Swallowing Stones by Joyce McDonald

March 8, 2008
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Swallowing Stones by Joyce McDonald is a suspenseful book about a tragic accident that set off a chain of events that would change the small town of Briarwood forever. Michael Mackenzie fired off his Winchester Rifle on July 4th, showing it off to his best friends. Little did he know that he had taken the life of a man, and this act would create horrible repercussions.

There are 2 main characters within this book; Michael Mackenzie, the accidental killer and Jenna Ward, the daughter of the deceased father. After Michael finds out about the event, his best friend Joe, tells him to keep it covert because he could be imprisoned for it. But throughout the book Michael is plagued by guilt from his conscience as more and more people are becoming involved and getting hurt. During the course of the book Michael is going through a lot of emotional struggle, and is thinking on deeper and entirely new levels.

Meanwhile Jenna is just beleaguered with thoughts of “what if” she had done something different he wouldn't have been killed, and dealing with the “innocent's guilt”. At first she had wanted revenge for whoever did this, so she could fill the emptiness inside her, but later realized that she just wanted it to end. Jenna realized she had to come to terms with herself before she could truly accept her father's death.

The death of her father mixes with her personal life when she begins to have panic attacks around her boyfriend. Michael's personal life becomes complicated as he can not see a definite right or wrong answer, for the word is not black and white, it is gray. Both Jenna and Michael's private lives turn in to turmoil with misunderstanding, break ups, new friends and broken trust. All of this mixed in with the normal anxiety of a teenager.

A truly great book filled with power, and an emotional thriller .This is a must read for all genres of readers, for it is filled with suspense, fast paced , and an intricate plot terrifyingly truthful of how one event can change a life, or the lives of many in one foul stroke.

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Alex222 said...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:11 pm
This book is about two main characters Michael and Jenna. It was Michael’s birthday and his grandfather gave him a Winchester rifle for his 17th birthday. He shot his rifle and accidently hit Jenna’s father Charlie Ward. And in the end Michael is watching Jenna sleeping in the ghost tree waiting for her to wake up and tell her he killed her father. I like this book because it uses great dialog. Another reason is that it has two different perspectives in the story. One reason I didn&r... (more »)
Brandeny replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:18 pm
good statement
lexisJ replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:27 pm
aw! yawn lolz
Cheyenne Alexus :) said...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:10 pm
I think swallowinq stones was a good book don’t get me wrong but the ending was just terrible and they need to get in detail of what happen  did he get caught or not or did joe get caught as well I truly want To Know  did he never told Jenna but Jenna part was A little boring and micheal part was Interesteing I Like It Alot But Swallowing Stones Was About this boy name micheal and his friend joe and this girl name jenna. micheal shot jenna daddy when he was fixing the roof but... (more »)
lexisJ replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:14 pm
oh wow.! =0
alex222 replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:15 pm
I agree they need a proper ending
jasmine said...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:08 pm
Swallowing stones is a great book. It’s mainly about a boy name Michael who was just turning 16 who were giving a gun. On his birthday his grandfather gave him a gun and Michael shot it in the backyard. Later that day a man was found dead on top of a roof. That lead up to the gun that Michael shot. Long story short is that Michael killed a man and was scared to live up to it. I love this book because it was more like a mystery story. It is the kind of story that that I enjoy reading. This ... (more »)
Cheyenne Alexus :) replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:13 pm
I Agree !!!
lexisJ replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:14 pm
i totally agree..!
diamond5 replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:25 pm
swallowing stones was about a boy named michael who received a rifle for his 16th birthday. it also was about how he killed a boy named charlie ward. then he told his friend Joe that he killed him. i think that the book was ok but the ending was the most lamest  ending.
Lloyd S. said...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 10:08 am
I think swallowing stones is about 2 lives being combined. It started off before michael's birthday party when his grandfather gave him a rifle, then he shot it for the fun it. Then an hour later joe brung amy ruggerio for michael's birthday present, when he got amy he took amy in the garage and he did the nasty nasty. Then the next day michael drove with joe in joe's car to the dmv so he can try to get his liscence, but he saw the news on t.v. saying that a man got shot in the head off the... (more »)
Brandeny replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:19 pm
Good state ment
Tae,Tae said...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 10:07 am

Look I do like the book; I wasn’t even in class for more than half of the book. I like that granddad gave mike a gun for his birthday . If I got a gun for my birthday im always going to be out side . shooting birds, cats, dogs, all that good stuff . at the end I don’t think he should of told on him self and I hope jenna is cool that mike is telling the truth , if I was me I would left it alone it not my daddy no im playing


Mrs. Martinez replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:13 pm
Jiamante - I think you were in class for more than half the book. Remember that you can always take it home to re-read!
jazz replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 12:14 pm
lol me 2 i would be shootin anything kumin mii way lol
chevez said...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 10:06 am
The book was alright i like how they had it as a mystery story.Jenna story was boring because there wasnt no say in and who killed her father till the end.Micheal story was interesting,at the begininng he got a rifile for his birthday. And thats how they suspected he killed her father.Micheal didnt keep it real wit joe because he was thinking about telling on him
diam said...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 9:58 am
Swallowing stones is a book about a boy name Michael shot a rifle on Fourth of July and he accidently shot a man name Charlie Ward. The accident came on the news and Michael is really worried about on rather or not he is a murder.  This girl name Jenna, Charlie ward’s daughter do not know how feels about her fathers. Michael cannot keep this a secret anymore so he went to tell Jenna the truth. I like this book because it’s a very dramatic book. I didn’t like the book becau... (more »)
dare said...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 9:56 am

swallowing stones is a book about these two boys name joe and michael.Michael shot a gun and killed a man named Charlie Ward.Jenna is Charlie's daughter. And jenna has a hard time about her farther's death.

The book was good ,but the ending was stupid. Michael was weak if i was him i would have let joe take the rap for it lol,but for real.Or Michael should have just let the cops get him.

Ade 14 replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 9:59 am
lol i dont think michael was weak but it was kind of wrong for what he did
Mrs. Martinez replied...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 10:04 am
Darius - interesting choice of words calling Michael weak. I think in the end, he did the right thing. Honesty is always the best policy!
richy said...
Nov. 22, 2011 at 9:55 am
i meant good
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