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I Kill The Mockingbird

Review

I Kill The Mockingbird

It is the summer right before friends Lucy, Elena and Michael enter high school, and the last thing they want to be thinking about is a required summer reading list. They are insulted that their English teacher, Miss Caridas, has given them such a long list of books to read, especially since they’ve read most of them numerous times. Their old English teacher, Mr. Fat Bob Nowak, who died of a heart attack in the school cafeteria, would have never required them to read so many. Actually, before he died, he told his students to read only one: TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. Mr. Nowak wanted his students to be engaged, thoughtful readers, and Lucy, Elena and Michael saw that being snuffed out the minute Miss Caridas put the long summer reading list on the chalkboard.
 
Besides, Lucy, Elena and Michael have plenty of other things to worry about. Michael is caught up in baseball and wants to find ways to become a better player. Elena continues to live with her uncle Mort and work in his bookshop, and is busy prodding Lucy to ask out Michael. Lucy would love to move out of the friend zone with Michael, but she is very focused on helping her mother adjust to living at home again after going into remission from life-threatening cancer. The three friends don’t need to read TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD anyway; they’ve read it multiple times. They do wish, though, that more teenagers would actually take the time to read it --- and that gives them an idea.
 
What’s the best way to make something as ordinary as a classic children’s book extraordinary and desirable? You make it disappear! Lucy, Elena and Michael start hiding copies of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD in bookstores, libraries, supermarkets, and any other place they can get to with relative ease in their local area. Like any sensible teenagers who wish to create a conspiracy surrounding a missing book, Lucy, Elena and Michael take to the Internet and social media and create a website called www.iKILLtheMOCKINGBIRD.com and instantly become self-titled literary terrorists.
 
If you’re plugged in, then you know what happens when something goes viral. Lucy, Elena and Michael watch as their conspiracy starts spreading beyond their local community and then beyond their state. At first they are thrilled that people are becoming interested in reading a literary classic, but when their ill- thought-out plan starts veering out of control, they aren’t sure how to end it. When thousands of people are involved, it’s going to take something big to stop the conspiracy. Oh, and not getting caught would be great, too.
 
Just in time for the end of the school year, I KILL THE MOCKINGBIRD is a book you’ll gladly add to your summer reading list. In addition to social media conspiracies, I KILL THE MOCKINGBIRD is also full of life lessons that made the classic book so famous. There are three well-developed teenage characters who are just on the brink of entering the high school rat race, and who long for a little more out of their summer break than afternoons wasted by the pool or in a shopping mall. Perhaps you’re in the same position as Lucy, Elena and Michael. If so, then get inspired and make your summer all that you want it to be --- and make sure it includes reading a good book or two!

Reviewed by Benjamin Boche on May 20, 2014

I Kill The Mockingbird
by Paul Acampora

  • Publication Date: May 20, 2014
  • Genres: Children's, Youth Fiction
  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
  • ISBN-10: 1596437421
  • ISBN-13: 9781596437425