Sunday, February 23, 2014
Diversion: Poetry and Middle Grades Fiction -- Robin Herrera, HOPE IS A FERRIS WHEEL
This isn't a mystery, but it's a darned good novel, and Star is heart-warming and courageous. She won my applause over and over for how she handles ordinary but painful crises. And I'm particularly mentioning it today because we're just five weeks away from National Poetry Month -- and what eventually turns Star's life around is poetry, from reading Emily Dickinson to grappling with a Shel Silverstein poem to grasping what metaphor brings to her situation. I'd recommend this for middle grades as an encouraging and enjoyable novel, but also to high school classrooms where the story and the clear, smart writing can carry skeptical teens into realizing how poetry works and why it's worth their time.