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Monday, December 25, 2017

Restart by Gordon Korman

Restart What if you were a bully who everyone was scared to even look at in the school hallways?  What if you were the star football player who suddenly has to stop playing football?  What if you woke up one day and couldn't remember your life?  Well, meet Chase Ambrose, because this has just happen to him.

During the summer right before school begins, Chase falls off the roof of his house, breaks an arm and suffers a concussion which results in amnesia.  He cannot remember anything about his 13 year life.  Can you imagine waking up and not knowing your family?  As he gets ready to go back to school, he starts to have pieces of his memory coming back but not enough that help him make any sense of his life.  He walks down the hall and kids avoid him, except for Aaron and Bear, who are kind of over the top and not very nice people.  Chase doesn't really want anything to do with them but he feels that if they were friends before, he should still try to hang around with them.  He becomes interested in the video club whose members are considered geeks or nerds.  Chase struggles with his former self and how he appears to be now.  People are having a hard time believing he has changed.  Has he?

I have become a huge Gordon Korman fan.  I loved his last Mastermind trilogy.  In this book he takes on the topic of bullying  and if someone really can change their life by taking responsibility for their actions if given the chance. It talks about friendships.  In middle school going into high school, some friendships stay strong while others take different paths.  In this story, Chase is consistently thrown into situations where he has to choose to do the right thing, and this effects the friendship with his old friends.  Also, the style of writing is told in first person from different characters points of view.  This is a great book to read as a read-aloud since it would lead to rich discussion about bullies, the power of forgiveness, choosing to be kind and retribution.  It not only addresses how a bullying but also the steps the person being bullied may have to go through to move forward with their life.

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