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Don't miss our Resources for Core Literature including the books:
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Cody's Book Club

Sounder

by William H. Armstrong

'Sounder' is a story about a family's hard times in the South.

If you have read this book,
send us your review. If you answer all three questions below,
we'll post your name and you'll be in the Club!

A review is 2 or more sentences answering these 3 questions:

1) Did you like the book?

2) Why (this is very important!)?

3) What parts did you like or not like?

You must answer all three questions
to have your review posted.

 

The very best reviews will get a star!

Congratulations to these members of Cody's Book Club!

Updated 8/21/09

little booknew Rayven, age 14, Georgia

I loved the book because I had a dog and about the same thing
happened to me. My favorite part was when they thought
Sounder was dead, but he ended up being alive.

little booknewJasmine, Arkansas USA

I really enjoyed this book. It was very heart touching!!!
I liked how the mother was very strong and took care of her
family while her husband was in jail. Also I like how
strong-minded the boy was... Most of all the outstanding character
was Sounder...I did not like how he was shot, but through it all he
made it through and ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!). at the end!
(Tears) Over all it was a
great book.

little booknewAli, age 13, Maryland USA

Well, I thought it ENDED up as a good book, but the beginning I thought was very slow until of course Sounder gets shot and the boy's father gets taken to jail. It was a good book. The movie was great, too. I liked it because it was very true and not made up and it somewhat showed what life was like back in the 1930's. At first I disliked the part where Sounder gets shot, but if those events didn't happen, it would be a very slow and boring book. I do recommend this book for younger kids.

little booknewAnonymous, age 13, Hertfordshire UK

1. To be honest, I thought it was interesting, but I didn't like it at all.
2. It just wasn't my cup of tea. I do care about this stuff, but it's just too sad for me and anyone sane.
3. I hated the bit when Sounder got shot, and I hope they don't say 'oops! you'll have to read the book yourself' ugh, get over it, just don't read it please. I mean the book!

Brad, age 11, New Hampshire USA

Yes, I liked the book. I found it to be very interesting. I like it when Sounder came back to be with his family.

Lexi, age 15, California USA

Yes, I really liked the book. I liked the book because it was a very realistic book. This story was also very sad, but when I finished the book, it really touched me. And when Sounder ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!, it makes me feel like I want to save him because anyone who reads this book will fall in love with this dog. The parts I really liked about the book is when Sounder comes home and this may sound a little mean, but I sort of also liked it when Sounder ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!. That part almost made me cry, but that is what makes a good book in my opinion. That makes a good book because the reader really grows attached to the character. Sounder is a great book, I have read it twice already.

Anonymous, age 14, Kansas USA

I like the book because it had three really good characters. The main character Sounder "the dog" was the only one that had a name. I liked that Sounder was attached to his father. I felt bad that the father had to steal food for his family, and then they came and took him to jail. But I didn't like that ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!...almost at the same time and the boy is left behind.


Jonathan, age 13, Kansas USA

I like the book. I like the book because the boy never stops looking for his father until he's found. I didn't like the part where the dog got shot and then died later.

Alex, age 14, Kansas USA

I like this book because I got to learn about a dog named Sounder and how he was living with a family. The part that I did not like about this book was when the father stole the food for the family, but also I think that was a great idea because the family had to eat.

Gabriella, Age 15, Kansas USA

I think Sounder was a great book. This book is a heart- breaking book! You go through mixed feelings. I loved how the boy never gave up on looking for his father. He kept going know matter what. Even when his mother told him to stop looking for him it was not any use. He was gone, gone forever. There was a lot of adventure in this book.

I think everyone should read this book. You learn so much from reading. This book is a time setting book which could be happening now. Everyone would love this book. Know matter who you are. If you don't like reading books, then you will start. Once you start you won't want to put any book down. It turns into a movie! This movie turns at the end.

Michael, age 13, Kansas USA

I liked this book. It was cool. I thank the book was entertaining.It had some bad parts and some good parts. I think the boy's life wasn't that bad. It could be a lot worse. I think that more kids should read the book or do book reports. It is a fun book.

Dethishere, age 13, Kansas USA

I did not like this book this much. It was too slow and the setting is at the house all the time. He meets a teacher that helps him read. I like the part where the father and the dog ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!. The dogs...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!... from a explosion in the mines. That is it; hoped you liked it.

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Jeremy, age 13, Encinitas CA

I really like this book. I can see how that could have happened. The story is also about people being prejudice. Most of my friends liked the book, too. I really like the wording in the paragraph about how soulful Sounder's howl was.

Brittany, age 13, Maine USA

I liked this book. I liked this book because it was interesting. I like the part where he smashed the cake. It really shows how the blacks were treated in the book. I like the whole book so far and I would recommend it to kids 13 and older just because it's about dog and it was a very interesting book! I like this book a lot. It was my favorite book so far just because I like dogs a lot!

Sarah, age 14, Ohio USA

Yes, I like this book a lot, mainly because it deals with how a family deals with and because of the dog, it is very trustworthy. I didn't like when Sounder got shot and the boy was looking for him so much and worried about him. It made me really sad, but that is what a good book does to you.

Dylan, age 13, Massachusetts USA

I read this book, and liked it a lot, but I'd rather tell the people who didn't like this book why they really didn't. Those who said it was stupid because the characters didn't have names just said they aren't good readers.

The author did that so that readers could relate to the characters in it! He wanted the family to represent the whole African American race being discriminated against. It's an art, not an absence, and if you can't read between the lines, then that's your problem, not Mr. Armstrong's.

Holly, age 14, Maryland USA

I liked this book a lot. At the beginning it started off slow but then it got interesting. My favorite part is when the cake gets smashed since it really shows how blacks were treated. I recommend this book to anyone.

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Trisha, age 16, California USA

I loved this book MUCHOOOO... I don't see why other people are saying it is boring...dude I couldn't stop reading it. Seriously I am not kidding...and i am not a reader but this book has motivated me to start reading more...you never know what the book will be like until you start reading it. REMEMBER... NEVER jUgDe A bOoK bY iTs cover!!!!

This book was so good... you will definitely fall in love with Sounder. His owners and him were such nice people that they do not deserve to be treated harshly by the racist white men...just for stealing a HAM...oh yea it was a ham...ok?

This book was so good because it shows how BOY never gave up...he tried hard and never quit! He becomes a man within his journey in search for his father. I am so proud of him on how he had the willingness and motivation of wanting to learn how to read.

I just really got into the book...all the characters had a perfect personality...regardless of them not having a name. I did not like how boy and his father and Sounder...basically the whole family, were affected by racism in the novel. Anyone who is racist should know that they are hurting people...good thing racism has been diminishing!!! Well... I just wanted to say I did enjoy reading this book.... it was AwEsOmE!!! :] BYEEE!!!

Jacqui, age 13, California USA

I loved this book. It was one of the best books i have ever read!!! I loved it because it showed courage of a little boy and the strength of him! He showed compassion and love to the dog and the father. One of my favorite parts was the dog getting up after he was shot and that the boy first held on with all his might. I loved how the dog used its ability to heal itself by going to the oak tree and getting sap. What I hated was that the father...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!

Aniba, age 13, Ontario Canada

I actually really enjoyed reading this book because it gave a good perspective of what life was like back then and that you shouldn't take stuff for granted. The part which I didn't like was when the boy's father was arrested because of stealing just because he was trying to feed his family and preventing them from starving and when Sounder's ear gets shot off.

The part I liked was when the father returns home and so does Sounder. Also, I didn't like the part when the father's body gets paralyzed and when ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!

Olin, age 10, Singapore

I sort of like that book and I wondered how it would end. My favourite part was when Sounder and Dad came home because it looked like something good was going to happen. The strange part for me was understanding how the boy got hurt by the fence. I wondered if it was the guard or if the fence was simply dangerous. The part I hated the most is when the red-faced guard of the prison destroyed the boy's cake. I wish I had not read that book because it made me feel like those persons in their cold, scary world.

Iesha, age 13, MS USA

I liked this book because it is a story that teaches you to never take anything for granted. My favorite part of the book is when Sounder comes home. The part I did not like was when the boys dad gets taken away.

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2fast4uraj, age 14, California USA

The book was a decent book. It showed how African Americans were treated back in the day. I am glad that it is not like that anymore, because if it was, I would be treated bad because of my color. This book touched my heart very much. The boy was very sad when he lost Sounder, it was all he had left after his father had been taken away by the three white men. I really do feel for him. The only thing is they need more about the boy and they need to have names for the characters other than Sounder. I kept getting lost because I forgot who was who. But overall, it was very excellently written. Peace Up! A-town!

Mehreen, age 13, Texas USA

I like this book very much, but this book does not give enough information about the boy's past. That is needed in this book because you can begin to lose interest. But other than that, this is a great book for all ages.

I like this book because also it is very sad to know how people were treated and how they passed through these hard times together. I like the parts where it's very interesting, like when everything happens so fast and how the family deals with these problems that occur in their lives. If you have not read this book hit the library because this is a must read!

