Goobie, Beth. Sticks and Stones. Orca, 2002. ISBN 978-1551432137 112 pp. $9.95
Jujube becomes the target of a vicious gossip and bathroom wall graffiti when her dance date doesn’t deny the rumor that she slept with him on the their first date. Refusing to become a victim, she uses her class assignment on Ways We Communicate to fight an administration that refuses to take the matter seriously.
Sticks and Stones is part of Orca’s Soundings series. Written by award winning Canadian authors, the short thematic novels are designed for classroom use with special appeal for the reluctant reader. Large print type and simply constructed sentences combine with a flashy neon title and striking color photograph to hook. Characterization is a bit flat, perhaps because of the brevity of the novels, but the plot is strong (if not complex) in both novels. Sticks and Stones has a sympathetic character and universal theme. Based on real life events, are ideal for discussion and could even create a neat segue into current events. Highly recommended.