Friday, February 29, 2008

A Small White Scar

If boys can keep reading beyond the first few chapters which tell the back story of "A Small White Scar", they will find rattlesnake bites, a dangerous flash flood, and a rodeo that is so real you can hear the calves bawling in their pens. Boys who like action from the first paragraph will have to wait for the story to unfold. But, it’s worth it. Readers will identify with Will, the 15-year-old protagonist who itches to carve a life out for himself separate from Denny, his mentally retarded twin brother. Both characters are well developed; Will’s anger is consistent with his life experiences and Denny’s thoughtful yet child-like responses are consistent with a person who has Down Syndrome.

My favorite line is towards the end of the book when their father reveals that although Will sees himself as Denny’s surrogate parent, Denny is the one who has taught Will about self-sacrifice, responsibility, and love. K.A.Nuzum
uses beautiful figurative language to describe Colorado in the 1940’s; teachers could use this book as a mentor text and ask students to find the similes and metaphors, as well as to identify the various types of conflicts which confront Will and Denny. Recommended for boys and girls from 6th grade and upwards. (Harper Collins, 2006).Technorati Tags:
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