Monday, July 20, 2009

Onion John

I had almost been discouraged from reading this book, right now, because I read a review from someone that the book hardly deserved to be a Newberry Award winner. Because I have made a commitment to read all the Newberry Award winners, I plowed ahead...and boy, am I glad that I did. I thought that the book was one of the best that I have read. I was frustrated by some poor editing of serious punctuation problems. That was the only problem that I saw in the book.
Onion John carries the important message of how we, as adults, trying to force our ideals of what a better life is upon other people. We, as Americans, do this so often to other countries, as we try to "improve" their standard of living. In reality, the people are very happy with the life that they are living. Andy Rusch's father is so busy trying to live his dream through his son and in trying to look good in the eyes of others by "improving" the living situation of Onion John. He does major harm to both as he endeavors to do this.
At a town meeting, Ernie, the reporter says:
"'Hasn't it become pretty obvious?...What we think is proper and what John thinks is proper, they're two different things. What are we trying to prove to him, that he's wrong?'"
I highly recommend Onion John to all interested in good literature with a great message...a message that we, as adults, should take very seriously!

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