Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Cruisers by Walter Dean Myers

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Walter Dean Myers is an amazing author. I was intrigued by the cover and by the premise of this story. I have to admit, I was a little disappointed. I had a hard time really getting into the story and it felt shallow. The topics that were being delt with were not shallow (racism and broken families). As the main character observes, these are complex issues, but I felt that Mr. Myers didn't go as deep into it as he could of, or as middle school readers can and want to. I'm constantly impressed by my students' ability to handle and wrestle with complex issues.

Another aspect that made it hard for me to connect with this story was the culture. It is set in Harlem and the main character is a black, 8th grade boy. I am a white woman from Maine. I understand some of the culture and dialect of this culture because I read. But I am aware that I don't really get it.

The story is well crafted, and Mr. Myers is an extremely talented author. But this book just wasn't for me.

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