Fourteen-year-old Joey Campbell knows that he is lucky to be one of the survivors of the school fire. But really, how much luck is involved when he is the lone student to stand up during a fire drill? The only one who insists on getting out of the classroom? Joey’s best friend, Maureen, thankfully decides to follow, but the remaining twenty-four people in Room E201 are swallowed in the mysterious blaze that engulfs their school.
Other than Joey's classroom, the rest of the students heed the fire alarm and survive, but grief-stricken parents and classmates have no one to lash out against except Joey and Maureen. Behind a fence that his dad builds for their own safety, Joey deals with rage, sorrow, and helplessness in equal measure. Some solace can be found within the pages of his journal, but ultimately he must face the living in order to accept everyone and everything that is dead and gone.
|Publisher:||Margaret K. McElderry Books|
|Product dimensions:||5.80(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.90(d)|
|Lexile:||590L (what's this?)|
|Age Range:||10 - 14 Years|
About the Author
Susan Shaw is the author of One of the Survivors, Safe, an ALA Top Ten Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers and a Carolyn W. Field Honor Book, and The Boy From the Basement, a New York Public Library Best Book for the Teen Age. She lives in Wayne, PA, and you can visit her online at susanshaw.org.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
They say survivors of tragic accidents suffer not only the personal trauma of the tragedy, but also feelings of guilt as the "lucky" ones who survived the event. What if that guilt is compounded by the fact that the survivors are also being accused of causing the deadly event? Joey has already survived one fire - the one that killed his mother barely a year ago. Now he and his friend, Maureen, have survived a fire at their high school that claimed the lives of everyone else in their history class, including the teacher, Mr. Austen. Since the two fourteen year olds were the only students in the classroom to survive, people in the community have decided to accuse them of starting the fire in the first place. The reasoning behind the accusation? How else would they have known that the fire alarm was not just a test. That day the new fire alarm system was being tested. It started clanging before classes were even in session. Throughout the day, the fire alarm would sound, and the principal would announce over the PA that it was just a test. Joey became more and more unnerved each time the alarm went off, until finally, in history class, he snapped. Even though Mr. Austen threatened him with detention, Joey stood up and announced he was leaving the building. Everyone knew about his mother's tragic death, but only Maureen knew Joey well enough to recognize his panic. As they both left the classroom and the building, they accepted the fact that they might be punished for their disobedience. However, when they arrived outside to find the building was indeed on fire, their world changed forever. ONE OF THE SURVIVORS by Susan Shaw is the story of Joey's life after the fire and his struggle to cope with the angry accusations of some in his community and to deal with his own private grief and guilt. Shaw uses a mix of Joey's personal journal entries and narrative accounts of the events surrounding the time leading up to and including the fire. Readers will witness the emotional turmoil Joey experiences as he relives his mother's death and the senseless deaths of his fellow classmates. Shaw's control of the events and the way she gradually reveals the facts create a riveting read.
I would give One of the Survivors a rating of 4 stars out of 5 because it was good, mysterious, and entertaining but, at some parts it was confusing. However the book did have a fantastic plot and great story line though. The book is about a fire that burnt down Village Park High School, 14 year old Joey Campbell's school. 24 dead and 2 survivors. Now Joey has to cope with all the students' parents as well as any student who didn't get affected by the fire as they all blame Joey and his neighbor for starting the fire. Joey and his neighbor Maureen were the only two who got out of their freshman history class. It was on the day they were testing the fire alarm and Joey got so frustrated he had to go because, he already lost his mom to a house fire earlier. Now it's up to Joey to clear his name and get back to living a normal teenage life. I would recommend this book to teenagers who like mystery books, because they have to try and found out what actually happened that the fire started, it deals with actual teenage students who have to live with what they survived. also, i would give this to teenagers because throughout the entire book you're reading a teenagers journal of what happened and how it affected him and everybody else. This book was very good!
One of the Survivors By: Susan Shaw 10-16 How would you like to have people standing in your yard every day chanting, “Murderer! Murderer!” while throwing trash just because you and your friend knew to escape on that fateful day? 14-year-old Joey and his best friend Maureen are trying their hardest to cope with the loss of their whole history class while having people throwing trash into their yards. I would give this book a 4.9 out of five stars. It was a great read with the chapters written in daily journal entries. It was very descriptive with the physical traits of the characters like Donnie’s cow-lick and Maureen’s blond hair with a tiny bit of black still in it. It was very sad at moments such as when Joey is telling about the fires that killed his mom and whole history class and how he couldn’t save them. I would recommend this book to a friend because it is written in a very unique style and is not the everyday book that you pick up in a library and put back down because it looks sad or not thrilling enough. When I first saw it in the library I knew that I just HAD to read it. The beginning is very suspenseful because you don’t know if it’s the fire that the back cover talks about or another one. Every time I stopped reading I was left wanting to read more. I just couldn’t get enough of the book, I read it outside, in bed before falling asleep, just about anywhere I wanted to be reading it.