This just in: top Amazon reviewer Grady Harp’s take on Chain Gang Elementary:
Grade schools are often microcosms of world situations and nowhere is that more evident than in the talented Jonathan Grant’s novel CHAIN GANG ELEMENTARY. Grant writes with a soothingly casual style that pauses here and there for infusions of philosophy, a wondrous description of Richard, a stay at home dad, and his beloved son Nick, some biting observations about authoritarian head of faculty, and some practical advice (in the form of a story) of how we can approach and even resolve some of the quandaries that face our public educational system. He wraps this all together in a story about a particular school – Mailliford (school of excellence) – and the manner in which Richard as a father and a writer and reporter manages to become the elected head of the Parent-Teacher Organization – a step that opens the can of worms that this novel so grippingly examines.
The reason this story works so well is Jonathan Grant’s gift for writing comedy. As is always the case, the serio-dramatic aspects of a story are best revealed through the words of parody cum laugh out loud technique: the events that could become static and tedious in the fights between the principal and the parents who demand more than the status quo as quality education versus test preparation and scoring is concerned become diving boards for Grant’s manipulation of characters and incidents that in the end are hilarious. This is a book full of wisdom from a man who lives it as well as a generous novel of stature in comedic writing.
Click here to see all reviews of Chain Gang Elementary at Amazon.com. Current average is 4.3 stars (on a 5.0 system).