One for The Books #5 Bridge to Terabithia


Lauren Wildoner

Kaitlyn Craig, Messenger Reporter, Columnist & Human Interest Coordinator

When we think of Bridge to Terabithia, the first thing that comes to most of our minds is the 2007 film starring AnnaSophia Robb and Josh Hutcherson. But the movie is actually based on a classic, Newbury Medal-winning novel. The book was written by Katherine Paterson in 1977. Most of the times when discussing books, the word classic, is synonymous with the word boring. But with this book, it is not the case. This book is a short and easy read, but at the same time, it will leave you feeling much different than when you started the book.


This book focuses on two fifth grade kids named Jess and Leslie. Jess lives on a farm with his four sisters and his parents. They struggle financially, which causes the other kids to pick on him and call him things like farmer boy. His big goal for the new school year is to become the fastest kid in the school. But on the first day of school, on the day of the big race, this girl moves into the area, and into Jess’s class, who decides to participate in the race as well. This upsets some of the boys because running was considered a boy’s sport. And Leslie ends up beating all of the other guys in the race, which sends some attention her direction. Jess is very annoyed with her at this point, and when he gets off the bus and he thinks that he is finally away from her, he finds out that Leslie and her family has moved in right next door to his family. Leslie’s family also couldn’t be more different than Jess’s family, Jess’s dad works in a family-owned store, while his mom stays home to take care of him and his siblings. While Leslie’s parents are both fiction writers. Leslie and Jess begin to talk more and more, and they become the best of friends. One day after school they are running around playing on the property behind their houses when they find an old rope swing. They go across and find a piece of land that only they know about, and they decide to make this land their own imaginary world of magical creatures. The adventure unfolds in this mystical world, leading to things that would never be expected.


This book is so heartfelt and emotional that you will definitely need tissues while you read it. And even if you have seen the movie, I still recommend reading the book because it is even better than the movie when it comes to details, and knowing the personal thoughts of the characters. The book really helps you delve into the character’s brains. This book ignites your imagination, and also helps you get a new perspective on life, which is hard to do in such a short book.
This book is also perfect to read for school projects, it has a lot of aspects in it that are perfect for in-depth discussion. It is short, but still captivating and beautifully written. It is a book that you can read over and over again and never get tired of.