Dust from the Book Fairy

That Book Woman

Posted on: 23 November 2008

That Book Woman

That Book Woman

That Book Woman is both an account of the impact of the pack horse librarians that brought books to isolated Appalachian families, and the story of how one illiterate boy, Cal, becomes a reader.  As a librarian, this book made me tear up; I loved how Cal changes from resenting his sister’s love of books and wondering why “that book woman” is so persistent, to asking his sister to teach him to read and thanking “that book woman” by the end of the story.
This book was much better received by the adults in my school than the students (K-5).  The adults have uniformly loved it; the students gave it a lukewarm approval.  The vocabulary and dialect make it a difficult read for them, but it works as a heavily scaffolded read aloud–meaning, take the time to explain what’s going on as you read.

Posted at The Picnic Basket

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