Crash (Jerry Spinelli)

Meet John "Crash" Coogan, football player, jock, king of the seventh-graders. Since the age of 6, he and his best pal, Mike Deluca, were mischief makers. Their favorite target: Penn Webb, Crash's geeky, pacifist, vegetarian neighbor. He wears clothes from used clothing stores and always wears a different button on his chest, and never even considers that the two jocks could be the suspects. After Crash's maternal grandfather has a stroke, his mother has to take good care of him, and she ends up quitting her job to be with him. Crash and his mom have to start shopping at secondhand stores to save money, and he gets a taste of what it's like. So when Mike takes a prank over the top, Crash has to figure whose side he's on.Newbery Medalist Jerry Spinelli's book makes you think about how financial status, religious beliefs or whatever our differences might be don't really matter; what does matter is how grateful you are for what you DO have, and we shouldn't judge others for what THEY have. "Crash" is full of comedy, sadness, and the moral definitely will leave you thinking. Recommended for ages 9-14.

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