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When you reach me by Rebecca Stead
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When you reach me (edition 2009)

by Rebecca Stead

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3,1593541,771 (4.17)230
Member:liss2
Title:When you reach me
Authors:Rebecca Stead
Info:New York : Wendy Lamb Books, c2009.
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:fantasy, mystery, life, time travel

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When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead

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English (351)  Dutch (2)  Swedish (1)  All languages (354)
Showing 1-5 of 351 (next | show all)
_When You Reach Me_ by Rebecca Stead is a Newberry Award Medal winner from 2009. Essentially, it is the story of 12 year old Miranda and a series of mysterious notes left for her which prophesy a dangerous event. The writer has ostensibly seen these events unfold before because s/he is a time traveler. A little creepy, a little funky, this book could appeal to a wide audience, although perhaps not the one it is intended for.

While Scholastic.com's "Book Wizard" ballparks the reading level of this book at 4.6 (call it 5th grade), the interest level is actually a bit older (Scholastic puts it at 6th-8th grade). I would posit however that, although 6th-8th graders would be drawn to the characters because their age is approximately the same, some of the deeper themes in _When You Reach Me_ would still not resonate fully with that audience. Miranda's complicated relationship with her mother (and Mom's with her long-term beau, Richard), for instance, makes sense to adult eyes but may be lost to kids. We watch the awkwardness unfold as friendships and old relationships change in early adolescence, jealousy and "mean girl" mentality fuels actions, and the degree to which grief and loss can unhinge a person will float over adolescent heads. Could this book be a springboard for teaching these complex themes? Sure - possibly in a 12th grade elective, but it would be tough to sell a book written at a 5th grade level to administrators.

I personally enjoyed _When You Reach Me_ but I would have a tough time "selling" this book to it's intended audience. ( )
  Debra_Armbruster | Sep 14, 2014 |
This book was very intriguing, although I was not the intended age group for the book. The plot is well-written, and it keeps the reader guessing for what is going to happen next, especially with the appearance of the mysterious notes. Is this a tale of fantasy, or could it be a wishful life of a depressed tween, who is in despair of the real world, and writes notes to herself and entries in her diaries to create a better world. It depends on how you see it, but I think both opinions are valid. ( )
  Emanbella | Aug 30, 2014 |
A girl starts receiving mysterious notes. This book is a fun, light puzzle for fans of science-fiction. ( )
  kradish | Jul 30, 2014 |
Miranda's best friend, Sal, is avoiding her, and now these mysterious notes keep appearing. What do they mean? Who is sending them? Will Sal ever come around? And what is with the crazy man on the corner?

I absolutely loved this book! One of my favorites, I cannot wait to re-read it again and again! ( )
  lbblackwell | Jul 30, 2014 |
Desi, remember in 4 years that you wrote a more complete review of this book and it's going to be in your dropbox account.

You want to use this book with students so that they can have the joy of looking for the clues that lead to the big reveal at the end. Hook into that interest to discuss other points about character development.

Don't forget the ideas that you and Kellie and the class came up with. (Artful Thinking about Beginning, Middle, End; Utilize the cross-curricular connections; explore Mrianda's character arc; body biography of young/old Marcus, pair with The The Machine or Wrinkle in Time.

MIddle school and up can easily read ( )
  Desirichter | Jul 27, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 351 (next | show all)
This book has a very nice climax when given. Exciting and has much significance to it. Symbolic and wonderful.
added by GraceDaniels | editNew York Times, Grace Daniels (Feb 14, 2014)
 
...a story in which characters really come alive during those few months we spend with them, when their lives are shaped for ever.
 
In this taut novel, every word, every sentence, has meaning and substance. A hybrid of genres, it is a complex mystery, a work of historical fiction, a school story and one of friendship, with a leitmotif of time travel running through it. Most of all the novel is a thrilling puzzle. Stead piles up clues on the way to a moment of intense drama, after which it is pretty much impossible to stop reading until the last page.
 
Eventually and improbably, these strands converge to form a thought-provoking whole. Stead ('First Light') accomplishes this by making every detail count, including Mirandas name, her hobby of knot tying and her favorite book, Madeleine LEngles 'A Wrinkle in Time'. Its easy to imagine readers studying Mirandas story as many times as shes read LEngles, and spending hours pondering the provocative questions it raises.
added by sduff222 | editPublishers Weekly (Jun 22, 2009)
 
Stead's novel is as much about character as story. Miranda's voice rings true with its faltering attempts at maturity and observation. The story builds slowly, emerging naturally from a sturdy premise. As Miranda reminisces, the time sequencing is somewhat challenging, but in an intriguing way. The setting is consistently strong. The stores and even the streets–in Miranda's neighborhood act as physical entities and impact the plot in tangible ways. This unusual, thought-provoking mystery will appeal to several types of readers.
added by khuggard | editSchool Library Journal, Caitlan Augusta
 

» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Rebecca Steadprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Blackall, SophieCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Holloway, CynthiaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious.

-- Albert Einstein

The World As I See It (1931)
Dedication
To Sean, Jack, and Eli,

champions of inappropriate laughter, fierce love,

and extremely deep questions
First words
So Mom got a postcard today.
Quotations
"It's the jumping, from one diamond to the next, that we call time, but like I said, time doesn't really exist. Like that girl just said, a diamond is a moment, and all the diamonds on the ring are happening at the same time. It's like having a drawer full of pictures."
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Book description
This remarkable novel holds a fantastic puzzle at its heart.
By sixth grade, Miranda and her best friend, Sal, know how to navigate their New York City neighborhood. They know where it's safe to go, and they know who to avoid. Like the crazy guy on the corner.

But things start to unravel. Sal gets punched by a kid on the street for what seems like no reason, and he shuts Miranda out of his life. The apartment key that Miranda's mom keeps hidden for emergencies is stolen. And then a mysterious note arrives, scrawled on a tiny slip of paper. The notes keep coming, and Miranda slowly realizes that whoever is leaving them knows things no one should know. Each message brings her closer to believing that only she can prevent a tragic death. Until the final note makes her think she's too late.
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As her mother prepares to be a contestant on the 1980s television game show, "The $20,000 Pyramid," a twelve-year-old New York City girl tries to make sense of a series of mysterious notes received from an anonymous source that seems to defy the laws of time and space.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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