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Everybody Sees the Ants

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( 13 )
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  • Posted September 19, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Another amazing and original book from A.S. King.

    I see the ants.

    This is a touching, funny and nuanced story about Lucky Linderman, a fifteen year old who has a long legacy of being bullied by a horrible kid that no one seems to be willing to stop. But that's not all it's about; there is so much in this book that I bet everyone who reads it gets a little something different out of it. Here's what I took from it: Lucky Linderman is a good kid in a bad situation. He's a good kid who finds himself the victim of Nader McMillan, the community bully/jerk/a-hole. Lucky is also the son of clueless parents who don't mean to be neglectful, but kind of are due to their inaction. He's a good kid who is a product of the crappy things that go on in his life until he realizes he doesn't need to be. I'm not going to talk about the magic realism in this book, because I don't want to take away from it, but through certain scenes, Lucky realizes what life is about, no, what HIS life is about and how he needs to be an active participant in it if he wants it to change.

    There's so much I loved in this book, from the character Lucky himself, to Ginny and Lucky's mom, to the little things that made it so different from anything I'd read before, like Lucky's healing wound, frank talk about the Vietnam War draft lottery, the way Lucky sees his parents and...well I could go on and on, but I'd rather leave it up to you to discover. Another great book from A.S. King!

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 23, 2011


    The kind of book that bebds reality bur never loses reality. A fantastic exploration of family and friendship. Lucky linderman will linger in my head foquite some time, I know it.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 11, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Must Read!! Review by Bookittyblog

    I usually like reading from a female's POV. For obvious reasons I can identify myself more with them. But reading from Lucky's POV was different. I felt very protective of him. I couldn't get why "mom" and "dad" couldn't protect better their son, but as the book progressed I kind of got why everything was happening. I don't want to get into details because I will spoil the book.

    All her characters were amazing and realistic. One of the characters that impact me the most was Aunt Jodi because it reminds me of someone close to me. It amazed me how much they were so alike (Aunt Jodi and that someone). Oh and the ants!! One of my favorite things about the book were the ants. They were hilarious!

    This book touched my heart, broke it and made me laughed like a crazy person. A.S. King is incredible with words, and I admire that she decided to write about bullying, to educate us about how bad the situations is for some kids out there.

    I want to say something to people who witness bullying, if you see someone getting bullied do something don't stand there and act like nothing is wrong. You might save a life


    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2014

    The book, ┬┐Everybody Sees the Ants,┬┐ by A.S. King explores a boy

    The book, “Everybody Sees the Ants,” by A.S. King explores a boy named Lucky Linderman and how Lucky tries to overcome his school bully Nader. The conflict in this story is external and character vs. character. Lucky has been repeatingly bullied by Nader since second grad, and now Lucky is in high school. For example, like how Nader says,”Don’t help her” because Charlotte’s bikini top fell off in the pool which shows how rude Nader is. So, Lucky and his mom go to their Aunt Jodi’s house for a vacation from everything, and met a girl there that changes him. The second conflict is Lucky’s parents. Lucky’s mother is absolutely addicted to swimming as it says,”My mother is addicted to swimming. I don’t mean this in a cute, doing handstands-in-the-shallow-end sort of way.” Then, there is Lucky’s father who knows Lucky is getting bullied, but doesn’t do anything about it. Which shows as Lucky says,”maybe she thinks being a squid means she won’t be swallowed by the hole in our family,” […] Dad says was ,: It would have been better if my dad had come home in a bag, because then at least we could know.” Then he transforms into a turtle,” which shows how Lucky’s mother and father are cowards and won’t face their problems.
    I like this book, because how it shows Lucky growing and learning a lesson through all of this. For example, how to stand up for himself and to be independent. Also, it teaches you there can be ups and downs in life. For example, “ NO matter what I do, I can never get away from it. It’s like we’re cursed.” I also like in this book is Lucky can see imaginary ants because that symbolizes his self-concious and how he feels or what he sees. For example,” […] You’re bleeding a little, and hand me a tissue. The ants say: aren’t we all bleeding a little?” Also how Lucky’s scab symbolizes how much hes grown and the more he gets stronger physicaly and emotionaly. For example,” I feel the fresh, smooth parts and marvel at how soft they are. New skin amazes me. New skin is a miracle. It is proof that we can heal.” I would recommend this book to anyone goinig through rough times, getting bullied in high school, or anyone because, “Everybody Sees The Ants,” teaches you a lesson.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 22, 2013

    Better than we thought it would be.

