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Release Date: 10/12/2010
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About the Book: A group of students are having mixed feelings about starting fifth grade with a new teacher Mr. Terupt. Seven of the students share their stories-the bully, the shy student, the outcast, the smart kid, the one who hates school, the troublemaker, and the new girl. Never did they think they would care about their teacher-or each other. But when a tragedy strikes Mr. Terupt's classroom, the students join together and learn more about each other than Mr. Terupt could ever teach them.
GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: I picked this book up because it's on our state book award list for grades 4-6 (The Mark Twain Award). Sometimes these books can be hit or miss, so I never go into reading the nominated titles with high expectations. Yet sometimes a book comes along that finds the perfect balance of sappy and sweet without being too much of one or the other. And when that happens, that book hits just the right notes and I know it deserves a spot on the list and the tweens that will be reading it that year will love-as will the adult readers.
Because of Mr. Terupt takes on a challenging premise-telling the story of a school year in seven different voices. Author Rob Buyea manages to make each story work and each voice is distinct. I never felt as though there was one character I didn't get to know as well as the others-each one is well developed and they all felt like real students to me.
The chapters are short which helps in making this book a fast paced read. I read it in one sitting and finished it quickly and I'm sure many tween readers will find themselves unable to put it down as well. It's not that it's action packed for full of adventure. I felt like I knew these kids, that I was part of their schoolyear and I wanted to find out what happened to them. I cared about each of their stories and I had to keep reading. I'm pleased to find a companion novel coming out later this year-I won't mind another trip back to the classroom with these kids!
Perfect for readers that enjoy quieter, character driven stories that have moments that will make you laugh and cry.
Book Pairings: Love Aubrey by Suzanne LaFleur, Hound Dog True by Linda Urban
Full Disclosure: Checked out from my local library