Smackdown Books 2017

Arlene's smackdown17 book montage

The Memory of Things
Hour of the Bees
The Gospel Truth
Ultraman, Vol. 1
The Bunker Diary
Trouble Is a Friend of Mine
Footer Davis Probably Is Crazy
The Hired Girl
An Ember in the Ashes
The Porcupine of Truth
Enchanted Air: Two Cultures, Two Wings: A Memoir
Drowned City: Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans
Goodbye Stranger
Beautiful Blue World
The Blackthorn Key
All American Boys

Friday, December 14, 2012

Desert Angel vs Inside Out and Back Again

Neither of us felt we had the ultimate winner in our hands for round one, but both books had merits. 

Once you read the back of the book for Desert Angel, you pretty much know the whole book.  At the very beginning, Angel finds her mother murdered by her latest crazy boyfriend, Scotty, and she fears he’ll come after her, which he does.  The rest of the book is fairly repetitive and predictable as Angel flees from Scotty who is, indeed, looking to wipe out the witness to his crime.  There are probably a fair number of kids who’d read it for the adventure, but it’s not especially profound or original. 

Inside Out and Back Again is the story of a year in the life of Ha, a refugee from Vietnam during the war.  Her family ends up in Alabama.  It is somewhat autobiographical and written in verse (but reads like prose), which makes it a quick read.  While more kids will probably pick up Desert Angel on their own, Inside Out and Back Again is the better book.  The protagonist is lively, hating to be told she can’t do something because she’s a girl.  At times, she can break your heart and at others you will admire her.  Plus, she makes some pretty amusing observations about learning English.  Renae suggested that it might pair well for classroom use with American Born Chinese

Advancing to round two:  Inside Out and Back Again.  
-Laura and Renae

1 comment:

  1. I just finished Inside Out & Back Again and loved it.