Bob, age 13, New York USA

I liked the book because I thought it was easy to understand and wasn't a book that you read and then had to ask yourself what did I just read! Well, overall I would give it a 7-8 but I didn't like that the dog's ear got shot off!

Erin, age 13, California USA

Sounder is a bittersweet story about an African-American who goes from a boy to man as he searches for his father, who was arrested for stealing food for his family, and his dog, Sounder, who was shot and crawled away to die. I really liked this story, because it was very deep and held a hidden meaning even as it grew depressing. One of my favorite parts was when Sounder came back to the boy, even as he was dying, to wait together for the boy's father, who was also the dog's master, to come back. Towards the end of the story the boy's father came home for his waiting dog and son, and it was happy until later...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!) But he was now strong and able to take it. Sounder is a wonderful book and those who don't like it probably don't understand it and aren't reading it correctly.

Nicole, age 13, Pennsylvania

Yeah the book was pretty good, but sometimes confusing. I liked the book because it gives me something to think about and it always kept me wondering what's going to happen next. I thought it was pretty funny when the teacher started talking to the plant! But I'm the type of person to read a book for fun so if I just saw the book somewhere and didn't have to read it for reading I would have probably never picked it up, sorry!

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Emily, age 14, Oklahoma USA

I like the part when the boy puts Sound under the pillow and I really didn't like the part were the dad got arrested for stealing the ham but it really wasn't him they just thought it was. It was sad and happy in one!!!! I do love this book and as a matter of fact, I am doing a book report over this book. It's so cool!

Aleigha, age 13, Indiana USA

In the beginning it sounds nice when he wakes up to ham and he only smelled that like twice. Then it gets sad because his dad gets caught for stealing and the dog gets shot. But the boy can go to school now!So in a way it is happy and sad.
I REALLY LIKE THIS BOOK!

Mary, age 14, Oregon USA

I thought this book was an excellent read. I liked it because of how much courage the boy had trying to find his father. My favorite part was when he was learning to read. Although you could sort of predict what was going to happen, it was fun reading how William H. Armstrong wrote it. I would recommend this book to anyone eager to read a great book!

Amanda, age 13, North Carolina USA

I loved this book, I liked it because I love dogs and I have one myself. My favorite part is when Sounder ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!)!

RoHaN, age = 15, Seoul S. Korea

I really recommend this book to whomever likes books with animals and adventure. This is a very emotional book, expressing loss, pain, suffering, and hope. 1) Yes, I loved this book. 2) The book pulls you right into the story, and shows you how times were in the older days. 3) I disliked the end, it was sad. :'( ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!)

Mia and Hayley, age 13, Sydney

I did not like the book Sounder. Some of the reasons I didn't like it were the following. Only one character had a name, which was Sounder, which I think isn't a very good thing to have in a book.

Another thing was that it was very predictable. It is very obvious that Sounder would come back. No good author would make one of the main characters ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!). Also, I think there wasn't a very good story line. All that happened is a boy whose father gets taken to jail for stealing a ham, ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!). Which I think is a very predictable (and not that good) storyline.

It was a very sad book, which had no adventure in it, which in my opinion is the making of a bad book. Even though the story shows how black people were (and still are) treated and how we should not treat them badly, I would not recommend this book to anyone of any age.

Jeffrey, age 11, Texas,USA

I am not a reader, but I like animals. When I saw this book I thought this book was just about dogs. So I checked the book out of the library. It was better than I thought it would be. The book was great. I got glued to the book and I could not put the book down. I think that tells you how much I like the book. I totally disagree with Sara from Georgia. I sort of like books that are sad. I liked it because it touched me. It made me think if that is really what they did back in those days, and what I would do if that was my dog and dad. I did not like that his dad ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!). I don't like that his dog got shot. I liked everything else about the book. And I really like William H. Armstrong.

Emily, age 13, Oregon USA

I read the book, then I watched the movie. The book is much better because it's more realistic and it seems like it's the way the black man meant for it to be. My favorite part was when the father came home and Sounder actually started barking. I did not like the part when Sounder got shot, it was so sad.

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Joel, age 13, New York USA

I really really liked the book. The 2 sad parts was when the father went to jail, I mean he just stole a turkey. That's pretty stupid, and when Sounder got shot. I liked the part when the boy was reading, that was pretty cool.

Renee, age 14, Canada

Once I picked up the book, I assumed that it would have been very good, since it was a Newberry Medal Award Winner. Part of my assumptions were wrong because as I read, it got boring and dull. I guess I'm not interested in these kind of books. Part of the book was good, and I recommended it to people that like realistic and in-the-past books. The book shows you how the people back in the 19th century South had lived and gone through hard times. It shows you how a boy makes his choices in every troublesome situation, and it shows how a dog can be so special in every way.

