Thursday, January 26, 2012

Book #3: Darth Paper Strikes Back

My daughter Skye and I got to see Tom Angleberger last October at our local independent children’s bookstore. What a treat! He was funny and lively and great with the kids. He did some silly juggling tricks, drew pictures, folded a huge Origami Yoda, and made us all laugh a lot.

He asked us which character we thought he was most like in middle school. (Do you know?) He told us there would be a third book, and had all of us guess who would be on its cover. (He couldn’t tell us yet – publisher’s rule – but told us to keep an eye on his website for announcements. Who would you like to see?) He signed books, drawing a picture in each one and taking the time to chat with every kid.

Skye and I agreed that Felix would have had a blast at his talk, and that we should have brought him along. She got an Origami Yoda book signed for him, and told him all about our afternoon. I didn’t think a first grader would be interested in hearing a story about middle school students, but when they both requested Yoda for our next read aloud, we gave it a try.

Felix loved it! He laughed a lot at my terrible Yoda voice (but Dwight’s is terrible, too, right?) and he enjoyed the format of the story, how in each chapter, Dwight/Yoda helped someone. (Hey, sort of like Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle. Just noticed that. Hmm. Kinda cool.)

We had just as much fun with Darth Paper Strikes Back. This time, I got to do a terrible Darth voice, too. Felix enjoyed correcting my breathing technique. They both made me repeat any scenes where someone disagrees with Origami Yoda, so that they could squeal with laughter. Example:

Dwight held up Origami Yoda and croaked, “Dress rehearsals you must start.”

“But the play is three weeks away!” I said.

“Dress rehearsals you must start!”





So we did.

Try reading that aloud in a terrible Yoda voice and see if it doesn’t make you squeal with laughter, too.

And I don’t want to give anything away, but I loved the ending, especially when Dwight’s mom finally gets it. We’ll definitely be checking out the next book.

Be sure to check out the other Read Aloud Thursday posts at Hope Is the Word.

P.S.  In reading Tom's bio, I learned that his wife, Cece Bell, is also a children's author/illustrator.  Check out this great interview with her on Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast.  She won me over immediately when I saw that first photo of her reading Miss Piggy's Guide to Life.


Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

I just finished this yesterday (or the day before? I lose track. . . ) and I really, really liked it. Look for a review coming soon!

Books like this are SO hard for me to read aloud, though. Multiple voices, lots of extraneous material in the text, etc.--I never know how to handle it all!

Caryl said...

Glad you guys enjoyed it, too, Amy! My sister is doing a book group with third graders at her son's school, and chose Origami Yoda for them to read. They're meeting once a week through February, and she's having them do all kinds of fun things. I plan to create a post about it when she's done.

I like reading aloud books with multiple voices. They give me more opportunities to be silly, in order to differentiate them! ;)