Milo and the Restart Button by Alan Silberberg

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Milo and the Restart Button by Alan Silberberg

Category: Teens
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Jill Murphy
Reviewed by Jill Murphy
Summary: Lovely story about coming to terms with grief. Milo's voice is sweet and honest and regular comic strip punctuations prevent things from ever becoming too painful.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 288 Date: March 2011
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 0857071904

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Starting over is like pressing the reset button on a game that makes you lose all your points and wipes out any of the good stuff you've spent hundreds of hours learning...

Milo's restart button was pressed by the death of his mother. Since that awful day, life has not been good. His father has retreated inwards, his sister is always angry, and they've moved house several times. Moving house means moving schools and if you're not blessed with natural cool - and Milo isn't - then things become even more difficult. But worst of all is the mother-shaped hole in Milo's life - she's not there and her things aren't there because Milo's father got rid of everything. Memories are all Milo has, and even these are beginning to grow fuzzy and slip away into the all-pervading fog of grief...

... but hope and help is at hand. Milo makes new friends, at school in Marshall and Hillary, in his neighbour Sylvia, and even in Daubney St Clair, the suave alter ego he invents to get him through the day. And as the school year goes on, Milo inches towards acceptance, the last and most difficult of the stages of grief.

Filled with kindness and charm and wry humour, Milo and the Restart Button charmed me to both laughter and a tear or two. Your heart bleeds for Milo, who fills the pages of a first person narration with honesty, candour and terrible pain. But you also recognise an everychild in him, not just a cipher for grief, and you laugh too, as he struggles with maths, falls in love with an unattainable girl, and cringes when his friends meet his father.

The book is punctuated with funny little comic strips, which are great in their own right, but also prevent things from ever becoming too painful to read. It's easy to read but it's also profound. And it comes highly recommended by Bookbag.

My thanks to the good people at Simon & Schuster for sending the book.

Zelah Green: Who Says I'm a Freak? by Vanessa Curtis is another lovely story about coming to terms with grief. So is Peace, Locomotion by Jacqueline Woodson, which is written as a series of letters. Older children might like this theme explored in Breathing Underwater by Julia Green.

Buy Milo and the Restart Button by Alan Silberberg at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Milo and the Restart Button by Alan Silberberg at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy Milo and the Restart Button by Alan Silberberg at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Milo and the Restart Button by Alan Silberberg at Amazon.com.


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the author said:

Hi Bookbag - I just wanted to say thanks for the really lovely and thoughtful review of MILO. As you know it's a personal story for me so it's nice to get feedback that a story like Milo's can be funny and healing at the same time. Thanks for taking the time to get to know Milo!

Alan Silberberg