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How to Build a House

By Dana Reinhardt

How to Build a House
  • Critics' Opinion:

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  • Published in USA  May 2008,
    240 pages.
    Age range: Young Adult


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There are currently 15 reader reviews for How to Build a House
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Carol (04/08/08)

Adult Review
The young adult I had intended to read this book was not available so I read it myself - a 50 year old mother of two sons ages 21 and 23. I really enjoyed this book and the characters seemed like real kids dealing with real issues although it was somewhat predictable. I would recommend this to mature teenagers and adults who are dealing with divorce or family separation issues.
Lauren (03/31/08)

how to build a house
I found this book to be a really good book. It really touched me and made me feel like I was in her world. It was well written. It is also one of those books that you can read over and over again and never get tired of it. It would probably appeal to teen from the age 14 to 17. I really enjoyed the book.
Rebecca (03/30/08)

how to build a house
How To Build a House is a great book. Though I haven't gone through everything the main character, Harper, has I still found myself relating to her in so many aspects of of life. I'm 15 and I can definitely relate to this book. Just the way Harper regards everything around her and how she is hesitant to let people see who she really is makes me feel like I'm not alone, that there is always someone everyone can relate to. I recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a place to belong.
Kyra (age 14) (03/26/08)

Interesting, but not exceptional
The book had an interesting and easy to follow plot with many unique characters. I would only recommend this book to someone in High School (or older) because the mature themes would not be relevant or appropriate for younger readers. I am a few years younger then the main character who is a senior in high school, but the book still has relevance to me. At first the book is a bit confusing because it takes place in both the past and present, but in the end the effect is great, giving you a puzzle to solve about the main character and her life. The book includes some romance which I enjoyed. The only reason I did not rate it a 5 is because it seemed like a common teen novel with nothing in particular setting it apart. That said, it is still a good book to read; I enjoyed it and would recommend it to my friends.
Caroline (03/26/08)

Suprisingly Great
How to Build a House by Dana Reinhardt is a surprisingly good read. What first starts out as an account of a pretentious teenager who runs away from her problems to help the earth evolves into a very familiar, yet not overdone, story of summer love. The main character Harper Evans warms her way into the readers’ hearts with her insecurities and idiosyncrasies. Although she has a non-conventional family she is very predictable in her actions. We see repeatedly throughout the novel her struggle to deal with her family’s imperfections. Yet, in contrast to the Wright family, for whom she is building a house, Harper’s clichéd problems seem insignificant. This story allows the reader to feel as if they are part of something bigger than themselves, and that although as individuals we may seem insignificant when we join together we can do a lot change.
Sandra/Madison (03/24/08)

How to Build a House
I gave this book to my 12 year old granddaughter, Madison, to read and review..the following is what she had, to say: "I really enjoyed reading this book. I am a child of divorced parents, and totally related to the main character. Reading this book reminded me of all of the feelings that I had, ....and that I still have when it comes to divorce. I especially liked the fact that I really got to know the people in the book and that it was easy to read. Most of all, it made me think about forgiving and forgetting. It really stressed family and communication. I think that no matter what kind of family you come from, you can enjoy this book. I think that every age group can read this book. And, everyone might learn some things while reading this book."
Ella, age 16, East Lansing, Michigan (03/18/08)

How to Build a House
How to Build a House by Dana Reinhardt would make a lovely summer read
but lacks the depth of an excellent novel. The plot line follows a
basic summer love and loss story that occasionally overdoes the
comparison between building a house and building a relationship. Also,
the authors attempt at imitating high school love turns what is
supposed to be a story about healing love into one where a
relationship is mainly based on its physicality. Still, this kind of
substance makes it worthy of a "pool side" read. The character are
simple and humorous and the plot is easy to keep track of and,
overall, has a cute meaning.
Selene - As Told by Her Daughter (03/18/08)

The House that Harper Built
Wonderfully real story. This book touches on issues that face teens every day - divorce, love, high school, sibling relationships and understanding that your parents are human too. Harper is an exceptional character who feels she is nothing special and is dealing with the very difficult divorce of her parents. In building a house, she finds a new outlook on her parents, sisters, real love and her life. I loved it.
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