    A book club I belong to had this as their book of the month. No one anticipated we would like it, but we all did. It was entertaining, and we could see ourselves in the characters. The people and dialogue were true to life. The situations were believable.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 20, 2013

    very well written

    It was a surprisingly good read about a young man's coming off age, dealing with his parents' benign neglect and his experience with bullying.
    I liked it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 18, 2013



    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 28, 2012

    Pretty good(:

    This book is a good read. I can see how some people would not like it but everyone has different tastes and views, so reviews are just oponons... i reccomend giving this book a try :) who knows? You might just like it.

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  • Posted February 28, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Unfortunately the book's strengths are not complemented by the book's plot

    There are some things you need to know about Lucky Linderman.

    First: His mother is a squid. She swims more than two hundred laps every day. No matter what. Even when Lucky has some new bruises courtesy of Nader McMillan or her husband once again flakes on his familial duties.

    Second: His father is a turtle. Lucky's grandfather never came home from Vietnam and Lucky's dad never recovered. He spends all of his time hiding in his shell or working at the restaurant instead of actually being a father.

    Third: Lucky doesn't smile. Ever. Not since asking one stupid question for one stupid project in Social Studies (the class actually isn't stupid--Lucky kind of likes it). He is definitely not going to smile since that one stupid question brought him nothing but trouble and the renewed hatred of Nader McMillan.

    Fourth: Ever since Lucky was seven he's been having strange dreams. Now the dreams are his only refuge as he spends each night in the war-torn jungles of Laos trying to finally bring his grandfather home from the war he could never leave.

    But even dreams that seem as real as Lucky's can only last so long before it's time to really wake up in Everybody Sees the Ants by A. S. King.

    Everybody Sees the Ants is King's follow-up to her Printz Honor book Please Ignore Vera Dietz. It was also a finalist for the 2011 Cybils in Young Adult Fiction which is how I came to read it.

    There are certain books that I enjoy upon first reading them. But the more I think about them, the more I really look at all of the little details, the more problems I have. Everybody Sees the Ants was that kind of book.

    While not actually a mystery, Everybody Sees the Ants is structured in such a way that readers do not initially get a linear story nor do they get the full story. Anyone looking for a puzzle to put together will enjoy the multiple angles of this book. Lucky is a shockingly authentic* narrator with a voice and story all his own. King's writing is painfully intense and quirky as Lucky drags readers through dense Laos jungle and the even deeper problems of his own life.

    Unfortunately these strengths are not complemented by the book's plot which is filled with numerous holes and seemingly random details that added little to the plot itself. Without delving into specifics, King never fully explains the nature of Lucky's dreams which creates a fundamental problem with the structure of the book. Similarly, readers never really understand why one teenaged boy is able to not only bully but literally terrorize an entire town with absolutely no intervention from any adults or the authorities.** Other moments were easily predicted or simply heavy-handed as King was at pains to make certain points about Lucky's relationships with his parents and the world at large.

    If you aren't looking for a book that needs to answer all of your questions or stand up to a close reading, Everybody Sees the Ants might still appeal.

    *Unlike me, you probably already knew that King was a female author. I didn't know that while reading the book and was completely floored to find out A. S. King was not a man. That's how authentic Lucky's voice is in this story.

    **I maintain my stance that Nader should have been institutionalized as a psychopath long before the events of this book started.

    Possible Pairings: Leverage by Joshua C. Cohen, Liar by Justine Larbalestier, The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl by Barry Lyga, The Piper's Son by Meli

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 9, 2011

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    Posted May 29, 2014

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    Posted September 27, 2013

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    Posted February 27, 2012

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