THE MIND READER by Jan Slepian

THE MIND READER

Age Range: 11 - 13

KIRKUS REVIEW

 Slepian (Pinocchio's Sister, 1995, etc.) turns again to the days of vaudeville for this surprising, meaty tale of an authentic mind-reading act. A last-minute substitute when his drunken father passes out at show time, Connie Leondar, 12, wows the crowd, bypassing the coded messages his costumed mother sends from the audience to make stunningly precise, accurate observations. Only Annie knows his secret; Connie really can read the thoughts and comprehend the feelings of others. She watches as he grows more haggard and desperate-looking, until at last, after visiting the particularly vile mind of a man named Rusty Shanks, Connie confesses that all the sorrow, need, pettiness, and malice is more than he can bear. Persuading him to make a break, Annie steals away with him, in search of a never-met uncle known as Crazy Joe. The plot has the pace and ambience of old-time melodrama, but Slepian goes beyond types in her casting--even Shanks has a spot of tenderness in his villainous heart, and Joe is far from crazy. Connie finds in Joe's strange and wonderful junk garden a rejoinder for his desperate pursuit of a better view of human nature, and the settled home he needs. Absorbing. (Fiction. 11-13)

Pub Date: Oct. 13th, 1997
ISBN: 0-399-23150-1
Page count: 132pp
Publisher: Philomel
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15th, 1997




MORE BY JAN SLEPIAN

ChildrenEMILY JUST IN TIME by Jan Slepian
by Jan Slepian
ChildrenPINOCCHIO'S SISTER by Jan Slepian
by Jan Slepian
ChildrenBACK TO BEFORE by Jan Slepian
by Jan Slepian

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenSEERS by Kristine Bowe
by Kristine Bowe