Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Crash by Jerry Spinelli

Publisher: Scholastic, 2000

Pages: 162
Source: My shelves
Genre: Middle Grades Realistic Fiction

I love Jerry Spinelli’s books. I can’t believe it took me this long to read this one. I grabbed it from my shelves to go home with me over the summer. I’m glad I moved it up the list. This is the story of three young boys and the influence they have on those around them.

From the minute Crash Coogan met Penn Webb he’d decided he didn’t like him. Not only did he not like him he was going to do everything possible to make his life miserable. Then Mike moves in and becomes Crash’s best friend and the two of them make Penn’s life miserable. The thing that bother’s Crash the most is that Penn doesn’t get mad at him or at least doesn’t show he is mad. Penn is a Quaker and doesn’t believe in violence so he never retaliates. He continues to be friendly no matter what is done to him. Now Crash’s sister has become a champion for animal rights, and has become a vegetarian, just like Penn. It is a kindness that Penn shows to Crash’s grandfather that changes things for Crash. What could be so powerful that Crash would choose the “dweeb” over his best friend?

The characters were well developed and the plot was extremely realistic. As I read this book I was almost able to plug the names of former students into the place of the characters. This will be one I highly recommend to my students and especially anyone who loves Jerry Spinelli.

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