Window Boy

Window Boy

5.0 1
by Andrea White
     
 

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Set in 1968, this touching novel tells the story of Sam Davis, a young man with cerebral palsy who peers though his bedroom window every day at the school he longs to attend. With great determination and the help of both his caretaker and his imaginary friend, Winston Churchill, Sam not only succeeds in gaining admittance to the school and the acceptance of his peers,…  See more details below

Overview

Set in 1968, this touching novel tells the story of Sam Davis, a young man with cerebral palsy who peers though his bedroom window every day at the school he longs to attend. With great determination and the help of both his caretaker and his imaginary friend, Winston Churchill, Sam not only succeeds in gaining admittance to the school and the acceptance of his peers, but also fulfills his dream of becoming the school's basketball coach. The narrative, full of poignant insights into attitudes toward people with disabilities, provides a glimpse into the life of Winston Churchill, who is a key inspiration for young Sam.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

A 12-year-old boy with cerebral palsy overcomes tremendous odds in White's (Surviving Antarctica) often affecting but overstuffed novel set in 1968. Sam Davis's father has abandoned him and his mother, and she in turn has delegated most of his care, emotional as well as physical, to a nurse, prim Miss Perkins. An émigré raised in London during the blitz, Miss Perkins has nurtured Sam on the books of Winston Churchill, with the result that the boy has a vivid imaginary friendship with "Winnie." When the boy enters a public school for the first time, with Miss Perkins at his side, the other students and even the teacher wonder if he is much more than a vegetable—until he uses a letter tray to spell out what proves to be a prize-winning essay on Churchill, and until his close observations of the playground yield good tips for the school basketball team. All this would be drama enough, but White also adds the mother's sudden marriage and institutionalization of Sam (winning the essay contest helps free him). It's too bad that White doesn't stick to her imaginative portrayal of Sam; readers might be put off by the excesses and distanced by the historical setting. Ages 9—12. (Apr.)

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Houston Chronicle
The inspiration that White provides to adolescents is endless.
FLYP Forward
An excellent book.
Children's Literature - Kathleen Karr
It is the 1960s, before Congressional laws concerning the public education of disabled children have been passed. Andrea White uses the fictional story of twelve-year-old cerebral palsy victim Sam Davis to dramatize the seriousness of the situation. Cerebral palsy is not a poster-pretty disease, leaving few bodily functions working aside from the brain. Sam's father has abandoned the family because of the incurable disease. His mother lives in her own little world trying to ignore it. Sam is left with watching boys his age play basketball outside his window—and with his "nanny," the Englishwoman Miss Perkins, who loves her charge and Winston Churchill in equal measures and teaches Sam never to say "never." Sam tries going to school, ends up in an "Institution" but finally has his day. While Sam's story is definitely four-tissue material, White knows it ought to be told, and tells it well. The book's back matter includes true case studies about working with physically disabled children. Reviewer: Kathleen Karr
School Library Journal

Gr 6-8

Sam Davis, confined to a wheelchair by crippling cerebral palsy, has two passions: basketball and the life of Winston Churchill. His beloved nurse cum companion, Miss Perkins, lived through the war in England and reads him multiple biographies of the prime minister as she shares her own stories of war-torn London. The novel is set in the 1960s, prior to the advent of the law mandating education of all children, and Sam is precluded from attending public school. When Miss Perkins offers to accompany him in the classroom, he finally has a chance to show what he can do. He wins over his reluctant teacher, but is unable to convince the principal that he should stay. In the midst of his struggles at school, his mother leaves the country with a new male friend and places him in an institution for children who are mentally disabled. White has created a 12-year-old with a vast life of the mind, making up for his physical disabilities. In spite of his many hardships, Sam perseveres and does not merely survive, he thrives. Strong character development is combined with an accurate representation of the lack of educational opportunities for those who were physically and mentally disabled pre-IDEA. The interweaving of Churchill's voice and strength of personality adds to the depth of the plot and allows Sam to have an intellectual companion, given the absence of any friends his own age.-Wendy Smith-D'Arezzo, Loyola College, Baltimore, MD

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781933979144
Publisher:
Bright Sky Press
Publication date:
04/01/2008
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
946,318
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.30(d)
Lexile:
700L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Andrea White has published several short stories and is the author of Surviving Antarctica, which won the Golden Spur Children's Literature Award.

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Window Boy 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a phenomenal book...I highly recommend it