Thunder Boy Jr.

By: Sherman Alexie

Illustrator: Yuyi Morales

Thunder Boy Jr. is tired of sharing a name with his dad. He wants his own name, “a name that sounds like me . . . that celebrates something cool that I’ve done.” But how will he choose? Full-color illustrations digitally created using colors and textures from “the remains of an antique house in Xalapa, Mexico.”

ISBN: 9780316013727

JLG Release: Aug 2016


Sensitive Areas: No sensitive areas
Topics: Personal names , Identity , Indians of North America , Fathers and sons , Family life

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Awards & Honors

Prairie Bloom Book Award 2018—2019 Nominee Parents’ Choice Awards, Picture Books Gold, Spring 2016
The Kirkus Prize 2016 Finalist, Picture Books
ALA Notable Books for Children Nominee–Summer 2016, Picture Books
Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2016, Picture Books
Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2016, Picture Books
The New York Times Notable Children’s Books of 2016, Picture Books
New York Public Library 2016 Best Books for Kids, Picture Books
Goodreads Choice Awards 2016, Picture Books
National Public Radio’s Guide to 2016 Great Reads
Charlotte Zolotow, 2017 Honor
Shelf Awareness 2016 Best Books of the Year, Picture Books
ALSC Notable Children’s Books 2017, Younger Readers
NEA’s Read Across America Educator Recomended Books 2016–2017, PreK–K
CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People 2017, K–2
BCCB 2016 Blue Ribbons, Picture Books
2017 Capitol Choices, Zero to Seven
CSMCL Best Multicultural Books of 2016
The Washington Post Best Children’s and Young Adult Books of 2016
2016 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award Honor, Picture Books

Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books*, The Horn Book Magazine*, The Horn Book Guide^, Kirkus Reviews*, Publishers Weekly*

Horn Book

[STARRED REVIEW]
“I HATE MY NAME!” Why, Thunder Boy Smith complains, couldn’t he have been named “Sam” like his mother (Agnes) wanted? And why does he have to share his name with his father, Thunder Boy Smith Sr., especially since their shared name causes people to call Dad Big Thunder, a nickname “lik
[STARRED REVIEW]
“I HATE MY NAME!” Why, Thunder Boy Smith complains, couldn’t he have been named “Sam” like his mother (Agnes) wanted? And why does he have to share his name with his father, Thunder Boy Smith Sr., especially since their shared name causes people to call Dad Big Thunder, a nickname “like a storm filling up the sky,” and himself Little Thunder, which “makes me sound like a burp or a fart.” As the boy considers a number of new names, the pictures let us into his world and dreams. He once climbed a mountain (really his dad’s strong back), so he could be named “Touch the Clouds,” his little sister Lillian suggests. Lillian is no pushover, though; she also offers, considering Thunder Boy’s bike-riding prowess, “Gravity’s Best Friend.” It is Dad who comes up with just the right name, rather a diversion from the book’s theme of self-definition but unmistakable in its acknowledgment of the bond between father and son. Despite the dad-pleasing message, the book is too funny and real to veer into parental self-congratulation, and Morales’s illustrations (made from “the remains of an antique house”—you’ll have to read the note) give great life and specificity to Thunder Boy’s Lightning’s family. Dad truly is a mountain of a man, Mom rides a sporty scooter, Lillian is both brattish and adoring when it comes to her big brother; a pet dog dances happily amongst them all. roger sutton

Book Details

ISBN

9780316013727

First Release

August 2016

Genre

Fic

Dewey Classification

Trim Size

Page Count

40

Accelerated Reader

Level 2.5; Points: 0.5;

Scholastic Reading Counts

Level 1.4; Points: 1;

Lexile

N/A

Format

Print Book

Edition

Hardcover edition

Publisher

Little, Brown

Potentially Sensitive Areas

No sensitive areas

Topics

Personal names, Identity, Indians of North America, Fathers and sons, Family life,

Standard MARC Record

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Cover Art

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Standard Correlations

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