Books in the Middle: Reading for Middle School

Our focus is on books middle school students might like to read and topics pertaining to books for these students, and we are giving recommendations. Teachers, librarians and middle school students are the contributors to this blog. If you would like to listen to booktalks of some of these books, please check out this site and enjoy!

So You Ran Away From The Juvenile Detention Center…. March 8, 2013

In The Journey Back by Priscilla Cummings, Fourteen Year old Digger has been in Cliffside Youth Detention Center too long. No one is home to protect his mother and siblings from his father’s rage. So Digger decides to escape. His escape takes him in the back of a garbage truck, stealing a truck, and canoeing down a dangerous river. Digger ends up hurt and hungry in a camping ground. This is where his real journey home begins.

This story is one of escaping the past. Digger is in the youth detention for a prank that went tragically wrong. Even though he knows what happened was wrong, Digger wants to help his mother and sibling and needs to get home to them. Through this journey back home, Digger discovers who he is and what he believes. His new friends show him that life is messy for all people and not everything will work out the way you plan. Digger own journey gets side tracks and he ends up discovering who he is and who he wants to be in life.

This book is a sequel to The Red Kayak. However, it is not necessary to read in order to understand this separate story of Digger. I really enjoyed the many survival aspects to this book as well as the emotional pull that Digger develops with his new friends, Luke and Nora. This book will show readers the honorable way to live, but also the hardships one has to face to live and survive!


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