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The Wave (Laurel-Leaf contemporary fiction) Mass Market Paperback


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 770L (What's this?)
  • Series: Laurel-Leaf contemporary fiction
  • Mass Market Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Laurel Leaf (September 15, 1981)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0440993717
  • ISBN-13: 978-0440993711
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 4.1 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (226 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,672 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

The Wave is based on a true incident that occured in a high school history class in Palo Alto, California, in 1969.

The powerful forces of group pressure that pervaded many historic movements such as Nazism are recreated in the classroom when history teacher Burt Ross introduces a "new" system to his students. And before long "The Wave," with its rules of "strength through discipline, community, and action, " sweeps from the classroom through the entire school. And as most of the students join the movement, Laurie Saunders and David Collins recognize the frightening momentum of "The Wave" and realize they must stop it before it's too late.

From the Inside Flap

The Wave is based on a true incident that occured in a high school history class in Palo Alto, California, in 1969.

The powerful forces of group pressure that pervaded many historic movements such as Nazism are recreated in the classroom when history teacher Burt Ross introduces a "new" system to his students. And before long "The Wave," with its rules of "strength through discipline, community, and action, " sweeps from the classroom through the entire school. And as most of the students join the movement, Laurie Saunders and David Collins recognize the frightening momentum of "The Wave" and realize they must stop it before it's too late.


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Customer Reviews

The author of the book ‚The Wave' uses a limited omniscient narrator for the story.
GAM Siegen Class 10b
I highly recommend the book for young adults, particularly older teens, and would encourage parents whose teens read this book to discuss it with them.
Tiffany A. Harkleroad
Kenneth G. 1A The story behind this book is a great life lesson on how power can be addictive and painful.
C. King

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 26, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I just finished reading The Wave for my eighth grade english class and I thought it was great. I was only supposed to read up to chapter six for Monday, but I got so into the book that I finished it. I only wish that it was a little longer and that they had spent more time on the ending. It was really good to completely get a grasp on how much American youth will rely on one leader to think for them. Even though the book takes place in 1969, I think the incident could still take place today, because so many kids are still willing to follow a leader and do what the majority is doing. Deep down, The Wave really is a classic story about the effects of extreme peer pressure.
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By GAM Siegen Class 10b on March 1, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The Wave by Morton Rhue
"Morton Rhue" is a pseudonym and his real name is Todd Strasser . He was born in New York City in 1950 and he grew up on Long Island (N.Y.). Todd went to the I.U. Willets Elementary School. The he went to the Wheatly School for junior high an high school. He had trouble with spelling and grammar. Later he graduated from Beloit College. He was a reporter on the Middletown (N.Y.) Times-Herald Record and an adverting copywriter before his first novel for young people, Angel Dust Blues, was published 1979. For some years he supplemented his income as the owner of Toggle Inc., a small fortune-cookie company. He and his wife, Pamela, live not far from New York City with their daughter, son, and yellow Labrador retriever. "The Wave" was the first book he had published under his pseudonym "Morton Rhue". As Todd Strasser he published more than 100 books. He wrote movie novelizations, too, for example "Free Willy", "Jumanji" or "Home alone". He got many awards for some of his books.
The book is called `The Wave', because the experiment, the teacher started is named like that. His intention is to create something, which symbolises movement, direction and impact. Then he gets the idea of calling it `The Wave' , because a wave has these characteristics. In order to give the `Wave members', his pupils, a feeling of community, he also introduces a special symbol and a special salute. The symbol is a circle with the outline of a wave inside it. The salute is to cup the right hand in the shape of a wave, then to tap it against the left shoulder and hold it upright.
Ben Ross a history teacher at an American high school is discussing the horrors of the holocaust. The students ask how all this could happen.
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40 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Gunia VINE VOICE on June 30, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I'll start out by saying to adults out there that this is a book I would highly recommend...for your youngsters. First, it has characters that young adults like to read about--high schoolers, cheerleaders, football players, etc. Strasser also includes minor characters for break away from the action or for comic relief. I know my students enjoyed the characters, especially the girls who enjoyed the interaction between them and the fact that the progagonist is a female. Second, it deals with things that many young adults should know more about and/or have strong feelings about: the Holocaust and peer pressure. Discussing Nazi-ism with my class prior to reading the book caused them to ask many of the questions that the characters asked. The book helped them to understand the Holocaust better and lead to a discussion about peer pressure and the importance of setting your limits clearly before someone in high school pressures you into something (drugs, drinking, sex, stereotyping). Finally, it's a well written book. It has short chapters (everyone likes those), it's fast paced (because the book takes place over a week or so) and the main points are easilly understandable because the author has the characters repeat important information in different ways several times to make sure the young adult reader is not getting lost in sub-plots. In all, an excellent work that more parents or other adults should read with their children.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By BeatleBangs1964 TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 12, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When Ben Ross decides to illustrate how Naziism came into being, he conducts a very dangerous experiment. He insists that the students in the high school history class he teaches stand and salute when responding; he teaches them the credo "Strength through discipline!" "Action through Discipline!" The students quickly respond and one boy who had previously neglected his stuides and personal grooming transformed into a serious diligent student under this new approach.

In time, the students are so pulled under the Wave, as the movement is called. They insist that other students salute them; they conduct Wave rallies and even attack a boy because he is Jewish. Parents pressure the principal to take some action and it is only the teacher's clever way of bringing the experiment to an end with the help of two students who had their own brushes with danger involving the Wave to show just how fascism can be encouraged and developed.

This was based on an actual case in California in 1969 and it illustrates the power of group mentality. An excellent, tautly written work!
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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Gero Schanze on October 12, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
After having read the first couple of pages, I was absolutely unable to put the book down. The idea of the story, that fascism is still present everywhere, even in America, which resents it the most is quite interesting. It is true that the characters are not exactly the most complex ones I was ever confronted with in a novel, and also the idea that a high school class of such a rowdy nature is transformed into such a obedient and disciplined "machine" is quite ridiculous, but I believe that had the characters had more depth, or had the author spent more time on the transformation, it would have interfered with the story's flow.

Now, the main reason why I enjoyed this book so much is that it confronts a theme that too many people are trying to forget, to ignore: the susceptibility of every single person on this planet to fascism. To prove this, a teacher at an American high school starts a very dubious experiment. He founds a "club", the Wave. They have their own greeting, and an own belief (power by discipline, power by community, power by action). But soon nobody sees the Wave as a school project anymore, but as real life. Students that refuse to join the Wave are threatened. The student newspaper releases an article which criticizes the Wave very strongly, and somebody sprays the word "ENEMY" on the author's locker. Things escalate when a Jewish boy is beaten up. Even the teacher who founded the Wave cannot control it any longer. But then he shows the members of the Wave a picture of Adolf Hitler, and says that he is their leader. He shows how wrong the way that they were behaving was, and suddenly, everything goes back to normal.

The ending of this book is truly somewhat idiotic, and is obviously a result of lack of ideas.
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