Tag Archives: identity

Identity: #GNCelebration

29 Oct


Goodreads Summary: Yumiko is a young Japanese woman who has made London her home. She has a job, a boyfriend; Japan seems far away. Then, out of the blue, her brother calls to tell her that her father has died in a mountaineering accident.

Yumiko returns to Tokyo for the funeral and finds herself immersed in the rituals of Japanese life and death – and confronting a decision she hadn’t expected to have to make.

Fumio Obata is a Japanese exile himself.  He moved to Britain in 1991 to study illustration at Glasgow School of Art and never left, so he knows all about the conflict of belonging. This is a lovely book that leads me to an illustrated work, which is NOT a graphic novel.


The Inker’s Shadow, by Allen Say, is a companion to the Sibert Honor Book  Drawing From Memory. 


In The Inker’s Shadow, we follow young Allen as his father  sends him to an American military academy, so that his son could learn English and “become a success in life.”As the school’s first and only Japanese student, he experienced immediate racism among his fellow cadets and his teachers. Allen  an American military academy, so that his son could learn English and “become a success in life.” He works part-time and his talent is eventually “discovered” by a teacher or two leading to special opportunities and scholarships.

Other perspectives

7 Oct

Yesterday, I listened to an interview on NPR with Stephanie Meyers talking about the 10th anniversary re-release of Twilight. It contains bonus material entitled  Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined,  in which Meyer tells her classic story from a male point of view. Bella is replaced by Beau; Edward by Edith.

This was particularly interesting because I am reading Another Day, David Levithan’s retelling of the A and Rhiannon story from Levithan’s highly successful Every Day,  from Rhiannon’s point of view.


It opens on the day that A is Rhiannon’s boyfriend, Justin. It’s been a while since I read Every Day, but I remembered enough of the story. I actually think you could pick this one up and totally enjoy it even without first having read its companion novel.

I really enjoyed Every Day and was a little worried to start a retelling of the story but Leviathan pulls it off. A remains the character we loved and getting some insight into Rhiannon helped me understand her much better. I think, overall, reading  Another Day,  has actually enhanced my enjoyment of Every Day. I think it would be interesting to read the books one right after the other.

Publisher’s Summary: Every day is the same for Rhiannon. She has accepted her life, convinced herself that she deserves her distant, temperamental boyfriend, Justin, even established guidelines by which to live: Don’t be too needy. Avoid upsetting him. Never get your hopes up.

Until the morning everything changes. Justin seems to see her, to want to be with her for the first time, and they share a perfect day—a perfect day Justin doesn’t remember the next morning. Confused, depressed, and desperate for another day as great as that one, Rhiannon starts questioning everything. Then, one day, a stranger tells her that the Justin she spent that day with, the one who made her feel like a real person . . . wasn’t Justin at all.



Hi, Mrs. Seed! SOLSC 8

8 Mar

“Hi, Mrs. Seed!” said the cherubic first-grader, waving his hand at me.

I smiled back, said hello and added, “I’m not Mrs. Seed. I’m Miss Gillespie.”

This conversation happens about once a week. There are several middle-aged women in my building with similar builds: short stature, round body, dark hair, glasses.

Screen Shot 2014-03-06 at 6.30.54 PM   Screen Shot 2014-03-06 at 6.47.04 PM  Screen Shot 2014-03-06 at 6.44.50 PM

Sometimes it’s hard for the kids tell us apart. They get it eventually, but as with many things in education, it just takes time and frequent repetition.

Characters created with BITSTRIPS

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