“Slow at first, then started to pick up. The end is really good.”Maya wrote this review Thursday, February 21, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This middle school title is an excellent example of realistic, historical fiction. Jeffrey Lionel Magee was an orphan taken in by his aunt and uncle who live under the same roof, but ultimately live separate lives. Jeffery quits school and runs away, ultimately ending up in a racially segregated town. Maniac continues to be on the move, staying with families that take him in, each adding to his life experiences. Racism and bullying prevail throughout the story, which would make excellent reading for students studying segregation. As a fan of The Outsiders, this book reminded me of that title as the division between groups is based upon circumstances beyond one's control. ”Jodie D'Alexander wrote this review Wednesday, February 20, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This is probably one of my all time favorites. I love the controversy and the kind of action adventure it has. I also love the running and sports. Reminds me of my childhood.”Quinton wrote this review Wednesday, February 20, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Maniac Magee was an outstanding book. It was one of the best books i have ever read. My opinion of this book is that it was a marvelous book. One of my favorite parts was when he tired to get that enormous knot out of the rope.
“I read this book in 4th grade at my Aunt's request and it is easily one of my favorite books from my childhood.”Nick Coyan wrote this review Tuesday, February 19, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“I love this book! Maniac Magee teaches us all about multiculturism.”Mrs. Koch wrote this review Sunday, February 17, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“I love this bool
“The book follows the life of Jeffrey Lionel Magee. When he was very little, his parents died in a tragic trolley accident. After living with his aunt and uncle for awhile, Jeffrey gets fed up with their entirely loveless relationship and he runs away. For the rest of the book he is homeless and bounces around in the racially segregated community of Two Mills, PA. He lives with a black family in East End for a little while, but leaves when the family is given grief for having a white kid in their home. He then lives with an old man who dreamed of playing in the Major Leagues and a white trash family in West End. By the end of the book, Jeffrey (who is nicknamed Maniac by the community) ends up breaking down some racial barriers between West and East End and finding a family to live with.
I thought this book was incredible. It was a children's book that actually had quite a bit of depth. Not only was it fun to read about all of Maniac's adventures, but the book explored racial tension, loneliness, and other serious issues. The dialog was great, sometimes serious and usually hysterical. The characters were also great. Maniac is a completely over-the-top hero while still managing to be human and completely believable.
This is definitely a book I would like to read to my kids someday. It manages to be a pretty fun book while still providing the opportunity for serious discussions about the state of the world. ”
“"Jeffrey Lionel Magee's parents were in a trolley when its drunk driver crashed and sunk the trolley into the Schuylkill River in Bridgeport, PA, orphaning him at age three. After living with his Aunt Dot and Uncle Dan in another town and enduring their mutual hatred and silence, he runs away during a school musical performance. One year (The Lost Year) and 200 miles later, Jeffrey finds himself across the river from Bridgeport in Two Mills, PA, where Hector Street sharply divides black East Enders from white West Enders.
He meets Amanda Beale, an East Ender who carries her library of random books in a suitcase, and he borrows a book before continuing his dash through town. Along the way, he intercepts a football pass made to local football star James "Hands" Down, infuriates gigantic little-leaguer John McNab by hitting home runs off his fastball, and saves an unlucky child from Finsterwald’s back yard. The Finsterwald house is a house dreaded by everyone and has a bad reputation. Because of these acts, he earned the nickname "Maniac" and started a local legend.
When bully East Ender "Mars Bar" Thompson corners Maniac and rips a page from Amanda's book, Maniac is rescued by Amanda herself, who takes him home to her chaotic but loving household. Maniac finds a temporary home there, helping Mr. and Mrs. Beale with the chores and pacifying their youngest children, Hester and Lester. Soon though, a few East End residents make it clear that they don't want him in the East End anymore by writing racist graffiti on the Beale's garage door. His final effort to gain acceptance is by untying the famous Cobble’s Knot (a huge, grimy ball of string with a year's supply of pizza waiting for its vanquisher.) After finishing the task he is praised by everyone as confetti is thrown into the air. Amanda Beale realizes, too late, that the confetti was made from the pages of her favorite book. Maniac runs away again so he won't hurt the Beales anymore. He takes shelter in the buffalo pen at the zoo and occasionally eats with the Pickwells—West Enders who provide spaghetti dinners for anyone who shows up at their dinner table.
At the zoo, Maniac meets Earl Grayson, a washed up minor-league baseball pitcher who works as a groundskeeper, who hasn't ever learned to read, and who insists he has no stories. For a few months Jeffrey has a home again with Grayson, helping at work, celebrating holidays, and teaching Grayson to read. When Grayson dies in his sleep, Maniac wanders off aimlessly.
On the verge of frozen starvation he encounters Piper and Russell, child-ruffians who are running away to Mexico, and who turn out to be John McNab's brothers. Maniac leads them back home, bribing them with free pizza, and stays at their cockroach-infested, decrepit house. Here, Maniac finds the worst that the West End has to offer as he learns that the McNabs are making a bunker because they believe the East End is planning a rebellion. He endures the coarseness and squalor of the McNab home in hopes of keeping Piper and Russell in school and under control, but eventually gives up.
After beating Mars Bar in a foot race (running backward) and goading him into crashing a birthday party at the McNabs', Maniac is homeless again. He moves back into the buffalo pen, and runs for miles every morning before Two Mills wakes up. Before long, Mars Bar starts running with him as if by coincidence, and the two never say a word to each other. One day they come across a hysterical Piper McNab, who frantically leads them to Russell, stuck on the trolley trestle where Jeffrey's parents died. Maniac walks away silently, nearly unconscious and stunned by fear, while Mars Bar rescues Russell, becoming a hero in the child’s eyes. Maniac retreats to the buffalo pen, where Mars Bar leads Amanda Beale to persuade Maniac once and for all to come live with her family again."
“I would definitely recommend this book; it was one of my favorite books. You should read this book because you can visualize the setting throughout the whole book. There are also a lot of surprises in it, and they always kept me interested, and wondering what will come next. It is about a kid named Jeffery (Maniac) Magee, who runs away from home to go live on his own. In the town he decides to stay in, he becomes basically a legend. Everybody loves him, big kids and little kids, but the problem is that there is a black side and a white side, and that causes a little bit of trouble. If you like realistic fiction books, this is definitely a good book that you want to read. ”Theo G. wrote this review Friday, January 25, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No