POND SCUM by Alan Silberberg

POND SCUM

Age Range: 9 - 12

KIRKUS REVIEW

After his parents divorce, Oliver is so filled with anger, pain and loneliness that he spends an inordinate amount of time watching TV or tearing the wings off insects. Then his family moves to a battered house at the edge of a pond. The creatures that call the pond home have formed an uneasy alliance for protection against all humans. Amazing events unfold when a magical gem allows Oliver to be transformed into insects, lizards and birds, and to form friendships with them. There are so many twists and turns and the plot becomes so convoluted that the suspension of disbelief necessary for workable fantasy is severely tested. Adding to the difficulty is the awkward format in which the story of the pond’s inhabitants and the human characters unfolds in alternate chapters. That the animal characters are more defined than the humans is another obstacle in what turns out to be rather a mishmash. (Fiction. 9-12)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-7868-5634-3
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: Hyperion
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2005




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