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Don't Check Out This Book! by Kate Klise

Don't Check Out This Book! (edition 2020)

by Kate Klise (Author)

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342572,296 (3.67)None
When Appleton Elementary's new school board president, Ivana Beprawpa, uses her position to line her own pockets, student sleuths Sara and May, supported by passionate librarian Rita B. Danjerous, seek the truth. Told through letters, memos, and text messages.
Title:Don't Check Out This Book!
Authors:Kate Klise (Author)
Info:Algonquin Young Readers (2020), Edition: Illustrated, 160 pages
Collections:Your library

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Don't Check Out This Book! by Kate Klise


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A fun, light-hearted read with a good message about banned books. I enjoy the Klise sisters' letter, memo, text message, and newspaper format as well as the play-on-word character names (Reid Durr, Rita B. Danjerous). The endpapers are illustrated with banned books: Jumbies by Baptiste, A Wrinkle in Time by L'Engle, The Giver by Lowry, Drama by Telgemeier, Deenie by Blume, A Light in the Attic by Silverstein, The Witches by Dahl, And Tango Makes Three by Richardson, Brown Girl Dreaming by Woodson, To Kill a Mockingbird by Lee, Bridge to Terabithia by Paterson, Mommy, Mama, and Me by Newman, and I Am Jazz by Herthel. ( )
  bookwren | Jun 6, 2020 |
I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own. Any quotes I use are from an unpublished copy and may not reflect the finished product.

Don't Check Out This Book! was something I read in a single sitting while putting the girls down for a nap (it usually takes about 45 minutes before they're completely conked out). I hadn't anticipated finishing this one so quickly, but the story was short and interesting, which made for a speedy read. The formatting helped too, since it's mostly told with letters, notes, and emails.

When books include emails, I skim the headers and whatnot and jump to the juicy bits. It starts to feel repetitive after awhile, and this one was no different. When people respond to emails, the subject line gets longer and longer, and then you're dragging your feet through barely-altered information. I liked how it looked, but it was unimportant to my reading experience. I sort of wish I'd read this one with my son, and plan to do so at some point in the future. I think he'd really like it!

I thought the concept of the Green Dot Collection was amazing, and liked that it encouraged children to read books that were about important (if somewhat embarrassing) topics. They could borrow the books without officially checking them out (honor system), which is brilliant. You're showing them that they can be trusted, and it teaches responsibility and accountability. Additionally, this method allows students to educate themselves without the hassle of discussing something they're not comfortable with, and I think all schools should employ similar strategies. Kids still need access to the information they're too embarrassed to ask about.

Large portions of the story felt too simple, even knowing this book was meant for a younger audience. There are a lot of really great points made throughout the book, but the delivery was often unremarkable. I wish we'd seen more from the children's perspectives, and less from a very irritating female character (she's the worst). I think having more younger voices would make this book more relatable for children, even though they'll likely have no trouble following along.

Don't Check Out This Book! encourages kids to ask questions, and to occasionally challenge the rules when they don't make sense (investigate, make smart choices). It shows children how to educate themselves and pursue topics they're passionate about. They shouldn't feel limited by what they're comfortable sharing with an adult. I think a lot of kids will resonate with these characters and what they're going through, but nothing about this book made it stand out. If I saw this book a few months from now, I probably wouldn't be able to recall anything specific about its contents. (★★★⋆☆)

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  doyoudogear | Mar 10, 2020 |
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-William Shakespeare, King Lear
This book is dedicated to the rabble-rousing librarians and scandal-stomping young readers in whom we place our last, best hope for democracy.
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Dear Mr. Memree,

The new librarian called this morning.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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When Appleton Elementary's new school board president, Ivana Beprawpa, uses her position to line her own pockets, student sleuths Sara and May, supported by passionate librarian Rita B. Danjerous, seek the truth. Told through letters, memos, and text messages.

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