Thursday, January 10, 2013

Theodore Boone: The Accused by John Grisham

Recommendation: *** (3-stars)

In the latest installment of the new kid series by John Grisham, Theo finds himself on the other side of the law. Stolen property is found in Theo's possession, but he claims he is innocent. Nonetheless an investigation ensues and the evidence is quickly stacking up against young Theo. Even his lawyer parents are having a difficult time helping him. Will Theo be able to prove his innocence? To what lengths will he have to go to do so? Is he willing to break rules to do it?

Positives: I really like Theo as a character. As a kid he struggles through issues of honesty, integrity and dealing with friends. Though not a "biblical" role model, I appreciate the tone the author approaches these areas with.

Negatives: Theo's uncle Ike isn't the greatest influence on his life. He is usually the reason Theo goes against his conscience and does something that he believes to be wrong.

Talking Points: Theo has a reputation of being a kid of integrity. He is known for his work ethic and his honesty in dealing with friends, teachers and others. Talk to your kids about their reputation. What do their friends and teachers think of them and how does it reflect Christ to them? The Bible talks about our reputation as well. Talk about these verses with your child - Prov. 10:9, Prov. 11:3, Prov. 19:1. I think one of the best things this story illustrates about Theo's integrity was that those who knew him did not believe the charges against him. I Timothy 3 tells us what the qualifications for church leadership are (and these are the character qualities I want my kids to work on now). Several times it is mentioned that they are to be above reproach and to have a good reputation. We call it being a "Teflon person." When you walk in integrity, accusations of wrong doing don't stick. Help teach your child the importance of a "good reputation" for the glory of God (Matt. 5:16).

Age Level: 8 years of age and up

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