I recently finished reading Posted by John David Anderson. At 384 pages long, I was able to spend a lot of time getting to know the characters, and a lot of time thinking about the messages in this story. But even though I had 384 pages to think through, it didn't feel like nearly enough time.
Here's the thing, the characters Anderson creates are real. They have real personalities, real experiences, and real emotions and thoughts. As Sandra Cisneros reminded us in Eleven, we are still 11, and 13 and 12. Once we've been those ages, we never undo them. So even though I'm far from middle school, I could still feel the uncertainty, and the frailty of feelings when faced with comments or looks from certain people. I could also remember the feeling of what it meant to be part of a tribe of friends. Being surrounded by the people that get you.
It's all here.
Anderson's writing is a gift to us. I hope this novel is used in classrooms, as a read aloud or for book groups and clubs. There is just so. much. here. Navigating friendships, and navigating who you are. I often paused while reading to savor passages.
"You can do an awful lot of damage with a handful of words. You can destroy friendships. You can end a marriage. You can start a war. Some words can break you to pieces.
But that's not all. Words can be beautiful. They can make you feel things you've never felt before. Gather enough of them and sometimes they can stick those same pieces back together."
If you were to read the final paragraph of the book before reading the whole story (do not do this), it wouldn't mean all that much to you. But after spending so much time with Frost, Wolf, Deedee and Rose, you've been privy to many inside jokes and been there for all sorts of events and conversations, and that final paragraph is filled with references to those things. You might just feel like part of the tribe by the time you read that final paragraph. And feeling that will bring a smile to your face.
If books were for hugging (and they are) then this is surely one to hug. Please get this book. Get it for you, and get it for others.
Oh, and include some cool sticky notes.
Other stops on the tour:
April 17 Librarian's Quest
April 18 Nerdy Book Club
April 19 For Those About to Mock
April 20 Teach Mentor Texts
April 21 Unleashing Readers
April 22 Next Best Book
April 23 Bluestocking Thinking
April 24 Litcoach Lou
April 25 Kirsti Call
April 26 Educate-Empower-Inspire-Teach
April 27 The Haunting of Orchid Forsythia
April 28 Maria's Mélange
April 29 The Hiding Spot
April 30 This Kid Reviews Books
Special thanks to Walden Pond Press!
Giveaway closes Friday (4/28) at 9pm Eastern