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The Summer of Owen Todd



by
Tony Abbott

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Macmillan
Imprint
Farrar, Straus & Giroux
ISBN
9780374305505

Awards and Honors
School Library Journal’s Best Books of 2017, Middle Grade and Chapter Books
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Language: Mild Language, Violence: Sexual Assault/Rape, Language: Mild Language, Violence: Suicide Reference/Discussion
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This harrowing and sensitively told tale of child abuse is a must-read for anyone who might ever be called upon to help a friend in need. Author’s note, with resources.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Language: Mild Language, Violence: Sexual Assault/Rape, Language: Mild Language, Violence: Suicide Reference/Discussion

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

224

Trim Size

8 1/4" x 5 1/2"

Dewey

F

AR

3.9: points 6

Lexile

630L

Genre

Fiction

Scholastic Reading Counts

11

JLG Release

Apr 2018

Book Genres


Topics

Best friends. Friendship. Sexual abuse. Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Family life.

Standard MARC Records

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly*, School Library Journal*, Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA)

School Library Journal

[STARRED REVIEW]
It’s the summer after fifth grade, and lifelong best friends Owen and Sean are looking forward to a vacation full of baseball, go-karts, beach trips, and, now that they are getting older, a bit more independence in their Cape Cod hometown. Things don’t go as planned, however, when Sean’s single mom hires Paul to help look after Sean, who depends on insulin injections to manage his diabetes, while she goes to work at a new job in a neighboring town. Paul, a friendly older guy from church, seems nice enough, if a little strange, but before long, Sean tells Owen about some uncomfortable incidents between them. As Paul’s behavior escalates into child abuse and sexual assault, Sean continues to confide in Owen, but threatens suicide if Owen tells anyone else what is happening. The story is told from Owen’s point of view as he struggles with how to handle the situation and what might happen if he breaks his promise to keep Sean’s secret. Ultimately, witnessing Sean’s abuse firsthand spurs Owen to action, and he records the assault on his father’s cell phone before telling his parents everything. While doing so costs Owen his friendship with Sean, Paul is eventually arrested and Sean is able to get help. An author’s note at the close of the book further encourages readers to speak out if they or someone they know is being abused, and includes contact information for RAINN (Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network). The setting is particularly well drawn, and woven into the story are threads about family, friendship, trust, courage, and growing up. VERDICT Unsettling and at times painful, this book offers an empathetic portrayal of a difficult and important subject.—Lauren Strohecker, McKinley Elementary School, Elkins Park, PA

Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

[STARRED REVIEW]
It’s the summer after fifth grade, and lifelong best friends Owen and Sean are looking forward to a vacation full of baseball, go-karts, beach trips, and, now that they are getting older, a bit more independence in their Cape Cod hometown. Things don’t go as planned, however, when Sean’s single mom hires Paul to help look after Sean, who depends on insulin injections to manage his diabetes, while she goes to work at a new job in a neighboring town. Paul, a friendly older guy from church, seems nice enough, if a little strange, but before long, Sean tells Owen about some uncomfortable incidents between them. As Paul’s behavior escalates into child abuse and sexual assault, Sean continues to confide in Owen, but threatens suicide if Owen tells anyone else what is happening. The story is told from Owen’s point of view as he struggles with how to handle the situation and what might happen if he breaks his promise to keep Sean’s secret. Ultimately, witnessing Sean’s abuse firsthand spurs Owen to action, and he records the assault on his father’s cell phone before telling his parents everything. While doing so costs Owen his friendship with Sean, Paul is eventually arrested and Sean is able to get help. An author’s note at the close of the book further encourages readers to speak out if they or someone they know is being abused, and includes contact information for RAINN (Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network). The setting is particularly well drawn, and woven into the story are threads about family, friendship, trust, courage, and growing up. VERDICT Unsettling and at times painful, this book offers an empathetic portrayal of a difficult and important subject.—Lauren Strohecker, McKinley Elementary School, Elkins Park, PA

Grades 5-8
Realistic Fiction Middle Plus
For Grades 5-8

Stories with strong, relatable characters that portray believable contemporary or historical real-life experiences.

14 books per Year
$235.90 per Year
Interests
Chapter Books/Novels,Diversity,Fiction,History,Realistic Fiction
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Grades 5-8
Realistic Fiction Middle Plus
14 books per Year
$235.90 per Year

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