San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
The second of three special Reading As Writers meetings this summer!
Not Your Typical Book Club
Reading informs our writing. Reading with intent can push us to the next level of our craft. Our goal in this special series is to examine how three award-winning authors have brought their stories to life, and in doing so, learn how we may hone those same techniques.
Please read each book before its assigned meeting, then roll up your sleeves for a lively discussion of the craft techniques used by the author.
This month: 2013 Pura Belpre Author Award-winner Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, by Benjamin Alire Saenz.
2012 Pura Belpre Author Award winner Guadalupe Garcia McCall (Under the Mesquite) will lead this discussion. Don't miss it!
1. The narrator is a very quiet, introspective boy. Thus, the book might be considered a quiet book, meaning there is little action. Why does this narrative approach work/ why might this appeal/not appeal to young adults/adults?
2. What are some of the more important themes the author is trying to convey, and how does he go about conveying them?
3. Structurally, the story of Aristotle and Dante unfolds through narrative, but the author uses other modes like dreams and letters. How do these structures blend/fit in with the themes? How do they enhance it/detract from it?
4. The setting (80's) of Aristotle and Dante is not a typical/widely-used setting for a YA book. Why do you think the author choose this setting? Why not a more modern setting?
5. There are many universal truths woven seamlessly throughout the novel. How did the truths/discoveries that Aristotle and Dante make throughout the novel portray today's youth?