Friday, August 22, 2014

Counting to D by Kate Scott

Loved this read! The main character leads us through her teen life living with dyslexia, with a bunch of brilliant friends who come in and out of the picture in really interesting, engaging, authentic ways. I think what I loved most was how the main character and her new boyfriend seemed totally natural to me. I mean I could imagine two teenagers who are like, and my high-school teacher friends could talk about students who seemed like, these students. I also loved loved loved how the author unveils dyslexia. She actually has dyslexia (and figured out which font dyslexics can best read) (seriously!)(I have so much to learn!) and wrote using that lens very effectively.

Sam has some serious baggage that she is trying to cover up as a new student at a high school in Portland (hometown, baby!!) (oh, did I say I loved that too? I did.). Her schedule includes 5 AP classes--a seeming record for a sophomore. But as the story continues, we learn more about Sam and how those challenges twist and tense her life and those she is in relationship with. She hangs out with a crowd of brilliant students who call themselves the Brain Trust, an intimadating group to most, it seems. But the Brain Trust has its own fragile issues, and Sam gets to play a decent role in a key demise of the group. Greater, wicked-smart Sam unearths some of her own confusions and caps down on living life as herself rather than what she believes others want her to be like.

This would be a perfect read for teachers who want to know more about what it is like to have dyslexia, teens who want to read an authentic text with a primary storyline focused on dyslexia, or someone looking to learn more about teens who are struggling to find their foothold in growing up. Can't wait to read Kate Scott's new book, scheduled to come out this fall. 

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