Tag Archive: Gary Schmidt


Sherman Alexie

Read Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian. Given my recent decision, I wasn’t sure if I could finish this one, but I prayed about it and didn’t get a “no”, so I went ahead with it. I really appreciate how well Alexie deals with grief. I could imagine a young adult reader connecting with this book as one connects with John Green’s Looking for Alaska. Of course, since I was listening to the audio version, I also had the pleasure of listening to Alexie read (If you’ve never heard him read–you need to stop whatever it is your doing, find his website, and drive to his nearest reading, even if it is over 17 hours a way. He is that good. And, he has the amazing ability of memorizing his stories. Fascinating!)

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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!

Holy cow, it has been a blustery weekend in Wisconsin!

Made better much better by good books (currently on the shelf: Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy and Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt, an amazing author who I met at the Festival of Faith and Writing), amazing friends and family, and a smashing wedding.

My best friend, Amanda Lynn-Marie (Parish) Jorgenson got married this weekend and I had the honor (really, it was!) of being her maid of honor. And I think I have some neat story ideas thanks to the experience including, but not limited to: the “flower girl posse”, a 48 oz. bag of Craisins, a giant yellow smiley face beach ball rolling down the highway, 4 tornados, and much, MUCH more!