Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Runt by Nora Raleigh Baskin

Middle school is hell, and you just gotta get through it. But if it's truly that bad for everyone, why does it seem like some people have it made in the shade?

This book tells a couple different stories - some boys, some girls - and in the course of the back-and-forth, ahead in time and back again, we get multiple perspectives on the action: a boy pees on another boy's shoe, gossip flies online, a fake online profile is created.

What becomes clear is that there are at least two sides to every story, and maybe bullying isn't a black-or-white thing. Was the victim innocent? How long does it take for a dish of revenge to get cold?

This is a book that should (and I hope it does) get a lot of attention with middle schoolers, their parents, and their teachers. There's a lot to talk about: what would you do? Have you ever seen something like this? It's hard to rise above - is it even possible?

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