Book review: The Buckle, by Don Sawyer

The BuckleThe Buckle by Don Sawyer
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I used this as a whole class novel in my adult fundamental literacy class and it was a hit. My students really liked it. It was challenging for them, but not frustrating in terms of reading level. It’s tough to find books for adults that are easy readers–they’re not children and they need adult content. This was perfect. They liked the local setting, the exasperating but likeable main character, the well paced storyline and the high interest plot. Will Luke ever learn to cope with his abusive childhood and make a new life for himself? Can he stay out of prison? Will he win the championship, or die trying? Unlike some of the novels I’ve read with my fundamental classes, this one was not grimly depressing. Luke’s life is hard, and he makes a lot of poor choices, but he does make progress, and the ending is happy. It was an enjoyable read and a good teaching text. The Fry Reading Level for this book is 3 or 4; I’d say it’s suitable for an adult reading at about a Grade Six level.

You can read more of my reviews on Goodreads.

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