It's not a test unless you can fail. . . . Trouble always seems to find thirteen-year-old Julian Twerski. First it was a bullying incident, and now he's been accused of vandalizing a painting. The principal doesn't want to suspend him again, so instead, he asks Julian to write a 200-word essay on good citizenship. Julian writes 200 no's instead, and so begins an epic struggle between Julian and his principal. Being falsely accused is bad enough, but outside of school, Julian's dealing with even bigger issues. His friend Quentin has been really sick. How can life be fair when the nicest guy in your group has cancer? Julian's faith and friendships are put to the test . . . and the stakes have never been higher. Praise for Twerp A Bank Street Best Book of the Year
A Junior Library Guild Selection
A Summer Top Ten Kids' Indie Next List Pick "Reminiscent of The Perks of Being a Wallflower. . . . You don't have to be a twerp to read this book." --New York Post "A vivid, absorbing story about one boy's misadventure, heartache, and hope for himself." --Rebecca Stead, Newbery Medal-winning author of When You Reach Me " Fans of] Jeff Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid who have matured beyond the scope and gravity of that series will find a kindred spirit in Julian." --School Library Journal "Reminiscent of movies like The Sandlot. . . . Well-written and funny." --The Advocate "Alternately poignant and comical. . . . A thought-provoking exploration of bullying, personal integrity and self-acceptance." --Kirkus Reviews "Funny, poignant, and an effective commentary on bullying and its consequences." --The Horn Book Magazine
- ISBN-13: 9780385391085
- ISBN-10: 0385391080
- Publisher: Random House Childrens Books
- Publish Date: February 2015
- Page Count: 345
- Reading Level: Ages 9-UP
- Dimensions: 1.5 x 6 x 8.75 inches
- Shipping Weight: 0.98 pounds
A frank look at a friend's difficult diagnosis
Finding the Worm is Mark Goldblatt’s second book about Julian Twerski and his 34th Avenue gang, based on the author’s childhood experiences in Queens, New York. The sequel to Twerp continues with language that is simple and accessible but packs a punch, especially when dealing with the sensitive topic of cancer.
When the guidance counselor pulls seventh-grader Julian and his friends out of class, they share the same unspoken fear: that their friend Quentin has died. Quentin has a brain tumor, but fortunately his prognosis is good, and he will soon be returning to school.
Julian, Shlomo, Lonnie, Beverly, Howard and Eric provide a safety net for Quentin that is poignant and believable. They wrestle his wheelchair onto the bus every day, chat at his bedside and cushion him from the ignorant bullies who tease him at school.
Julian’s principal, rabbi, older sister and friends help as he struggles to accept why bad things happen to good people. Finding the Worm offers no glib answer but satisfies with a powerful portrayal of friendship at its most meaningful.