Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Review of Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli

Title: Maniac Magee Author: Jerry Spinelli
Published by: Scholastic Inc
Pages: 184
Source: Bought
Rating: 4/5

From GoodreadsManiac Magee is a folk story about a boy, a very excitable boy. One that can outrun dogs, hit a home run off the best pitcher in the neighborhood, tie a knot no one can undo. "Kid's gotta be a maniac," is what the folks in Two Mills say. It's also the story of how this boy, Jeffrey Lionel "Maniac" Magee, confronts racism in a small town, tries to find a home where there is none and attempts to soothe tensions between rival factions on the tough side of town. Presented as a folk tale, it's the stuff of storytelling. "The history of a kid," says Jerry Spinelli, "is one part fact, two parts legend, and three parts snowball." And for this kid, four parts of fun.

I picked this novel up for $1 at our local thrift store and decided I should read it since it won the Newbery Medal. 

At first I was really confused as to what this story was about.  There was just this kid who ran away and was trying to find where he belonged.  But as this story progressed you really got to know Jeffrey (Maniac Magee).  He was a wonderful person and cared about others.  He was lost in life and just trying to fit in, but to not conform to other peoples ideas. 

The writing was simple and flowed nicely.  It was a very fast read, but very meaningful as well.  This novel was not only about what a family means, but also about different types of families and how each family is unique, but share some of the same traits. 

Overall, this was a good read that I think most people would enjoy.   


  1. This sounds like a good book for kids. I love finding good books for such bargains! Thanks for the review.

  2. Spinelli is a wonderful author! You should try Star Girl, too, if you haven't already read it. It's more YA.

  3. I loved this book! I've been trying to read every book on the Newbery list for a few years now (I'm SO close!) and this is definitely one that stands out.

  4. I have read this book at least ten times, I absouletly love the book. I have to read a book and do a project and it has to include racial tension and I thought of this book as soon as he said that. I think this book is a great book for kids and teens.


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