A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Readers learn about onomatopoeia (words made from sounds) through its use throughout the book. There's also discussion of techniques of throwing the discus.
Running your own race. Take a chance on finding what you truly like to do vs. continuing to do something you don't enjoy. Find your own way to dedal with a loved one's death and process your grief.
Positive Role Models
Sunny has the courage to walk away from racing and the courage to explore what he loves, which is dance. His fellow track members step up to offer encouragement and support in the face of ridicule from other, less understanding team members. The adults in Sunny's life (besides his father) let him work through problems on his own while offering support. HIs coach listens to what Sunny says about wanting to dance instead of run and finds a way to keep Sunny on the team (by switching to the discus throw), so he can still have an outlet and be with friends.
Violence & Scariness
Sunny's father yells and throws items off a table at one point. Sunny chokes on a piece of bread and thrashes about, knocking things around in the kitchen.
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Some mild teasing, including calling things "stupid" and teens telling each other to "shut up."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A woman is described as being an ex-addict who celebrated sobriety with a bad tattoo every year.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Sunny: Track Book 3 is the third book in the Track series by awarding-winning, New York Times Bestselling author Jason Reynolds (Long Way Down, As Brave as You). The book can act as a standalone, however teammates from earlier books in the series do make an appearance. The book deals with grief and the loss of a parent, teamwork, self-care, and finding your own path.
Is It Any Good?
This distinctly different book for a distinctly different character delves into what makes the "weird kid" tick, more like like what makes him tick, tick, boom, and whoosh. The protagonist of Sunny has a weird life being homeschooled with a dad who makes Sunny call him by his first name. And Sunny speaks in a unique way -- using onomatopoeia (words made from sounds) to describe everything from feelings to situations to movement. This can be jarring at first, but considering Sunny is also a dancer, it begins to make sense and readers will get into the groove. Previous teammates from the Track series make brief appearances, but the book has its own vibe separate from the others and the track for which the series is named.
Parents and teachers will like the opportunity to explore how sounds can be used as words and the opportunity to discuss grief and healing. Kids will enjoy Sunny's quirks and find strength to forge their own life moves using Sunny's example.
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.