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

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Nazi Hunters vs. We Were Liars

We thought Nazi Hunters won as the book to move forward.  This is for no other reason than it is an important piece of history that people need to remember (and learn about how painstakingly it all 'went down').  The other reason is that We Were Liars was a book with little hope and very few, if any other,redeeming qualities (maybe I was grumpy when I read it), but other than the demonstration of how powerful the mind can be - we just didn't find much between these covers that would make us want to recommend it to kids (unlike Nazi Hunters that we feel kids should all read).

Posted by Arlene on behalf of Dianne, Deb and Donna


  1. Dianne, Deb and Donna,

    Unfortunately, I feel like I can't disagree with you more.

    Full disclosure: in a previous round, I listened to the wrong Nazi Hunter book. It was amazing. Which made it very challenging to read the Nazi Hunter book that I was supposed to read in the first place! I know, it is not fair to compare the two...but I just can't help it.

    I'll admit, I was resistant to reading We Were Liars. I tended to lump it in with all the other chicklit. Again, not fair, I know. On Saturday when I realized that I had not read either book for this round, I downloaded the audio. I am new to audio books but was pleasantly surprised and impressed at the quality of both the audio and the story. I was thoroughly consumed. I found myself laying on the couch for long stretches rather than multitasking as I could have easily been doing.

    It is without hesitation that I vote for We Were Liars in this round.

  2. I would also like to share my disappointment in your choice - I am still a bit bitter about this decision and unlike the Grandfather in We Were Liars, I am not so quick to move on. I believe that the redeeming qualities in this story are many and invite tons of opportunities to discuss important ideas with students. "Does being rich equal happiness?" "How much can you forgive?" "Is a one time act of stupidity able to condemn you for life?" "How is the villain in this story?"
    Nazi hunters is more cut and dry presentation of the facts. I found that it had much less life and depth to it.