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|Truth as told by Mason Buttle|
Author: Connor, Leslie
Mason Buttle is the biggest, sweatiest kid in his grade, and everyone knows he can barely read or write. Mason's learning disabilities are compounded by grief. Fifteen months ago, Mason's best friend, Benny Kilmartin, turned up dead in the Buttle family's orchard. An investigation drags on, and Mason, honest as the day is long, can't understand why Lieutenant Baird won't believe the story Mason has told about that day.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 2.70
Points: 8.0 Quiz: 193450
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 2.10
Points: 15.0 Quiz: 72784
Kirkus Reviews (10/15/17)
School Library Journal (+) (11/01/17)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/01/18)
The Hornbook (00/03/18)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 11/01/2017 Gr 5–7—Calvin Chumsky, a brilliant seventh grader and the only friend of Mason Buttle, says, "The Universe is amazing. It knows what we want. And sometimes… it hands it over like a gift." Maybe so, but the Universe isn't kind to Mason Buttle. He is a large boy who has severe dyslexia and overactive sweat glands. He is plagued by two neighborhood boys who call Mason stupid and pelt him with lacrosse balls and mushy apples. One boy, Matt, not only mistreats Mason but beats up his own dog, who prefers Mason. Worse than the constant ragging is the memory of a tragedy that happened two years ago: Mason's best friend fell off a broken ladder to his death. Lieutenant Laird has hounded Mason ever since to remember more about the accident. Mason finds his comfort in his broken-down house, the secret hideout he and Calvin create, and a school room monitored by a caring social worker. Mason's family and friends have their own misdeeds and insecurities. Uncle Drum has sold off many acres of the family's apple orchards. Instead of working, he spends his days in a diner. Shayleen, a runaway, tries to fill her life with stuff bought on a shopping network. Connor expertly captures the camaraderie of Calvin and Mason, the overly permissive parenting of Matt's mother, and the suspicious attitudes of the townspeople toward Matt after the accident. The final line in the books says it all: "Knowing what you love is smart." VERDICT A poignant underdog tale that will resonate with many young readers.—Lillian Hecker, Town of Pelham Public Library, NY - Copyright 2017 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.