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Stuck in Neutral by Terry Trueman

Stuck in Neutral (original 2000; edition 2001)

by Terry Trueman

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8537910,511 (3.94)28
Title:Stuck in Neutral
Authors:Terry Trueman
Info:HarperTeen (2001), Paperback, 128 pages
Collections:Your library

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Stuck in Neutral by Terry Trueman (2000)

  1. 00
    Every Day by David Levithan (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: These intense novels, both deeply emotional and empathetic, grapple with the concepts of identity and internal experience -- and in both books, the main characters are similarly trapped within their own minds, unable to fully share themselves with others.… (more)
  2. 00
    Wonder by R. J. Palacio (FFortuna)
  3. 00
    Wish by Joseph Monninger (kaledrina)
  4. 00
    Cruise Control by Terry Trueman (FFortuna)
    FFortuna: Companion novels, the same story from different perspectives.

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» See also 28 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 79 (next | show all)
A really unique look inside the head of a boy with severe Cerebral Palsy and the way his family responds to him. Shawn lives inside his head and remembers everything he's ever heard. Unfortunately, his disease is so bad that he has no control over any of his body's muscles and has grand mal seizures daily. Because he has no way of communicating with others because he can't control even his eye muscles to blink on command, no one knows what a genius he is inside his head. Terry Trueman's own son suffered a similar disability. It explores some interesting ethical decisions about the right to life for people with severe disabilities. The book is very short and would make a really good in class read for book discussion groups or Socratic seminars. I think there would be LOTS to discuss.
  TeachrBkMom | Jul 8, 2015 |
Shawn's inner life is amazingly well drawn, complete with humor and out-of-body experiences and male teen fixations. His parents fail him in a variety of ways. His dad, while agonizing about Shawn's pain, leaves the family because he can't handle it; but them builds his career from a poem he wrote about that angst. What a loser! His mother functions at a much higher level, seeming to provide all that she can; except that she still relates to him as an infant. That would be hard to pull off. His siblings are fiercely protective and treat him as an individual, even without any of the feedback usually needed in relationships.
I look forward to reading more about this family. ( )
  2wonderY | Jul 1, 2014 |
I really enjoyed this book. It looks at cerebral palsy, which is a disease I wasn't really familiar with. The ending was tough for me to read. ( )
  scote23 | Dec 26, 2013 |
I'm not sure why this book got so many accolades. It was okay but not anything I want to tell everyone in the world about. ( )
  Brainannex | Oct 25, 2013 |
So sad. :[ ( )
  Melumebelle | Aug 8, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 79 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Terry Truemanprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Heller, JohnnyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For my parents and my sons.
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My name is Shawn McDaniel. My life is like one of those "good news-bad news" jokes. Like, "I've got some good news and some bad news - which do you wanna hear first?
"Will anyone ever know that my life, once lived and then over, was one of perfect remembering? No one will know. No one will know me. I'm just not ready to give up the hope that someday I might be known. I'm not ready."
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0064472132, Paperback)

Fourteen-year-old Shawn McDaniel loves the taste of smoked oysters and his mother's gentle hugs. Unfortunately, it's impossible for Shawn to feed himself or to hug his mom back. Shawn has cerebral palsy, a condition he has had since birth that has robbed him of all muscle control. He can't walk, talk, or even focus his eyes on his own. But despite all these handicaps, despite the frustration of not being able to communicate, Shawn is still happy to be alive: "Somehow all the things I think about and remember turn to joy... favorite movies... pinecones... chocolate pudding... the scent of Comet in a stainless steel sink.... Life can be great, even for me. Even for me." That is why he panics when he begins to suspect that his father is thinking of killing him. Shawn knows that his father is trying to be kind; he imagines that his son's life is an endless torment. His dad has no idea of the rich life that Shawn lives inside his head. And Shawn, helpless and mute, has no way of telling him.

Stuck in Neutral is a truly unique journey into the mind of a truly unique character. Shawn McDaniel, who is literally trapped in his own body, will serve as a powerful metaphor for teens who feel cornered by circumstances or their own physical shortcomings. Terry Trueman's first-person portrayal of Shawn is made all the more poignant by the fact that Trueman's own son, Henry, also suffers from cerebral palsy. This is an original and moving debut. (Ages 11 to 15) --Jennifer Hubert

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:18 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Fourteen-year-old Shawn McDaniel, who suffers from severe cerebral palsy and cannot function, relates his perceptions of his life, his family, and his condition, especially as he believes his father is planning to kill him.

(summary from another edition)

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