The Wrong Bus

The Wrong Bus

by Lois Peterson, Amy Meissner
     
 

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Jack loves and misses his bus-driving grandfather. When Grandpa Nod got sick, Jack's mother said eight-year-old Jack was too young to visit his grandfather in the hospital. When Grandpa Nod died, Jack's mother said Jack was too young to go to the funeral. One day after school, Jack gets on the wrong bus. To his surprise he discovers Grandpa Nod is in the driver's

Overview

Jack loves and misses his bus-driving grandfather. When Grandpa Nod got sick, Jack's mother said eight-year-old Jack was too young to visit his grandfather in the hospital. When Grandpa Nod died, Jack's mother said Jack was too young to go to the funeral. One day after school, Jack gets on the wrong bus. To his surprise he discovers Grandpa Nod is in the driver's seat of the empty bus. Grandpa Nod takes him to all the places Jack was too young to go—the hospital, the funeral home and the cemetery. By the end of the ride, Jack has had the chance to tell his grandfather how much he misses him. And with his birthday coming soon, Jack receives a very special gift—Grandpa Nod's bus schedules. So even if he does get on the wrong bus, Jack will always be able to find his way home.

Editorial Reviews

CM Magazine
"For children who have recently lost someone in their lives, or for any child who is curious about death, this story is a good option...The Wrong Bus is a unique story that lets children confront an important subject at their own level, making it a good addition to both personal and school collections. Recommended."
Library Media Connection
"Peterson deals with a sensitive issue in a light-hearted, non-threatening manner. She allows the reader to empathize with Jack as he tries to understand and come to terms with his loss. Soft, b&w illustrations are peppered throughout the text, creating an added sense of comfort. This would be a good choice for a child who is dealing with the death of a loved one."
Booklist
"Jack soberly takes in each scene, asks cogent questions...and absorbs his grandpa’s comforting responses...while quietly demonstrating that, given just a little distance, he—and, by extension, young children in general—is indeed capable of comprehending and coping with the loss of loved ones."
Southwest Ohio Young Adult Materials Review Group
"Although this seems like a sad story, it is well told and could help any child get through losing a grandparent."
Resource Links
"Peterson has addressed the issue of death and grief in a respectful manner...Readers who are dealing with the death of a loved one may find that this book gives them the tools to address the feelings they are experiencing. It could definitely be used by parents, teachers and counsellors to help young children understand the grieving process."
The Muskokan
"A gentle way of talking to children about aging, illness, death and grief."
Children's Literature - Emily Hearn
According to his mother, eight-year-olds do not ride the bus alone, visit hospitals, or go to funeral homes or cemeteries. Consequently, Jack Finch is having a hard time finding closure after his grandfather's death. The day after Grandpa Nod's funeral, Jack returns to school. Like his mother, his friend Katy assumes control by informing everyone about Grandpa's death. While waiting for Katy after school, he is shocked to see Grandpa Nod pull up in an unnumbered bus for a Magical Mystery Tour that takes Jack to places he is not supposed to go: the water park for children six and under, the hospital where he died, the funeral home, and finally the cemetery before returning him to the bus stop. While visiting those places, Grandpa tells Jack about his experiences and answers his questions. He reassures Jack about his satisfaction with his new home, a place Jack can come to visit him and remember. He also reminds Jack that he will soon be nine. Black-and-white illustrations help convey Jack's journey from sadness and confusion to understanding and acceptance. The story should be helpful for children having a hard time saying goodbye to a loved one. Reviewer: Emily Hearn

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781554698691
Publisher:
Orca Book Publishers
Publication date:
05/01/2012
Series:
Orca Echoes Series
Pages:
64
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.40(h) x 0.20(d)
Lexile:
500L (what's this?)
Age Range:
7 - 9 Years

Read an Excerpt

There was no number on the next bus. Jack stepped back. He expected it to pass by, headed for the depot. But it stopped in front of him.

    The doors wheezed open.

    The sun shone in Jack's face. He couldn't see the driver.

    "Hop on, son," a voice said.

    "This is the wrong bus," Jack said. "I need the Number 26."

    "This will do. Hop on, Jawbreaker."

    Jawbreaker! Jack raced up the stairs. "Grandpa!"

Meet the Author

Lois Peterson wrote short stories and articles for adults for twenty years before turning to writing for kids. She was born in England and has lived in Iraq, France and the United States. She now lives in Surrey, British Columbia, where she writes, reads and teaches creative writing to adults, teens and children.

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