Booktalks

Booktalk for And Then Everything Unraveled

  • Grades: 9–12

 

Everyone believes her mother died when the ship disappeared without a trace.  But Delia is sure her mother is still alive. 

The whole thing started just days after my mother left for Antarctica to document the damage done to the polar ice shelf by global warming.  It really wasn't a big deal-she travelled a lot.  And it did mean that I could spend the last days of summer surfing.  I love to surf, but I have to keep it a semi-secret from my mother, who's a serious workaholic, and thinks surfing, like most  sports, is a waste of time.

So last Monday, I spent the whole afternoon surfing.  I came home to find Thad at our house.  He's in charge of the day to day running of my mother's company.  He had news for me-bad news.  The ship my mother was on had sent an SOS, and disappeared.  It hadn't crashed, or sunk, or gone off-course.  One moment it was in quiet water heading south, and the next moment it was gone.

Everyone around me was sure TK (that's what everyone called my mother) was dead, but I wasn't so sure.  My mother was the most fanatically organized person in the world.  No way she'd get on a ship that could just vanish.  There was an explanation, I was sure of it.  But before I realized what was happening, TK's will was read and I was shipped off to New York City to live with one of my aunts, and be supervised by the other aunt, who now had the power to make all the decisions for my life.

That was when I realized I'd forgotten my cardinal rule-make your own decisions.  If my mother was dead, I would know.  And since there was no logical reason for her to be dead, all I had to do was get my power back and go find her.  It was time to quit listening to other people and listen to myself!

This booktalk was written by Joni Richards Bodart, university professor, consultant, librarian, and booktalking expert.

  • Subjects:
    Understanding Self and Others
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