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The Running Dream by [Van Draanen, Wendelin]
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The Running Dream Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product Description


"I read T"he Running Dream" on my way to the World Championships. I nearly missed my flight for reading it and inhaled it before I touched down. It's a truly touching story that feels very real."--Katrin Green, Paralympic Gold Medalist
"This heart-touching story is a helpful reminder that we must appreciate each day and each blessing. When I go around "Rigor Mortis Bend" and think of Jessica, my legs do not feel nearly as tired anymore."--Jordan Hasay, four-time USA Track & Field Jr. Women's Champion
"Van Draanen's extensive research into both running and amputees pays dividends--readers will truly feel what's it like to walk (or run) a mile (or 10) in Jessica's shoes."--"Booklist"
"Inspirational. The pace of Van Draanen's prose matches Jessica's at her swiftest. Readers will zoom through the book just as Jessica blazes around the track. A lively and lovely story."--"Kirkus Reviews"
"Van Draanen delivers an abundance of interesting medical detail and emotional authenticity in this accessible and inspirational novel."--"The Horn Book Magazine"

About the Author

When Wendelin Van Draanen ran her first marathon, she was struck by the people with physical handicaps who were also running and was inspired to write this book about overcoming adversity with courage and grace and strength.
She is the author of many beloved and award-winning books. For middle graders, she s written "Swear to Howdy" and the Sammy Keyes mystery series. For teens and tweens, there s "Flipped, " "The Running Dream, " "Confessions of a Serial Kisser, " and "Runaway." And for younger readers, check out the Shredderman quartet and the Gecko and Sticky series. Wendelin Van Draanen lives in Central California with her husband and two sons. Find her on the Web at WendelinVanDraanen.com or on Twitter at @WendelinVanD."

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3628 KB
  • Print Length: 354 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers (11 Jan. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004DEPF18
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #310,011 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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By TeensReadToo TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 23 April 2011
Format: Hardcover
An accident involving a junk-hauling truck and a school bus leaves one high school track team member dead and one team member with her leg amputated below the knee.

When Jessica wakes up after surgery, she learns that her leg was hopelessly crushed, leaving doctors no choice but to amputate it. At the same time she is facing her own crippling injury, she learns that her fellow teammate, Lucy, didn't survive. Her world looks pretty bleak and hopeless.

Because she is young and healthy, Jessica's recovery goes smoothly and she soon heads home from the hospital. Physical therapists have been preparing what remains of her leg for a prosthetic replacement. Her wish is to walk, but she doesn't hold out much hope that she will ever run again. Supportive family and friends work hard to convince her that she needs to be patient and keep a positive outlook. Of course, this is easier said than done.

Upon returning to school, Jessica finds herself working hard to catch up on the work she has missed, especially Algebra II. Because of her wheelchair, she sits in the back of the classroom with Rosa, also wheelchair-bound due to cerebral palsy. Jessica discovers that Rose is a math whiz and can explain the concepts even better than the teacher. It's amazing how Jessica never really noticed Rosa before the accident, but now she understands that cerebral palsy is just an outside condition and that there is much more to Rosa on the inside.

Meanwhile, medical expenses are challenging the family budget, and when the track coach mentions the idea of a "running" leg for Jessica, the $20,000 expense seems impossible. But, once again, her friends step forward and decide to make Jessica's ability to someday run again their cause.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is such an inspiring story that I will not hesitate to pick up again and again, beautifully written - I read it in one day. Most surprisingly though it made me (someone who dislikes exercise) want to RUN!
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Format: Paperback
amazing, an easy read with a fantastic storyline and plot and one of my faves
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars 327 reviews
27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review from Blkosiner's Book Blog 17 Feb. 2011
By Brandi Leigh Kosiner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
The Running Dream is very inspirational, and I love books that make me feel, think and moves my heart.
Jessica is a great narrator- she has a concise voice, and I like how the emotion comes out in this book. It is fictional, but it all feels real. From the details, the emotions, the responses of friends and family, down to financial matters.
I love the message that comes through both Jessica and Rose- do not see the disability- see the person. I love that even though Jessica has her own physical problems, she must overcome her prejudices and notions with Rose.
This is a great story and I recommend it
39 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Beautiful Story of Courage & Strength 15 Jan. 2011
By A Very Merry Shakespeare - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
You know how it is when you wake up in the morning and sigh...you have to go to work at a place that makes you ill, or you have to face down a bill collector, or spend hours in your home trying to work and take care of your child while outside your next door neighbors are playing music so loud it could wake the dead. Or maybe you can't sleep because of the aches and pains or the icy wind blowing against the window, and you wish your life could be better? I'm guilty of this; I'm guilty of cussing or crying, sighing or grumbling...but what if it was worse? What if I really had something to complain about? I don't. I get up every day on two good legs, with minor aches and pains maybe, but able to walk out the door and follow my dream. This is a book that shows us what real troubles are, and how someone can overcome the fact that they have lost the destiny that they were shooting for with their whole heart, body, mind, and soul.

