Recommended for Readers
in 6th Grade and Up
1997 - Newbery Medal Winner
Four sixth-grade students, who are each dealing with different family issues, come together as an academic quiz team.
This is a serious book, which may be better suited for small group discussion than independent reading recommendations. The symbolism is accessible to middle grade readers, but they may not appreciate the language use without directed study, Sistine is a strong character, and Rob's journey, especially the relationship with his almost-silent father, is interesting to examine. This is not a page-turning humor romp that invites mass appeal, but it does invite re-reading and thoughtful reflection.
If I didn't pocket my curiosity, I would be giving away more than a bus seat." p. 67
The best discussion questions, of course, are generated by and contemplated by readers. These questions are designed to avoid major spoilers about the book, and to provide a starting point for teachers, parents, and student reading groups.
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