Guys Write for Guys Read
by Jon Scieszka
School Library Journal
Starred Review. Gr 5-9–Scieszka has put together a diverse and fast-paced anthology of scribblings and stories that deserves a permanent place in any collection serving middle graders. The book features brief contributions from scores of heavyweight authors and illustrators like Walter Dean Myers, Dan Gutman, Chris Crutcher, Avi, Brian Jacques, Dav Pilkey, Stephen King, Daniel Pinkwater, Jerry Spinelli, Will Hobbs, Chris Van Allsburg, Laurence Yep, and frequent collaborator Lane Smith. If there's one overarching theme here, it's the simple but important message: "read what you like, when you like, whatever that happens to be." Several other themes reappear in multiple selections. Among them are the importance of fathers, what it is to become a "real" man, how childhood reading predicted and shaped an author's future, adventures and misadventures in sports, why it's okay to be a "guy's guy," and, conversely, never being a "guy's guy" and finding out that that's okay, too. Boys who are constantly doodling–even when they're not supposed to–will be particularly inspired by contributions from successful illustrators like Tony DiTerlizzi, Timothy Basil Ering, and Brett Helquist, who've dug up their old, shaky drawings from parents' attics to show boys just what they were creating when they were kids. While the anthology arguably contains not one single masterpiece, there's something undeniably grand about this collective celebration of the intellectual life of the common boy.–Jeffrey Hastings, Highlander Way Middle School, Howell, MI
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
|distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.: |