|Digital List Price:||$2.99|
|Print List Price:||$11.99|
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Joshua's Island (James Madison Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
Kindle Feature Spotlight
|Length: 248 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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|Age Level: 10 - 18|
|Grade Level: 5 - 12|
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Joshua's Island takes a poignant look at bullying and the effect it has on an entire social structure. No one is immune to bullying, whether it's directly or indirectly; we all feel the pain on a human level.
I have never read a YA novel, but the weird thing is: I love YA movies. This novel was introduced to me on Goodreads; at first I'd hesitated, and then I thought "what the heck". I'd been looking to branch out beyond my usual romance, paranormal, and historical novels, and I never thought in a million years I would love a YA novel where the characters were all under the age of eighteen... but I could not have been more wrong. Kudos to Patrick Hodges for making me step outside of my comfort zone.
The premise of the story deals with Joshua, a brave but scrawny eighth-grader who is a social outcast and who has faced relentless bullying almost daily for three years. Joshua, brave Joshua, is in his last year of middle school, and prays that high school will bring something new, something different. No more being bullied by the `Bully Squad.' No more being an outcast. No more sitting alone on his Island, watching the world pass him by.
Joshua forms an unlikely alliance with a lovely girl name Eve. Now, Eve isn't too fond of Joshua because, like other kids facing peer pressure, they tend to believe the gossip about someone as if it was gospel. Eve is on the fast track to popularity, her main goal being part of the `It Crowd'... but fate steps in, pushing Eve in Joshua's direction.
They bond because of their Science class partnership, and even more once Eve is ousted by Rhonda, the queen bee of the popular clique, because of said partnership. Together their friendship grows deeper and more meaningful, something a lot like First Love.
I highly recommend this book for middle schools and high schools alike. It was well-written with excellent dialogue. The point of views between the characters shift effortlessly, and I found myself eager to read Eve's point of view just as much as Joshua's, even though the story centered more on him.
This was an excellent book. Please let's put an end to Bullying and push to get Joshua's Island in school libraries.
Joshua’s Island is a story about the harsh realities of bullying and explores what it’s like to be the victim – the utter loneliness, the loss of self-worth, the constant fear, and the helplessness. I empathized with Joshua straight away. Bullying is not something I take lightly and I was glad to read a book that sheds light on this horrible subject in a tasteful way. Yes, there are scenes that are cringe-worthy in how this thirteen-year-old boy is beaten, emotionally abused, and humiliated by the ‘bully squad’ and subsequently neglected by all of his classmates who are too afraid to go against the tyranny of the popular clique lead by the ‘Dragon Queen’ (as Joshua has dubbed her), Rhonda. But, when Eve, a former ‘lower class’ student, who over the summer became part of the ‘in crowd’ finally sees Rhonda for the vile person she actually is, her eyes finally open and she truly sees Joshua. Becoming an outcast for going against Rhonda, Eve and Joshua, having only each other, form a friendship that becomes a catalyst, changing both of their lives as they learn self-worth, true friendship, and love. Together, and with a few friends they gain along the way, they learn to stand up for themselves.
Reading this book, I think I went through every emotion possible. I was heartbroken, sad and teary-eyed, hopeful, happy, nostalgic as Joshua and Eve became each other’s first love, and unbelievably angry at the despicableness of the bullies. I wanted to reach right through the pages and smack them all up side the head in defense of Joshua.
Joshua’s Island really spoke to me and I recommend it to everyone. Bullying is an ongoing problem and the only way it can be addressed is head on, which I think this book expresses. Bullying is never something that should be ignored by the victim, or by others who know it’s going on. The tormentors have their power because we give it to them, but when we stand against them, like Kelsey and her band of 5th and 6th graders did in the book, when we ask for help when it’s beyond our control, only then will it stop. This book should be a must read in every classroom.
There’s a Lord of the Flies, feral-like nature to the cliques of tormentors at school, and we’re reminded in a similar way that humanity is learned rather than endemic to us. Joshua, for all that he suffers, and perhaps because he suffers, is the most mature, and adult-like of the kids at school. He’s a good reminder that depth of soul is more than an adequate counter for the shallowness of life. Something that those around him do not have the eyes to appreciate, but I surmise the reader will.
For a first-time author, the writing proved to be intensely disciplined, meticulously edited, and emotionally poignant throughout. Keeping in mind that this book isn’t for everyone because of the nature of the subject matter and the target audience, for the right reader, it’s a gem.
Most recent customer reviews
Very good book. I love Joshua. He is the type of kid I would hang with.Read more
Joshua is a victim of bully's.Read more