Saturday, December 27, 2008
Looking for Newbery - Day 2
Eleven, by Patricia Reilly Giff, is the second book I read on my "looking for Newbery" quest. Fuse #8 tallied that Eleven has been mentioned on at least 3 mock Newbery lists as a possible Newbery winner. That was certainly a book worth my time!
I loved Eleven! I loved the positive friendship between the two main characters, a boy and girl. I loved how there was a mysterious element to this book, which is accentuated with flashbacks. I loved how Sam, the main boy character, has an inability to read until he finds a reason important enough for him to learn. I love how his special education teacher is so supportive of him. I love Sam's grandfather, Mack, and his extended "family", Anima and Onja. I love the multicultural elements they bring to the story and to Sam's life. I love how eclectic Caroline (the main girl character) is. I love Sam's ability to make beautiful items out of all types of wood. I love how, because of his gift with wood, Sam will be able to give his teacher something in return for helping him learn to read. I love how Giff has an "Eleven" prologue, and an "Eleven" epilogue -- it really brings this story full-circle. I love the importance of Sam's dreams, interspersed throughout the story -- they have such great meaning. I love how eleven symbolizes so much in Sam's past, present, and future.
I loved Eleven -- it is a book worthy of its 3 mock Newbery mentions!!!