Friday, June 16, 2017

Friday - Let's Not Forget

I found a copy of By The Great Horn Spoon by Sid Fleischman in the sale pile at a local bookstore.  Just like that I was transported to San Francisco during the Gold Rush.  No, wait.  I was thrashing on a boat at the southern tip of South America.  No, wait.  I was stowing away on said boat as it sailed out of Boston.

Newbery Award-winner, memoirist, biographer, - Sid Fleischman wrote accessible books for kids.   This guy could write a book that kept the pages turning.  Short cliff-hanging chapters, likeable characters and the kind of historical details that stick in your cranium, Fleischman's fiction turns blah readers into RAH! readers.  (Ooh, I like that!  I think I made a meme.)

Want to explain what a tall tale is without introducing legendary characters?  Use one of Fleischman's McBroom books.  McBroom's adventures cross the line of believable, even while the character maintains that they are ab-so-lute-ly true.

Give your young readers a template for creating their own Tall Tales.  Just take the truth and stretch and stretch and s-t-r-e-t-c-h, just like Josh McBroom.

The Whipping Boy earned Sid his Newbery Award.  Jemmy is the whipping boy, a servant who is punished when the prince, Prince Brat, does something wrong.  When kidnappers sneak into the castle, they end up taking both boys. The one who can read MUST be the prince, right? Wrong...

Fleischman left us in 2010, a day after his 90th birthday but before his last book,  Sir Charlie: Chaplin, the Funniest Man in the World was published.  His books are still in stores and libraries.  They still make kids laugh and learn.

It's Friday.  Let's not forget Sid Fleischman.

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