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The Chocolate Warby Robert Cormier
Synopses & Reviews
Stunned by his mother's recent death and appalled by the way his father sleepwalks through life, Jerry Renault, a New England high school student, ponders the poster in his locker — "Do I dare disturb the universe?"
Part of his universe is Archie Costello, leader of a secret school society — the Virgils — and master of intimidation. Archie himself is intimidated by a cool, ambitious teacher into having the Virgils spearhead the annual fund-raising event — a chocolate sale. When Jerry refuses to be bullied into selling chocolates, he becomes a hero, but his defiance is a threat to Archie, the Virgils, and the school. In the inevitable showdown, Archie's skill at intimidation turns Jerry from hero to outcast, to victim, leaving him alone and terribly vulnerable.
"The Chocolate War is masterfully structured and rich in theme; the action is well crafted, well timed, suspenseful; complex ideas develop and unfold with clarity." The New York Times Book Review
"Vicious and violent mob cruelty in a boys' prep school is not a new theme but Cormier makes it compellingly immediate....Mature young readers will respect the uncompromising ending..." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"The characterizations of all the boys are superb....This novel [is] unique in its uncompromising portrait of human cruelty and conformity." School Library Journal (Starred Review)
"Robert Cormier has written a brilliant novel." Children's Book Review Service
In 1974, after suffering rejections from seven major publishers, this uncompromising portrait of conformity and corruption made its debut and it quickly became a bestselling — and provocative — classic for young adults.
A high school freshman discovers the devastating consequences of refusing to join in the school's annual fund raising drive and arousing the wrath of the school bullies.
About the Author
Robert Cormier (1925 — 2000) received the 1999 Margaret A. Edwards Award, honoring his lifetime contribution to writing for teens.
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