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Saint Iggy

Review

Saint Iggy

Randy "Igmund" Corso is a third-year freshman with a colorful track record at school. When you have a record like he does, teachers can lie about you, and no one believes you, especially not the court system that's supposed to decide if you're expelled from school or not. With the way everyone treats him, you'd think he's a bad kid, but he's not. He attends class, sometimes. He doesn't use drugs, even though he was born addicted. He does his best to stay away from his father's drug dealer Freddie, who is always knocking on their door looking for money.

With his dad most likely passed out drunk or high at home and his mom "visiting someone" somewhere, Iggy doesn't have anyone to tell when he gets indefinitely suspended from high school for an offense he didn't commit. Even the social worker can't get through because the phone has been disconnected.

With a few days until the hearing, Iggy turns to his friend Montell, a law school dropout from the rich side of town who is investing his time in pot and philosophy. Iggy needs a plan to straighten out his life, but that's more difficult done than said for a 16-year-old with no skills or money who has just been kicked out of school. His makeshift plan is to:

1) make a plan
2) get out of the projects
3) do something with my life
4) change everyone's mind about me
5) get back into school

During the week before Christmas, Iggy drags himself around the city looking for answers and enlightenment. He keeps thinking about his principal, who told him to "do something that contributes to the world." That seems like such an easy thing to do until he tries it.

How exactly can one kid do something to contribute? What if he's never had any examples to follow? What if the only differences he can make are too small for anyone to notice? And does it even matter if people notice?

Author of the Printz Honor Book FAT KID RULES THE WORLD, K. L. Going has put together another enjoyable read. The contrast of Iggy's dark urban world against Mo's posh lifestyle provides the story with an ideal backdrop for a grim hero like this to emerge. An entertaining novel with more depth than you'd imagine at first glance, SAINT IGGY takes the life of a fringe-living outcast from the projects and makes him someone unforgettable.

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Reviewed by Jonathan Stephens on October 18, 2011

Saint Iggy
by K. L. Going

  • Publication Date: September 1, 2006
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
  • ISBN-10: 0152057951
  • ISBN-13: 9780152057954