Saturday, January 17, 2009

First Encounters of the Child Reader Kind

Today, I volunteered at a reading program, where I got to read The Rock and the River with kids for the first time. It was fun. The girl I read with was nine years old - a bit young for the novel, I thought at first - but as it turned out, she understood and could even relate to some of the events that occur early in the book. As I read a scene in which my character (Sam) encounters racism, my new friend stopped me from reading on. "Yeah," she said. "That guy's racist." Then she proceded to tell me about how she had seen racism in action in her own community. I was impressed by the way she took the scene and connected it to her own experiences. It was exciting to realize that the book was beginning to have the effect I hoped it'd have - at least on one reader!!

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