Give a Boy a Gun by Todd Strasser

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Gunshots echo through the gym. Two heavily armed students, Gary and Brendan, hold their classmates hostage at a high school dance. Their targets: the football players and teachers who have tormented them. Their weapons: semiautomatic rifles stolen from a neighbor. Their motive: revenge.

In Give a Boy a Gun, the interweaving voices of students, teachers, friends, and the gunmen themselves re-create the harrowing crisis at Middletown High and the reasons behind Gary and Brendan's rampage. Mirroring the voices on each page are facts about guns and school violence that offer a blistering counterpoint to a tragedy that rings dreadfully true to life.

A stunning work of fiction taken straight from today's headlines, Give a Boy a Gun is a stirring wake-up call to stop the violence and explore the role of guns in the lives of teenagers.


About Todd Strasser

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Todd Strasser has written many critically acclaimed novels for adults, teenagers, and children, including the award-winning "Can't Get There from Here", "Give a Boy a Gun", "Boot Camp", "If I Grow Up", "Famous", and "How I Created My Perfect Prom Date", which became the Fox feature film "Drive Me Crazy". Todd lives in a suburb of New York and speaks frequently at schools. Visit him at
Published September 1, 2000 by Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing. 128 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Vivid, distressing, and all too real, Strasser's (Close Call, 1999, etc.) latest work of fiction explores the minds and hearts of a group of students, parents, teachers, and community members whose lives are forever altered by a tragic school shooting.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of Give a Boy a Gun

Publishers Weekly

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Like Virginia Walter in Making Up Megaboy, Strasser (How I Changed My Life) explores the psyche of adolescents who use handguns to violent ends. Unfortunately, the format used here detracts from the c

Sep 04 2000 | Read Full Review of Give a Boy a Gun

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