Sense of place deeply influences the lives of characters in this month’s Dart, Arrow, and Boomerang guides.
As we explore grammar, punctuation, spelling, and literary devices, we’ll observe the ways environment helps shape their choices, relationships, and increased self-awareness.
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The Year of the Dog, Grace Lin
When Pacy’s mom tells her that this is a good year for friends, family, and “finding herself,” Pacy begins searching right away. As the year goes on, she struggles to find her talent, deals with disappointment, makes a new best friend, and discovers just why the Year of the Dog is a lucky one for her after all.
This funny and profound book is a wonderful debut novel by award-winning and bestselling author and illustrator Grace Lin, and young readers will be sure to love and treasure it for years to come. ~Amazon
Purchase the book here.
Amal Unbound, Aisha Saeed.
Life is quiet and ordinary in Amal’s Pakistani village, but she had no complaints, and besides, she’s busy pursuing her dream of becoming a teacher one day. Her dreams are temporarily dashed when—as the eldest daughter—she must stay home from school to take care of her siblings. Amal is upset, but she doesn’t lose hope and finds ways to continue learning. Then the unimaginable happens—after an accidental run-in with the son of her village’s corrupt landlord, Amal must work as his family’s servant to pay off her own family’s debt.
Life at the opulent Khan estate is full of heartbreak and struggle for Amal—especially when she inadvertently makes an enemy of a girl named Nabila. Most troubling, though, is Amal’s growing awareness of the Khans’ nefarious dealings. When it becomes clear just how far they will go to protect their interests, Amal realizes she will have to find a way to work with others if they are ever to exact change in a cruel status quo, and if Amal is ever to achieve her dreams. ~Amazon
Purchase the novel here.
Our Town, Thornton Wilder.
Thornton Wilder’s Pulitzer Prize-winning drama of life in the mythical village of Grover’s Corners, New Hampshire—an allegorical representation of all life—is an American classic. It is the simple story of a love affair that asks timeless questions about the meaning of love, life, and death.
Our Town explores the relationship between two young neighbors, George Gibbs and Emily Webb, whose childhood friendship blossoms into romance, and then culminates in marriage. When Emily loses her life in childbirth, the circle of life portrayed in each of the three acts—childhood, adulthood, and death—is fully realized. Often considered one of the greatest American plays of all time, Our Town is also Wilder’s most frequently staged play. It debuted on Broadway in 1938 and continues to be performed daily on stages all around the world. ~Amazon
Purchase the play here.