Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Focused by Alyson Gerber - ADVISABLE

Focused by Alyson Gerber, 304 pages.  Scholastic, April 2019.  $17.

Content: G 



Clea can’t concentrate. If she can’t concentrate, she can’t get her homework done.  And if she doesn’t get her homework done, she’ll be on academic probation and she won’t be able to go to nor compete with the school chess club.  She may have started going to please her best friend Red, but now she goes because she loves it.  Unfortunately, Clea also can’t keep her mouth shut – and one day she wounds Red with her words - - at a time when she needs Red and Red really needs her. Is there something wrong with Clea – could she really be one of those ADHD kids who need medication?

Watching Clea at the beginning of the book as she navigates her world with her ADHD brain is eye-opening as a teacher.  I know that Gerber has had to severely simplify the struggles of someone coping with ADHD and trying out possible treatments and medications.  I can almost forgive the author for how simplistic the whole thing seems – how much a miracle it appears.  Because the kids I see struggling around me – their answers don’t seem to come that easily.  Valuable still, to see the world through different eyes.

Cindy, Middle School Librarian, MLS

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