Monday, January 26, 2015

Fuzzy Mud by Louis Sachar (Book Review)

*Disclosure of material connection- I received a copy of the book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for my honest thoughts. I was not required to write a positive review and all opinions stated are 100% my own.

About the book-

From the author of the acclaimed bestseller Holes, winner of the Newbery Award and the National Book Award, comes a new middle-grade novel with universal appeal. Combining horror-movie suspense with the issues of friendship, bullying, and the possibility of ecological disaster, this novel will intrigue, surprise, and inspire readers and compel them to think twice about how they treat others as well as their environment.
Be careful. Your next step may be your last.

Fifth grader Tamaya Dhilwaddi and seventh grader Marshall Walsh have been walking to and from Woodbridge Academy together since elementary school. But their routine is disrupted when bully Chad Wilson challenges Marshall to a fight. To avoid the conflict, Marshall takes a shortcut home through the off-limits woods. Tamaya reluctantly follows. They soon get lost, and they find trouble. Bigger trouble than anyone could ever have imagined.
In the days and weeks that follow, the authorities and the U.S. Senate become involved, and what they uncover might affect the future of the world.

My thoughts-

Louis Sachar (pronounced SACKER) has been entertaining children for decades with his wonderful books. You would be hard pressed to find a kid from my generation who didn't devour Sideway Stories From Wayside School, a personal favorite of mine or There's a Boy in the Girl's Bathroom, another book I remember reading over and over again in elementary school. Fast Forward a decade or so and the kids of that generation will tell you that Holes is one of their very favorite books (rightfully so, as it is a Newbery winner and even spawned a movie version!) Sachar has penned over 20 books over the years and now he is back with Fuzzy Mud, a great children's novel that I think my children's generation will cherish. Tamaya and her neighbor Marshall take a shortcut through the woods one day to avoid a bully which sets off a series of events. Tamaya touches the fuzzy mud and immediately her hand feels weird. I like the writing style Sachar uses in this novel switching back and forth between the events that started with the fuzzy mud and a court case taking place that is related to those events. As in many of Sachar's books there are lessons weaved throughout. Fuzzy Mud focuses mainly on bullying, something pretty prevelant these days. It doesn't just focus on the bullied, but also shed's some light on the person doing the bullying. This is a great conversation starter about to broach the subject with your children or to get them thinking about bullying and what they can do to prevent it or that things aren't always what they seem. I definitely recommend Fuzzy Mud for any elementary aged children and I also recommend it to their parents. This would be a great book to read together and discuss!

Fuzzy Mud will be available on August 4, 2015. You can pre-order it on

Connect with Louis Sachar on Goodreads

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