Chase Ambrose is an 8th grade star football athlete. He also has a reputation as the biggest bully at Hiawassee Middle School. In school or out, he and his friends are mean to people. Even community service - multiple times! - hasn't changed him. Then, he fell off the roof and went unconscious. Chase forgot everything. He wakes up with no memory of who he is or what he's done. When Chase returned to school, people avoided him and aren't willing to believe his story. They remember who he was and what he did, even if he doesn't. As Chase figures out ways to pull up his old memories, he finds himself in situations where he needs to decide what's best for him.
BTSYA / Teen Reader (13):
Restart is a book about the struggles rebuilding, learning from your actions, and doing the right thing. What makes this book really good is that it is unique. There is a theme of adjusting to change, but in a plot that is different from other books. Even though it is about a bully, I think it is a great choice to read for ages 8 and older. It is child-friendly and doesn't involve inappropriate actions or language.
While the theme of change (and how hard it is) may not be new, readers will find this presentation unique and smartly done. There is a lot readers will take away from restart.
None, unless you are completely opposed to stories with examples of bullying activity.
This is a story about change and redemption.
What did your reader think about Chase's amnesia? Were they skeptical like his classmates? Going beyond the bullying, there is a lot to unpack in this story: change, looking at yourself honestly, perseverance, and, for his classmates, learning to forgive.
10 and Up
10 and Up
Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™ . Reviewer age: 13
Borrow. This is a worthy read that has a lasting impression.
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