Five adjectives about The Wednesday Wars.

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sciftw eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The previous post has some great adjectives for Gary Schmidt's The Wednesday Wars. I'll provide 5 more.

  1. Funny. Holling is a hilarious character that is made funnier because the book is written from his perspective. Readers will often find themselves laughing out loud as Holling describes what he looks like in his costume with feathers on the butt.
  2. Relatable. Most people that read this book have been through junior high or are in junior high. Holling's experiences with his friends, parents, siblings, teachers, etc. are all relatable experiences. We've felt awkward when around that certain someone that we like. We've had fights with siblings. The book narrates a lot that many readers will find common ground with.
  3. Inspiring. I'm a teacher, so I find Mrs. Baker a very inspiring teacher. She goes the extra mile to help her students, and she makes efforts to understand her students as people.
  4. Sobering. As a parent, I get very angry at Mr. and Mrs. Hoodhood for essentially ignoring their children. Readers that are parents will likely be upset at the part in the book where Holling's father forgets to pick him up for the baseball signing.
  5. Accessible. Schmidt does an excellent job of making the book accessible to a wide range of readers. He chooses to include common events, locations, and relationships in this text. Additionally, Holling is the story's narrator. This means that Schmidt is forced to write in a way that reflects how a 7th grader would think, act, and talk. The book is accessible to 7th grade readers because it sounds like a real 7th grader is narrating.
edcon eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Gary Schmidt's 2009 young adult novel The Wednesday Wars was nominated for at least two prestigious literary awards.  Here are five adjectives that can be used to describe it, with a rationale for each.

  1. The novel is humorous. When Holling's teacher forces him to read Shakespeare's The Tempest, he loves it. He figures that she has not read it herself, since it has murders, witches, a monster, and includes people drinking themselves drunk.
  2. The novel is realistic. It is set during the Vietnam War, and Schmidt takes pains to recreate the 1960s.  Walter Cronkite appears on the television news, announcing the numbers of soldiers killed each day.
  3. The novel is poignant.  It traces some common setbacks and problems that adolescent boys experience, such as finding a place to fit in with other people.
  4. Some of the scenes in the novel are surprising. Holling's father, a successful architect, is not a very nice man or caring father.  He neglects Holling and his sister and frequently lets them down. 
  5. The novel is ambitious.  Schmidt creates many different story lines; some are about family, some are about school relationships with peers and teachers, and some are about religious differences. All occur against the backdrop of an unpopular war.  Schmidt is able to balance all the competing narratives and bring them together effectively.
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The Wednesday Wars

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