The Thing About Georgie by Lisa Graff
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I wish I could give this book more than 5 stars.
It was that good.
I know this isn't really my normal genre, but I have to say, I enjoyed it more than several of the YA paranormal books I've read recently. Lisa Graff is one of my new, favorite writers. Regardless of what is your favorite genre, you should give this story a try.
The Thing About Georgie is a story about a fourth-grade boy who happens to be a dwarf. The story is so real, the characters are so real, the struggles Georgie and his friends face are so real, that I felt like I was watching a documentary (kinda like that show on TLC - Little People, Big World) following Georgie around rather than reading a book. I absolutely LOVE the way the story is written. Most of it is from Georgie's perspective. His thoughts and feelings are so true for a fourth-grader...of any height. I never felt like he thought in a way too old for his age, or that he faced any problems a fourth-grader wouldn't be faced with. Even the secondary characters have things going on in their lives that you get glimpses of to help you better understand and feel like you know who they are. The thing I loved most about the book was when a narrator actually spoke to you, the reader. She tells you to do things: to compare yourself to Georgie, to what he can and can't do. I loved the interactivity; it really made you relate to Georgie as a person. And I loved at the end when you find out who that narrator actually was -- perfect!
You know, schools are constantly looking for new books for kids to have as required reading to help them broaden their understanding of the world and the people inhabiting it. I really think this would be a good book for teachers to utilize to help kids learn that just because someone looks different from you doesn't mean they are any different. We all have things to be happy about, even if they're small -- or huge. We all have struggles in life. We all have to learn to accept what difficulties life has given us, learn to deal with them - or outgrow them, and learn who it is we are meant to be. The Thing About Georgie is a great example of that experience wrapped up in a 42" package of awesomeness.
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