Thursday, November 15, 2012

Can’t Get There From Here by Todd Strasser - ESSENTIAL


Strasser, Todd  Can’t Get There From Here, pgs. 198. Simon and Schuster, 2004. FICTION. Language, 0 swears; Mature Content, PG13; Violence, PG13. 

This story focuses on the abuse of children, and through each characters story on the streets we find out what kind of dysfunctional homes they have come from.  We realize that for many of these kids there has never been a choice, but the streets.  We are sucked into their world of living off the streets, dirty hair, black hands from never being washed, malnutrition, prostitution and drugs.  The story makes you feel uncomfortable yet, somehow, confident that they all might survive.  We root for all of them to make right choices, but realize how hopeless their situations sound to them.  So we pin our hopes on Maybe, that she will be okay and turn her life around, and with her we will find a little hope within ourselves. 

G rated language makes this a great read for junior high/high school.  The book has an interesting set up.  Chapter one is the opening “grab you” story that introduces some of the characters.   The farther you read into the story the more understanding you have of the characters.  At first in chapter one, you really don’t like the kids at all, and at the end you understand them and root for them to survive.  I loved the in depth look at homelessness told from the point of view of a young girl, whom we figure out is twelve years old, as the story progresses.  

MS, HS - ESSENTIAL. Reviewer, Kathleen Dale, Library Media Specialist, RJH Library.

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