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Brendan Buckley's Universe and Everything in…
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Brendan Buckley's Universe and Everything in It

by Sundee T. Frazier

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Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
The agenda (life of a multiracial child) overshadows the story. ( )
  lindap69 | Apr 5, 2013 |
The last 100 pages were much better than the first 100. It just took way too long to get interesting. I give this a 2.5, round to 3. ( )
  michelleannlib | Mar 30, 2013 |
Recommended Ages: Gr. 4-7

Plot Summary: Brendan is looking forward to having the entire summer to answer all of his questions in the Brendan Buckley's Book of Big Questions About Life, the Universe, and Everything In It, which will be quite difficult considering he adds new questions every day. His questions are also getting more difficult, especially after he accidentally runs into his grandfather, who he's never met, and he's never been told why. Now his questions are getting more difficult because they aren't able to be answered with science. What happened between his mom and Ed to make them so angry they don't talk anymore? He doesn't understand, but he wants to spend time with Ed, especially since Ed is a scientist and loves rocks as much as him. Plus, he misses hanging out with his Grandpa Clem. Will Brendan follow the five tenets of tae kwon do as he tries to answer the biggest question of all: who is he? Is he black? If so, what does that mean?

Setting: Tacoma WA, Brendan takes a bus the 8 miles to see Ed, they go together in the mountains on an expedition for thunder eggs

Characters:
Brendan Samuel Buckley - 10 y/o,
Khalfani Jones - Brendan's best friend, met in tae kwon do class, adventurous and likes to do stuff that will get them in trouble, like making a sling shot and using it to try to get his sister's dolls out his window and land in the pool
Grandpa Clem - AKA Samuel Clemons Buckley, died in April
Gladys - Brendan's paternal grandma, comes over once a week for dinner and spends time with Brendan during the summer when his parents are at work, doesn't like diet soda and spoils Brendan when they go out to the mall
Katherine - Brendan's mom, AKA Kate, works at a place that helps pregnant girls, always wanted to help people
Ed DeBose - very good at ignoring Brendan's questions, agrees to hang out with Brendan even though he knows it's a bad idea
Dori - 4 y/o, Khal's sister, the reason why Brendan thinks it's okay that he's an only child
PJ - Ed's dog
Mr. Levi Henderson - Ed's friend who comes over once a week to play chess with Ed, black, is the first person who hears Ed introduce Brendan as his grandson

Recurring Themes: family, race, tae kwon do, rocks, minerals, friendship, curiosity, science, questioning

Controversial Issues:
pg 135 "I've only seen mom cry a few times....when one of the pregnant girls she helped killed herself"

Personal Thoughts: I enjoyed this book. I liked the authentic characters because they each had their quirks that made them seem real. It was a little predictable but a fantastic chapter book for boys and girls.

Genre: Realistic fiction, drama

Pacing: medium
Characters: very well developed, deep
Frame: really like Brendan's list of more things about Rocks and Minerals and Tae Kwon Do in the back of the book
Storyline:

Activity: Rock identification, questioning ( )
  pigeonlover | Jul 24, 2012 |
Brendan has a notebook full of his scientific experiment ideas and he can't wait to use his summer to find the answer to as many of his questions as possible. Throughout this summer though, more questions pop up for Brendan than he is ready for -- the biggest one: why has he never met the grandpa that lives just one town over?

This book was too cliched for me to enjoy. I feel like the message (a good one: everyone deserves to make their own choices and be treated equally) was stamped too heavily throught the story. ( )
  agrudzien | Jul 15, 2012 |
It's the summer of Brendan's tenth year. Having recently lost his Grandpa Clem, Brendan discovers another grandfather, Ed Debose. But why has no one ever told him of this grandparent? Why has he been in hiding and how does Brendan go about finding the truth? Brendan learns the answers to these questions and learns a lot about himself in the process.

YA566-Q4, YA566-P4 It's all about identity! ( )
  victorianist | Jan 11, 2011 |
Showing 1-5 of 11 (next | show all)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 044042206X, Paperback)

Ten-year-old Tae Kwon Do blue belt and budding rock hound Brendan Buckley keeps a "Confidential" notebook for his top-secret scientific discoveries. And he's found something totally top secret. The grandpa he's never met, who his mom refuses to talk about or see, is an expert mineral collector and lives nearby! Secretly, Brendan visits Ed DeBose, whose skin is pink, not brown like Brendan's, his dad's, or that of Grampa Clem's, who recently died. Brendan sets out to find the reason behind Ed's absence, but what he discovers can't be explained by science, and now he wishes he'd never found him at all. . . .


From the Hardcover edition.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:52:24 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Brendan Buckley, a biracial ten-year-old, applies his scientific ability and interest in rocks and minerals to connect with his white grandfather, the president of Puyallup Rock Club, and to learn why he and Brendan's mother are estranged.

» see all 2 descriptions

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