November 29, 2007

Rules - by Cynthia Lord

What's it like to be a twelve-year old girl? I wouldn't know, but I bet it's not easy. It's probably even more difficult when everything your family does seems to center around your little brother with Autism. This is the situation that our main character Catherine finds herself in, and life with her brother David is really getting on her nerves, especially since she seems to be the one mainly in charge of watching out for him, and teaching him the rules of how to get along in this world.

When Catherine tries to make new friends, things really get complicated. The new girl next door who she really wants to be friends with is one of those "perfect" girls who seem too good for everyone, and the boy she is getting to know just happens to be in a wheelchair, and isn't able to talk. Somehow, Catherine must find a way to make sense of her world, and by the end of the book she does. It's not easy though, and this book shows that life isn't always clean, and that family and friendships can be a bit messy.

This is a great book, and I'm excited to read more by the author. She really gives us interesting characters and puts them into realistic situations that make the reader reflect on his or her own life. This will appeal to readers who enjoy realistic fiction, friendship stories, and characters who struggle and grow because of it.