Author: Wymer, Tracy Edward
Eddie is determined to win the Seventh Grade Science Symposium and honor his dad by proving the elusive Golden Eagle is real.
|Accelerated Reader Information:
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.60
Points: 7.0 Quiz: 184702
Kirkus Reviews (04/15/16)
School Library Journal (05/01/16)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (07/16)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 05/01/2016 Gr 5–7—Thirteen-year-old Eddie Wilson is determined to win the seventh grade Science Symposium prize, as his father did, and to spot the rare golden eagle his father claimed to have seen as a young birder. But no one believed Joe Wilson, who had a reputation for wild exaggeration, and Eddie, now mourning his father's death, grapples with uncertainty about his father's honesty. He develops a friendship with Gabriela, a new neighbor from Brazil whose father is deaf and keeps exotic birds. Eddie is filled with adolescent angst but tempers his fear and frustration in dealing with Mouton, a classmate with Tourette's syndrome who taunts and bullies him and has stolen and trashed his bicycle. When his science teacher pairs him with Mouton for the Symposium project, Eddie must decide how to cooperate with his partner and harness Mouton's hidden artistic talent to devise an award-worthy project that will restore his father's good name. Descriptive bird references add texture to the fast-paced and absorbing first-person narrative and balance the emotional elements of the story. Eddie, an avid birder and artist himself, is a sympathetic character dealing with complex personal and practical issues that include antagonism toward his science teacher and concern over his mother's smoking. - Copyright 2016 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Bulletin for the Center... - 07/01/2016 Since his dad died, Eddie has obsessed over finding the golden eagle his father doggedly maintained he had seen, though his insistence led to his becoming something of a joke in their tiny town. Eddie’s school’s annual Seventh Grade Science Symposium provides just the vehicle for Eddie’s pursuit of the elusive bird; unfortunately, he’s been paired with Mouton, a friend-turned-bully with Tourette’s Syndrome who also possesses remarkable artistic talent. Cooperation creates understanding and even friendship between the two boys as Eddie navigates issues around his father’s integrity as a birder, a teacher who seems to have it in for him, and his deep, abiding grief. Wyman gets a surprising amount of mileage out of birding; readers will share Eddie’s frustration at fruitless expeditions, sadness at doubting his father, and elation when he finally spies the golden eagle. Introspective and insightful yet believably uncertain and unknowing, Eddie makes a resonant protagonist, and indications of his family’s low socioeconomic status, further strained after his father’s passing, add subtle tension to this quiet novel, as does his volatile relationship with Mouton. This would satisfy budding naturalists but also suit readers wrestling with grief or the confusing feeling of doubting a beloved adult. AA - Copyright 2016 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
Booklist - 07/01/2016 Introducing Eddie Wilson, a seventh-grader still mourning the loss of his father and determined to live up to the legacy left behind. For Eddie, this means winning the annual Science Symposium and tracking down the elusive Golden Eagle, which, according to his dad, had wings wider than a creek and talons the size of bulldozer claws. But as the competition looms nearer, nothing is going according to plan. Mr. Dover, Eddie’s science teacher, seems determined to see Eddie fail, while bully Mouton will stop at nothing to make Eddie’s life miserable. Meanwhile, Eddie is no closer to impressing Gabriella, the new girl at school. Although Eddie’s backstory is touching, his narrative voice is unbalanced, and bits and pieces of plot are developed, then discarded. Still, Wymer weaves together action, internal monologue, and enough birding facts and bird call mnemonics to satisfy most readers and delight any budding ornithologist. The emotional and neatly packaged ending as well as the book’s unique focus will keep many young readers fully invested in Eddie’s story. - Copyright 2016 Booklist.