Monday, April 21, 2014

No Place

by Todd Strasser

Imagine if your family lost everything, despite trying everything to keep it. How would you feel if you were suddenly homeless. Would you keep going to school? Would you be able to face your friends? Would you even be able to tell them? Would they care enough to help you and not just judge your family? Dan has always been taught that as long as you work hard in school and go to college everything will work out. But when both his parents lose their jobs, and can't find new ones, he learns that that privileged dream isn't quite what he was told.

The recession of the past few years have had enormous consequences on many. But for those fortunate enough to have done well, it's easy to forget those who have lost everything. Many families who never had cause to worry about homelessness no do. Those whose parents aren't able to find any work, kids who pick up odd jobs so that they can buy dinner for their families. Strasser's book tackles a tough subject that is hidden to many kids, either because they are not exposed to it or because anyone they know who is in that situation keeps it hidden. It's a powerful and realistic read about how precarious our situations can be. A small amount of violence keeps in pace with the novel, definitely a good read for teens of all ages.

Genre: Realistic Fiction
Age level: 8th Grade

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