Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Angry Management (2009)

Chris Crutcher has brought together characters from his previous book (without aging them) and put them together in an anger management course led by a retired teacher/cowboy who gives us a brief introduction of each of them as a way of reminding us of their previous history. Kids from foster homes, abused kids, black/gay kids, obese kids, and all of them mad.

Amazingly, the ones best suited to help them are other damaged teens. They understand what it is like to live in situations that most people can't understand and while they can't solve the problems, they can listen.


Montana grabs Tara and holds her tight.

Tara squirms a moment, then surrenders. How do you tell somebody that? How can she tell her mother that feeling bad feels right when everything in your world is wrong; that at first you need your foster parents to make things familiar, which in this case means f___d up. It makes such sense at a heart level, but even for a wordsmith like Montana West, it's impossible to articulate. It's so true, and it sounds so crazy.

The author is proud that his books have been challenged and removed from libraries because he puts in them things that many adults don't want to hear, or don't want their kids to hear. It is, of course, a shame, because what he has to say should be heard by every teen and every parent of a teen.

I highly recommend this book.

My rating for this book: +++++

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