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BECAUSE OF MR. TERUPT by Rob Buyea

BECAUSE OF MR. TERUPT

By Rob Buyea

Age Range: 9 - 12

Pub Date: Oct. 12th, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-385-73882-8
Publisher: Delacorte

During a school year in which a gifted teacher who emphasizes personal responsibility among his fifth graders ends up in a coma from a thrown snowball, his students come to terms with their own issues and learn to be forgiving. Told in short chapters organized month-by-month in the voices of seven students, often describing the same incident from different viewpoints, this weaves together a variety of not-uncommon classroom characters and situations: the new kid, the trickster, the social bully, the super-bright and the disaffected; family clashes, divorce and death; an unwed mother whose long-ago actions haven't been forgotten in the small-town setting; class and experiential differences. Mr. Terupt engineers regular visits to the school’s special-needs classroom, changing some lives on both sides. A "Dollar Word" activity so appeals to Luke that he sprinkles them throughout his narrative all year. Danielle includes her regular prayers, and Anna never stops her hopeful matchmaking. No one is perfect in this feel-good story, but everyone benefits, including sentimentally inclined readers. (Fiction. 9-12)