Alli, age 13, USA

A sad, yet pleasurable book about a young boy who loses his dog after his father has stolen a cake. Rangers show up, take the dad, destroy the house, and ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!). There is foreshadowing showing things about Sounder and then what happens to the father.

Lizmarvsa, age = 14, Maryland USA

I read the book Sounder in my French class. It was hard to understand for me, because the vocabulary level was very high. Despite this, I enjoyed the book because it was an emotional and inspiring story. I especially liked how the boy never gave up trying to obtain an education. Overall, a good book.

Sarah, age 14, Georgia USA

I hated this book because first of all the only character who had a name was Sounder. Second of all, it was so predictable. I mean, most people with common sense would know that Sounder WOULD come back because any author wouldn't make the main character die in the 1st part of the novel. So all in all, my tip for you--Don't waste your time. :)

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Ian, age 13, Washington, USA

I particularly enjoyed reading Sounder. It, I'd have to say was one of the best books I've ever read. It relates to how racism used to be like back then. They put a black person in jail for a year just for stealing a single turkey, and they probably back then would treat white people much differently. It was sad though how the dog...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!).

Katia, age 14, New York USA

I think this is a wonderful book. I love this book because it shows the explicit characteristics of a real, imaginative, and creative writer. William H. Armstrong is one of my favorite writers. Another reason why I love this book because it is realistic book and to love dogs sometimes have just like I do towards my dog. I would recommend this book to anybody in the USA because you learn to value your parents and friends.

Khamori, age 12, Georgia USA

I liked the book because the worse thing to happen was the father getting arrested and Sounder...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!). And that's why I liked SOUNDER.

Chrissy, age 13, New York USA

I think the book Sounder by William Armstrong was a great book. One of the things that I found the most interesting was how the author constantly used symbolism. I also enjoyed how the boy learned so much on his journey. My favorite part of the story was when the boy found out Sounder was going to ...oops, you'll have to read this part yourself!). Overall, I think Sounder was a wonderful book.

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Maxine, age 13 New York USA

Sounder was a great novel, I think it was a great novel because any book that can make you cry is a great book and it felt so real like I was there. I especially liked it when the boy learned how to read. I found it very sad when Sounder got shot. One thing that I did not like about the book was how the only character that had a name was Sounder. I felt very bad for the family. It must have been hard to grow up being poor and be discriminated because the color of your skin.

Kyle, age 13, Illinois USA

I liked this book because it tells you what blacks had to deal with back in that time. I liked this book because I like dogs. I would recommend this book to anybody in the United States Of America. I would like the author to write another part of Sounder.

Katherine, age 13, New York USA

When I read the novel Sounder I learned to appreciate another race more than I had before. When reading this novel I learned what black people went through in the 1860's. I also learned much more about black history. The novel Sounder was a very educational novel because it teaches you about life, how you have to earn something you want, and how life doesn't always turn out the way you would have liked it to turn out.

Harold, age 14, Texas USA

I think this book was great, and I recommend it to people who don't have sick pets because it has a pet dying and you might be scared because your pet might die because it is sick.

Frima, age 12, Caracas Venezuela

I think Sounder is a very learning-from book... why??? Because you learn to like what you have, and you learn to value your family and friends.

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Jenny, age 13, B.C. Canada

I think this is a wonderful book for us to know how it was like back in the early 1870's where there were still a lot of discrimination going on in the southern United States. This book give us the opportunity for nowadays people to have an idea of how it was like to be 1870's. I would highly recommend this book to everyone.

Dominique, age 15, Florida USA

I loved this book for many reasons. One of these reasons was because it shows the explicit characteristics of a real, imaginative, and creative writer. William H. Armstrong is one of the best writers of all time. Another reason why I loved this book is because it is so realistic and shows the love for dogs people sometimes have just like I do towards my dog. In brief conclusion I will just have to say that the book was excellent I loved it!!!

Kristen, age 13, Maryland USA

I thought the book was sad. The book was sad about all the bad things that happened to the boy and his family. It also told of how the black people were treated in the South. Even though this book is sad, I would definitely recommend this book to others.

Naomi, age 14, UT

I had to read a classic book for my Honors English class. This is a great book. I love how the boy has faith that his dad and Sounder will come home. I love the description. I could actually picture the place where he lives and how he felt. I recommend everyone to read this book. You have not lived if you have not read this book.

