Monday, January 20, 2014

32 Books My College Students Assigned Me: Chapter 9: Book #7: Why We Broke Up

I wake up on Monday morning early and without an alarm, ready to read Book #7.

Over the past years I've had many students ask me if I'd read it and I told each one  with a bright smile, NO, I saw the movie, it was horrifyingly violent and I hoped they'd all die so I wouldn't have to watch a horrifyingly violent sequel.

And each student said in response, the book is so much better.

They were all right.

Two pages into the book I can't put it down.

Seventy pages later I'm wondering how I could maybe assign this book in class.

Then I remember. I don't know how or why I forgot, but now, I remember it so clearly.

Zoe read this book in elementary school, and came home crying.

She cried all night one night and the next day and the next unconsolably waiting "Oh Mom she DIED, it's as if PRIM died, but oh MOM she's DEAD.. I'm so sad, so sad, I can't believe she's dead....."

Maybe I was busy grading?
Maybe I was binge-watching Grey's Anatomy?
Was that the year I discovered Gordon Ramsey?

Whatever was going on in my world, I didn't really understand how great this book must be to have moved my daughter so profoundly.

Today I asked her if she remembers what I did when she was crying.

You were nice, at first, but you didn't understand.

I agree. I didn't understand how powerfully moving a book could be, I didn't understand you were reading a book THIS good. How could I have not begged you to lend it to me next?

She nods.

You kinda broke up with me when I didn't seem to care about what you were reading.

She nods and says nothing.

So I ask her if she can lend me her copy of Finding Alaska, and we hug it out before I get back to the last pages of Book #7.

 I know how this book ends (thanks, movie, thanks for ruining that!) but the writing is so good that I can forget the movie and settle into this dystopian anti-princess tale.