Wednesday, May 14, 2014

May Grades 3-4 Book Club: A Tale Dark and Grimm

May's book discussion was about the book A Tale Dark & Grimm by Adam Gidwitz. Ten participants were present. Thanks to Abbie, Alexandra, Eva, Evan, Julia, Kelsey, Molly, Natalie, Olivia, and Rileigh for attending! Please read some of the comments about the book below, taken from the author's website.

*Please note that we will be having a Skype session with the author on Thursday, May 29th at 3:00 p.m. at Melrose School. Please talk to Mrs. Casey in order to get a permission slip to attend!

1.  What do you think of the narrator of A Tale Dark and Grimm? Would the story be the same without him?

-Because he intersects at the right time and says the right things
-He's funny
-It wouldn't be the same without him because the narrator pulls the whole story together. He puts the humor into the story.
-I liked how he butts in during the middle of a story. It happens a lot when he gets to a good part.

2. Why do you think the author decide to put "The End" at the end of many of the stories? Does his decision to do that change the way you read the book?

-To me, it doesn't change how you read the book. 
-It changes it a little bit because it makes it funny. 
-The end of the story seemed like it might not be the end.
-I didn't think "The End" was really the end of the book.

3. In "Brother and Sister", Hansel continues to hunt animals even though he knows what he is doing is wrong. Why does he continue? Have you or your friends ever continued to do something that you knew was wrong? Why did you continue? What was the result and how did you feel about it?

-Hansel continued to hunt because he had turned into a beast. 
-He turned into a beast because he didn't listen to the tree.Each day, he hunted things that were bigger and bigger.
-I didn't know it was Hansel at first.
-He kept hunting because he was turning into the beast. It made him hunt and hunt.
-Hansel inherited the beastness from his dad.
-It's a habit to continue doing things that are bad. Maybe Hansel was a bad habit that started.
-When my brother and I were wrestling, he got hurt. I felt bad about it. 
-Once I was swinging on the tire swing. My mom told me to stop and not do it anymore. 
-A girl I know had an Instagram account and was hacked. The hacked post was inappropriate. She can't tell her parents that her account got hacked because she'll get in more trouble.

4. How would you characterize the parents in this book? How are they similar in other fairy tales you've read and how are they different? Why do you think so many fairy tales have parents like the ones in A Tale Dark & Grimm?
-I think that the parents are connected so that the story keeps going. They try to make the parents greedy, selfish or even cannibals.
-I like the widow.
-I like the people who cared for Hansel.
-I don't think that the parents change how I read the book.
-I think a lot of fairy tales have parents in them because it makes them more interesting. If Cinderella's mother hadn't died, her dad wouldn't have remarried and gotten a wicked stepmother.

5. What in this book made you laugh? Do you like humorous stories? Do you think the humor helped or hindered the book?
-When Hansel became the Devil's grandmother.
-I thought all of them were funny.
-I don't have a favorite. The humor helps the book because it makes it more of a children's book and less scary.
-It needed the humor because you needed a break from the scary. A good children's book has humor.
-When the narrator interjects comments, it makes it funny. It's hard to take in all of the horror at once.
-One of the funny parts was when Gretel landed on the ravens' backs and they got mad at her. The funny parts make you feel happy even if terrible things happening.
-I think that the humor helped the book a lot because it made it more of a children's book. It made it better and easier to read.
-My favorite humorous part was when they were fighting the dragon and it snuck up behind them. And then the dragon got drunk.
-I think that the funniest part was when Hansel dressed up as the Devil's grandmother. And when the dragon got drunk.
-My favorite humorous part was when the narrator said not to have little children around. 
-The dragon getting drunk, the ravens and when Hansel had to become the Devil's grandmother to get out.
-When the dragon was drunk.

6. The worlds in fairy tales are very different from those most people live in today. So, why do people still enjoy reading them? Why might fairy tales still be important in people's lives?
-It makes you think how nice this world is. It has you think of how good this world is. Most of the fairy worlds are pretty sad and unhappy.
-The kids had no idea why they had their heads chopped off.
-The world here is much better than that in the story.
-The fairy tales might seem better because of fairies, gods, and nice goblins but then there are fire-breathing dragons and palaces destroyed. It makes you think what a great life and world we have. 

7. Some questions we might ask the author during the Skype session...
-Can you please write more books for us to read?
-Why did you decide to do Grimm fairy tales?
-What inspired you to write books and Grimm books?
-Why did you decide to write books that are gruesome and people die a lot?
-Can you write books about a real-world place but magic is intertwined but not necessarily a fairytale place.
-Are you working on a new book, not associated with Star Wars.
-Are you married? Do you have kids? If you do, how many?
-What's your favorite sport?
-At what age should children read your books?

-What was your favorite book as a kid?
-Would you like to make a movie out of your books?

Book Club will meet on June 4th at 3:00 p.m. We will be discussing Eight Keys by Suzanne M. LaFleur. : "When twelve-year-old Elise, orphaned since age three, becomes disheartened by middle school, with its bullies, changing relationships, and higher expectations, keys to long-locked rooms and messages from her late father help her cope." Please pick up your copy of this book behind the Circulation Desk at the library.

April Grades 3-4 Book Club: The Collectors

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