Book Review: The Outsiders and Dope Sick

The Outsiders By S.E. Hinton



S.E. Hinton’s 1967 classic, published when she was a freshman in college, is as appropriate and realistic today as it was then. Fourteen-year-old Ponyboy, his brothers, and his friends are poor outcasts–“greasers.” They have little but always stick together. After they’re victims of the town’s “socs (socials)–kids with lots of money, tough cars, and chips on their shoulders–everyone comes to realize how deep and serious their divide is. (S.G.B. © AudioFile 2005, Portland, Maine– Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine)

I never did read this book when I was younger. Or if I did I do not remember.  But I am pretty sure that I would have remembered. I think that this book is still great for kids today as well as in the past.  The big idea of the book still exists out there today. The clothes, speech, and time may be different, but teens can still relate and I think that they would really get into this book.  It is not on the county reading list where I work, but I would suggest this to students to read on their own.

I give this book ****

* Wish I never read this book.  ** Okay read.  ***This was  a good book  ****Great book, recommend to all!

Dope Sick by Walter Dean Myers

From Publishers Weekly

Using both harsh realism and a dose of the fantastic, Myers (Game) introduces an inner-city teen in the jaws of a crisis: 17-year-old Lil J is holed up in an abandoned building, believed to have shot an undercover cop in a drug bust, while police officers assemble in the street below. As he searches for a way out, Lil J is stopped by Kelly, an eerily calm vagrant who invites him to cop a squat and check yourself out on the tube. Kelly’s TV not only plays scenes from Lil J’s life but projects what will happen if he sticks with his current plan: suicide. Shocked, Lil J considers Kelly’s question, If you could take back one thing you did… what would it be? Aided by Kelly’s TV, Lil J revisits pivotal moments and wrestles with his fate. As expected, Myers uses street-style lingo to cover Lil J’s sorry history of drug use, jail time, irresponsible fatherhood and his own childhood grief. A didn’t-see-that-coming ending wraps up the story on a note of well-earned hope and will leave readers with plenty to think about. Ages 14–up.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc.
Walter Dean Myers is an author that I had never read before I started my student teaching. Not being around teens I had never really paid much attention to the books that they were reading. But now that I am working in a high school it is important that I know what they are reading, why, and also to read it myself so I know what books to suggest to what students. Walter Dean Myers is a great writer. I have read three of his books so far and they all have many real life themes that students can relate to.
Dope Sick is about a drug addicted teen. The school and students I work with don’t have these types of issues, that I know of, drug use is not prominent. But teens like books that will grab their attention. His books certainly do.  Students will read his books because they can be racy, they are short, and they are relatable. But what I can see is that they can take away a bigger message.  This book is telling the reader that it’s okay if you are going through life and you have not figured it all out yet. The time will come.  There is always hope and the possibility of change.

I give this book ****

* Wish I never read this book.  ** Okay read.  ***This was  a good book  ****Great book, recommend to all!


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