A Hero Ain't Nothin but a Sandwich

( 16 )

Overview

Benjie can stop using heroin anytime he wants to. He just doesn't want to yet. Why would he want to give up something that makes him feel so good, so relaxed, so tuned-out? As Benjie sees it, there's nothing much to tune in for. School is a waste of time, and home life isn't much better. All Benjie wants is for someone to believe in him, for someone to believe that he's more than a thirteen-year-old junkie. Told from the perspectives of the people in his life-including his mother, stepfather, teachers, drug ...

See more details below
Paperback
$4.39
BN.com price
(Save 26%)$5.99 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (39) from $1.99   
  • New (9) from $2.79   
  • Used (30) from $1.99   
Note: Visit our Teens Store.

Overview

Benjie can stop using heroin anytime he wants to. He just doesn't want to yet. Why would he want to give up something that makes him feel so good, so relaxed, so tuned-out? As Benjie sees it, there's nothing much to tune in for. School is a waste of time, and home life isn't much better. All Benjie wants is for someone to believe in him, for someone to believe that he's more than a thirteen-year-old junkie. Told from the perspectives of the people in his life-including his mother, stepfather, teachers, drug dealer, and best friend-this powerful story will draw you into Benjie's troubled world and force you to confront the uncertainty of his future.

The life of a thirteen-year-old Harlem youth on his way to becoming a confirmed heroin addict is seen from his viewpoint and from that of several people around him.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Children's Literature
The view of inner city life that emerges in this book is both gripping and depressing. Benjie's drug addiction is described from his own viewpoint and that of others involved in his life. He thinks he can quit anytime he chooses. Benjie comes across as a likeable, although unrealistic, teenager with many people who care about him. His relationship with his stepfather is the most fully developed exploring Benjie's resentments and his stepfather's true concern and willingness to help. His mother and grandmother feel beaten down, not only by Benjie's problems, but also by society. His friend laments his role in getting Benjie started in the drug scene. His teachers offer varying viewpoints. One viewpoint blames society, the other expresses frustration--both wanting to help. The authentic dialects and expressions convey the desperation of inner city life. This reissue of Childress' book describes the heartbreak of drug addiction for everyone involved with the addict. 2000 (orig. 1973), Puffin/Penguin, Ages 10 to 15, $15.95 and $4.99. Reviewer: Phyllis Kennemer
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780698118546
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/28/2000
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 315,062
  • Age range: 12 years
  • Product dimensions: 4.32 (w) x 7.01 (h) x 0.42 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 16 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(11)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 – 17 of 16 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2006

    This Book Was Awsome

    The main character in A Hero Ain't Nothin' but a Sandwich (written by Alice Childress) is Benjie, an African-American thirteen year old boy who lives in the bad part of town, where racism and violence are norm, and drugs are the only way out. Benjie lives in a apartment with his grandmother Mrs. Ransom Bell, his mom Rose 'Sweets' Johnson (soon to be Rose Johnson Craig), and his soon-to-be stepfather Butler Craig, who he has made up his mind to hate because he thinks that Butler's trying to take his mother from him. Whenever he is challenged by a problem at home or school, he resorts to denial and drugs. He steals from his family for drug money ('I had to take three bucks outta my grandmother's pocketbook, but I wasn't stealin it... I knew Jimmy-Lee would lend me three singles so I could slip back what was borrowed before anyone found out.'), but flatly denies being addicted to drugs, like when he says 'I take somethin sometime, but I ain't no user.' His other fault is that he thinks the world is against him. He dumps his friend Jimmy-Lee when he stops doing drugs and tells Benjie that he should do the same, it makes Benjie feel like a lesser person. He hates his teachers when they turn him in when he was high in class, and he hates everyone who says that he has a drug problem because, as he says, he doesn't have a drug problem. He believes that no one understands him, and he needs someone to believe that he isn't just some thirteen-year-old-junkie. But he won't let anyone believe in him. He knows they have no reason to like him, so they must not. Only when Butler stops him from jumping off a building does he find the person who had already believed in him. Benjie's main problem seems to be that he uses drugs, which hurts his life. He steals from his family and pushes his true friend away. Teachers constantly find him high in class, staring out the window, wondering where he's going to get his next hit. He agues with family, sometimes for no reason at all. But when the people around him try to clean his veins of skag and offer him help and comfort, he just pushes them away. People give up on him every time he goes back to drugs, thinking that they've done all they could to save Benjie. But what they don't realize is that their solution to Benji's problem didn't work because they were solving the wrong problem. Nobody can stop Benjie from using drugs because they don't give him a reason not to. One time he says 'Please God,' I prayed, 'send me a friend, someone to be crazy bout me Pleeeeease, God!' Clearly he wants someone to believe in him, and eventually he does say that he wants somebody to believe that is more than a thirteen-year-old junkie. But without that person, drugs are the only way to handle life for Benjie. Benjie finds his prayer when his previously hated stepfather saves Benjie from falling off his New York apartment roof, and showing him he really does care about him, does Benjie stop shooting up and starts to try to make his way in life. When you read this book, you get completely lost in it, and the characters come completely alive. You could see exactly what their personalities were, how they fitted into the community, and their thought process and feelings. Many a time, you almost expect to feel their warm breath as they exhale. What made this story so interesting andreal was the slang, misspelling, and the use of multiple views. When you are told that Benjie hates Butler, you are on Benjie's side, until Butler gives his view. Suddenly, both parties are equally in fault, and a new twist is added . When I finally finished the book, I forgot I was in California, not New York.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2014

    Devotion143

    All,I have to say is that this book is really good. One love to another one love booklover..its great

    Devotion143

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2013

    Beautiful

    This was amazing. The slang is heavy but this is a talking book. Which means it is written how the people actually speak so my advice would be to read outloud what you see written. It is easier to understand the language wont be such a trip up. It was great and very heart felt. Just loved

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2010

    Great Read!

