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Bridge to Terabithia: Trophy Newbery (046594005953-40184) Paperback – 1995

4.4 out of 5 stars 1,539 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Trophy; 3rd edition (1995)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000P821Q8
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 5.1 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,539 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,996,640 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Orrin C. Judd VINE VOICE on August 12, 2001
Format: Paperback
Leslie was more than his friend; she was his other, more exciting, self, his way to Terabithia and all the worlds beyond. -Bridge to Terabithia
Okay, before I make this unmanly confession, let me first state in my own defense that I have two small children and I was listening to the conclusion of this book at a very early hour, before I'd even had breakfast to fortify me for the day. That said, I'll now acknowledge that I very nearly started sobbing...
In 1976, Katherine Paterson's son David was 8 years old when his friend, Lisa Hill, was struck by lightning and killed. A year later Bridge to Terabithia was published, winning a Newberry Medal and becoming, if such a thing is possible, an instant classic. Ms Paterson drew upon this personal tragedy to create the story of a boy, Jess Aarons, and a girl, Leslie Burke, in rural Virginia, who become the best of friends. Jess is the middle child, and only son, of a reticent father, who struggles to earn a living. Leslie is the daughter, and only child, of two successful writers who have moved to the country, next door to the Aarons, for lifestyle reasons.
The friendship between the two kids is hesitant at first, particularly after Leslie usurps Jess's title as the fastest runner in their 5th grade class at Lark Creek Elementary. But both have some trouble fitting in with theirs peers, Jess because of his interest in Art, Leslie because of her scholastic ability and her parents' very 70s social attitudes (like not having a TV), and this shared awkwardness gives them a unique bond. Leslie creates an imaginary kingdom called Terabithia for them to rule over, accessible only be a rope swing over a local creek.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
While I respect parents looking out for their children, I think someone should listen up for a moment and take note of one fact. While many children complain that this book is "boring", we must remember that most fifth-grade children call any book that they did not choose for themselves as boring. In this day and age, children are not satisfied with books, as they require a slightly longer attention span than the television set. Those claims have now been tossed out the window.

Now... parents. Sometimes mild censoring of books is understandable. Children should not read books with explicit sex scenes, mostly because they wouldn't understand what's going on. Children should probably not read books like "Mein Kampf" and get the impression that this is right. However, are we now to declare such simple and basic concepts as friendship and death as "inappropriate for children"? Isn't it the opposite? These books prepare children for the inevitable. Sometimes accidents happen. Grandparents, parents, family, and friends can all die. Fifth graders know what "death" means. Are we to shelter them forever?

Of course not. I read this book in fifth or fourth grade, and I loved it. I started crying, and crying. This book made me feel so many emotions, and that's what the purpose of a really good book is. Should we all read action-packed books with no feeling? Of course not! This portrays friendship and the loss of a friend in such a clear, solemn way. We see how Jesse (the main character) struggles to deal with this. He's only a kid, after all. We feel it all - without actually going through that pain.

Regarding other claims about this book that it is not for children, let us remember one thing. These are children in the book. They think like children. They act like children.
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3 Comments 156 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
CHARACTERS: Jesse Oliver Aarons, Jr., a ten-year-old boy, middle child in a family of four sisters, whose parents are desperately poor; and Leslie Burke, new girl from the city whose arrival forever changes Jesse's life and the attitudes of the students at Lark Creek Elementary School.
SUMMARY: Young Jesse, who lives in poverty in the countryside in Virgnia, has big plans for the first week of school: he's run hard all summer and is sure he's now the fastest boy in fifth grade. Despite the fact that his dream is shattered by the arrival of a lean, lanky girl named Leslie Burke who moves to his school district from Arlington, Jesse and the newcomer become best friends. She never gloats over the fact that SHE is the fastest kid in the class, and the fact that the two are outcasts at school draws them into friendship.
Together the two find, name, and create a magical kingdom in the woods that they reach by swinging across a creek on a rope tied to a tree limb. Jesse and Leslie keep Terabithia their secret, telling neither family nor schoolmates about the hours of make-believe fun they spend there. They name themselves king and queen of Terabithia and play elaborate games almost every day.
Leslie's parents are attractive, educated professional writers who left their busy lives in the city for the simplicity and quiet of the country. The Burkes begin fixing up an old house close to Jesse's, and Jesse proves himself quite handy with carpentry and electrical repairs. When the weather is unfit for playing in the woods, Jesse and Leslie help Mr. Burke at home.
Jesse has a crush on the beautiful music teacher who was new to the school district the previous year.
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