Ten Rules You Absolutely Must Not Break if You Want to Survive the School Bus

Ten Rules You Absolutely Must Not Break if You Want to Survive the School Bus

5.0 1
by John Grandits, Michael Allen Austin
     
 
Kyle is dreading his first trip aboard the school bus. Luckily, his big brother, James, is a school bus expert. James gives Kyle ten rules for riding the bus that he absolutely, positively must obey if he wants to avoid getting laughed at or yelled at, pushed around, or even pounded. During his fateful ride, Kyle grapples with each unbreakable rule. Along the

Overview

Kyle is dreading his first trip aboard the school bus. Luckily, his big brother, James, is a school bus expert. James gives Kyle ten rules for riding the bus that he absolutely, positively must obey if he wants to avoid getting laughed at or yelled at, pushed around, or even pounded. During his fateful ride, Kyle grapples with each unbreakable rule. Along the way, he discovers that the school bus isn’t so bad, and he may even have a thing or two to teach his brother.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Though his hair recalls Conan O'Brien, first-time school bus rider Kyle's anxiety-ridden narration is straight out of A Christmas Story. Kyle is scared to ride the bus and is relying on his brother's rules for survival. Playing up Kyle's reference to a TV nature show, Austin's faux-menacing acrylics imbue the riders and setting with animalistic qualities. Kyle (who briefly becomes a zebra among lions) breaks several rules, talking both to a bully (a grizzly bear) and to a girl. But by day's end, Kyle has developed a rule of his own: sometimes it's good to take a sibling's advice with a grain of salt. Ages 5–8. (July)
School Library Journal
Gr 1–4—Nervous to ride the bus on the first day of school, Kyle is armed with his older brother's survival rules: never sit in the first row or the last row, never make yourself stand out, never make eye contact, never touch anyone's stuff, never talk to big kids or to girls, never mess with the bully or the bus driver, and never be the last one on the bus. Following his brother's instructions is a lot harder than he thought and poor Kyle ends up breaking every rule. But, to his surprise he doesn't get laughed at, yelled at, pushed around or pounded, and the big kids don't steal his lunch, his money, or his football card collection. Instead, he makes a new friend, bonds with the bully, and convinces the driver to drop the kids off across the street away from the scary dog. The large, full-page acrylic illustrations constantly shift perspectives and points of view, adding energy, vivacity, and animation. Readers also gain insight into Kyle's wild imagination as he pictures himself as a zebra at a lion party and envisions the big kids as grizzly bears, the girls as mean snakes, and the bus driver as a vulture. Seasoned bus riders, and anyone who has been misguided by an older sibling's advice, will certainly enjoy this outrageously humorous, well-told story. However, youngsters nervous about riding the bus might want to wait until after they have overcome their fears to read it.—Rachel Kamin, North Suburban Synagogue Beth El, Highland Park, IL
From the Publisher

"Worthy of being shelved next to Jon Scieszka’s funniest."—Kirkus Reviews, starred review 

"Though his hair recalls Conan O'Brien, first-time school bus rider Kyle's anxiety-ridden narration is straight out of A Christmas Story."—Publishers Weekly

"The large, full-page acrylic illustrations constantly shift perspectives and points of view, adding energy, vivacity, and animation... Seasoned bus riders, and anyone who has been misguided by an older sibling’s advice, will certainly enjoy this outrageously humorous, well-told story."School Library Journal, starred review

Children's Literature - Sharon Salluzzo
Older brothers are known to give younger siblings advice, and James is no different. He counsels his little brother in the rules of survival as he rides the school bus alone and for the first time. Our young narrator finds that adhering to the rules is extremely difficult. How can you keep rules 1 and 2 ("Never sit in the first row," and "never sit in the last row") when those are the only seats available? In his nervousness, he breaks the other rules, too. Then something strange happens. He discovers that breaking his brother's rules can be okay. The gray undertones and the off-kilter angles of the illustrations create a shivery complement to the anguish of breaking the rules. Grandits' lengthy text flows smoothly from one rule to the next and the reader empathizes with the protagonist. The tongue-in-cheek humor pervades the matter-of-fact text and the illustrations with their unusual perspectives and literal interpretation. Our young narrator's facial expressions engage the reader and tell the story. A sophisticated audience that has experienced riding the bus will truly identify with, and cheer on this little fella. Teachers and school librarians will find this to be an entertaining and engaging way to commence a discussion on bullies and bus behavior. Reviewer: Sharon Salluzzo
Kirkus Reviews

Grandits' latest is a hilarious tongue-in-cheek look at the perils of riding the school bus.

Kyle is a little nervous about his first-ever bus ride. Luckily he's got his older brother James to teach him the rules. But from the moment the bus pulls up to the curb, things start to go wrong for Kyle, who manages to break seven of his brother's 10 bus rules on the morning trip to school and the remaining three on the way home. While many of the rules make good sense (never touch anyone's stuff, never mess with the bully), as Kyle learns, there are times when rules just cannot, or should not, be followed. And when Kyle survives the experience, he realizes that maybe he could give his older brother a few pointers. While the rather lengthy text and relatively sophisticated humor preclude this from soothing a new kindergartner's fears of the school bus, this is one that is sure to tickle older elementary kids and even middle schoolers who have been through it. Austin's acrylic artwork is amazingly lifelike. He is at his best when he illustrates scenes from Kyle's vivid imagination, which has a tendency toward metaphor. Kyle's every thought and feeling are manifest on the page.

Worthy of being shelved next to Jon Scieszka's funniest. (Picture book. 6-12)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780618788224
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
07/04/2011
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
273,351
Product dimensions:
8.50(w) x 11.00(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
AD520L (what's this?)
Age Range:
6 - 9 Years

Meet the Author


John Grandits is a book and magazine designer and the author of Technically, It's Not My Fault and Blue Lipstick, award-winning books of concrete poetry, and the picture book Ten Rules You Absolutely Must Not Break If You Want to Survive the School Bus, which received the Texas Bluebonnet Award.  He and his wife, Joanne, live in Red Bank, New Jersey. Visit him at www.johngrandits.com.

Michael Allen Austin is the award-winning illustrator of several children's books, among them Ten Rules You Absolutely Must Not Break If You Want to Survive the School Bus. Publishers Weekly has exclaimed that his illustrations are "wild and wily," and Booklist has called his art "unusual and exuberant." He lives in Atlanta with his wife, Kim, and their sheepdog, Riley. His website is www.austinillustration.com.

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Ten Rules You Absolutely Must Not Break If You Want to Survive the School Bus 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Nanni More than 1 year ago
Purchased for reading to a first grade class. Omitted some the words like getting "pounded". The class loved the book.