The Usual Suspects kindle î eBookFree Ù Maurice Broaddus

reader à The Usual Suspects ↠ Maurice Broaddus

Borhood hangout Thelonius and his pals become instant suspects Thelonius may be guilty of pulling crazy stunts at school but a criminal T isn’t about to let that label stick This middle grade feels like New Kid and every middle grade by Jason Reynolds with the rawness and sweetness that balance out in the message Thelonius is the perfect prankster because it's the best but it's obnoxious and he ends up in the principal's office often It's not until a gun is found near school property that Thelonius and his pals realize that they're going to be targeted unless they figure out who it was This sets off the fact finding expedition where Thelonius has to connect with Marcel the honor student ambassador that has a shady side she never gets caught when Theolnius always does Then there's other friends that he wants to protect and a mentor along with his mother It's a heartfelt story that only suffers from a generally bad cover but the message is loud and clear

kindle The Usual Suspects

The Usual SuspectsThelonius Mitchell is tired of being labeled He’s in special ed separated from the “normal” kids at school who don’t have any “issues” That’s enough to make all Have you ever felt deep down bone mad at the universe because it withheld information from you Information that is by rights yours to have Because at this moment I’m in that very situation I have here in my hands a book I have read this book and found it marvelous So I am in this funny state where I’m overwhelmed with love for this wonderful book on the one hand and engulfed in a red hot fury that people don’t know about it on the other Some people discover a great book and they feel this sense of satisfaction like they’ve discovered a gem or a treasure that is theirs and theirs alone That’s not me When I discover a great book my first thought is whether or not enough people are singing its praises The Usual Suspects by Maurice Broaddus isn’t doing too terribly in that department so far It’s received starred reviews sure it has But that’s not good enough people I want buzz I want this book so full of wit and intelligence raw honesty and clever plotting to be so well known that when I say The Usual Suspects to a room of librarians their first thoughts involve neither Casablanca or Keyser Soze but this work by Maurice Broaddus This all too real bookYou know that special ed class where a school will toss all the kids they don’t really want to deal with It’s a room of troublemakers A room of scapegoats A room ruled by Thelonius Mitchell With a brain that’s always working Thelonius sees through every person he comes across working the angles figuring out their weaknesses Then one day he finds himself in a precarious position A gun has been found on school grounds and by dint of being the usual suspects the special ed kids are now under close scrutiny Thelonius is used to the world thinking the worst of him but this is a whole other level of injustice It’s enough to get him investigating on his own But as he begins uestioning the different factions and kids of the school it becomes clear that there are forces at work here that would like nothing better than for him to drop the whole case And they’re willing to go to some pretty far lengths to make sure he knows exactly who’s in chargeIn 2019 the year of this book’s publication middle grade fiction has made a huge shift away from the fantasy novels and apocalyptic fiction of the Harry Potter and Hunger Games era As any news channel will tell you confrontations with reality yield far drama than any dragon or bleak future could muster In response I’ve seen author after author attempt to render the times in which we live into palatable fiction for young readers The best amongst them respect the kids They know that children see far than we ever give them credit for The worst come off as preachy pablum trying to instill lessons in great inelegant chunks Many of these books tackle the topic of systematic oppression and racial ineuities both historical and ongoing Some will talk about the police and others about protests and taking a stand At first glance The Usual Suspects wouldn’t strike you as one of these books It’s fun witty and bouncy at times Yet when you scratch even lightly at the surface you see how Maurice Broaddus is doing something better than telling He’s showing Time and again Thelonius outlines what it is like to live in a system where you’ve been labeled as a bad kid from the get go Constantly facing accusations and ineuities he’s shut down internally Once in a while he’ll allow himself to have a dream for his future but most of the time his head is full of the messages he’s been handed His saving grace is that he can see outside himself a little He says “Stories are all about how they are read not the teller’s intent Sometimes the intent and the meaning match up but sometimes they don’t It’s easy to let a bad story get in you and define you To let that version of how people see you soak in and take root growing inside you until you find yourself becoming and acting out that story It’s one reason I’m as suspicious of ‘teachers’ as they are of me” And by putting you in T’s head that oppression is tangible than a million books that merely talk about oppression Broaddus has just put it in terms you can understand with people a lot of kids see every day but don’t see if you get my meaning By giving voice to the voiceless he’s redefining what it is to be a middle grade novel about systematic racismThey will tell you that folks that like Jason Reynolds or Sharon Draper would like this book I have no idea why they say this I mean I know why but Maurice Broaddus doesn’t write a thing like either of them I saw someone online compare it to Maniac Magee which rubs me the wrong way entirely You know what I thought of when I read this book I thought of Harriet the Spy Not the cutesy version people who haven’t read it in 20 years remember but the actual book The one about the kid who’s smarter than most of the people around her but self sabotages herself every step of the way When I read this book I also thought of the movie Brick in which a kid conducts a thorough investigation but must wrangle with various factions at school that want to stop his detective work cold But the thing I thought about most is actually mentioned within the book itself At one point Thelonius says “Moms got me into reading Walter Mosley’s Easy Rawlins books” Now I have lived a long time but I’ve never seen a middle grade author make a pass at replicating Mosley for younger readers What we seem to have here is something entirely new Let’s talk compelling characters Which is to say let’s talk