Category: Festival of Faith and Writing

Yup, I just finished reading Gary Schmidt’s Trouble. Overall, it’s not as close to what I would call my “favorites” as Lizzy Bright and the Buckminster Boy and Wednesday Wars, but I will consider myself consoled as after drinking a steaming cup of hot chocolate on a just snowed on Colorado day 😉

Mostly, I love the way Schmidt uses allusions in his books, especially knowing that they are written for a young adult audience. I wonder how many young adults are influenced to read the books that he mentions within his novels.

I think the reason I didn’t like it quite as much as Lizzy and WW might be because Schmidt spent more time on the setting on this one. A lot of his novel took place on a mountain in Main, Katahdin, and that’s fine, but I always appreciate his representation of characters. However, it is always fun when authors experiment in new areas; it helps them to grow as authors, expands their reader base, and allows their readers to hear a different side of their voice.

And speaking of voices, Jason Culp was the reader for Trouble and he was really good. I am pretty picky about readers, whether taped or otherwise, and I hereby deem Jason a reader who I will look for intentionally when I consider audio books. Other people who are amazing readers:

My mom!: She read the entire Little House series to me when I was sick and had the chicken pox.

Jeremy Grinnell: Not so much a reader, but I love his voice on the radio/when he prays. He used to be my theology professor and I loved listening to him pray. Is that cheesy?

Mary Karr: Love listening to her read her poems and pray! Fantastic!

Anne Wysocki: Great teaching voice 😉

Chuck Swanson: Also, a great teaching voice.

Doc Carroll: Who doesn’t love listening to his teaching voice?

And many, many more!

My most favorite moments were non-conference (but more on the conference later):

* Hanging out with my former music prof, Dr. Mark Taylor, his wife Sandy, and friend, Diane.

* Going to Jeremy and Denise’s house warming party and having them ask if I wanted to sleep over–it was like I had never left! Seeing their three beautiful girls, lovely house, and all of my other GR friends while there. I love GR!

* Going home to see the fam and all of Gracie’s prom pictures! And hearing the stories, though the silly string scenario was probably the best.

SO excited!