Tuesday, February 16, 2016

The Nest:  The first thing that struck me was that Steve called the baby "it" in the beginning and didn't use the baby's name until the wasp asked him about it.  He didn't seem to be connecting with his baby brother but by the end of the book he saved Theo and risked his own life to do so.  I was really interested in the social statement against genetic engineering that evolved as Steve wrestled with the idea of "fixing" his brother's genetics and in the end decided it was wrong.  Steve seemed to really be questioning what is "normal" or acceptable both within himself and his brother.  I thought there was an interesting connection between Steve's dreams of wasps and the realities of wasps which made it difficult for him to stay grounded in reality.  The wasp attack at the end wraps up the story but seems a little hard to believe because Steve survived even with his extreme allergies.

Bone Gap: This book was a little weird to me with the kidnapper being from another world.  Like the Nest, I thought the Bone Gap was questioning what is "normal" as Finn is described as strange and we later learn he has a face recognition problem and Petey is described as "ugly".  They fall in love but still struggle with whether the other person sees value in them. Of course love prevails and the message seems to be that you want to find someone to love who sees the real you.  Love extends beyond romantic love to include brotherly love when Finn is ready to save Roza on his brother's behalf.  Finn recognizes that his brother is stuck and that he needs to get Roza back to free himself and get his brother back.

1 comment:

  1. The Nest: This is a very dark fairy tale about life and imperfection. It teaches about disability and diversity.

    If you are offered perfection even in your dreams be careful what you say yes too! Steve calls his newborn brother ‘it’, the newborn, Theo, has many issues starting with a heart defect that requires surgery and many others that will cause him challenges throughout his life. Theo is taking up much of their parents time and energy. When Steve is offered the chance to have Theo “fixed” it looks like the perfect solution but is it? Steve is lead to question if “normal” or “perfect” is the best way to be and comes to love and protect his brother by the end of the book.

    I would recommend it to my students because even though it is dark at times it is age appropriate for Jr and Sr high, well written and like a true fairy tale has a very good message.