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.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Reporter's Review: Lucky Breaks, by Susan Patron

Atheneum, 2009
Overall Grade: B

Lucky is about to celebrate her eleventh birthday—when, she anticipates, she will become intrepid. But her intrepidness is not challenged until a girl named Paloma comes to town…and Lucky promises that she won’t get them into any trouble. In trouble and out of it, Lucky learns the value of friends, the meaning of family, and other small lessons with big meanings.
Lucky Breaks was a sweet, easy-to read story, with absolutely adorable, huggable characters. It is, however, a book for readers who shy away from plot—not until page 125 does any conflict develop, and it is quickly resolved with a few heartfelt conversations. Lucky’s voice is unique, but one wonders if it wouldn’t be more so with use of first-person-narration; often the author’s voice steps in, sounding very adult, and distracting the reader from the story.

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

Possibly objectionable topics*: language , including: one mild curse, mention of a male body part (should we say, again?), and bathroom humor referring to a burro.

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