We don't do stars...
We don't do thumbs...
We read children's books and grade them in 10 categories:
literary quality
descriptive ability
humor (if attempted)
illustrations (if present)
believability of characters
believability of situations
overall reading enjoyment

There is no grading curve. There are no points for classroom participation. There is no extra credit.
If you disagree, come speak to us after class.

The Grading System

A+.....this means (guess what) we think it's great. So great it surprised even us.
A.....this means it's pretty darn good. A book we'd recommend to just about everyone we know.
B.....better than most. Not exactly Shakespeare for kids, though, if you get our drift.
C.....mediocre. Like the color beige, it didn't stand out.
D.....we didn't like it. There were more bad aspects than good ones.
F.....it reeked of badness. We read it over and over when we are in dire need of hysterical laughter.
F-.....We're pretty sure Dante had a circle of hell for the people who wrote these...and a lower circle for those who published them.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Reporter's Review: Fat Cat, by Robin Brande

Overall Grade: A-
Knopf, October 2009

Fat Cat, by Robin Brande, is one of those books that surprises you with its layers. As with Cat, the main character, you have to get to know the book before you can fully appreciate it—but it’s pretty likeable just from first glance, too. It is a first-person chronicle of a girl’s struggle to get an A and win the science fair—but her research project involves far more than lab work. Cat, to prove her theory on the healthy lifestyle of early humans, must live like one, as closely as possible, for the entire semester. No processed foods. No sugar, no caffeine, no chocolate. No TV. No hairspray. In the course of her research, she changes—she loses her extra pudge and soda addiction, and she gains a self-assurance she had never known.
But, as was mentioned earlier, this book had layers. It isn’t just about a girl’s lifestyle change and weight loss. The character is very real, and her relationships with her friends and family are really at the heart of the book. Robin Brande does an excellent job of weaving the story together, and getting a message across without the least bit of preachiness.

Literary Quality: B
Plot: B
Voice: A
Originality: A
Descriptive Ability: A-
Humor: A-
Illustrations: n/a
Believability of Characters: A+
Believability of Situations: A
Overall Reading Enjoyment: A

Possibly Objectionable Topics*: mild language, kissing, some discussion of sexuality (so...for mature readers)

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