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Analysis

Literary Devices in Maniac Magee

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

Setting

Say Hey!We don't get a nice clear date thrown at us anytime in Maniac, but we do get a handy dandy reference to one Mr. Willie Mays. It turns out Grayson pitched to the Say Hey kid back in his own...

Narrator Point of View

Really, we wouldn't mind if Maniac Magee were told in the first person. There are definitely times we'd like to know a little more about just what's going on in that wacky head of his. But, it's ju...

Genre

Yeah, we think adults could learn a lot from Maniac, too. But Maniac's story isn't geared towards the over-18 set. Nope, this is YA all the way. Maniac deals with some pretty tough experiences (whe...

Tone

Maniac has a tough journey, and as funny as things get, the tone lets us know that this is serious business. Check out this paragraph for a good example: Grayson had brought over a record player a...

Writing Style

Not only did he shamble, jive, shuck and hipdoodle at his own sweet pace, he did something he had never even done in the East End—he came to a complete and utter halt halfway across and let nothi...

What's Up With the Title?

Well for starters, it's the name of the main character. But it's more than that. It's not like the book is called "Jeffrey Lionel Magee." It's also not called just "Maniac." It's not even "Jeffrey...

What's Up With the Ending?

Feeling a little guilty about taking your family/home for granted? We are too. How could we not, when Maniac Magee finally ends with Maniac simply content that "finally, truly, at long last, someon...

Tough-o-Meter

We're not going to lie: Maniac deals with some serious topics. But even though death, loss, hatred and fear all play a role in the book, Maniac is still a kid, and he approaches these roadblocks in...

Plot Analysis

A Born ManiacBabies aren't born Maniacs: this one came to be when his parents died a tragic death, leaving him to be raised by his freezing cold aunt and uncle. Jeffrey becomes Maniac when he takes...

Trivia

Jerry Spinelli has six kids and sixteen grandkids (no wonder he writes kids so well!) (source) Willie Mays hit home runs from every spot in the lineup and from every inning up through the sixteenth...

Steaminess Rating

This is the story of a kid looking for family love, not the other kind.

Allusions

Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile (12.19, 13.16)Mike Mulligan's Steam Shovel (27.4, 32.6, 32.10)The Little Engine That Could (27.4, 28.1)The Story of Babar (27.4) George Washington, (33.11)Willie Mays (25...
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