In Freak the Mighty, what challenges and solutions do Maxwell and Kevin encounter in their initial interactions?

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In Freak the Mighty, the challenges that Maxwell and Kevin experience in their initial interactions include their physical and temperamental differences. They overcome these challenges by finding common ground in their unusual situations and then joining forces to gain strength from each other. Max is physically big and strong, but he does not consider himself smart and is weakened by his uncontrolled feelings. Kevin, in contrast, has physical disabilities that affect his lower body, but he gains power through his curiosity and applying his intellect.

Although the boys had known each other slightly when much younger, the relationship blossoms in the eighth grade. What at first seem to be tremendous differences between the boys turn out to be sources of their shared understanding. In both cases, some unusual characteristics had led each boy to consider himself very different from other children, which contributed to their sense of separation from society. An example of the way the boys’ strengths and weaknesses complement each other is provided in chapter 3, when Kevin cannot reach his mechanical bird stuck in the tree. After Max helps him by retrieving it, the two of them play with the device. Max also substantially expands Kevin’s limited mobility by pulling him in a wagon. Later the two of them will physically connect themselves into what looks like one huge, imposing creature.

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