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The Rules of Survival by Nancy Werlin

The Rules of Survival (original 2006; edition 2008)

by Nancy Werlin

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919609,547 (4.04)33
Title:The Rules of Survival
Authors:Nancy Werlin
Info:Speak (2008), Paperback, 288 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Rules of Survival by Nancy Werlin (2006)


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Audiobook from public library
  TeachrBkMom | Aug 6, 2015 |
Another great audio book. I love using my time wisely. ( )
  whybehave2002 | Feb 4, 2015 |
Another great audio book. I love using my time wisely. ( )
  whybehave2002 | Feb 4, 2015 |
From Sept 2006 SLJ:
Nancy Werlin’s latest novel tackles the topic of child abuse with grace and insight. Narrated by seventeen-year-old Matt as a letter to his youngest sister Emmy, The Rules of Survival is his effort to come to terms with the vicious treatment they suffered at the hands of Nikki, their beautiful and unpredictable mother. One of Matt’s early memories involves getting up during the night to sneak a cookie back to bed and being caught by his mother. Giggling and yelling “Cookie thief,” she holds a knife to his throat, cutting him just a little bit to teach him not to steal. As much as he fears his mother’s manic highs and lows, his greater concern as he grows older is for the safety of his sisters. He and his sister Callie shield Emmy as much as possible from Nikki’s volatile moods. Compounding the problem are the adults in their lives—their father and their aunt—who recognize Nikki’s instability but find it easier to look the other way. When Nikki’s ex-boyfriend Murdoch befriends the children, they want to believe that a more normal future is possible, but are afraid of being disappointed by an adult yet again. The story’s characters captivate readers from the beginning, and short, terse chapters move the plot along with an intensity that will appeal to seasoned Werlin fans and reluctant readers alike. As with Speak (Laurie Halse Anderson, 1999) and other recent novels that explore difficult issues, teens will empathize with these siblings and the secrets they keep. ( )
  KimJD | Apr 8, 2013 |
Listened to the audiobook; narrator did a good job because he matched the attitude and emotion of the characters. Matthew and his younger sisters try to survive the abusive actions of their mother. They come across a man named Murdoch who seems to have pity for children when he defends a young boy in a convenience store against his raging father. Matthew decides to seek Murdoch's help to get him and his sisters away from his mentally unstable mother. Story of a dysfunctional family and the detrimental effects abuse can have on children. Excellent novel, would highly recommend! ( )
  Jennanana | May 2, 2012 |
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This book is for all the survivors. Always remember: The survivor gets to tell the story.
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Dear Emmy, As I write this, you are nine years old, too young to be told the full and true story of our family's past, let alone be exposed to my philosophizing about what it all meant.
"The events we lived through taught me to be sure of nothing about other people. They taught me to expect danger around every corner. They taught me to understand that there are people in this world who mean you harm. And sometimes, they're people who say they love you." Matthew to Emmy
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0142410713, Paperback)

For Matt and his sisters, life with their cruel, vicious mother is a day-to-day struggle for survival. But then Matt witnesses Murdoch coming to a child?s rescue in a convenience store, and for the first time, he feels a glimmer of hope. When, amazingly, Murdoch begins dating Matt?s mother, life is suddenly almost good. But the relief lasts only a short time. When Murdoch inevitably breaks up with their mother, Matt knows he needs to take action. But can he call upon his hero? Or will he have to take measures into his own hands? A heart-wrenching portrait of a family in crisis, this is Nancy Werlin?s most compulsively readable novel yet.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:01 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Seventeen-year-old Matthew recounts his attempts, starting at a young age, to free himself and his sisters from the grip of their emotionally and physically abusive mother.

(summary from another edition)

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