Holy crap, you guys. This book is…not what I expected. And really, really good. Heartbreaking. Eye-opening.
I only learned that Laurie Halse Anderson wrote her modern classic and much challenged novel Speak in response to her own rape as a young teen. But where Melinda came to art to find her voice, Anderson came to writing. Anderson writes in verse that runs the gambit of emotion and holds no punches. It is a memoir of her full life, opening with a reflection on her father, whose severe PTSD sets the tone for her complicated home (later reflected in her YA fiction The Knife of Impossible Memory). Her rape by a classmate as a middle-school student left her […]
Almost accidentally, author Susan Hood stumbled upon a historical event that has gone mostly overlooked and it is the basis of her exciting middle grade novel Lifeboat 12. The book is told in verse format by narrator and actual survivor Ken Sparks, who is thirteen years of age right before London is destroyed in the Blitz. His life in London is troubled by things large in scope (like running to bomb shelters nightly when the alarms go off and living off rations and hand-me-downs) and intimate (feeling slighted by his stepmother who dotes on his half-sister and only seems disappointed […]
I first read The Odyssey when I was a freshman in high school. I think it might actually have been the very first assigned reading that year, and I remember being excited for it, and liking the story, but having suuuuuch a hard time getting through it, because the translation I was reading was so dense. Looking back (and now having read this translation) I don’t actually think I liked it as much as I thought I did, and I have some definite opinions about the Greeks being huge jerks. Mostly that they are huge jerks! I do NOT remember […]