Sunday, October 14, 2007

Dead on Town Line by Leslie Connor, illustrated by Leslie Connor

  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin (November 2, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 014240697X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0142406977
  • List Price: $6.99
  • I finished this book on Oct. 14
This is the peril of a librarian: there you are, walking along, straightening shelves, and books literally jump out at you. Some of them whisper: "Hey, bee, read me, I'm totally cool." some sort of shout "Hey! Read my ass!" some just sort of stand aside, aloof, knowing you will be drawn to them. This was one of those. Despite the fact that I had serious work to do, and despite the fact that I have books to read for the R.I.P challenge (which I am diligently working on, I swear) I had to read this one. And, since it was just a brief sort of taste of a book, I didn't feel too bad.
So, anywho, here it is: Cassie is dead, and they can't find her body. She is watching them search, but they aren't getting close enough because she's right on the line between two towns and they aren't looking there. This story is told in free verse. Honestly, I have never had the least interest in free verse (I always politely look the other way and try to look busy when Out of the Dust starts tapping me on the shoulder) but for some reason, this just seems so appropriate. And haunting. And sad. And sort of beautiful. And even though you couldn't pay me to read this out loud I really liked the format.
Most of the pages have black and white illustrations on them. Leaves or music notes sort of twirl around the poems. Some illustrations, such as a beautiful one of a field of birds, take up whole pages. The drawings are done by Gina Triplett, an artist who apparently designed her own set of Chucks. Her other illustrations are very cool, I particularly dig this one.
The story is sparse, and I'm not sure which, if any of my students would like this book, but it definitely wormed it's way into me and I thought about finishing it all weekend while I was out of town. Ms. Connor has apparently written some other stuff, so I might try to dig some of that up in the future. Either way, this is a very fall/spooky story. All the reviews/info I peeked at are all: "Blah, blah, blah, Lovely Bones, blah blah." I say boo to that. Does every story about a dead girl have to get compared to that? No. Some books should stand alone. Quiet. Aloof.

1 comment:

Stephanie said...

Wow. This sounds like something I need to pick up myself!!

I tripped over here from the RIP Challenge site. You have a fantastic blog!