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The Absolute Value of Mike Hardcover – June 9, 2011
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About the Author
More About the Author
I travel a fair amount, give speeches, visit schools, etc. and try keep up my blog and website in between. Writing time is precious -- I'm currently working on a several middle grade and young adult novels, as well as picture books and an adult novel. My latest is THE BADGER KNIGHT, a novel of adventure -- I hope you enjoy it!
Top Customer Reviews
He took this book in the car with him to read while going to and from his baseball games and he finished up this week. When I asked him if he liked it, he said, "I hope it's going to be a series!" That's high praise coming from him, as he has always been attracted to series. (The Chronicles of Prydain and Diary of a Wimpy Kid are two of his favorites.)
Now that he's finished the book, I've started it. I'll post some thoughts when I'm done. I just wanted to put this 5-star review up now so Ms. Erskine can enjoy it!
P.S. I agree with my son! I enjoyed this book, a story of a young teen whose distracted, socially inept math-genius father sends him to live with his quirky, down-home great-aunt and uncle for the summer. Sure, all the characters you meet are eccentric -- Gladys, Moo, Poppy -- more so than you'd find in real life, and Mike has uncanny abilities beyond his years, but Ms. Erskine has imbued all her characters with heart and humor. You root for Mike all the way. And, yes, I would like to meet him in another book one day!
I think taking into account the target audience is important when judging a book. The main character in this book is 14 but I think this story is aimed more at middle grade & preteens. It felt like it would be a hit with 10-13 year olds, especially boys.
The Absolute Value of Mike is full of likable, quirky characters. It’s a feel good, coming of age story. It has a great message about being yourself and following you heart.
Rating: 4 Stars – Great Book
Content: There were a couple mild swear words and a few reference to sex/crude remarks that I wish would have been left out.
Source: ARC from Author
So it was with great eagerness that I devoured this book. And it is with mixed feelings that I write this review. Therefore, I thought it would be best to write it in two parts, the first about its literary value, and the second about its value in understanding what dyscalculia means.
Part 1: Literary Value
This book has a lot going for it. For one thing, the characters are all unique and unconventional. While some other reviewers have criticized them as being too strange, I liked them because such people do exist, and reading about characters like these portrayed in positive ways can help promote tolerance and understanding.
Another strength is the plot, which compelled me to keep reading. I found it gripping, moving, and believable in its own world. It was also well written, which is only to be expected from a National Book Award winner. I enjoyed the story tremendously.
Part 2: Representation of Dyscalculia
First of all, a disclaimer: I am not an expert in dyscalculia.Read more ›
I will say as an adoptive parent that the adoption themes in this book manage to stay within bounds of what I see as acceptable-- a lot of literature and media bandy about adoption like it's their territory and bumble things up in the process. This book hits some of the arguments against international adoption in the face, and I think overall advocates well for it. Thanks!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
My 11 year old son did not like this book. He is reading at a high school level and is very sensitive to bad language. Read morePublished 5 months ago by ET
The storyline was pretty good, however I read this book before deciding if I should let my 10 year old son read it and I'm glad I did. Read morePublished 6 months ago by L. Salmonson
Wow! Not what I expected from looking at the cover (in a good way) but you know what they say never judge a book by its cover😀Published 14 months ago by S J Bremner
This book is hilarious and touching at the same time. It's really a unique look at how it may feel to be the child of a person with Autism and how this one beat the odds and made... Read morePublished 15 months ago by Melfish
This book haas a lot of true life meanings in it. But I'm sad that the ending was so abrupt! It was really great!Published 18 months ago by Kate Rohrer
It was a very nice book and it's good for school and for me most importantly.
It's really really nice
Really heart warming, feel good story to more than compensate for all the problems in the world that overlook the simple solutions that this book does not overlook.Published 23 months ago by DM