Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Blog Tour: Squint by Chad Morris and Shelly Brown

Squint by Chad Morris and Shelly Brown

Book Description:

My name is Flint, but everyone in middle school calls me Squint because I'm losing my vision. I used to play football, but not anymore. I haven t had a friend in a long time. Thankfully, real friends can see the real you, even when you can't clearly see.

Flint loves to draw. In fact, he's furiously trying to finish his comic book so he can be the youngest winner of the Find a Comic Star contest. He s also rushing to finish because he has keratoconus an eye disease that could eventually make him blind.

McKell is the new girl at school and immediately hangs with the popular kids. Except McKell's not a fan of the way her friends treat this boy named Squint. He seems nice and really talented. He draws awesome pictures of superheroes. McKell wants to get to know him, but is it worth the risk? What if her friends catch her hanging with the kid who squints all the time?

McKell has a hidden talent of her own but doesn't share it for fear of being judged. Her terminally ill brother, Danny, challenges McKell to share her love of poetry and songwriting. Flint seems like someone she could trust. Someone who would never laugh at her. Someone who is as good and brave as the superhero in Flint's comic book named Squint.

Squint is the inspiring story of two new friends dealing with their own challenges, who learn to trust each other, believe in themselves, and begin to truly see what matters most.

Rorie's Review:

I've always been a sucker for the underdog kind of stories, so I was excited to get a chance to read Squint. This book did not disappoint. Flint - aka Squint - has dealt with a whole lot of issues since he was diagnosed with keratoconus. Not only physical issues, but issues with mean people at school. As a result, he closed himself off from everyone and focuses solely on creating his comic with the hopes that his life will get better after he finishes it.

Enter McKell. She rocks Squint's world when she not only pays attention to him, but she is actually NICE to him. Something he isn't expecting from anyone. As their friendship grows, Squint learns a lot about McKell and her struggles, but also learns a lot about himself, his family and people who he once considered friends.

I like how this story doesn't make Squint a complete victim, and lets the reader see that things might not always be as cut and dry as they seem to be. This is a book I really want my older two boys to read, (and my younger two when they're just a little older) and hope that they can understand all of the different messages that this book gives to the reader.

Tarah's Review:

This is another of those books that I think every middle grade kid should read. It was powerful. I loved the idea of looking at things through different eyes. I loved how the book showed that none of us are all good or all bad. We all have things that we just don't see. We all have people that we minimize and ignore, and maybe we need to look around a little more and see their backstory.

I thought Squint's comic book was a fun addition to the story. I like how it paralleled his own life, and he was able to see others in his life a little more clearly. I loved the story with his grandparents. That was super touching to me.

I kind of wish that somethings had been said more clearly instead of leaving the read to glean it on his/her own. I think when dealing with middle school kids we might need to be more blunt.  But I would definitely recommend this book.

This is what a couple of my kids had to say about this book:

"I liked how they included two stories in one, and they both intertwine. The book was good. I liked the message of the story. I liked the rock dog. He was funny."

"I liked how they told both the characters stories and what they were both facing...because Middle School can get pretty hard.  I liked how the people thought their friend was helping them even if their friend didn't feel like they were doing anything to help. I liked how Squint's and McKell's problems are realistic. It's hard moving into a new place where you don't know who anyone is. It's hard to make friends with new people when you've been bullied a lot. I liked it all. I would read it again."

Andrea's Review:

I loved Mustaches for Maddie so I was very excited when I heard that the authors were releasing another book. Squint and Mustaches for Maddie have a similar feel, although I didn't connect as deeply with Squint. I think my connection may have been less because I'm not into comic books, so the parts where we read Squint's comic story didn't hold my attention as much as the rest of the story. That said, I still enjoyed the story and thought it had a great message.

My takeaway was that we don’t know what people are going through and a little kindness goes a long way. I loved Danny and his friend Yellow and the difference they made by Danny sharing his happy attitude. His challenges made people stretch outside of their comfort zones to help people and make a difference for someone.

I thought Squint’s situation with Gavin was quite eye-opening. Gavin didn’t recognize how his joking was hurtful, and Squint didn’t realize that his defense mechanism of not talking to Gavin was making him think that Squint didn’t like him. You don’t typically think about it from that side.

I loved when Squint's grandpa said, "Hard work is always something you should be proud of." So true. We might not get the results we hoped for, but that shouldn't diminish our effort.

Sometimes we’re blind to the sacrifices the people make for us (Squint’s grandparents, especially his grandma).

Parts of this book are pretty emotional and I couldn’t help but cry. This is a clean and inspirational read that I recommend. Squint
Author: Chad Morris & Shelly Brown
Publisher: Shadow Mountain
Published: October 2018
ISBN: 1629724858
Source: We received copies from the publisher in exchange for honest reviews.

Purchase: Amazon | Deseret Book

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