In her book Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life, Anne Lamott says, “For some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet or excite you. Books help us understand who we are and how we are to behave. They show us what community and friendship mean; they show us how to live and die.”

My hope is that this is what books become to you—as important as almost anything else on earth. This blog is about helping you find the miracle in these small, flat, rigid squares of paper while you are in middle school and beyond. Once you read alongside me, you are forever a member of my tribe of readers. No matter how you old you are, when you need to be reminded of the power of a good story, you will find me here, waiting to place one in your hands.

Monday, October 21, 2013

THE BOY ON THE PORCH by Sharon Creech

copyright date:  September 2013
primarily marketed for:   middle grades (3rd to 7th)

One day John and Marta find a young boy fast asleep on their porch.  Should they wake him?  No, he looks like he needs the sleep.  They decide to wait.  As they wait, their curiosity grows.  However, when he finally awakens, they discover the boy does not speak and the only information they can get is from a note that was left alongside him. 

In Sharon Creech’s charming story of The Boy on the Porch, it turns out the main character is not really the boy at all, but instead the role is shared by the selfless caretakers, John and Marta.  Although they are unlikely and unexpected parents, their ability to open their minds and hearts proves to reach far beyond the simple needs of the boy on the porch.     

This simple twist on the age old tale of a baby left in a basket on a doorstep is really a story about what it means to be a family.  Although it is one of those books meant for younger readers, I think there is depth enough for even the wisest reader.  Reading The Boy on the Porch brought me all the warmth and security of a bear hug.  I have a feeling it will do the same for you.

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