin, who has Asperger's Syndrome and is a little like autistic Boo Radley, a misunderstood mockingbird. Caitlin just lost her brother in a school killing. What;s at issue in both books is the need for empathy, for understanding. There's not much complexity in this tale; I though it needed more of that in a tale that is essentially ab ...more
Jan 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
As someone who has Asperger's, 10-year-old Caitlin has trouble understanding why people act a certain way and how to react to them in turn. She would always turn to her older brother Devon to explain things and situations for her, but Devon dies in a tragedy that rocks their entire community. So not only is Caitlin left without her most trusted friend and big brother, she must learn how to deal with the way her father is now acting, the way others treat her in school, learning empathy, and most ...more
Oct 17, 2010 rated it it was ok
One of my sisters loved this, the other didn't like it. I'm somewhere in between. I thought the writing was well-done: smooth and polished. But otherwise, I thought this was heavy-handed (the author's note is a sad muddle which kind of explains this) and very one-note.

Perhaps this is a small thing, but Devon's Eagle Scout project is a big part of the book, and it irritated me that what is described as his project would not earn him an Eagle--it just isn't big enough and doesn't include the requi
Jun 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Simply the best children's ficton I've read since I was a kid. Tears sprung into my eyes by the end of the first short chapter, and I was hooked. It's complex but not overly complicated, and the Big Things That Happen (as Caitlin might put it) are slowly revealed. I love how the intersection of other characters such as first-grader Michael and class bully Josh are deftly tied together -- the ending is a stunner to pull off and had not one note of triteness or seemed forced in any way. The issues ...more
Denisa Arsene
Oct 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
It was a great experience reading the book. It is so deep snd sensitive. I really like how the author looks deep inside in human's soul.
Caitlin is a litlle girl with Asperger whose elder brother was killed. Helpd by the school counselor she finds her way into a big, unclear world. Her story is told with feelings and love.
I really liked this book and I think one must read it in order to - at least - have a clue about Asperger and to better understand people with Asperger.
Mr. Bruton
***Spoiler Alert***
I don’t get it. That is most likely how you will feel as you read this book. But once you get to the end, you will Get It, just like the main character, Caitlin. In this realistic fiction book, the author does a good job of putting me in the place of a person with Asperger’s while telling a story with lots of emotion. It is not my favorite book, but it certainly teaches some good lessons.

This story takes place after a school shooting, and Caitlin’s family and fellow students
Jul 08, 2010 rated it it was amazing
An excellent addition to the growing list of fiction books with an autistic narrator. Ostracized by other 5th grade students already (because of her autism), Caitlin's role as the sister of a middle school boy killed in a school shooting only serves to make others more uncomfortable around her. Caitlin works hard to deal with the tragic, sudden death of her beloved brother and her father's resulting devastation. With the help of a wise school counselor she also makes progress towards learning ho ...more
Kellee Moye
Reviewed at:

This was one of those books that I never wanted to end. I got to where I was reading so fast, that I realized that I wasn't reading the chapter titles any more- that is how much I was gobbling up her Caitlin's words. I could have read about Caitlin for days and days because her voice is so beautiful. Beautiful and real. This book puts asperger's into a format where others may find empathy for those around them who are a bit different. I love i
Ruthy lavin
Dec 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is beautifully written.
I have a recently diagnosed child with Aspergers and whilst I’m familiarising myself with the term, he is just as I’ve always known him.
This book felt so familiar to me as I recognised so many traits in Caitlin that I see in my son. It is hard not to be drawn emotionally into this story, and I loved every page.
Wonderful stuff and easily 4 stars ⭐️
Stephanie (Stepping Out Of The Page)
Mockingbird is a moving novel by Kathy Erskine in which she tries to send a very important message 'in hopes that we may all understand each other better'. This book was written after the Virginia Tech school shootings, which is of course a very emotive subject. Erskine handled the portrayal of the aftermath of this well.

