Monday, March 9, 2015

Acampora, Paul. I Kill the Mockingbird.

Acampora, Paul.  I Kill the Mockingbird.  Macmillan/Roaring Brook Press  2014 166p  $16.99  ISBN 978-1-59643-742-5  ms/hs  Realistic fiction

Three best friends who are advancing to high school, with very different backgrounds and family situations, realize that To Kill a Mockingbird is on the summer reading list.  It is one of their favorite books, but it is underappreciated by other students, so they develop a plan to entice reluctant readers to read this classic.  As the owner of a local bookstore questions the ability of young people to re-shelve books correctly and discusses the ramifications of mis-shelving, Lucy, Elena, and Michael are inspired to exploit the effects of supply-and-demand.

In an effort to get more students to read this particular book, the group sets out to intentionally mis-shelve copies of it, so that there appears to be a lack of availability of the book within their state.  To compliment their effort, Lucy, Elena, and Michael leave behind flyers in the supposed proper placement of the books stating “I Kill the Mockingbird.”  Additionally, they create a website, a “friend” page, and a Twitter account to publicize the unavailability of the book. The ramifications cause this exploitation to go nationwide, and the three find that they need to develop a plan to bring the endeavor to an end in the most positive manner.

Paul Acampora has created a very exciting and action-packed novel that keeps the reader on the edge of his or her seat from the first page to the last.  By creatively using the characters’ diversity and the intertwined themes of social media and its mass effects, the author leaves the reader with a desire to read or re-read To Kill a Mockingbird, as well as to question and experience the effects of mass publishing. The themes of friendship dynamics and the use of social media highlight the  implications of individual actions and the consequences of Internet postings.

Summary: Best friends Lucy, Elena, and Michael create a plan to entice reluctant readers of To Kill a Mockingbird to select the book for their summer reading by using social media and exploiting the effects of supply and demand.

Friendship-Fiction, Literature-Fiction                --Virginia McGarvey


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