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Publisher's Summary

He wasn't born with the name Maniac Magee. He came into this world named Jeffrey Lionel Magee, but when his parents died and his life changed, so did his name. And Maniac Magee became a legend. Even today kids talk about how fast he could run; about how he hit an inside-the-park "frog" homer; about how no knot, no matter how snarled, would stay that way once he began to untie it. But the thing Maniac Magee is best known for is what he did for the kids from the East Side and those from the West Side.
©1960,1961 Sheila Burnford; (P)1997 Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, A Division of Bantam Doubleday Dell Pulbishing Group, Inc.

Critic Reviews

  • Newbery Medal Winner, 1991

"Half tall tale, half novel, Jerry Spinelli's Newbery Award winner is beautifully narrated by film and television actress S. Epatha Merkerson." (School Library Journal)
"A humorous yet poignant tall tale." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    269
  • 4 Stars
    76
  • 3 Stars
    30
  • 2 Stars
    14
  • 1 Stars
    13

Performance

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    214
  • 4 Stars
    42
  • 3 Stars
    19
  • 2 Stars
    6
  • 1 Stars
    7

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    202
  • 4 Stars
    55
  • 3 Stars
    24
  • 2 Stars
    6
  • 1 Stars
    9
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Craig
  • Denmark, WI, United States
  • 03-05-12

Excellent Middle School Story

If you could sum up Maniac Magee in three words, what would they be?

Life lessons abound

What other book might you compare Maniac Magee to and why?

none

Have you listened to any of S. Epatha Merkerson’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

no

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It would make me cry because all Jeffery wants is a home and he is so close so many times only to lose it again and again.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Maniac Magee is a great book

My child had to read this for school. We as a family thought it would be good to listen to it together as he read along with the book. I am so glad we did. The story is about compassion for people no matter the
color or station in life. It is about love. One of the best books I have read.
Even my husband loved it. We were all in tears at the end of the book.
The narrator is the best. She did each voice perfectly. She was especially good with the children's voices.
I hope audible will ask Merkerson to read more children's books and I do believe she is gifted reader.
Even my son was taken aback by how well she read.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Wonderfully narrated

This is my first audible.com book and I thoroughly enjoyed the narration! The story is well written and teaches a lesson without being "preachy". I will definitely listen to this again and with my children.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Listen again and again

I love this heartwarming story. Jerry Spinelli is a fantastic writer who uses vivid imagery to paint his characters and scenery in my mind. The reader compliments this with the voices she adds. Together, the story, author and reader, are like a warm blanket on a rainy day.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

An excellent reading of a timeless book.

This excellent reading of a timeless book helped it come alive for my students. The racial issues are still as relevant today, unfortunately

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

best book

This is the best book of ever heard in my life I rate it 10/10

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Heartwarming, and sad.

I found the story to be heartwarming and sad. so much loss, so much disappointment, but amid all that, spectacular glimpses of happiness, discovery, and spiritedness that makes you keep rooting for Maniac Magee the way you would for a close and personal friend. All the way through the story, you just want to reach in help him suceed, and witness him soar all at the same time.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Great story

This is an awesome story and was read wonderfully. I would recommend this book to anybody but most particularly children .

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Perfect voice for a great story.

What did you love best about Maniac Magee?

My students loved this story and really enjoyed the narration. The narrator does a wonderful job of inflecting accent, feeling, dialect, etc. <br/><br/>This is a good story that has been improved with the wonderful narration by Merkerson.<br/>

Who was your favorite character and why?

Maniac Magee, because he was cool, strong, independent and super smart.

What about S. Epatha Merkerson’s performance did you like?

Her different voices were fabulous and easy to follow.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Both! The story is humorous and yet touching.

Any additional comments?

I recommend this story and especially this audio verison to anyone.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Shawn
  • Yuma, AZ, United States
  • 02-09-09

Fun story, dragged down by too much agenda...

The story line is good, but the author has such an obvious agenda to preach that the story gets lost in the background noise at times.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful