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23 October 2006

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Jackie

Man, Dairy Queen's cover really got to you, didn't it? lol

Leila

YES.

(Today, a patron mentioned reading it, and the first thing I said was, "Isn't that, like, the worst cover EVER?" But she's used to me being slightly loopy, so she wasn't too taken aback.)

Fuse #8

Just finished reading the book myself. I was talking to a Jewish co-worker of mine, as she commented that she was awfully uncomfortable with a white author writing black slang as Codell does in this book. We talked about the fact that Codell had actually taught Chicago kids and that this was obviously born out of her own experience, but the point is an interesting one. If I hadn't known that Codell was white, would my discomfort with the book even exist? Does it matter in the long run? Is it believable that a child Paris's age could live as long as she had and not have even a clue about yellow stars? A good book for discussion to say the least. But I'm with you on the fact that it kicks "The Boy In the Striped Pajamas" in the butt.

Leila

I thought about that when I was reading it, too -- whether or not it was realistic that Paris didn't know the significance of the yellow star, I mean -- but I think it worked. It just wasn't something she'd come across before, whereas Sahara, who was a big reader, knew that it certainly wasn't something Paris should be wearing to school.

There was a bit about history class in elementary school, too -- about how she'd studied the Revolutionary War at least four times -- and I think there's some truth there, too. I know that every school is different, but we didn't get into the Holocaust until Middle School.

If I hadn't been a huge reader, I don't think I would have recognized the symbol (much less been aware of the history) at that age, either. (And Holy Cow, I know some people who have been asked by small children if they can Feel Their Horns. FOR REAL. No joke.)

As for the slang bit, I dunno. It didn't bother me personally -- as I sort of vaguely said above, I think Codell has a really good ear. It never felt exaggerated or mocking to me. I can understand the discomfort, though.

Rudolph

Very cool Esme!!!

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