Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Glass Cafe by Gary Paulsen

Originality- 16/20
Characters- 16/20
Remembrance- 6/10
Quote-ability- 6/10
Entertainment- 16/20
Ending- 7/10
Recommend to read- 6/10
TOTAL- 73/100
Grade- C

Tony’s mom, Al, is a terrific single mother who works as a dancer at the Kitty Kat Club. Twelve-year-old Tony is a budding artist, inspired by backstage life at the club. When some of his drawings end up in an art show and catch the attention of the social services agency, Al and Tony find themselves in the middle of a legal wrangle and a media circus. Is Al a responsible mother? It’s the case of the stripper vs. the state, and Al isn’t giving Tony up without a fight.

This book was pretty funny. Even though the issue that it addresses and the problems that are going on are pretty serious, it doesn't feel that way. Since Tony is only 12 he doesn't realize how serious the situation is.

I expected this book to go all deep and emotional but it didn't. The description of the book makes it sound like a huge court thing. Really half of the book is Tony talking about himself and his life. The other half wasn't nearly as serious as it was made out to be.

The story was interesting though. It makes you think how some things can get totally out of hand. It also brings up several issues on parenting and what is appropriate. Innocent drawings of women spark the attention of social services. I'm not sure how I feel about this. On one hand the pictures weren't very dirty, and did look more like art than porn. On the other hand, should a child be allowed in the back of a strip club? Is it right for him to be exposed to things at such a young age? These are some of the things that this book addresses.

I wish the book was longer but overall I was happy with what it gave me. I would recommend this book to someone who likes a little controversy.



Stephanie said...

This sounds interesting -- quite different from Gary Paulsen's other work.

Kathy Martin said...

This does sound interesting. I agree that it is not the usual Gary Paulsen. Are you reading an ARC or can I actually go to a bookstore and get this book now?

Becky said...

Hmmm...I don't really think I'd enjoy this book. I read to escape and I don't know, this sounds like it requires deep thinking.