    A Hero Ain't Nothin' but a Sandwich, by Alice Childress, is novel of a young thirteen year olds struggle with a drug addiction, racism, and finding himself amongst everyone else. The novel is a great book to be read, especially for to those in middle school because of the relation that they can make in the novel to their real life. Although the story is nearly forty-years old, the same problems still exist in our society, even so amongst the confused teenagers who struggle with self-identification. A quality that I found extremely pleasing in the novel was Childress's use of the African American slang and tongue; it really gives the story-line an authentic feel and entices the interest of the reader more. I highly recommend this novel to be read, but find that it best suites readers ages 12 or older.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 26, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A book that every parent should have there children read!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I read these boob in 1978-79 I used to work at the library during the summer the security guard there at the time (David) payed my buddy and I 5 bucks a day to sweep around the place one day he told me to read this book and I was'nt really in to reading books but this book? when I started I could'nt stop ! through out my life I would always think of this book and tell people about it now 30 some years latter I am buying 1 for the kids in my life to read Thanks to David for giving me this book and a special thanks to Alice Childress

    ALOHA & MAHALO
    JAMES

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 30, 2005

    a hero aint nothin but a sandwhich

    This is the best book I have ever read. I saw the movie on a field trip for school when I was younger. This story has always stayed with me. I am faced with an issue close to this one. And I have to remind myself that, ' A HERO AIN'T NOTHIN BUT A SANDWHICH!!! I LOVE THIS BOOK

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 26, 2003

    A Hero Aint Nothin But a Book Review

    Alice Childress A Hero Ain¿t Nothin¿ But a Sandwich Drama Little Benji, only 13 years old, is addicted to heroin. He has the choice to quit but the heroin makes him feel better about himself, and get through his days in the ghetto, so he doesn¿t want to quit. Alice Childress did a very good job of pulling me into the story. I read about five pages, and I just wanted to keep reading. It pulled me in from the very beginning. I like when books pull me in from the beginning, because then I am interested and can¿t wait to see what will happen. While reading this book I did not have to use strategy. It was a fairly easy book to read, but a very good one. I had a question that haunted me all the way through the book. Why had Benji been addicted to heroin at such a young age? Why had he even started in the first place? Why would he hurt himself like that so young? This novel really caused me to think about people my age who gave an entirely different life. I recommend this book to people ages 12 and up do to strong language.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2002

    A Story about a boy hooked on drugs - and how he, his family, and friends are affected

    This is a charming story about a preteen boy named Benjie who becomes hooked on drugs. His family and friends do everything they can to get him to stop, but he is hooked and can't control himself - even though he claims he isn't hooked. Meanwhile, Benjie's mother's fiance, Butler, turns away from Benjie's family because Benjie is very mean to him. Benjie's mom is very upset. Will Benjie ever get off drugs? If he can, will he be able to help his family and friends reunite? This book has a surprise ending, so go to your nearest library and check it out! :)

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 21, 2002

    Amazing Insight

    I decided to read A Hero Ain't Nothin' but a Sandwich because a friend of mine told me about it. After reading it I loved it, it was very interesting to see the struggles and ineractions between the characters. It also shed light on what it is like in the ghetto. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading about people. P.S. some of the slang is hard to understand.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2002

    What a Hero Really Is

    I enjoyed this book because it gives a descriptive insight on what it is like living in the ghetto. I reccomend the book to someone who enjoys reading reality books and looking at everyone's different insight of the ghetto.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 23, 2001

    THE BOOK IS GREAT SO FAR.

    I THING THIS BOOK IS VERY GOOD SO FAR EVEN THOUGH I'M ON CHAPTER 2. I WENT TO BARNES NOBLE TO PURCHSE THE ADVENTURES OF SHERLOCK HOLMES. I LOOKED IN THE TEEN SECTION AND LOOKED AT THE BOOKAND I DECIDED TO BUY IT. IT IS REALLY GOOD.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2001

    I LOVE THIS BOOK

    I'm 12, and one day in the school library me and my friends were playin around and picking out the dumbest book we could find! I grabbed this title. and cracked up. we sat in the library laughing, and when I opened the book and started reading fer a few minutes, I realized that it was one of the best books I have read b4!!! its about a boy who does drugs and is about to be hooked, everyone is trying to save him! the boy wants attention... and his whole family is growing apart! I recommend this book to everyone.. its the bestest! I SWEAR! I LOVE THIS BOOK and I really wanna buy it to keep! -Alyson

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2000

    Truth is found in this title

    This book was a really good veiw of how the ghetto used to be and still is. Its about a mother trying to get her baby back and a father bonding with his child.This whole book is centered around a boy striving for attention.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 16, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 13, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 – 17 of 16 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)