Thelonius himself Written in the first person he’s not a cipher but nor is he a Nick Carraway commenting on people interesting than himself all day long One of the problems I often detect in first person narratives is that the main character just doesn’t have that interesting an interior life Not a problem here Thelonius just brims with insights smart takes and a jaded outlook on the adults around him Broaddus continually peppers the book with off handed comments that drill down deep into his main character’s core Take when Thelonius is on the basketball court When he has the ball he’s a hog And when he’s called out on this he says “When the ball isn’t in my hands when I’m not in control I’m helpless I can run around all I want make screens confuse the defense but the reality is that whoever has the ball determines the action” Look at the seeming effortlessness of that statement There’s an elegance to the writing here The author is trusting that the young reader will read into that statement than what appears on the surface That’s what I mean when I say he treats his readers with respect Like they have brains or something And Thelonius while we’re talking about him is himself limited He’s interesting because you sometimes have a hard time rectifying his actions with his interior monologue You like this kid pretty early on Broaddus should probably give seminars on writing likeable flawed characters At the same time you and I think child readers would feel this as much as adult are frustrated that he’s suandering his talents on various pranks By the end of the book you get a glimmer of a sense that he might find a way to break out of his own self imposed limitations but clearly a seuel hint hint hint hint would be of use here At one point he says “I’m trying to do better but I’m not sure what better looks like just yet I think of it as using my powers for good against a bad guy I may need to work on developing new powers but until then I’m going with what I know”Of course to get at the other characters in this book you have to go through Thelonius’s lens and there’s a danger to that If he’s too insightful then he starts sounding like an adult and you don’t trust your narrator’s voice So the author has to walk this line between Thelonius’s deep seated intelligence about his fellows and the limitations of his own admittedly magnificent brain Broaddus once again solves much of this with descriptions that say than they say Of Nehemiah it says “Compared to him I’m sculpted like an Olympian He seems built like a collection of angry twigs” Rodrigo Luis “has the body of a third grader who had a diet of only leaves and water” A particularly nasty character’s smile “was ugly and jagged like someone took a broken bottle and carved a slit where a mouth should be” Tellingly Thelonius is best at understanding people when they’re young Adults throw him for of a curve He can’t separate their actions and intentions from the system they’ve signed on to and it makes him permanently skeptical of their actions He loves his mom who is a powerhouse of a woman that probably deserves a book of her own but anyone in his school or associated with his school is immediately on watch in his eyes We all have our preferences in the books we read My preference is towards middle grade novels filled with sentences that pop off the page and dance around for a while Honestly you could not have constructed in a lab a book as jam packed with sentences delicious than the ones found here Some of my favorite examples When Thelonius’s mom gets off the phone with Nehemiah’s mom or grandma “After a few minutes on the line with them she stared at our phone like it was an alien tongue trying to lick her” Nehemiah’s grandma “wears misery for makeup and chugs bitterness for vitamins” Of a fellow student “his hair is a series of short dreds in need of tightening that stand nearly straight up so it looks like he’s wearing a fallen crown” “Nehemiah bounces his Teddy Grahams package off my chest He hates them because he ‘never trusts anything that smiles all the time’” “That girl can’t find a maternal bone in a cemetery of mothers” At one point in the book Thelonius talks about the difference between himself and the kids that are beloved by the teachers The ones that obey all the rules without uestion He says “they’re always going to fit in Nothing wrong with that We just come at the world different because it comes at us different It comes hard we go hard We don’t fit in with how the system wants to define us and sometimes we have to turn the system on itself for us to get by” Even the adults that want to help are held back by this same system and in many ways it’s the small changes Thelonius makes at the end and not the solution to the mystery that’s the real success You want to know the real reason I compare this book to Harriet the Spy Because it feels like the author is handing truths to the kids reading it completely bypassing the adults of the world It feels sneaky I can see a kid gleaming truths from these pages that they have NEVER encountered anywhere with the possible exception of their own brains I can see adults becoming uncomfortable with just how much honesty is on display here It gives away the game this book does It’s always a good idea to sometimes read a book that’s smarter than you are starring a kid that’s smarter than the world around him You know why I haven’t heard people talking about this book Because nobody knows how to sell it Well sorry folks but the secret is out now It’s one of the best books I’ve ever read for kids and maybe the best school rated children’s novel I’ve encountered period This right here is the book of our timesFor ages 9 12

Maurice Broaddus ↠ The Usual Suspects mobi

The Usual Suspects kindle î eBook Free Ù Maurice Broaddus Û Thelonius Mitchell is tired of being labeled He’s in special ed separated from the “normal” kids at school who don’t have any “issues” That’s enough to make all the teachers and students look at him and his friends with a constant sideThe teachers and students look at him and his friends with a constant side eye Although his disruptive antics and pranks have given him a rep tooWhen a gun is found at a neigh Review copy courtesy of EdelweissCannot wait to buy this for my library and I think it is a must buy for urban classrooms and libraries in middle school settings This is a noir tale told by the boy who is always getting in trouble so much in fact he spends almost his entire day in his pull out special education classroom When someone brings a gun to school and Thelonius and his friends in their class are blamed he decides to investigate on his own and find the true culprit The story is funny creative and interesting and feels realistically fresh