Bridge to Terabithia

Review From User :

When I read this in fourth grade, I loved it because it was enchanting, and reminded me very much of 'secret hideouts' I made with friends at the same age. When I read it again later in life, aloud to my younger brother and sister ages 10 and 12, I was choking back tears to keep reading aloud, and they were crying. If you've never read it (or, I suppose now, seen the movie) beware, this review is a spoiler! What I have learned from this book is that our assumptions about children and what is "appropriate" for them are seriously flawed. We assume they need color, fantasy, and bling, and that they can't deal with "hard" topics like death and, oh, speaking of that, life. Kids are people too. And they do understand and can deal with hard topics in many ways better than us adults, who have learned to choke back the tears instead of actually crying. When I was a kid going to my secret hideouts, I wasn't just playing, I was escaping. If kids don't understand real life, then why do they run from it, then, as in this book (and in real life) gain life-altering skills while "away" and come back stronger I may choke back tears now, but when I was 10, I went to my secret hideouts to cry and deal with things in my own way, in my own world, just like Leslie and Jesse do in Terabithia.

Jess Aarons’ greatest ambition is to be the fastest runner in his grade. He’s been practicing all summer and can’t wait to see his classmates’ faces when he beats them all. But on the first day of school, a new girl boldly crosses over to the boys’ side and outruns everyone.

That’s not a very promising beginning for a friendship, but Jess and Leslie Burke become inseparable. Together they create Terabithia, a magical kingdom in the woods where the two of them reign as king and queen, and their imaginations set the only limits.

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