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Box of Shocks
By author: Chris McMahen
Selling Points: "only children, overprotective parents, friendship, compassion"
Publisher: Orca Book Publishers
Pub Date: Oct/01/2011
Pages: 168
Fiction Ages 9-12
Price:  $9.95
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Oliver has helicopter parents—they love him, but they seriously cramp his style. He decides to fill an old wooden box with souvenirs from some of his outrageous and daring exploits. That way, he'll never forget the zombies, the killer dogs and the crazy cows, and his parents will never know that he once jumped from a bridge with the police in hot pursuit. But the biggest shock comes when Oliver realizes that the most terrifying things of all can't be controlled or contained.
Eastern New Jersey Regional Library Cooperative - September 1, 2012
"An enjoyable read, especially for boys, who enjoy realistic adventures."
Canadian Children's Book News - April 1, 2012
"Oliver is a well-drawn character whose pragmatic attitude, honesty and humour are endearing, and who quickly overcomes the reader's initial impression of selfishness...With a facetious warning to read at your own risk, this well-written novel is a fast-paced, quirky experience that touches poignantly upon more serious issues. It will capture children's attention from the start, combining as it does adventure, humour and just a little coming of age." - January 3, 2012
"[Oliver is] an enthusiastic, realistic, and funny protagonist. His adventures come in different forms and it never gets boring to read about what his next challenge will be...Box of Shocks is an excellent realistic novel for kids of both genders between the ages of 9 to 13, and is highly recommended."
School Library Journal - January 1, 2012
"A touching story of personal growth, gratitude, and kindness, this book will serve as an excellent discussion starter."
Booklist - December 1, 2011
"Oliver's effective first-person narration shifts from accounts of his adventures to a growing understanding about the complicated lives of others—lives that are, often times, more shocking than anything that can be contained in a box."
Resource Links - December 1, 2011
"A fantastic read for any boy or girl, mid-readers will find themselves jumping into Ollie's shoes for this fantastic, nail-biting and mind-boggling adventure."
CM Magazine - September 9, 2011
"The settings where daring young Oliver carries out his secret adventures and collects his shocks (souvenirs to remember the experience) are vivid...A memorable story, full of age-appropriate jokes and sayings, and a plot that moves along quickly enough to hook even the most reluctant reader. Highly Recommended."
Kirkus Reviews - August 31, 2011
"A light and capable read."


Resource Links "The Year's Best", commended  CA  2011
Manitoba Young Readers' Choice Award, winner  CA  2013
CCBC Best Books, commended  CA  2012

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Middle Reader Fiction

Compelling fiction
for at-level readers

Key Features:
Compelling stories
Age-appropriate plots

Teaching Resources:
Accelerated Reader
Curriculum Connections


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