I've been reading a lot of historical fiction lately. It's my go-to genre. Both middle-grade and grownup books.
I finally had the chance to finish Joyce Moyer Hostetter's AIM, which I'd begun last summer when I received the ARC (thank you, lovely people at Calkins Creek). I'm embarrassed to say the book got misplaced as we traveled from friend to friend this summer. As soon as my local library ordered it, I was first in line.
I really enjoyed this book. The characters, the setting, the time, and the humor- not laugh-out-loud all the time, but sweet and smile-out-loud for sure. This is part of a trilogy of linked books, a prequel to BLUE and COMFORT.
As I read, I thought about historical fiction and who's reading it these days.
For more on this topic, check out the thoughtful post by Kirby Larson, HERE.
Although the cover with that great blue pickup truck caught my eye, AIM could be the kind of book that might take a teacher's or a librarian's prodding, or rather encouragement, to pick up. It would be a great book club discussion.
At NCTE, I learned about Literature Lunches, though for the life of me I can't remember who said it or what the real name is. Susannah Richards, was that you? The idea is to put a placard on a table with a book title on it. The students who've read that book gather at lunch to chat about it. Can you imagine anything better?
One thing I love about AIM is that the characters really feel things in a way that young readers will get. For example, Junior Bledsoe says of his slightly-poor-influence friend Dudley, "Dudley wanted to get away from his old man and I just wanted mine back."
A simple sentence that expresses so much of what the book is about, even if it took a while for Junior to realize what he really wanted.