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BRENDAN BUCKLEY’S UNIVERSE AND EVERYTHING IN IT by Sundee T. Frazier

BRENDAN BUCKLEY’S UNIVERSE AND EVERYTHING IN IT

By Sundee T. Frazier

Age Range: 10 - 12

Pub Date: Oct. 23rd, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-385-73439-4
Publisher: Delacorte

Ten-year-old Brendan Buckley, future scientist, expects to have a busy summer, between practicing Tai Kwon Do, spending time with his parents and paternal grandmother and writing in the notebook he fills with all of his questions and their answers. Then he runs into his maternal grandfather, Ed, at a rock-and-mineral show. They’ve never met before, and all Brendan knows is that his mother won’t talk about why. Initially unsure, Brendan decides to get to know his grandfather in secret. When they find out, his parents reveal that it is Ed’s bigotry concerning mixed-race couples—Brendan’s mother is white and his father is black—that has resulted in his absence. No stranger to racism, Brendan attempts to answer the question of why anyone would feel this way, as he simultaneously tries to find a way to bring his family together. Brendan is an appealing character with a sense of honor, and if the ending is a bit pat, Brendan’s curiosity and intelligence compensate. A good, accessible selection to inspire discussion of racism and prejudice. (Fiction. 10-12)