Some books are DELICIOUS. That's how I felt reading Judy Blundell's YA novel What I Saw and How I Lied. Lucky me -- I get to review this book, which won the 2008 National Book Award for Young People's Literature. This is the first novel Judy Blundell has written under her own name. She has written many many books under the pen name Jude Watson. What I Saw and How I Lied is set in post-World War II USA and it's about many things: mums and daughters, sexual awakening, and lies. Check out Judy Blundell's acceptance speech at the National Book Awards: http://www.nationalbook.org/nba2008_ypl_blundell.html
In the speech, Blundell talks about how essential it was for her to find her own "voice." She explains that until she wrote this book, she was a kind of hired gun, writing what other people needed her to write. The point really resonated for me -- and it's one I hope to bring up with my students. What are the stories we really have to tell? And if you're lucky enough to have one of those stories, well, by golly, TELL IT! IN YOUR OWN VOICE.
Today was the first day back at school and I'm buzzing around quite happily. Planning to settle in now at my computer and write my review of the Blundell book. I'll post the link when it comes out in a couple of weeks...
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