Saturday, August 27, 2011

Can I See Your ID? by Chris Barton

Can I See Your I.D. : True Stories of False Identities by Chris Barton
Dial Books for Young Readers

Stories of ten impostors-- many of them teenagers-- push questions of identity, deception, and gullibility to the extreme.


  1. Interesting short stories of real life folks who have had some crazy adventures under assumed names, genders, and occupations. The writing style was not my favorite, it was told in a rather distracting and occasionally confusing, "Imagine you are a _____ who is ______." But the stories themselves were compelling, and the chapters were succinct and offered a what-happened-in-the-end conclusion. A good book to read, but no Newbery!

  2. I actually think that the second person writing style added to the atmosphere of the book. You could feel that the characters were real people in 3 dimensions, not just story-book characters on a page. The factual explanations at the ends of the chapters give you a bit of background, but the real strength of the story lies in its illustrative character writing. Another effect of the second person perspective was the ability to put yourself in the characters' shoes and experience their feelings and emotions. This is normally accomplished using first person, but worked exceptionally well in second person in this book. The identities that the characters assume add another layer to this effect, so that you are experiencing the character and seeing the identity in every eye-opening story in the book. This is a very creative writing style that worked very well, so I think this book falls into the category of "distinguished" and therefore is a strong candidate for the Newbery.