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Amiri and Odette: A Love Story by Walter Dean Myers

Rating: 5/5 Stars
Genre: Urban Contemporary/Poetry
Release Date: 1/1/2009
About the Book: An updated re-telling of Swan Lake, set in an urban neighborhood and told in verse.
GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: I picked this one up mainly because it was on my cart of new books at work and because it was an updated version of a story typically told through ballet-this seemed like an interesting concept and I wanted to see how Myers pulled it off. Plus, the artwork caught my eye!
The story is told beautifully, and even though the book is short-coming in at 40 pages-it's a powerful one. Swan Lake is a housing project and Amiri's mom is worried he won't settle down with the right girl, so she opts to throw him a party. Amiri meets Odette, but instead of being cursed to turn into a swan, in this tale, Odette's curse is a drug addition and she can't escape the clutches of the dealer Big Red.
I really didn't know much about the story of Swan Lake, which I read the summary of after I read this one and I think I should have read it before. Since I knew it was based on Swan Lake, I kept taking some of the things as fantasy and kept thinking about the swan curse, because that's what I knew of the story, so I wasn't really clear on Odette's drug addiction until the end. I guess I just need some things spelled out for me sometimes!!
I really loved the artwork-the artist makes it look like graffiti and the paintings were done on asphalt, which has a really cool effect.
This is a quick read, and it's worth it!

Comments

  1. I am a HUGE Walter Dean Myers fan!

    My 7th grade students just did an author study, in which they had mini book clubs reading various WDM novels. It was so fun to watch.

    Haven't read this one, but will definitely be picking it up!

    ReplyDelete

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About Me

Hello! My name is Sarah and I am a Youth Services Manager who works with kids, tweens and teens. I love being asked about great books to read! I started my blog in 2008 as a way to keep track of what I've been reading and to use a reference tool for reader's advisory and it's grown into much more than I could have ever anticipated. In addition to book reviews, I also enjoy posting audiobook reviews, booklists and my adventures in being a librarian. 2017 Library Journal Mover and Shaker Committees: 2021 Newbery Committee 2018 Odyssey Committee 2016 Caldecott Award 2013 Michael L. Printz Committee- Fabulous Films Committee I have also served on the Cybils, Missouri State Library Association Readers Selection Lists, and as an Audies judge. Presentations :  I have offered various presentations at local, state and national libraries and conferences. Topics have included:  What's New in Children's & Teen Literature Engaging Teens in Reader's Advisory Gee