Out of the Dust

Book review by Megan McDonald, Common Sense Media
Out of the Dust Poster Image

Common Sense says

age 9+

A penetrating look at a poor child's life.

Parents say

age 14+

Based on 10 reviews

Kids say

age 11+

Based on 35 reviews

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.

A Lot or a Little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Community Reviews

age 18+

Horrifying!

A beautifully written story but with nightmarish details. The main character's pregnant mother is horrifically burned and dies after days of writhing and moaning in pain, in which her husband eventually abandons her to drink and she gives birth to a dead baby while her daughter watches. This is all described in vivid detail. The story is very depressing. My classmates and I were required to read this in college, and some of us struggled with depression or nightmares for a few days after reading this...even as 20-something-year-old college students. I would exercise great caution in allowing children to read this. I'm not sensitive and I like depressing stories, but I never personally want to open up this book again.

This title has:

Too much violence
age 10+

Left me depressed

I read this book as a nine or ten year old and the book was actually interesting and good until the accident part and after the burning I was fustrated, sad and overall depressed. Plus the book was just boring to me.Now I am a person who LOVES distoptian novels but this book was not somthing that I personally enjoyed.I have also read amazon reviews of a 4th grader kid having nightmares because of this book.Overall I would find a better book

This title has:

Too much violence

Book Details

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