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Breakout
Cover of Breakout
Breakout
Told in letters, poems, text messages, news stories, and comics—a series of documents Nora collects for the Wolf Creek Community Time Capsule Project—Breakout is a thrilling story that will...
Told in letters, poems, text messages, news stories, and comics—a series of documents Nora collects for the Wolf Creek Community Time Capsule Project—Breakout is a thrilling story that will...
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Description-

  • Told in letters, poems, text messages, news stories, and comics—a series of documents Nora collects for the Wolf Creek Community Time Capsule Project—Breakout is a thrilling story that will leave readers thinking about who's really welcome in the places we call home.
    Nora Tucker is looking forward to summer vacation in Wolf Creek—two months of swimming, popsicles, and brushing up on her journalism skills for the school paper. But when two inmates break out of the town's maximum security prison, everything changes. Doors are locked, helicopters fly over the woods, and police patrol the school grounds. Worst of all, everyone is on edge, and fear brings out the worst in some people Nora has known her whole life. Even if the inmates are caught, she worries that home might never feel the same.
    A Mighty Girl Best Book of the Year
 

Awards-

About the Author-

  • Kate Messner is a former middle-school English teacher and the author of E. B. White Read Aloud Award winner The Brilliant Fall of Gianna Z. and its companion, The Exact Location of Home; Sugar and Ice; Eye of the Storm; Wake Up Missing; All the Answers; The Seventh Wish; Capture the Flag; Hide and Seek; the Marty McGuire chapter book series; the Ranger in Time chapter book series; and several picture books. She lives on Lake Champlain with her husband and two kids. When she's not reading or writing, she loves hiking, kayaking, biking, and watching thunderstorms over the lake. katemessner.com
    @KateMessner

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from April 16, 2018
    In Wolf Creek, a small town in upstate New York, middle school students learn that they’ll develop a time capsule project as a summer letter-writing assignment. Best friends Nora and Lizzie, as well as new girl Elidee, imagine sharing tales of ice cream and swimming. But after two inmates escape from the local maximum-security prison, where Nora’s father is the superintendent and Elidee’s brother is an inmate, a new side of the friendly community is slowly revealed. Elidee’s experience of racism as one of the only black people in town makes Nora and Lizzie rethink just how welcoming Wolf Creek is. Narrated by all three girls through letters, recorded conversations, and texts, this is an effective, authentically wrought look at how fear and ignorance can lead people to treat those of different races or from different places with suspicion. Messner (The Exact Location of Home) shines a light on the ways that people are blind to their own privilege while quick to judge others. Though the look at societal racism, as in the prison system, is well explained, it’s the racism Nora and Lizzie discover in themselves, and their desire to change it, that will linger with readers. Ages 10–14. Agent: Jennifer Laughran, Andrea Brown Literary Agency.

  • School Library Journal

    Starred review from February 1, 2018

    Gr 4-6-Nora and Lizzie have grown up in Wolf Creek, a small town where Nora's father is superintendent of the maximum security prison. Elidee, one of only two African American students at Wolf Creek Middle School, recently moved there to be closer to her brother who is incarcerated in Wolf Creek Correctional Facility. When two inmates escape, tensions begin to rise. The story is told through letters and other documents by the three girls. Nora reports on the breakout, Lizzie parodies these reports, and Elidee writes poetry inspired by Jacqueline Woodson and Lin-Manuel Miranda. Readers also see text messages, school announcements, comics, and transcribed conversations. The book is a rich source of writing examples which can become didactic: at one point, students duly follow their teacher's instructions on persuasive writing to write petitions. The broad range of writing formats is engaging, however, and allows readers to understand the varying viewpoints of Nora, Elidee, and Lizzie. Messner places issues of race and criminal justice at the center of the story: Elidee frequently encounters racism in Wolf Creek, Lizzie learns about racial imbalances in the prison population, and Nora's older brother tells her about Black Lives Matter. The few middle grade titles that include characters in prison in a contemporary setting (Leslie Connor's All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook, Deborah Ellis's Jakeman) don't discuss these issues so explicitly. VERDICT An accessible format and a unique focus on contemporary issues of criminal justice and racial bias make this an essential purchase.-Lisa Goldstein, Brooklyn Public Library

    Copyright 2018 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    April 1, 2018
    Seen through the eyes of three seventh-graders, a prison escape upends daily life in a small Adirondack town.Wolf Creek's economy revolves around its maximum security prison. Nora's dad is its superintendent; Lizzie's grandma works in the kitchen; Elidee's brother is an inmate. Nora and Lizzie, white, are best friends. Arriving in this very white town with her mother two weeks before school ends, Elidee, black, feels isolated. She and her mother only moved to Wolf Creek because she didn't get into an elite private school back in New York City. Nora first finds her unfriendly. Elidee's reluctance to join in shows of support for the corrections staff, police, and volunteers engaged in the manhunt affronts her. With Lizzie's help she opens her eyes to the slights, subtle and overt, Elidee endures from some local whites. Most townspeople and prison staff are white; most inmates are black and Latinx. The manhunt broadens, reaching Lizzie's family and severely straining it. Elidee pours her anger and unhappiness into writing poetry, discovering her authentic voice. The story unfolds in time-capsule entries. Press clippings, text messages, and voice recordings effectively convey the racism hiding in plain sight, while the girls' letters provide the narrative throughline. Not all entries work--Owen's repetitive cartoons add little--but the format underlines the breakout's communitywide impact. A sensitive coming-of-age tale about waking up to injustice and where that knowledge can lead. (author's note, bibliography) (Fiction. 9-14)

    COPYRIGHT(2018) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • DOGO Books chlooe - Breakout is a story told by notes, letters, text messages, and poems. In this book, Nora Tucker (Main character) thought that she could just swim in the pool and eat popsicles every day because it was summer. But when two inmates break out of Wolf Creek's most high security, everybody is forced to lock every door and window. Before this happened, it was a few weeks before the end of school and it was so close to Field Day. But because of the breakout, it was canceled and had to be substituted by playing games indoors. This book was also made because it was supposed to be made for a time capsule project. Kate Messner has yet again made everything understandable that everyone could feel the intensity rising even though you're just reading a book. I rate this book 5 stars because each page in this book is filled with perspectives and also words that were recorded. I hope you consider reading this book and if so, enjoy it!
  • Publishers Weekly, starred review An effective, authentically wrought look at how fear and ignorance can lead people to treat those of different races or from different places with suspicion. Messner shines a light on the ways that people are blind to their own privilege while quick to judge others.
  • School Library Journal, starred review An accessible format and a unique focus on contemporary issues of criminal justice and racial bias make this an essential purchase.
  • Kirkus Reviews A sensitive coming-of-age tale about waking up to injustice and where that knowledge can lead.
  • The Horn Book Magazine Timely and relevant.
  • Kirkus Reviews, starred review, on THE EXACT LOCATION OF HOME Authentic . . . . Middle school worries and social issues skillfully woven into a moving, hopeful, STEM-related tale.
  • School Library Journal, starred review, on THE EXACT LOCATION OF HOME Vivid characters and situations, along with clear, simple writing and plotting, make this an accessible and enlightening read. A gentle but truthful look at poverty and homelessness.
  • Anne Ursu, author of BREADCRUMBS and THE REAL BOY on THE SEVENTH WISH An empathetic, beautiful, magical, fiercely necessary book that stares unflinchingly at the very real challenges contemporary kids face and gently assures them they are not alone. Kate Messner gives her readers a story to cherish.
  • Kirkus Reviews, starred review, on THE SEVENTH WISH Hopeful, empathetic, and unusually enlightening.
  • Publishers Weekly on THE SEVENTH WISH Rich and daring . . . As she did in All the Answers, Messner lightens a heavy theme with a bit of magic.
  • Wendy Mass, New York Times best selling author of 11 BIRTHDAYS on ALL THE ANSWERS It's no surprise that Kate Messner's magic pen could write a charming, moving, funny, and ultimately very surprising story about a magic pencil!
  • School Library Journal on ALL THE ANSWERS Will appeal to Wendy Mass fans as well as those who love Messner's previous novels.

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    Bloomsbury Publishing
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