Maniac Magee made his name by doing things that other people thought impossible. Not only was he willing to visit the East End of town, where he was a white boy in a black neighborhood, but he could also play sports better than anyone else in town, and run faster than anyone else in town.
But there is one thing that Maniac Magee doesn't have: a real home, and parents who love him. “Maniac Magee” is the story of how this unusual boy made his reputation, and in the end changed the people of his town completely.
I felt that “Maniac Magee” was a well written story. The plot was a little hazy at first, mostly focusing on how the main character managed to impress the other children of his town and create an enduring reputation. I felt that Jerry Spinelli did an excellent job creating his characters, embodying them with remarkable traits and personalities, but the storyline itself was nothing special. “Maniac Magee” has the tone of an epic story, but its only strong point is its main character.
Overall I would say that “Maniac Magee” is an interesting book, but I don't think I would have given it a Newberry Award.