Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Thing About Luck Book Club Meeting


Hello Dear Readers,

I finished The Thing About Luck two weeks ago and have not been able to get the characters out of my head.  I'd love to chat about the book on Twitter next Thursday, January 30, at 7:45 pm.

If you read the book already, reread and look for some things you think may offer great conversation.  Then post them to the comments section of this blog post.

If you have not read yet, order your copy or download it tonight.  Then tell your friends at school to do the same so you can enjoy a great Teacher Book Club.
I am going to offer up some points of conversation below that might surface in our chat.  Happy reading! See you Thursday night on twitter.  My handle is @Read_Write_Play

1.  I am really interested in thinking and talking more about Obaachan.  Page 267 has a beautiful description  of Wabi-sabi.  Jiichan says it can be "beauty and nobility in a rough exterior."  Looking back at so many of my post-it notes about Obaachan, I see her beauty and nobility in that rough exterior.  Do you?  Do you want to collect examples too?  I'd love to talk more about this.

2.  We could talk about Summer and her thoughts about death.  She speaks about it on page 79 and page 213 in detail.  I think she is a vulnerable character to us as readers, but not necessarily to the other characters.  Agree?  Why?

3.  Chapter 12 just sums up why I love Cynthia Kadohata's writing so much.  She captures the heart of what it is to be twelve.  I love when summer says, "Have you ever felt humiliated and proud at the same time?" (page 199).  We can talk more about this chapter and why it is an important part of the book.

4.  I'd also love to talk about Jiichan and this book he gave her, A Separate Peace.  I love the part on page 102 when Summer says, "It made me think that each person had all sorts of things going on inside of them, but most of these things would never surface unless circumstances were exactly right."  It seems like Jiichan had an important role in fostering the sense of empathy and compassion that Summer carries throughout the story/her life.  Do you agree?  I'd love to talk more about him and what he does to influence both of his grandchildren.

5.  Did you get the chills (or what I imagine a runner may feel at mile 25 of a marathon) when you read the bottom of page 261.  Summer carries so much onto that wheat field.  I'd love to talk about why she carries it all with her and the consequences (perhaps positive and negative - or maybe with no judgement at all) of all she brings with her that night.

6.  Finally, we could talk about Jaz.  He is such a great secondary character and the way he helps bring the book to a close is artful.  I would love to talk about those last few pages including the unchanging Jaz and Kadohata's decision to also bring Mick and Jenson back into the story in such a deeply personal way.  I wondered if she was trying to tell us something about moments when we should use our empathy to reach out and moments when we should use our empathy to just silently wish someone peace and kindness.  What did you think about that ending?

I am looking forward to discussing these topics and more with you next Thursday!  Cheers to  great books!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Sarah,
    How do I search your blog for a topic. I recently read how you develop small moments in writers workshop but I don't know what year or month it was posted. It was a great post and I would love to read more on how you organize your classroom and use writer's workshop but - Not too computer savvy! : /