The Monument

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by Paulsen, Gary. (Delacorte, 1991 ISBN 0-385-30518-4) Novel. Grades 6+.
This book was reviewed by Carol Otis Hurst in Teaching K-8 Magazine.
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Review

Thirteen year old Rocky(Rachel Ellen Turner) has her life changed by a remarkable artist (Mick Strum) who comes to her small Kansas town of Bolton to design a war memorial. Growing up in an orphanage, never expecting to be adopted, until she was (when 9ish) by Emma and Fred, Rocky is handicapped by a fused knee and is extremely self-conscious about it. She adopts Python(a large dog), gains courage, and learns to see the world around her with the help of the very unconventional Mick who comes to the town of Bolton, Kansas to create a monument to their war-dead. There have only been eighteen casualties of war through the years, but, when one of the town's citizens announces that he has visited the Vietnam Memorial in Washington and that Bolton ought to have a monument, Mick is commissioned to do the job. Mick is an artist: dirty, rather vulgar sometimes, driven by his art, hard-drinking and wonderful.

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