Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Spurt by Chris Miles: Book Review

Book received at no charge to facilitate review.
Jack Sprigley managed to get the raw end of the puberty deal. Not only is he a late-bloomer, he hasn't even sprouted which proves quite embarrassing for a ninth grader. It seems like all of his friends are leaps and bounds ahead of him in the manliness department.

When Jack feels abandoned by his friends over winter break, he handles it in the most cringeworthy way, by bragging how he masturbated the entire vacation. It wouldn't be so bad if Jack kept his conversations among the guys, but the readers can't help but squirm when the girls are included in his big talk to prove he's normal.

As if Jack hasn't proven he's socially awkward enough, he tries to prove his popularity by appearing on a reality T.V. show and presenting a mature and improved version of himself. What starts out what's supposed to be a funny look at the pitfalls of puberty, gets lost in the change of direction.

The novel has a few moments that might elicit some uncomfortable laughs, including a clever reversible cover. The novel is billed as a Judy Blume for boys but it lacks the heart of its predecessor that allows the reader to really connect with the protagonist. The story starts out promising but ends up getting off track.

Word of warning: Let the reader find this one without guidance or he may never look you in the face again.

Rating ★★★☆

Publishing Information

Publisher: Simon & Schuster for Young Readers (February 7, 2017)
ISBN: 978-1-481479721
Ages: 11-14

This book can be purchased at the following retailer.


Ms. Yingling said...

Exactly why I probably won't buy this. I recommend most books to my students, and they KNOW I read them all!

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