Author: Tony Abbott
Grade Level Equivalent: 3.5
Lexile® measure: 670L
Guided Reading: Q

My Recommend Age: 12 and up

Even though the the title of this book is FIREGIRL, it isn't about Jessica, the burn victim. It is about Tom, a seventh grader at St. Catherine's Catholic school, and his class, and their reaction to the disfigured girl. 

Tom is a sweaty overweight boy, who loves Cobra's and hanging out with his friend.  However, his whole life changes the day Jessica enters the classroom.  Like everyone else, Tom is trying to figure out what to say, and how to act, especially when it comes time for prayers and he must choose whether or not to hold her hand in the circle.  Through this and other interactions, Tom realizes that underneath her appearance is a person who has the ability to change his life for good.   

I think when I picked up this book, I was expecting more... And really, for a book with so little action, it is amazing how much plot this story has.  It is very well written and the change in Tom's character is well chronicled. Unfortunately, it is a sad story and even though Tom's character development is for the good, you almost finish and think, "Please tell me there is another one, where everything turns out all right".

Overall, I enjoyed this book and would recommend it. There is nothing offensive, although there are some descriptions of the accident which may be disturbing to younger kids. Also, it is an emotional book, and I definitely think it warrants a parent/child discussion on dealing with hard situations. 

Happy Reading

1 comment:

  1. Just read this recently. Kinda sad. Tom did all right for a kid his age. A lot can be learned from this story.


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