Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Stop Pretending: What Happened When My Big Sister Went Crazy

Stop Pretending: What Happened When My Big Sister Went CrazyTitle: Stop Pretending: What Happened When My Big Sister Went Crazy    
Author: Sonya Sones  
Publication Date: 1999
Genre/Format: Realistic Fiction/Novel in Verse  
Summary: This is a book written in verse about a girl whose older sister is admitted to a mental institute.  The girl misses her sister terribly, isn't sure what to think about her mental disorder, and worried about what others will think. 
What I Think: I, personally, love novels in verse.  This one wasn't exactly a favorite of mine, but I love that Sones addresses a topic that people probably don't talk about all that much.  I think she does a great job of writing about the various emotions that narrator feels when her sister is sent to the mental institute.  I think young adults might be drawn to reading about her insecurities and how she deals with them. 
     I love the snatch of text, it can easily be taken out of context and used to talk about truth and possibly a time when a student didn't tell the truth or was nervous someone would find out the truth.  
Read Together: 6 - 10  
Read Alone: 6 - 12 
Read With: Sones has other books that talk about dealing with family members who have medical or mental problems that are written in prose; Drums, Girls, And Dangerous Pie by Jordan Sonnenblick; Ida B (rpkg): . . . and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the World by Katherine Hannigan, So B. It by Sarah Weeks, Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko 
Snatch of Text:  
"Thin Skin"
I worry that
the truth will break out all
over my face, like a fresh crop
of zits."

Reading Strategies to Practice: Activating Background Knowledge, Visualizing, Making Connections, Author's Purpose  
Writing Strategies to Practice: Descriptive Writing - Similes  
Writing Prompts: After reading the snatch of text, think about a time when you were hiding the truth or imagine what it might be like to hide the truth and write your own simile.  Describe a time when you were embarrassed of one of your family members or a friend or when someone was embarrassed of you.  
Topics Covered: Family, Sisters, Embarrassment, Friendship, Honesty, Mental Disorders, Coping, Guilt 
Translated to Spanish: No

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