Jessica Carlisle has a gift - she can run like the wind and win race after race for her team. She's so good, in fact, that she's looking at winning gold medals in the Olympics when she gets older. Not only is she good at running, she loves it. There is nothing like the power - the "whoosh" - as her feet glide across the asphalt to people cheering. In that world she is Queen; in that world everything else makes sense. After a meet one day, where she has set a record almost impossible to achieve, Jessica is sitting on the bus with her friends when the crash comes. The lights go out and when they blink back on, she's in a hospital bed. She has a mother crying beside her; flowers on the table telling her to Get Well; a father who is angry and pacing the floor ready to take out the fates that have hurt his little girl; and, a cheery doctor who can say nothing more than 'you're healing well...you're fine...everything will get better...' and smiling like Jessica should feel like she's just won the lottery. A smile that says forget about the fact that one of your legs is gone, at least you have your life.

What life? Her whole future has been taken away from her. Her leg was smashed under a tangled piece of metal while others escaped with only cuts and bruises. Jessica is mad...beyond mad. Why her?

The story that follows hits you right between the eyes. Not a standard drama, the author writes her pages from Jessica's own mind, showing readers the steps of depression, anger, and the torrent of emotions that happen to someone when life becomes brutally unfair. The power that Jessica shows, the courage and bravery that comes upon her when she realizes that it's not over and there's no way the devil who made this happen is going to win, makes for one of the most powerful stories I've read in a long time.

Jessica's best friend, the boy she's always loved from afar, the support of her parents, schoolmates, and coach, as well as a young freshman in a wheelchair named Rosa who becomes a large part of Jessica's life, all come together to make a story that the reader WANTS to read. Not because of the lessons taught, mind you, but because Jessica's life, while tragic at first, turns into a fun, enjoyable read about friendship and starting over.

I hope this book goes straight to the top where it belongs...and I will try never to whine again. I will chase my dream until the lights turn out for good no matter what stands in my way or is thrown at me. Jessica is a fantastic role model for children and adults to simply keep going and, no matter what, doing what you love. Bravo!

Until Next Time,
Amy, Bookpleasures.com Reviewer
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So good 5 Jun. 2011
By T. Kay - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Flipped, also written by Van Draanen, was the first of her works that I read. She is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. In addition to Flipped and The Running Dream, I've read Swear to Howdy, and The Runaway. These books are insightful and inspirational without being over the top. I teach fifth grade, and though written for older children, might read this to a more mature class.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent and Multifaceted 10 July 2015
By Beth Settje - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
We were introduced to the book this year as it is on a list of suggested summer reading choices for my soon to be 7th grader. A friend read and recommended it to my daughter, who then bought it. Three days later, she came to me and insisted I read it too. I am very glad I did, as it is a well written story about facing adversity, understanding matters bigger than oneself, and overcoming obstacles.

Jessica, the main character, loses part of her leg after a car accident. At sixteen, that alone would be very difficult to cope with; however, Jessica is a fast runner on the track team, and to lose her leg makes her feel like she has lost her freedom. The book is in five parts, with very short chapters in each section, so it moves along at a very quick pace. The story opens with Jessica facing the reality of not having a leg and continues with her going through different stages of denial, anger, acceptance, and ultimately resolve. She has some supportive friends, a realistic family, and doctors who care but don't always know how to express themselves well to a teenage girl. Along the way to her recovery, Jessica learns more about herself, her fortitude, and her character than she ever expected. The author does an excellent job taking the reader along on the journey.

This review is vague, because I don't want to share too much about the plot and inadvertently give away a spoiler. Suffice it to say, the book is great for middle school and high school students. There is no inappropriate language or behaviors, and the lessons learned will be relevant to the 11-17 year old age group. As an adult, I also found it meaningful and am glad my daughter suggested I read it.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring story 24 Jan. 2016
By Robin Landry - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As a lifetime runner, I understand the feel of freedom that running gives you and I can't imagine not being able to run any more(although riding a horse is quite the high too). Well written, and believable, we join Jessica on the worst day of her life. She has just set a record for the 400 at her high school, when the school bus is hit by an uninsured driver's truck and Jessica wakes up in a hospital with a doctor telling her how lucky she is. Jessica feels anything but lucky since her dream of running is now over. Even when she considers the death of her teammate, Jessica feels as if she died to, or at least her dream did.

With the help of her friends and family, Jessica goes from denial, to depression, to learning to live again in a different way, but just as fulfilling. She learns more about herself and how she took being healthy and popular for granted until her life fell apart. As she regains her life, Jessica wants to help another girl, Rosa, fulfill her lifelong dream. As Jessica heals, she brings another girl with her into a life that is fuller than the one Jessica had lived previously.

A great book to show how even the worst things that happen to us can give us unexpected gifts. Jessica is a great character that I'm sure young girls will relate to and inspire to be like. Highly recommended.
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