The Things Owen Wrote – Jessica Scott Kerrin

  The Things Owen Wrote – Jessica Scott Kerrin, Groundwood Books, (9780773060309), October 2017 (uncorrected proof)

Format: paperback uncorrected proof ??

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 1

Genre: realistic fiction

What did you like about the book? Owen is staying with his forgetful, widowed grandfather while his parents are away on an anniversary trip to Las Vegas. Owen is a good student, an avid photographer, but then he makes a mistake and now he has to fix it. His grandfather sent off some important documents to Iceland and Owen’s notebook was in the box. He doesn’t want anyone else to see the notebook so he convinces his grandfather on a last-minute trip from Alberta to Iceland to retrieve the notebook and deliver another item. Along the way, the secret of the notebook is revealed (he plagiarized a poem) and he discovers his grandfather’s forgetfulness is more serious than he thought. Honestly, I didn’t like very much about this book.

Anything you didn’t like about it? I don’t think this is a children’s book. The back suggests it is for grades 4 – 7. There are far too many conversations between adults, however (including one about how much chili powder to put in a casserole), and the storyline just isn’t that interesting. There is also a lot of dialogue about fairly unimportant details, as well as a plug for one of the author’s other books (Owen’s grandfather is reading it on the plane). I had trouble reading the book.

To whom would you recommend this book? I don’t recommend it.

Who should buy this book? I don’t recommend it.

Where would you shelve it ? realistic fiction

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Laura Gardner, Dartmouth Middle School, Dartmouth, MA

Date of review: July 11, 2017

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