by Kim Firmston

Martin doesn't see the world like other teens his age do

Martin's been diagnosed with ADHD, but he feels something about his diagnosis isn't right. The Ritalin he's prescribed doesn't seem to make a difference. When Martin's grades continue to sink no matter how hard he tries, his father writes him off as lazy and just plain stupid. His dad is convinced that Martin just needs to focus more on his studies and less on making movies.

One night while out pursuing his passion on the city streets with his camera, Martin meets Stick and is introduced to the energetic and exciting pastime of parkour -- free-running. While filming Stick's flips and tricks, Martin begins to see a connection between how his brain interprets the world, all jumbled and fast-moving and out of order, and what the free-runners see. Camera in hand, Martin sets out to make a video that will show his dad what he sees, and hopefully get him to understand that Martin's real learning disability, dyslexia, has never been properly diagnosed.

About the Author

KIM FIRMSTON is the author of the SideStreets novels Schizo, Hook Up (a Resource Links Year's Best), and Touch. She lives in Calgary, Alberta, where she gives writing workshops for teens.


"Stupid will certainly appeal to male students, and anyone interested in urban stories featuring teens."
Jaime Tong,, Educator at Vancouver School Board
"The portrayals of a kid's experiences with learning differences are spot-on, and a clear story line leads the reader through Martin's difficulties with nail-biting suspense, both at school and on the tops of abandoned buildings. A compelling high/low reader with wide teen appeal."
Erin Downey Howerton,, Booklist
''Stupid is an accessible yet richly layered text. I recommend it for the targeted age group, but also hope that educators and parents will read it and consider that "lazy" and "stupid" are often misnomers and never helpful.''
Karen Boyd,, CM: Canadian Review of Materials


Canadian Children's Book Centre Best Books for Kids & Teens
One of the Year's Best -- Resource Links

Subjects (BISAC)


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