43 min

#72 - A Conversation with Mae Respicio Books Between Podcast

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Intro
Hi everyone and welcome to Books Between -  a podcast for teachers, parents, librarians, and anyone who wants to connect kids between 8-12 to books they’ll love.
I’m your host, Corrina Allen - 5th grade teacher currently enjoying Spring Break, a mom of two tween daughters, and part of the MGBookVillage team.  And MGBookVillage.org where you can find transcripts and interview outlines of all of our episodes and links to every book and topic we mention today.
This is episode #72 and oday’s show features three novels that will get your students talking, and a conversation with Mae Respicio - author of The House That Lou Built.
Book Talk
In this segment, I share with you three books and discuss three things to love about each. All three books today have a couple things in common - questions of identity and an element of mystery.  Two involve recovered memories, two of them have a bit of magic, and two of them include rather helpful birds. The three books featured this week are Restart by Gordan Korman, The Lost Girl by Anne Ursu, and The Boy, the Boat, and the Beast by Samantha Clark.


Restart
Let’s start with Restart.  This novel, by Gordon Korman, was one that people kept pushing me to read. Teachers, students, librarians - everyone kept saying, “But have you read Restart yet??”  So how can you say no to that kind of pressure? And - they were right! First of all the premise is incredible - the school bully (Chase Ambrose) falls off his roof, gets amnesia, and forgets everything about his previous life. And doesn’t get why certain kids are terrified of him, why others treat him like some big hero, and others, well… do things like dump a cup of frozen yogurt over his head. Plus, it’s not just told from Chase’s point of view - we get to hear from lots of the other kids as Chase’s past (and present) are slowly revealed. Restart is incredibly crafted. Aside from how well this novel is paced and pieced together, here are three other things I really loved about Restart:
 
Brendan Espinoza’s videos! Like lots of kids we know, he loves YouTube! Brendan is one of the first kids in the school to - if not accept the “new Chase” - at least offer him a little empathy. And that’s a powerful thing to do considering that Brendan was one of Chase’s biggest targets. He’s one of the video club kids and desperately wants one of his YouTube videos to go viral. So of course, he stages these increasingly over-the-top stunts to film.  It’s hard to describe a funny video in a way that also makes you, the reader, laugh and cringe - but Gordon Korman pulls it off! And I’ll never go through a car-wash again without thinking of Brendan…. Mr. Solway! He’s this crotchety, hilarious, Medal-of-Honor-winning veteran living at the nursing home where Chase and his crew are serving out their community service.  And somehow he is the spark, the center, the fulcrum of the story. That it works really powerfully as a read-aloud with tons of big ideas to discuss. Restart was our most recent bedtime book for my family, and whoa did we have a ton of deep conversations. Like…. When should you forgive someone?  Is it possible to make amends for your past bad actions? And the whole situation with Joel and the video club and Shoshanna and Chase’s dad and football!  
If you are looking for a great book club novel, one that will offer a lot of fodder for discussion, then Restart is a fantastic option. It’s both hilarious and deep. Which to me, is that hard-to-achieve but perfect when it happens combination.  
 
The Lost Girl
Next up is The Lost Girl by Anne Ursu. A story about inseparable twins Iris and Lark. Well, inseparable until 5th grade when they are each placed into different classes with teachers who might not be the best fit for their distinctive personalities. Iris is analytical, outspoken, conscientious - a girl who always knows when her library books are due.  Lark is sensitiv

Intro
Hi everyone and welcome to Books Between -  a podcast for teachers, parents, librarians, and anyone who wants to connect kids between 8-12 to books they’ll love.
I’m your host, Corrina Allen - 5th grade teacher currently enjoying Spring Break, a mom of two tween daughters, and part of the MGBookVillage team.  And MGBookVillage.org where you can find transcripts and interview outlines of all of our episodes and links to every book and topic we mention today.
This is episode #72 and oday’s show features three novels that will get your students talking, and a conversation with Mae Respicio - author of The House That Lou Built.
Book Talk
In this segment, I share with you three books and discuss three things to love about each. All three books today have a couple things in common - questions of identity and an element of mystery.  Two involve recovered memories, two of them have a bit of magic, and two of them include rather helpful birds. The three books featured this week are Restart by Gordan Korman, The Lost Girl by Anne Ursu, and The Boy, the Boat, and the Beast by Samantha Clark.


Restart
Let’s start with Restart.  This novel, by Gordon Korman, was one that people kept pushing me to read. Teachers, students, librarians - everyone kept saying, “But have you read Restart yet??”  So how can you say no to that kind of pressure? And - they were right! First of all the premise is incredible - the school bully (Chase Ambrose) falls off his roof, gets amnesia, and forgets everything about his previous life. And doesn’t get why certain kids are terrified of him, why others treat him like some big hero, and others, well… do things like dump a cup of frozen yogurt over his head. Plus, it’s not just told from Chase’s point of view - we get to hear from lots of the other kids as Chase’s past (and present) are slowly revealed. Restart is incredibly crafted. Aside from how well this novel is paced and pieced together, here are three other things I really loved about Restart:
 
Brendan Espinoza’s videos! Like lots of kids we know, he loves YouTube! Brendan is one of the first kids in the school to - if not accept the “new Chase” - at least offer him a little empathy. And that’s a powerful thing to do considering that Brendan was one of Chase’s biggest targets. He’s one of the video club kids and desperately wants one of his YouTube videos to go viral. So of course, he stages these increasingly over-the-top stunts to film.  It’s hard to describe a funny video in a way that also makes you, the reader, laugh and cringe - but Gordon Korman pulls it off! And I’ll never go through a car-wash again without thinking of Brendan…. Mr. Solway! He’s this crotchety, hilarious, Medal-of-Honor-winning veteran living at the nursing home where Chase and his crew are serving out their community service.  And somehow he is the spark, the center, the fulcrum of the story. That it works really powerfully as a read-aloud with tons of big ideas to discuss. Restart was our most recent bedtime book for my family, and whoa did we have a ton of deep conversations. Like…. When should you forgive someone?  Is it possible to make amends for your past bad actions? And the whole situation with Joel and the video club and Shoshanna and Chase’s dad and football!  
If you are looking for a great book club novel, one that will offer a lot of fodder for discussion, then Restart is a fantastic option. It’s both hilarious and deep. Which to me, is that hard-to-achieve but perfect when it happens combination.  
 
The Lost Girl
Next up is The Lost Girl by Anne Ursu. A story about inseparable twins Iris and Lark. Well, inseparable until 5th grade when they are each placed into different classes with teachers who might not be the best fit for their distinctive personalities. Iris is analytical, outspoken, conscientious - a girl who always knows when her library books are due.  Lark is sensitiv

43 min