Jeff Gottesfeld Author Interview
Happy Fourth of July!
Thank you for stopping by for a special author interview with Jeff Gottesfeld, author of Twenty-One Steps: Guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
When I opened this gorgeous book from Candlewick Press I knew that I'd be sharing it between home and the classroom. I began with a reading at home to my 6 year-old. He requested it night after night after night. I finally dared to sneak the book to school to read aloud at the end of May, in honor of Memorial Day. My fourth graders sat in silent awe as they learned, many for the first time, about the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Told in serious tones through the narration of the first Unknown, and set to the stunning visuals created by Matt Tavares, the book commands the respect of its audience. And one read through won't be enough.
You've said that you have walked National Cemeteries for Memorial Day for many years. Tell me a little about how this tradition came to be.
You wrote this book for young people; at points during the process did you pause to imagine what they would feel as they experienced your words? And what hopes did you have beyond the reader closing your book after a first read?
When writing a book about a standard of perfection, how did you carry on without doubting that you might miss something? Is there something you wish you had included that still tugs at you?
Have you been present when a Guard of the Unknown Soldier has held your book for the first time?
Any last thoughts you'd love to share with readers?
Thank you for stopping by. My hope is that you've either gained new insight and created a deeper connection with the story and its creator, or that you have discovered a new book to add to your home and classroom libraries.
For an educator's discussion guide visit: Here
Learn more about Jeff Gottesfeld Here