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Don, age 15, Illinois USA

I think this book is a great book because it tells about what blacks went though in the 1860s. It also teaches people more about black history.

Montana, age 11, Iowa USA

I liked the book Sounder because I think it was cool but it was very sad at the end.

Kim, age 13, Indiana USA

Sounder, is an excellent book. It has taught me a lot about the hard times African Americans have faced. Not only did I learn about history, I fell in love with Sounder and his family. This book helped me to appreciate people of another race more.

Clarissa, age 14, West Virginia USA

I have mixed emotions with this book, because I AM AN ANIMAL NUT!! It was sad, it was upsetting it was exciting and much much more!!!

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Rachael, age 12, Pennsylvania USA

I really like this book. I can see how that could have happened. The story is also about people being prejudice. Most of my friends liked the book, too. I really like the wording in the paragraph about how soulful Sounder's howl was.

Reneisha, age 13, Texas USA

I think Sounder is a good book. The sad part about the book was when the boy's father got taken to jail and when Sounder got shot. Another sad part of the book was when...oops, you'll have to read the ending yourself!). One of the good things that happened was when the boy started to learn how to read and went to school, so he could teach his siblings the things he has learned. Sounder was one of the best books I have read!

Kimberly, age 13, Virginia USA

This is a good book,. It is a sad, but good book. The only thing I don't like is that the only suspense is in the beginning.

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Abby, age 12, Ohio USA

I thought this book was da' bomb! I have to do a report on it and the reason why the sharekeeper (father) gets taken away by the sheriff is because they think he committed a terrible murder. I've been looking all through sites on the web. That is how I know this! Not because he stole a ham! Someone put that! Weird peeps! It was great and I hope everyone gets to read it.

Nate, age 11, New York USA

I had to read this book for English. I hated it! So the dog got shot. I've had lots of dogs. I don't cry when they die.

Tonya, age 12, USA

The book is good. I like the part when the boy put Sounders under his pillow.
I didn't like the part when the father gets arrested for stealing a ham.
But he didn't steal the ham.

Vanessa, age 10, Arizona USA

I think this book was not that good of a book because it was too descriptive
and a little bit more boring than I expected. I will confess that I did cry in
the beginning. It was the end that got to me because
...oops, you'll have
to read the ending yourself! I think that Sounder was a good book a little
bit because it actually was a little bit of a mystery.


Kelsey, Age 12, California USA
Great, it kept me on the edge of my seat.

Kaitlynn, Age 10, Canada

I thought it was a really exciting book to read. I say that just because
it was!

Sammantha, age 11, Arkansas USA

I think everybody should read this book it is very good. When I got in
the middle of the book, that's when I started liking it. I just hope when
everybody will read this and if you haven't read this book Sounder and
don't want to read then that's ok, but you're missing out on a really good
book. If you haven't read the book you will like this book a lot. It is
very heart warming and it will make you cry.

Pearl, age 11
I really liked the book. I am a dog lover and so I enjoyed reading it for
that reason. It was a very touching book, enough to make someone cry.
It shows how bad the races acted toward each other back then. The boy
got kicked and hit with hard metal and that was cruel. I wish the story
would have ended different. But it was still a great book. I would
recommend it to any mature reader to read.

Julie, age 10, New York

I thought this book was very moving. I was very upset when ...oops! You'll
have to read the ending yourself!. Reading this book in my class taught me
a great deal about the lives of sharecroppers in the south after the
Emancipation Proclamation.

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Timo, age 11, Vantaa, Finland

It was a very good and touching book. The saddest parts were when Sounder
was shot and the father was taken to jail. It was also sad at the end of the
book because Sounder and the boy's dad...oops! You'll have to read the
ending yourself! The boy must have felt terrible when Sounder was shot
because Sounder was almost everything that the boy had. I'm glad that
African Americans are being treated better these days.

Kelsey, age 13, Idaho USA

I liked the book. It was sad, but it was a great story. I feel better
that the African Americans are getting a lot more respect now
than they were.

Jessica, age 13, North Carolina USA

I liked the book Sounder because it seemed real, like I was in it. The book
was also very sad because of when the dad got taken away and arrested. I liked
Sounder to be was very sweet. I learned from this book was how life was in the
South. I enjoyed the book a lot, it was a great book.

Jake, age 14, Wisconsin USA

I liked this book. It was hard for the kids to be poor and have their
dad arrested, but it was very realistic. This is the second book I have read
about coon dogs and hard times. I think that if you like 'Where the Red Fern
Grows', then you probably will like 'Sounder'.

 

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