Parents' Guide to

Out of My Mind

By Sally Engelfried, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 10+

Girl with cerebral palsy conquers challenges in moving tale.

Out of My Mind Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 13 parent reviews

age 12+

Not recommended for kids under 12, much like book Wonder but worse

I feel like this book had parts that dragged or didn't make the best of sense. Melody's classmates and teachers are rude to her, including the fact that they left her behind for a field trip thing. Whilst I do enjoy that the author included how rude kids can be and how they don't accept people like Melody, or just people with disabilities or special needs in general. I appreciated that message and that it was carved beautifully into the story. I do like and enjoy some of the characters, but I feel like too many of them aren't likable or great fits for the story in general terms. The book has many beautifully done elements added to it but it has a story that is either too sad or hard for kids younger than twelve to grasp or understand. Overall, not a great book or something that I'll read again in the future. Sad about that, it had a lot of potential.
1 person found this helpful.
age 12+

A must read. Great for “clean” book reports.

(I’m fourteen- long story why I’m listed as an adult) This book is great. Seriously awesome. Unbelievably spelltacular. Left me speechless- the ending wasn’t a fairy tale one, not close. It was a sad end, but the sequel is happy. The book reminded of Wonder by R.J. Pallacio; only less mature. Although both books are about middle schoolers that, well, stand out. I love them both with all my heart. The Eason I rated this 12 and older is due to the horrid way some friends and teacher act at the end. They say sorry, but they were still unbelievably mean. I was seriously crying. Read! Read! Read!

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
1 person found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (13):
Kids say (73):

Author Sharon M. Draper, winner of several Coretta Scott King awards (for November Blues and Copper Sun, among others) has created a well-rounded, likable character. Melody's not afraid to express anger or frustration yet still manages to keep a mostly positive outlook on her situation. Though some of the language is surprisingly dated for a book that came out in 2010, Melody's worries are timeless: She wants to wear cool clothes, be accepted by her peers, and have grown-ups acknowledge her intelligence.

Readers will find it easy to empathize with Melody and will root for her when she finally gets to be a part of the fifth-grade history competition -- and they'll feel her heartbreak when all doesn't go as she hopes it will.

Book Details

  • Author: Sharon M. Draper
  • Genre: Coming of Age
  • Topics: Great Girl Role Models
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: Atheneum
  • Publication date: March 9, 2010
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 10 - 18
  • Number of pages: 304
  • Available on: Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
  • Last updated: July 12, 2017

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate