Nancy Keane's Booktalks -- Quick and Simple
Strasser, Todd.
New York : Simon & Schuster Books, 2007
ISBN 141690848X

(3 booktalks)

Click on the book to read Amazon reviews
Booktalk #1

This is for your own good.  How many times have you heard that but were not sure that it was true?  Parents tend to say that when they know something unpleasant is about to happen.  But what if your parents hire people to kidnap you and send you to boot camp?  I've seen reports about these places on television.  They are touted as being the answer to unruly teens.  That's what happens to Garrett.  Now, Garrett is not a bad kid.  He's a rich kid who is a bit spoiled.  And he is dating his teacher.  But it's not like he's in a gang or failing school or anything.  But his parents don't like his choice of girlfriend so they sign him up for Lake Harmony.  They've done their research and are sure this is for Garrett's own good.  What they don't know is what really goes on behind the walls of Lake Harmony.

Booktalk #2

When 15-year-old Garrett refuses to end a relationship with 23-year-old Sabrina, his controlling parents send him to a behavior modification boot camp in hopes that the camp’s extreme methods will teach him to be a more respectful son. Garrett struggles to survive the extreme cruelty and eventually joins two other teens in a desperate escape attempt. (Florida Teen Read, 2009)

Booktalk #3

What would you do if your parents didn’t like who you chose for a boyfriend/girlfriend? This is true for Garrett. His parents decide to send him to Lake Harmony. Since Garrett is under 18, he has no rights, and they can send him wherever they want. By using torturous physical, emotional, and psychological techniques, Lake Harmony guarantees his parents a changed teen.

“Welcome to TI – Temporary Isolation – where I am forced to lie facedown on the cold concrete floor for twenty-four hours a day ... After a day your chin becomes sore, your neck muscles cramp, and your knees and ribs grow raw from pressing against the hard floor. After two days parts of your body that shouldn’t hurt – your elbows and hips, your lower back – begin to ache ... I can’t escape the sense that I’m lying on the germs, the sweat, the smells of the hundreds who’ve lain here before ... they would expect you to reflect on the error of your ways and see the mistakes you’ve made. But what if you haven’t done anything seriously wrong, what then? ... My parents sent me here because it’s about what they think. And that’s a different story.” (page 30, 31)  (Rhode Island Teen Book Awards, 2008-09)

SUBJECTS:      Juvenile delinquency -- Fiction.
                        Interpersonal relations -- Fiction.
                        Family problems -- Fiction.

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