Wednesday, December 31, 2014

What are the Rules?


Every year is filled with many great stories, and one of my favorites for 2014 was Rules by Cynthia Lord. The characters in this book stayed with me throughout the year, and I'm still thinking about them!  ~ L


   


“Looking closer can make something beautiful.” 
~ Cynthia Lord, Rules

Keep your clothes on even if they get wetNo toys in the fish tank. Catherine’s life involves lots of rules, which she's created in order to help her brother, David, navigate through life. David is autistic, and the rules help him know what to do in certain situations. Not everyone understands David, and sometimes Catherine wishes he would be like any other brother. But, he's not. David needs to go to the video store at the precise time you've told him, not one minute later or he'll start screaming and crying. Catherine loves her brother, but she spends a lot of time watching him, and it isn’t always easy. She used to look forward to visiting David’s OT’s office (occupational therapist), because her and her mom would spend time together at the beach, but now his therapist needs her mom to be close by. While at OT Catherine meets Jason, a boy in a wheelchair who uses a communication book to let others know what he's thinking. She asks if she can make some words for his book. Most of Jason’s words are black words on white cards, but since Catherine is an artist she makes words with pictures. She spends a lot of time thinking of words that she would want, like “stinks a big one” or “whatever”.  Catherine starts to look forward to seeing Jason at OT and, even though he can’t talk, they have a lot of fun together. During the same summer a new girl moves in next door, and she's twelve just like Catherine. Having a best friend next door has been a dream of Catherine’s for forever. Will the new girl become her best friend? Will Jason and Catherine ever see each other outside of OT? Will David ever learn the rules? Will Catherine get the attention from her parents that she wants? Get out and read this book so you can find out the lesson that Catherine needs to learn!

I read Rules by Cynthia Lord and was immediately captivated by the voice of Catherine. She has a lot on her plate being in charge of her brother, and I think the rules she made for him make sense. Catherine is someone I would want to be friends with because we have a lot in common. I would love to live next door to someone who wants to use flashlights to send secret codes at night, and swimming is one of my favorite summer activities. It was helpful to see what life was like for Catherine and the challenges she faces on a daily basis. This story will open your eyes to what it's like to walk in someone else’s shoes. I recommend this book to kids in fourth grade and up. Boys and girls will enjoy it, and they will see the world through kinder eyes once they start reading. The rules made me laugh, and I often found myself nodding along with them. I like that Catherine is a thinker and that she really stops and notices the world around her. I had so many lines that I loved because they were such beautiful thoughts. I look forward to reading more books by this author.

Has anyone else read Rules? Or have you read another book by Cynthia Lord? We would love to hear your thoughts. 

Happy Reading! ~L

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40 comments:

  1. Happy New Year's Eve. Wishing you all the best.

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    1. Happy New Year to you, Vanessa! :)

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  2. Sure sounds like a fun one, rules are a pain especially for a kid, but they are needed.

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    1. Pat- This is a great book and it definitely makes you think about rules. :) ~L

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  3. I really like this book.

    Happy New Year!

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    1. Kelly- Awesome to hear you like this one too!

      Happy New Year! ~Stephanie and Jess

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  4. I haven't read Rules, but it is on my TBR list. Thanks for the reminder. Have a wonderful new year.

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    1. Rosi- I think you will love Rules when you get to it!

      Happy New Year to you, too! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  5. Happy New Year's Eve! I haven't read this one, but your review certainly makes me want to!

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    1. Meradeth- Rules is a great book and worth the read for sure!

      Happy New Year to you! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  6. It sounds like a wonderful book. Thank you - I will track it down later. And a very happy New Year to you.

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    1. Elephant's Child- I hope you enjoy it when you track it down.

      Happy New Year to you too! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  7. This book sounds cherish able!

    Happy New Year!

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    1. Patty- It is! :)

      Happy New Year! ~Stephanie and Jess

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  8. I haven't read this one, but it sounds fascinating. The name Cynthia Lord sounds familiar. I think I must have seen one of her other books recommended somewhere.

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    1. Stephanie- Rules is a wonderful book. I haven't had the chance to read anything else by Cynthia Lord- but I know she has lots more books out there. :) ~F

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  9. I've seen Rules, but haven't read it. It sounds like a good book, though.

    Have a very happy New Year!

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    1. Sherry- Rules is a great book. Hope you get to read it soon.

      Happy New Year! ~Stephanie and Jess

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  10. Thanks for turning us on to a fave book of yours. Happy New year! Hugs, Catherine

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    1. Catherine- You are welcome! It is definitely worth the read. :)

      Happy New Year and hugs to you. ~Stephanie and Jess

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  11. Catherine sounds like a very much likeable character and someone I would love to get to know myself :) Great review!

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    1. Olivia- The main character is great and definitely someone you would want to know. :) ~F

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    1. The Armchair Squid- It is! :)

      Happy New Year! ~Stephanie and Jess

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  13. ''This story will open your eyes to what it's like to walk in someone else’s shoes.''

    The authors that pull that off are amazing. And it looks like this one did, so that's really great! Very lovely review!

    Happy New Year!

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    1. Lola- Thanks! Cynthia Lord definitely does a great job of creating a book and characters that make us think. The characters and story will stay with you for a long, long time.

      Happy New Year! ~Stephanie and Jess

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  14. Did she write Happy Birthday, Hamster? I LOVE that book. The rhyme just washes off the page and fills the reader with happiness. MUST read this book. What a super review. Happy New Year!

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    1. Robyn- She did write Happy Birthday, Hamster! We have not read that one, but it looks so cute. Now that we've heard your thoughts we'll have to find a copy soon! Thanks for visiting.

      Happy New Year to you, too! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  15. Sounds awesome! I actually think I have that in my classroom but I haven't read it yet - I'll have to fix that!

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    1. Jemi- If you have it in your classroom then you should definitely read it! So worth the read! :) ~L

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  16. Sounds fantastic! Wishing you all the best for 2015!

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    1. Romance Reader- It is! Wishing you all the best for 2015 too! :) ~L

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  17. It sounds like a great read. I just wanted to stop by and wish you a Happy New Year. Thank you for taking the time to come by my blog. I really appreciate it. I wish you all the best in this new year.

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    1. Raven- Rules is a really great story. I always love stopping by your blog and visiting. Thanks for your kind words. I wish you a very happy 2015 too! :) ~Jess

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  18. Sounds like amazing read! Happy New Year!

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    1. Romance Book Haven- It is! Happy New Year to you too! :) ~L

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  19. I absolutely LOVE Rules! That little book is so amazing... which reminds me I really need to have it on my bookshelf.
    Hope you had a wonderful New Year!

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    1. Adriana- I agree with you that it is an absolutely amazing book. I love the way the story is told and there are so many insightful lines in the book. Happy New Year to you too! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  20. Sounds like someone knew autism well. Such a good idea for a book to help kids understand. It would be great if they could have this in classrooms. I love the sounds of her friendship with Jason! Catherine sounds like a great main character!

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    1. Molly- I think this is a perfect book to help build compassion and to help people see autism through the eyes of someone who loves them. The friendship with Jason adds a lot of depth to the story and definitely gives readers more to think about! Thanks for stopping in. :) ~L

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