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Gantos, Jack.
New York : Farrar Straus Giroux, 2011.
IL 5-8, RL 6.0

2 booktalks


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Booktalk #1

Young Jack Gantos is in BIG trouble! He defied his fatherís instructions and played with his antique Japanese rifle. He defied his motherís instructions and chopped down her corn field. Because of these two dumb moves, Jack is grounded for the summer. Luckily (or unluckily, depending on how he looks at it), Jack can only leave the house to help old Mrs. Volker write the obituaries of the original Norvelt citizens who seem to be dropping like flies this summer. Mrs. Volker not only schools Jack in the history of Norvelt, but includes him in her medical examinerís role when she examines the bodies of the dead. Unfortunately, Jack is prone to nose bleeds every time he gets scared, surprised, or grossed out, so viewing dead bodies isnít at the top of his to-do list. The newspaper editor thinks something sinister is happening to the old ladies of Norvelt, and thinks Mrs. Volker is to blame. Is Jack really working for a murderer? 
(Booktalk by the Sequoya Youth Book Award committee, 2014)

Booktalk #2

Jack is sure it was an accident when his fatherís souvenir Japanese rifle fires while he is playing with it, but he has been grounded for the summer. The only thing his parents will allow him to do this summer is help his elderly neighbor write obituaries for the people who are dying in their town, and they sure seem to be dying off fast. Set in Norvelt, Pennsylvania, read this humorous mystery to find out why!  (Pennsylvania Young Reader's Choice Award nominee, 2014)

SUBJECTS:     Behavior -- Fiction.
                        Old age -- Fiction.
                        Norvelt (Pa.) -- History -- 20th century -- Fiction.

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