Here is the latest on the Community Read, friends and neighbors. It will begin on October 13th and conclude on November 24th of this very year.
I have indeed read the featured book, “Four Miles to Pinecone” by Jon Hassler (March 1933 – March 2008). Mr. Hassler was a teacher as well as a writer. He taught highschool . This may be why the main character in this book appears so natural. Mr. Hassler knew his teenagers. He mainly wrote about small town rural Minnesota. Interestingly, this particular book was originally written in 1977, yet it has a completely current feel. The only thing that might date it a little is the lack of mention of computers (which you don’t miss at all) and the lack of mention of cell phones (which wouldn’t get good reception in a tiny town in northern Minnesota on the Canadian border anyway). So much for being outdated. The basic conundrum is a moral question. Do you rat on your friends or not? And if so, when? And why? Though the book’s action begins in St. Paul, the main action (and I do mean “action”) takes place in the woods of northern Minnesota. It is a mystery story. It is credible. The characterizations are scrupulous. The setting is realistic. It is a one sitting read. I, personally, didn’t wish to leave my hero stranded by doing something as mundane as going to sleep in between chapters! He might need my input, like yelling out “upper left for first gear, you dummy…”.
Read this book, everyone. It was written for young adults. It is, however, ageless and genderless. If you are a cat, as am I, there are fish mentioned. A favorite of mine!
The conclusion of the Community Read falls during American Education Week. Kelly Virden of our Pine River Journal will have weekly “activities” in the paper to encourage participation.
In conclusion may I suggest that you turn off that box with moving pictures and pick up a book.
Browser, the library cat
Printed in the Pine River Journal 16 Oct 2008