Nancy Keane's Booktalks -- Quick and Simple

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Almond, David
New York : Delacorte, 1999
IL 5-8
ISBN 038532653X

(3 booktalks)

Booktalk #1

If you like a mystery and you like stange-types of beings you will love this book?  What kind of being comes to mind when you hear the word Skellig?  Try part man, bird, and angel?  If you saw this creature what would you do?  Why is he in this rundown dilapidated garage?  Why does he regurgitate his food like a bird?  To read what the main character Michael thought and to see what happens between Skellig and Michael you will have to read "Skellig" by David Almond. (Karen Womack, graduate student, <>

Booktalk #2

[This is a good booktalk to do around Halloween because of the mystery and magic in the story.  However, there are no references to Halloween, so it can be done at any time. I would use a prop:  Wings (either homemade or bought - you can find these during Halloween).]
I would come in wearing the wings and ask some questions.  Why do you think I'm wearing these wings?  What do you think I'm supposed to be?  Do you like to read stories with some mystery in them?  If you do, you'll really like this book.  A young boy named Michael and his family move into an old house.  There's also an old garage that's about to fall down.  Michael takes his flashlight and goes to the garage.  It's very dark and spooky inside, with spiders and cobwebs and strange noises.  At one corner of the garage, Michael finds a man.  (I would then read them the man's description from page 8 and the description of the man's wings on page 95.)  Try to guess who this man with wings is and see if you're right by reading Skellig. (Gloria Sanchez

Booktalk #3

Michael wants his life back the way he dreamed it would be. The excitement of moving to a new house is clouded now that his new sister is so ill and his parents are so preoccupied. The only bright spot is Mina, the girl he meets who has some strong opinions and many things to teach Michael, even though she doesn't go to school.
One day while investigating the garage as the real estate agent called it (although Michael thinks of it as a demolition site), he realizes that something or someone is hiding in the far dark corner. Michael reaches out to this being, bringing him Chinese #27 and #53 (his favorite), and aspirin (for his "Arthur Itis") and begins a relationship that defies description. What is Skellig, this creature that Michael and Mina care for? Man? Bird? Angel? What will he mean for their future? This story guarantees to engage and mystify through to the very last page. (New Hampshire Great Stone Face Committee)

SUBJECTS: Strangers -- Fiction
                        Angels -- Fiction
                        Moving, Household -- Fiction
                        Family life -- England -- Fiction
                        England -- Fiction.


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