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Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Chicken Boy written by Frances O'Roark Dowell

Chicken Boy
Tobin McCauley, a somewhat difficult child from a difficult background, has entered 7th grade. His grandma drives him to schoolthe first day, causing quite a ruckus as she pulls up on the sidewalk "like it was our own personal parking spot". The cops know the family, thanks to grandma and Tobin's older brothers. Tobin himself trys to stay in the background, doesn't participate in class, has no friends, doesn't want anyone to pay attention to him. This changes when he stands up for his English teacher - fighting a bully during Phys. Ed. - and ends up suspended. That's when Henry enters his life - Henry, his little brother Harrison, and chickens. Tobin finds himself doing an extra credit project for science with Henry. They go into the egg business along with Harrison.

Things at Tobin's house start changing for the worst. His grandma and his father don't like each other much. He is the youngest child. The house is usually a mess. His father doesn't have much time for any of the kids. DCFS enters the picture and everything in Tobin's world is disrupted.

Chicken Boy tells the story of a family that has fallen apart when their anchor, Tobin's mother, dies. They have to come together, start accepting the changes, and move on together. An interesting story of growing up, maturing, and accepting what cannot be changed in life.

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