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Comment: This item is in good condition. All pages and covers are readable. There are no stains or tears. Dust jacket is present if applicable. May contain small amounts of writing and/or highlighting. Spine and cover may show signs of wear. May not contain supplementary items. We ship within 1 business day. Big Hearted Books shares its profits with schools, churches and non-profit groups throughout New England. Thank you for your support!
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Break Paperback – August 25, 2009

4.0 out of 5 stars 52 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Seventeen-year-old Jonah is on a quest to break every bone in his body, and his best friend Naomi is there to film each attempt, as he crashes his skateboard or dives into an empty pool. His 16-year-old brother, Jesse, has deadly food allergies and their parents aren't vigilant about keeping the house safe, so that job has fallen to Jonah, who is weighed down by the responsibility. He breaks his bones so that as he heals he becomes stronger ("It's sort of a natural bionics thing. Break a leg, grow a better leg. Break a body, grow a better body"), a belief treated with almost religious reverence from some, like Naomi (who calls it a "revolution"), but that eventually results in his being institutionalized. Moskowitz, who wrote the story while a high school junior, paces the story well and creates in Jonah a believable and complex protagonist. Love interest Charlotte is one-dimensional, and Naomi strains credulity as she eggs Jonah on. But the brothers' relationship is poignant, and Moskowitz's depiction of Jonah and Jesse's respective traumas-and a family drowning in dysfunction-are viscerally real. Ages 14-up.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal

Grade 9 Up—Seventeen-year-old Jonah is determined to break every bone in his body, and to this end he stages accidents that are quite disturbing and painful to read. His friend Naomi encourages him and videos the sickening stunts, which include jumping into an empty 14-foot-deep swimming pool. Jonah's dysfunctional activity stems from family dynamics: parents who argue; an infant brother who wails incessantly for no known reason; and a 16-year-old brother who has life-threatening food allergies that frequently land him in the ER. Jesse is a constant worry for Jonah, who believes his brother is primarily his responsibility. There's plenty of teen angst and drama, but the resolution feels rushed and somewhat implausible. Jonah escapes from a juvenile psychiatric unit with the help of Mackenzie, a teen volunteer at the facility who has access to the isolation unit and knowledge of security codes. Mackenzie is enamored with Jonah's explanation of his self-destructive actions, calling them "adorable." Later that evening Jonah learns that Jesse and Naomi are a couple; this inexplicable union is also crucial to the climax. Despite its shortcomings, the unique, emotional story line may draw in teens who want a quick read and are willing to overlook some of the unlikely plot twists.—Patricia N. McClune, Conestoga Valley High School, Lancaster, PA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Simon Pulse (August 25, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416982752
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416982753
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.7 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #778,425 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Brittany Moore VINE VOICE on October 8, 2012
Format: Paperback
Jonah wants to break every bone in his body, because broken bones grow back stronger. His slightly younger brother Jesse is allergic to everything and can practically only eat protein shakes and apples. His baby brother won't stop crying. So Jonah knows it's up to him to be the strong one. He has to take care of Jesse. How can he do a good job though, when he keeps breaking his bones? The answer is, he can't. His self-destruction send him down a bad path and Jonah may be the one who needs the most help.

This was a very interesting story. The concept of someone breaking their bones so that they can be stronger makes no sense to begin with. Ones Jonah explains the whole reason of why he believes it though, it makes more sense...maybe too much sense. Jonah was an okay character, he had a lot of stuff going on though. I'd go a little crazy to if I were in a house with a baby that wails non-stop and a brother who could die just by breathing the same air as milk or eggs. It's a lot of stress and pressure with no relief. It was nice getting to know Jesse too. He didn't let his allergies stop him from excelling at other things, like sports, but he did not want to build up a food tolerance. He had very bad feelings towards food, as I imagine anyone in his position would. I didn't care for Charlotte much. She didn't seem to fit in with the other characters very well. She was sort of just a normal busybody. *shrug* I did like Naomi though. I loved how intense she was when she got into something. She was a little spitfire and a good person. She was a bit destructive though, but she made a lot of good points.

I was really confused on Jonah's whole broken bone theory until closer to the end when he explains it in full.
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Format: Paperback
Right off I can tell you that this book is not for the faint of heart...more than a few times I found myself skimming through the sections where Jonah describes his many injuries on his path to breaking every bone in his body. On the other hand that is always a sign of great writing when the reader gets such a visual representation of the written word that it causes an actual physical reaction (in other words me getting queasy!)

Jonah has a lot of issues...a brother with deadly (this is no exaggeration) food allergies. I mean the poor guy can basically only drink these special blended drinks and he needs a lifetime supply of Benedryl...a baby brother who cries non-stop day and night and, well, obviously distracted parents. Jonah is constantly stressed out about the health of his brother who seems to be in and out of the hospital with horrible allergy attacks that almost bring him to the brink of death!

With the help of his best friend Naomi, who is filming his "accidents" as some sort of bizarre documentary, Jonah sets out on his goal of breaking bones. Whether its skateboarding or using a hammer...lets just say mission accomplished. He has to get pretty creative when trying to explain the injuries and before too long, he just can't hide it anymore.

I think that most readers will see the significance of Jonah hurting himself soon after something happens that causes more stress or anxiety for him. Most of the time when we think of self-mutilating, we think of girls who cut themselves or as a lot of teens refer to them "cutters". Jonah's story shows us the "macho" side of self-mutilating, which is almost more scary because I think a lot of us might write it off as "boys will be boys" especially in the age of TV shows like Jack Ass and Scarred.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Bought the Kindle version.
It was a interesting book. A very quick read
that kept my interest. I think I've read this about 3 times.
The book is about a guy named Jonah who has a complicated family life. His brother Jesse is allergic to everything and his baby brother will cries no stop.Jonah is on a mission to break every bone in his body. To be stronger. I feel like the book was well written.It felt like you knew the characters.
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Format: Paperback
I loved Hannah Moskowitz's newer releases, but for some reason I'd been holding off on reading her debut. Both because just generally, it can be kind of disappointing to have seen what a writer can do now, and then go back to their possibly-not-as-strong debut, and just because of the subject matter - I like darker YA books, but the whole bone-breaking thing just seemed a bit too disturbing. But I never should have doubted Hannah Moskowitz - while it's not going to be my favorite of her books (that's Gone, Gone, Gone), I did really enjoy Break.

The whole bone-breaking thing seemed kind of absurd at first, but within the context of the novel, it totally makes sense. It's painful to read about at times, but Hannah Moskowitz's writing makes it so compelling you can't even think about putting the book down. And of course, the bone-breaking storyline isn't all that Break is about. This seems to be a pattern for Hannah Moskowitz's books: they're usually marketed for one plot, but then turn out to be so much more. And if you thought Jonah breaking his own bones was intense, it's got nothing on the rest of this novel.

More so than the bone-breaking, Jonah's family is the main focus of the novel. (Although, of course, that wouldn't have made for a particularly intriguing back cover.) The family set-up is the most unique I've read about in a long time. I don't even want to talk about it much because I think it works best when you discover the intricacies of the family dynamics on your own. Jesse and Jonah have an incredibly complex brother-brother relationship, proving once again that Hannah Moskowitz is the best at writing sibling relationships.
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