Saint John Don Bosco:

"Never read books you aren't sure about . . . even supposing that these bad books are very well written from a literary point of view. Let me ask you this: Would you drink something you knew was poisoned just because it was offered to you in a golden cup?"

To find more books by your favorite author, click on the author's name in the title...

Also, try searching by "historical fiction" if you're looking for novels at a certain time period...

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Silent to the Bone by E.L. Konigsburg

The transcript of a 9-1-1 call is effective at pulling you in on the first page of the book.

It’s a 9-1-1 call involving a baby who is not breathing right.

My 9 yr. old found it intriguing, and I’m glad I got through the book before she read further.

It’s not for tweens. As the story unfolds, the au pair had harmed the baby and then put her to bed and gone into the back bedroom with her boyfriend. It’s clear from the context what they are doing in the bedroom. The brother comes home and finds the baby “breathing funny,” and a 9-1-1 call is made. The rest of the story unfolds as his best friend, Connor, breaks through Branwell’s trauma-induced silence and reveals what happened. The baby girl does make it.

The au pair uses her sexuality manipulatively and the details are too graphic. I caught a review on-line that made this point, then seemed to suggest talking about it with your tween was the solution. I don’t think talking is the answer here. Skipping it was our solution.

I also thought the review I read missed a salient detail. Both Connor and Branwell’s parents are divorced and remarried. In Branwell’s case, his mother died. In Connor’s case, the father cheated on the wife and divorced her to marry the paramour. When Connor’s older half-sister discussed the situation… she actually came home one day and immediately figured out what was going on with her dad and the new woman, she makes a comparison with her situation and Branwell’s as both being sad, life-changing events. The serious nature of the sin of the father, the adultery, the breaking of his vow, and the broken family is apples and oranges compared to the death of parent where no free-will decision or sin was involved. This is entirely overlooked. Now, that was a topic worthy of discussion.



Post a Comment

regina was here

  © Blogger templates Psi by 2008