“Who does that?”
Someone asked me that question today and it stopped me cold. I honestly did not have an answer. I didn’t know how to respond.
I had been out running errands and decided to treat myself and stop at the bookstore. I hadn’t really planned on purchasing anything (I’m making a conscious effort to utilize the library more). Once at the store however I was so excited to discover The Lost Track of Time by Paige Britt, that I just couldn’t resist it! First of all, the book is sized slightly larger than other books. Whoever thought this up is a genius! My eye was drawn to the book first because of its size. Then I noticed the cover, beautiful! The colors and illustrations work together to grab attention immediately. So of course, I had to pick up the book and start paging through. Then I noticed the pages! (This book hits it from all angles) The pages are shiny and smooth (love the feel). And there are these incredible sketch-like purple illustrations sprinkled throughout the book, just enough to pique the imagination. Finally I turned to the inside front cover to find out more about the story. Unbelievable! The story is about a young girl, Penelope, whose passion is to become a writer. Unfortunately, her mother does not share her passion and instead believes the key to success is to be busy and productive every minute of every day. Then one day the unthinkable happens, Penelope finds herself with a completely free, unscheduled day! How could this happen?! She doesn’t have time to ponder the question because before she knows it, she has fallen through the "hole” in her schedule and landed in the “Realm of Possibility”! I didn’t have to read anymore, I was sold. I needed this book!
As I was paying for the book, I shared with the store clerk how excited I was to have discovered this new book. I noticed her quizzical expression; So I explained to her how I am a teacher and every year I have a Mock Newbery Cub for my students. We spend September through January reading and reviewing new middle grade novels, trying to determine the next winner of the John Newbery Award. I went on to explain that while I do purchase several books for the students to read, I also check out 50 to 60 books from the public library so there are enough copies for all the students to share. In preparation for the launch of the club in September, I spend my summer “discovering” and reading new 2015 middle grade novels to include in the club. Now I truly enjoy discussing our Mock Newbery Club, and I know I tend to get a little excited and talk fast, so I slowed down and took a breath when I noticed the clerk’s expression. The next thing she said was,I could see she didn’t understand my excitement.
“Who does that?”
I was struck speechless. That question had never occurred to me. I love what I do. Teaching, reading, and sharing books are my passion. I just stared at the clerk. And then I answered,