Book Review: “Colin Fischer”

“Colin Fischer” by Ashley Edward Miller and  Zack Stentz

Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Mystery, Contemporary Fiction

GoodreadsSource: Library

Summary from Goodreads:

SOLVING CRIME, ONE FACIAL EXPRESSION AT A TIME

Colin Fischer cannot stand to be touched. He does not like the color blue. He needs index cards to recognize facial expressions.

But when a gun is found in the school cafeteria, interrupting a female classmate’s birthday celebration, Colin is the only for the investigation. It’s up to him to prove that Wayne Connelly, the school bully and Colin’s frequent tormenter, didn’t bring the gun to school. After all, Wayne didn’t have frosting on his hands, and there was white chocolate frosting found on the grip of the smoking gun…

Colin Fischer is a modern-day Sherlock Holmes, and his story–as told by the screenwriters of X-Men: First Class and Thor–is perfect for readers who have graduated from Encyclopedia Brown and who are ready to consider the greatest mystery of all: what other people are thinking and feeling.

review

Oh look, it’s another book featuring a teen on the autism spectrum.  I didn’t mind it because the story really worked for me. We’ve got the angle of Colin trying to fit into high school and with his peers. That’s hard enough to do but for Colin, who has Asperger’s, it’s even more difficult. Then we have the mystery angle of the story. I do love a good mystery. Colin couldn’t just leave the big mystery that happened right before him alone. The most interesting part of the story, for me, was the fact that Colin was trying to clear his bully’s name. Most people wouldn’t go out of their way to help someone who makes their life miserable (even if they thought the person innocent). Colin had to do it though. Not because it was the “right” thing to do but because he couldn’t leave the mystery unsolved.

When reading books that feature characters with Asperger’s, it’s always interesting to see how others in the world “deal” with them. Even though more and more people are aware of the disorder, most people still aren’t sure of what to do. This book highlights some realistic relationships. We have his female friend, whose name I’ve forgotten. She’s known Colin for quite a while so she knows his quirks. I loved that she wasn’t really bothered by the things he said or did. She let him know what it wasn’t acceptable for him to say or do something. Even though she’s becoming popular she still was sticking to him.

The Coach was pretty awesome as well. I don’t think he quite knew what to do with Colin other than give him a bit more attention. He did his best treat Colin as normal as he could. Colin’s brother’s  behavior was expected but disappointing. I know it must be difficult to grow up with a brother that’s different. Colin probably has always been treated differently so the brother might feel left out. I would think on some level the brother must know that Colin needs to be treated the way he is. He’s not intentionally trying to be difficult. I hated that he went into Colin’s room to mess with his stuff. I know I feel anxious if someone messes with my stuff. I couldn’t imagine they anxiety Colin felt though.

The voice was weird. It seemed so rigid. I could understand a rigid and weird voice if Colin was narrating the story but the story was in 3rd person. I’m not sure what the authors were trying to do with that. I did enjoy the footnotes and anecdotes throughout the story.

The bottom line: A good mystery!

 

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10 thoughts on “Book Review: “Colin Fischer”

  1. Hey, I am reading book and there is a thing I would like to clear out about American schools.
    One guy I know used to go to American school, though for one year only, but I think it is long enough to get the system. So, when I asked him about bulling, if it really is so, as it usually is shown in the movies? He said there is no such cruel bulling as such student will be kicked out of school. So in his school was no shit like that.
    And here is again the story that begins with the bulling… Does it belong on what State it is? I mean is it in such States of America more strict than in other or is it just a fantasy of author?

    • There is definitely bullying in schools. It might not be as “bad” as it is in the movies because the kid should be kicked out for that. It’s a lot more on the smaller scale: calling someone names, making fun of them, turning their friends against them. Basically little things that are harder to get in trouble for.

      I don’t know if it’s a world wide problem. I think people associate it with the US more because we’ve had more deaths recently because of it.

      Quick answer: Yes bullying does exist but authors do bigger bullying than is seen in normal day-to-day life.

      • People associate it with US because it is a big deal (can I say so?) in your country. Nobody sticks his tongue into own ass and shuts up like nothing has happen.
        We can use Russia as example: there is a really cruel bullinglike classmates rape one with a broom. Make a video and upload it online. Have you heard about that? There also are many cases of suicides because of teachers’ bulling: there was a boy who’s parents died in auto crash, so his grand ma took care about him. Seniors in Ru are getting so less money for their whole-life-hard-work that they even can’t really pay their own bills. And now imagine, a single senior has to take care about a growing child. In East Europe students have to pay for the renovating of entire school or renovate their class room. This small family had no single penny to pay it and teacher was bulling the boy so hard that he killed himself. And this is not single story. Let me guess, you have never heard about it as well? ;)))
        Oh wait, I know one more story, told me by one teacher who works in Ru: one girl got her eye beat out and SHE had to change school, because there is a law in Ru, that every child has right to finish school and nobody can deny it. So, as she didn’t want to go to the same school with that moron she had to find herself a new one ;))
        And there are billions such stories over there. I know them, because as I know Russian I have some Russian online friends over there and get to know stuff you can find only online and sometimes only in private blogs on live journal.

  2. So I am done with the book.
    I totally agree with your review except the thing about the voice. I find it really well done, so I had a possibility to get better look at the situation from different angles: crying of happiness mother when her older son says he loves her for the first time ever, reaction of Danny and the thing between him and Melissa.
    I am surprised you didn’t mention (or have I overlooked it??) the introductions to every single chapter. I have already read several books written in this way, but this is the first that made sense to me. So I didn’t skip any single sentence and even learn some new things and I def. gonna watch a documentary movie about Heinrich Gross. Gosh, he made it ’till 2005! Can you believe that????
    And the last but not the least – COVER! Such a well made thing! I say it as a person who has studied graphic design. It reflects exactly what people like Collin are in our eyes and how they see us. I don’t think it could be made any better.

      • Oh, and one more moment, I almost laughed myself to death when Collin nearly killed Stan(?) during the basketball game xDD First I was laughing at the situation, then I have imagined face expression of couch and nearly died for the second time xDD
        He was my second favorite character after Collin=)

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