The Book Reviews – Website

December 19, 2010

The Boxer

Filed under: T — thebookreviews @ 11:13 pm
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The Boxer by Kathleen Karr: Book Cover

The Boxer

Author: Kathleen Karr

Page Length: 169

Reading Level: 4

Genre: Historical Fiction

PLOT SUMMARY: It’s the late 1800s and times are hard for John and his family. His father has run off, his mother barely makes enough money to get by, and he’s left trying to support his brothers and sisters. Tired of struggling, John decides to try to win the prize money in a fight – there’s only one catch – fighting is illegal. John winds up in the slammer for six months, but it’s in jail that he truly learns what it means to be a champion. Never giving up his love for boxing and determined to provide well for his family, John Woods overcomes the odds to become a famous boxer.

REVIEW: This was interesting read. John’s warm heart and love for his family above himself is an excellent lesson to promote to teenagers. The theme of perseverance and survival in the book is wonderfully and vividly presented. Readers get a feel for the economic circumstances of the time, the limitations imposed by one’s class, and the determination it takes to prevail during hard times. John never gives up on his dreams, his family, or his ethics. This book is a good read and would likely appeal to boys – with its boxing sequences and blow by blow descriptions.

AREAS FOR TEACHING: historical connections, connecting text to self, connecting text to text, cause and effect, sequence of events, compare and contrast

TOUCHY AREAS-PAGES: boxing, incarceration, betting

RELATED BOOKS: Fortune’s Fool, Born For Adventure, World’s Apart, Mama Went to Jail for the Vote, The 7th Knot, Gilbert and Sullivan Set Me Free

MOVIE & ART CONNECTIONS:

“Rocky” movies

Boxing paintings – http://www.edgarbrown.com/the-loss-boxing.php

RELATED WEBSITES:

http://www.buildingrainbows.com/bookreview/reviewid/18518

http://www.childrensbookguild.org/kathleenkarr.html

http://litplans.com/authors/Kathleen_Karr.html

http://www.encyclopedia.chicagohistory.org/pages/159.html

REVIEWED BY:  Dayna Taylor

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1 Comment »

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    Comment by Joye P. Villatoro — September 28, 2014 @ 6:36 pm | Reply


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