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Kinda Like Brothers Hardcover – August 26, 2014

4.4 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Realistic fiction for tweens
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 4–6—Life is a very complicated affair if you happen to be 11-year-old Jarrett of Newark, New Jersey. He is asthmatic and about to fail summer school. His mother takes in almost any foster child, including kids with special needs. The last straw is the arrival of two siblings, the developmentally challenged toddler, Treasure, and her tall, athletic 12-year-old brother, Kevon, who will be sharing Jarrett's room. Jarrett has had to share his mother's attention for as long as he can remember but never before had to give up his personal space. The friction between Jarrett and Kevon gains momentum when Kevon makes the basketball team and shows off for the girls, including Caprice, the girl Jarrett has a crush on. The protagonist is bound to get even at all costs. He spies on Kevon and his social worker, digging for any way to humiliate his foster brother without thought to the consequences. A pattern of mutual cruelties is set into motion which rapidly escalates on both sides. Plot and characters are realistic and engaging. References to farts, foot odor, and disgusting toenails abound. Gross-out humor aside, this is a solid story about dealing with problems that threaten to overwhelm and the importance putting one's own personal pain aside to understand the pain of another.—Kathy Cherniavsky, Ridgefield Library, CT


Praise for Coe Booth's BRONXWOOD:

"Readers who have been with Tyrell from the beginning as well as those meeting him for the first time will be utterly invested in his future." -- KIRKUS REVIEWS

"Tyrell tells his own story in language that never misses in its gritty authenticity." -- BULLETIN OF THE CENTER FOR CHILDREN'S BOOKS

"A compelling tale of a teen still trying to make the right choices despite the painful consequences." -- SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL

"Booth paints a vivid picture of urban African American life." -- VOYA

Praise for Coe Booth's TYRELL:

A 2007 LA TIMES Book Prize Winner for Young Adult Fiction

An ALA Best Book for Young Adults

"A gritty and gripping first novel." -- THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW

* "Heartbreakingly realistic. . . . Unlike many books reflecting the contemporary street scene, this one is more than just a pat situation with a glib resolution; it's filled with surprising twists and turns that continue to the end." -- BOOKLIST, starred review

"The definitive tale of the modern African American urban youth." -- VOYA

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Press (August 26, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0545224969
  • ISBN-13: 978-0545224963
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #795,178 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Booth reminds me a lot of Walter Dean Myers. Dealing with similar inner city lives of young adults, Booth characterizes 11 year-old Jarrett as a young African-American boy struggling with school and getting enough attention from his mom who has decided to open their home to foster children. Worried about repeating the sixth grade, Jarrett now has to room with Kevon, a 12-year-old foster child. Soon, Jarrett realizes that Kevon's distance comes from a long history of sadness. Coping with Kevon's presence, Jarrett turns his attention to making horror movie trailers with his friend.
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Format: Hardcover
I liked this book on a few different levels. I liked it because it showed diversity of several different types, and we desperately need more of this in children and young adult books today. I also liked the break through of the mental health stigma, people, especially children and young adults need to not only know it is out there, but it is OK and there is help not only for the person suffering from it but the family as well, no one should suffer in silence. And the biggest reason I choose to pick this book was Jarrett and his learning problems. You see Jarrett and I are a lot alike. I spent most of my school years struggling and playing catch up, I didn't even really start to read until half way through my second grade year when everyone figured out I was really good at faking it, until test time that is. This book is a awesome read for middle grade and young adult guys, however girls will surely appreciate the finer point as well, but I think this book will especially appeal to reluctant readers of all ages or genders, it is that good!

Jarrett's mom is a foster mother for babies, but when a special case comes her way she can't turn down the babies older brother as well, after all it is only for a few days until they find another foster home, so Jarrett is told. Now Jarrett is stuck sharing his room, friends, and life with the older, cooler, smarter Kevon and it has been a lot more than a few days. Will they ever learn to get along or will Kevon's dad come to get him and his little sister Treasure first?

This really is a awesome book and if you get it through kindle you can pick up the audible.com version as well discounted and I must say the narrator John Clarence Stewart Does a outstanding job, well worth it, he was awesome!
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Format: Hardcover
Jarrett’s mom takes in foster babies. He is used to getting less attention than the foster babies and life is pretty predictable. Until Kevon comes. Kevon is a foster child a little older than Jarrett who gets taken in to be fostered. Jarrett and Kevon immediately dislike each other. But Jarrett doesn’t trust Kevon—he knows something is off. A nice, light read that touches on hate, this is a story about two kids who could just as well be brothers.

My thoughts:

This book was enjoyable. I had some problems with it, but overall I found it to be an easy and fast read. Ok, these kids HATE each other. I could not STAND it. Jarrett does this, so Kevon does that and Jarrett gets him back and it’s not my fault it’s his fault. AAAAAAAHHHHHHH. “Why does he have to share a room with me?” Me: “Why are you so selfish? He came from bad circumstances and ALL HE DOES IS SHARE A ROOM WITH YOU. Oh. My. Gosh” *end rant* Other than the aforementioned craziness, I did actually think this book was great. It was a nice story, and I loved how real it was. You connected with the characters (even if two of them could be jerks) and I really liked Kevon’s sister, Treasure. she is kinda sorta really cute. Even though I had problems with the characters, I understand that the book was ABOUT trying to be friends and kinda being like brothers. The back is why I picked this up at BEA: “Kinda Like Friends. Kinda Like Enemies. Kinda Like Brothers.” I just love that. So, this book did well emphasizing how people can be ignorant and could care less about someone else, and it shows you that if you just dislike someone just because, it will lead you nowhere. The book conveyed its message.


8.25 out of 10 Xander
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Format: Kindle Edition
Apparently I relate to eleven year old guys.

Thank you, NetGalley and Scholastic, for this free book to review!

For some reason, I really relate to characters who are religiously or culturally different than me and struggle in school (this also happened in Playing With Matches). I just do.

That really says something on Coe Booth's part. She managed to make an eleven year old boy relatable. Man. I've got a ton of respect for this author; she writes emotion so well.

I kept waiting for something drastic to happen, but it never came. There was excitement, yeah, but some unmet potential with Kevon's dad. Then again, this book is geared toward a younger audience, so maybe it was perfect.

Also, why was Qasim stopped by the police? Everyone said it was for no good reason, the police just did that because, being black, he looked suspicious. Writing about racial prejudice can be a good thing, but this didn't advance the plot.

Would I read other books by this author? Most likely. Maybe one for a slightly older audience though.
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