A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that among issues of power and wishes lurks a hidden metaphorical theme: The entire progress of the glasses' hold on Kevin exactly parallels the course of drug addiction and withdrawal.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Kevin Midas is a seventh grader who gets picked on a lot. On a camping trip he climbs to the top of a mysterious Indian mountain just at the summer solstice, and finds a pair of sunglasses there. He soon discovers that they make his wishes come true, and he and his best friend, Josh, have a wonderful time wishing for everything they ever wanted.
But this is only the beginning. He also discovers that they cannot undo what they have done, and that when exposed to sources of electricity, such as a wall socket, they become stronger. Soon they begin to make anything he says come true, then to make any passing thought real, and finally to reach deep within his mind. In addition they find that using the glasses becomes physically addictive, the realities they create become normal to everyone else, and Kevin has an enemy who also knows about the glasses.
Is it any good?
One of the most exciting, suspenseful, and enthralling adventures to come along in some time, and this makes a superb read-aloud. In addition, it provides the deep satisfaction of pushing an idea as far as it can go, and far beyond the boundaries of the usual story.
This author's imagination is not limited by normal boundaries. The first half of the book is very funny, but as things get further and further out of control, as the glasses and Kevin's mind begin to change the fundamental order of the universe, the consequences are sobering and breathtaking. It would be hard to imagine the child who could put this book down before the end.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the addictive nature of the glasses. What are some of the early warning signs that the glasses might be more trouble than they're worth? Why doesn't Kevin pay more notice to the problems with the glasses? What would you wish for if you had the glasses? Do you think you would handle them differently than Kevin did?
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