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|Moon over High Street|
Author: Babbitt, Natalie
Twelve-year-old orphan Joe Casimir needs help with the choice he has to make. Mr. Boulderwall, the millionaire, knows exactly what he wants Joe to choose. And millionaires are experts at making choices. Well, aren't they?
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.80
Points: 4.0 Quiz: 149863
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 4.50
Points: 7.0 Quiz: 56371
Common Core Standards
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
School Library Journal (00/04/12)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (A) (00/05/12)
The Hornbook (00/05/12)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 03/15/2012 Although Joe’s parents died when he was a baby, he is happy living with his grandmother and learning all he can about the moon. Why the moon? He’s always seen it as something he can count on. After his grandmother breaks her leg, 12-year-old Joe travels downstate for an extended stay with Aunt Myra. Unexpectedly, the wealthiest man in town takes a shine to the boy and offers to adopt him, an opportunity that feels more like a crisis to Gran, Myra, and Joe. Once Joe opens up about what he really wants for his life, their dilemma is settled with uncommon clarity of vision and purpose. Set in the early 1960s, this chapter book creates a vivid sense of the past as a simpler time. With swift, sure strokes of imagination, Babbitt creates larger-than-life characters in a small Ohio town half a century ago. In this idyllic setting, even the moon, untouched by human footprints, seems relatively uncomplicated and pure. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: The author of beloved classics, including Tuck Everlasting (1975), continues to enjoy a large fan base; expect requests from both young readers and teachers. - Copyright 2012 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 04/01/2012 Gr 4–7—Joe Casimir's parents died when he was only a few months old, and he has been raised by his paternal grandmother. The summer he is 12, Gran breaks her hip days before they are scheduled to visit their cousin in Ohio, so Joe is sent off alone. Once in Midville, he blooms under the comfortable companionship of Myra, her old friend Vinnie, and Beatrice, the quintessential girl next door. Then the richest man in town, Ansom Boulderwald, takes an interest in him as a possible heir to his business. Playing off Joe's fascination with meteors, Babbitt elegantly weaves the metaphor of a meteor about to come crashing into the boy's world to describe Boulderwald's proposal to adopt him and control his future. While set in the '60s, the story has a timeless quality to it, and segments of the writing soar with vivid figurative language. Boulderwald is not portrayed as totally evil, but his power and wealth, plus his wife's ruthless upwardly mobile striving, are viewed as empty goals, while Gran's and Myra's more humble views on the importance of family, friends, and following your heart win out. Joe is a hesitant, reserved kid who only allows himself to open up when he is comfortable with certain people. As a result, readers may have to work to understand his motivations. Nonetheless, there is an endearing quality in shy, reticent Joe and his small, but fiercely loving family, and much to ponder thematically here. Ultimately it will take that special discerning child to appreciate this thoughtful yet quirky novel.—Caroline Ward, The Ferguson Library, Stamford, CT - Copyright 2012 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Bulletin for the Center... - 05/01/2012 In 2129, 96% of the population live on a fixed income for which they do no work; 1% are violent offenders who are locked away; and 3% are eligible for employment in jobs that the robots can’t do, such as professions that require special talent, or the creation of images that attract lots of media attention. Since this last group can earn 100 times more than the minimum, and since children of that group can’t inherit their parents’ wealth unless they too become celebrities, some kids will do anything to become famous, bucking for celebrity status by accumulating a statistically calculated number of hits on social media. Derlock Slabilis comes up with a plan to stow away with friends on a transport ship to Mars, betting that the resulting media will ensure that they are celebrities for life. The problem is that Derlock has other, more nefarious plans, plans that turn his friends into foils and put them in mortal danger. Following an accident that maybe isn’t an accident, the group is left alone on a spaceship they must learn to operate, but the most difficult part is learning to cooperate with one another, as each member of the group has a distinct personality laced with attitude that doesn’t necessarily play well with others. A strong-willed girl named Susan, one of the transport’s passengers, is the focalizer here, deftly navigating the interpersonal tensions; Barnes keeps those tensions taut indeed as he manages to create complex mini-dramas, but he also offers biting social satire and crafts an ending that leaves readers wondering whether Susan might not just be as much of a sociopath as Derlock himself. As with all good science fiction, the science is plausible if not yet possible, and Barnes provides “notes for the interested” explaining technical points. This is geek-lit at its best; fans of Battlestar Galactica, Firefly, and Star Trek will be queuing up. KC - Copyright 2012 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.