I was drawn it from the very first page of Mockingbird by the unique writing style and distinct voice of our eleven year old narrator, Caitlin, who has Aspergers. We are thrown
May 28, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kids
This was recommended by someone in my Adolescent Lit. Class. She didn't say much about it other than that it was a pretty easy read and that the main character has Aspberger's Syndrome. I read The Speed of Dark earlier this year and was surprised by how helpful it was in understanding the way people with Aspberger's see and hear the world and how things like color, loud noise, indirect speech, and facial expressions can be overwhelming and indecipherable. I'm hoping this will be a kid-friendly v ...more
Suad Shamma
Oct 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015, own
This was such a heartwarming and moving novel that works for readers of any age. From the very first page, I found myself totally enraptured by eleven year old Caitlin, who suffers from Asperger's and has just lost her brother to a school shooting.

Caitlin is a very logical and literal person, her emotions don't work the way they need to and she finds that to be her biggest challenge. She hates upsetting people, but ends up doing just that on many occasions due to her extreme honesty and her fai
I wasn't actually planning to read Mockingbird, reading it was just a challenge for myself to see how fast can I read( with trying to just scan the words and turning pages so fast that some got torn, my max reading speed was 4 pages per minute ) so I didn't actually have lots of time to think about was has been going on and figure out my feeling during reading it. tho I like the Aspergeristic( is that a real word?) theme that was being used. I don't have Asperger myself but I've had a lot o
Ana  Lelis
I heard nothing but good things about this book. I was hoping I'd enjoy it, but I didn't know I'd like it this much. ''Scout'' is an amazing girl and I loved seeing her development through the story. She learns so much but at the same time she teaches us and makes us reflect. It's so simple but genuinely beautiful. Touching and inspiring, if you're open to it there's no way you won't like it.

Kimberly Sabatini
May 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mg-ya
So incredible. I will love the quarter cut cedar chapter until I die. The boys and I adored this book. If you loved WONDER--you MUST read Mockingbird. <3
Apr 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Caitlin marks time from ‘The Day Our Life Fell Apart.’ The day Devon died.

Her brother was shot at school, by a fellow classmate. He left behind a half-finished Eagle Scout wooden chest, one little sister who is not allowed in his room and a father who now cries all the time.

Caitlin can’t understand how Devon died; the doctors said he had a hole in his heart that couldn’t be fixed or filled. But every time she walks past his closed bedroom door she half expects him to swing it open and invite he
Nov 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is for young readers. It is written from the perspective of Caitlin, a 10 year old girl with Asperger’s Syndrome. She recently lost her older brother when he was a victim of a middle school shooting. She is trying to come to terms with what this loss means for her, her Dad, and her community. It is an insightful look into the workings of the brain of someone with Asperger’s.
Jun 26, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-reviewed
From the moment we are born, we begin learning. We watch the adults around us and mimic their actions and, slowly but surely, start to get the hang of the basics--sitting up, crawling, walking, talking. There is a whole other set of skills that most of us pick up naturally, not really having to consciously learn or practice them--the skill of recognizing when someone is angry, the skill of seeing that a friend is sad and offering them comfort. But did you ever think of what it would be like if y ...more
Nusrat Mahmood
Mar 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
The only problem I face while reading this book is... well... the protagonist reminds me of Caitlin Jenner. just the name people...just the name!! nothing else :v

Well... I like it. I would like it more if I have not read similar books earlier I guess. Still, it's a nice read! The whole story was nicely put together and who does not love a character who sees everything as either black or white. At least I do. Because I envy people who sees things like that as I can't. I am a grey person. so yeah
Oct 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2010
Giveaway of this book on my blog until 12/9/10
Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine is a well written tale of a girl with Asperger's Syndrome. Since one of my children exhibits mild Asperger's like tendencies, I really benefited from reading this book.
See my review:
Very interesting read.
Apr 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, fiction
This was a sweet book - a tear-jerker too, but in a good way.
Chaitanya Sethi
Caitlin is 11 and lives with her father. They are coming to terms with the tragic passing of her brother, Devon. What complicates the process is Caitlin's Asperger's. She knows Devon has died but doesn't grasp the magnitude of what it means. She hears her father crying in the shower daily but doesn't know what can be done. Things at school are also challenging - she doesn't have many friends, the adults don't Get It when she talks to them, she doesn't like doing group assignments, and then there ...more
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Kathryn Erskine spent many years as a lawyer before realizing that she'd rather write things that people might actually enjoy reading.
She grew up mostly overseas and attended eight different schools, her favorite being the Hogwarts-type castle in Scotland.
The faculty, of course, did not consist of wizards, although... how did the headmistress know that it was the wee redhead who led the campaign

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