From School Library Journal
Grade 6–9—Milo has always been "a sideline kind of guy," so his decision to run for President of the United States is a big step. Despite long odds and the fact that he cannot take office even if he receives enough votes, the campaign grows in momentum with local news coverage, a burgeoning Web site, and national television coverage. The story of his six-month campaign packs in elements of politics, teen romance, and self-realization with mixed results. The teen remains a regular guy throughout the experience—thoughtful, earnest, and likable—so most readers will empathize with his triumphs and struggles. At the same time, his ordinariness makes his successes harder to swallow. The issues he focuses on, such as changing the voting age, are not especially compelling, and his words and ideas don't seem unique enough to inspire the impact he makes on the nation. The mobilization of young voters by having a spokesperson their own age is appealing, though, and Milo's actions to capitalize on that potential seem credible. In the teens-for-president genre, Janet Tashjian's Vote for Larry
(Holt, 2004) is more thought-provoking and exciting, and Dan Gutman's The Kid Who Ran for President
(Scholastic, 2000) is funnier, but Condie's novel provides a sometimes intriguing look at the political process through the unlikely candidacy of a 15-year-old kid.—Steven Engelfried, Multnomah County Library, OR
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