Happy Friday Everyone! I have to say that I have really enjoyed being a part of Fiction Friday. I know I missed last week, but I am back on track… I hope. 😉
One of the books I read this week is a classic fave of mine. I read it with some students as a book club at summer camp, but I really felt like it deserved some attention. The other book, I predict, is going to be one of my all time faves of this summer. Away we go…
The Boxcar Children
Gertrude Chandler Warner
The Boxcar Children, by Gertrude Chandler Warner, is a book about four children who run away from home after the death of their parents. They are afraid of their grandfather, who they knew didn’t like their mother, for what reason we never figure out.
Henry, Jessie, Violet and Benny travel along, avoiding adults, until Jessie discovers a boxcar which they decide to live in. During this time, Henry walks into town and starts working for a doctor, Dr. Moore, in Silver City and brings home surprises for the kids on a daily basis. The ingenuity of these children grabs kids attention as they read about how they solve problems of every day living.
I know as a child I really wished I could be one of the Alden children and live in a boxcar. And I know that this book has influenced my life choices as I look for adventure in every day life, and as I come up with creative solutions to the problems that rearing 6 children can bring. It is a book that will always stay dear to my heart.
If you can get kids hooked on this book, then you have a huge series of books for them to love including a prequel written by Patricia MacLachlan and some graphic novels. Little brothers and sisters would also love The Adventures of Benny and Watch, a beginning to read series (1.8).
Mockingbird, by Kathryn Erskine, tells about Caitlyn, a 5th grade girl with Aspergers who is trying to figure out a messy world without the help of her brother Devon who was killed in a school shooting. Her widowed father just doesn’t understand her literal mind, or the reason’s why she just doesn’t “get it”.
Through her journey to figure out the world, with the help of her school counselor, Caitlyn helps her whole community find closure.
Reading back over my words, I realize that I just can’t express what this book did for me as a teacher. It really gave me insight into the mind of a young adult with Aspergers. I laughed, I cried, and my heart jumped for joy as I read this wonderful book.
Kathryn Erskine does a great job of sharing serious things in a way that doesn’t way the heart down, but lifts it up instead and fills it with hope.