New (to Me) Author Discovery! Yay!

I’ve been reading, reading, reading. Mostly YA lit, of course, but I want to talk about the book I finished over the weekend: Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper. I have a few of her books on my bookshelves in my classroom, but this is the first of her books I have read. I assure you I will be reading every one of those other books of hers I have on my shelves. Eventually. My “to-read” list is VERY long, you see. And getting longer thanks to my Twitter and Facebook friends who keep recommending so many incredible titles.

  What can I say about this book about a ten year old girl named Melody?

In a word: outstanding. What I really liked about this book is the fact that while I found the narrator, Melody, to be extremely sympathetic, I did not feel sorry for her. I even found myself getting irritated with her at times, as I have with so many other main characters from other books. I’m pretty sure that was Sharon Draper’s goal when she wrote this book.

As I read, I couldn’t help thinking this book would make an excellent choice for a lit circle with a focus on freedom as a theme. Melody is trapped in her own mind and in a body that constantly betrays her. Freedom is something Melody yearns for, but never comes close to achieving.

Although there are those who feel this book doesn’t quite ring true for one reason or another, I recommend this book to everyone–especially parents, teachers, and students. You never know when the person whom you assume is not worth your time or effort based on physical appearance just might be someone like Melody.

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