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“There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them.” More
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company, 2011 [Scholastic edition]
Summary: Hills Village Middle School, aka prison, has lots of rules. To make sure everyone knows what they are, Mrs. Stricker not only reads from her little green book with the Hills Village Middle School Code of Conduct, she gives every student a copy. Sixth grader Rafe Khatchadorian doesn't see it as a code as much as he sees it as a scorecard. Together, Rafe and his best friend Leo concoct Operation R.A.F.E (rules aren't for everyone). Middle school is going to be a blast! Comic-style illustrations complement the text in this fast-paced romp through 6th grade.
Type of Reading: independent reading, read aloud book
Recommended Age: read together:10 and Up; read yourself: 10 and Up
Interest Level: 9 and Up
Reading Level: 4.5
Age of Child: Read by a 12-year-old girl.
Young Reader Reaction: Our sixth grader laughed her way through Rafe's story of life in sixth grade. The illustrations were her favorite part, and she would get lost looking at them and forget about reading!
Adult Reader Reaction: The story is somewhat predictable and the characters are fairly stereotypical. It is clear that this book is aimed at boys, but girls will like it too.
Pros: Readers who love Wimpy Kid and Big Nate will find more friends at Hills Village Middle School, too.
Cons: None, really, because it gets kids reading. I just wish there were some fresh ideas and less stereotyping.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is a book that will be read a couple of times, and then readers will want something else.