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Butterfinger
Untitled | Unknown
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Make sure to vote. @LibrarianRyan worked hard to make sure this is fun and fair. Go to her post for the link. #MGBuddyRead @megnews I really want Ophie's Ghosts to win. Was that too biased? Go Ophelia!!!!

megnews I was rooting for it too in the last round. Going to vote now! 1h
18 likes1 comment
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LitsyEvents
Betty Before X | Ilyasah Shabazz, Rene Watson
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Repost for @megnews

Next up for February #MGBuddyRead

All welcome!

#BuddyRead

megnews Thanks for sharing!! 3d
LitsyEvents You are beating me @sprainedbrain 😁 3d
sprainedbrain What can I say @Butterfinger I haven‘t done much this weekend. 😂 3d
42 likes3 comments
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megnews
Betty Before X | Ilyasah Shabazz, Rene Watson
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Next up for February #MGBuddyRead

All welcome!

Daisey I just picked this one up from the library on Friday, so I plan to join in for February! 3d
IndoorDame My library has this so I‘d like to join! 3d
LibrarianRyan yeah 19h
JaclynW Got it! 9h
36 likes4 comments
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megnews
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IndoorDame When reading with kids I think this would benefit from supplementary educational materials or conversations to go along with it, especially if this was a kids introduction to the holocaust. But I think it‘s great that this is different from the holocaust literature I‘ve read before, and I really appreciated that it touched on a lot of important pieces emotionally instead of just historically or factually. 4d
megnews @IndoorDame I agree. I think this could be used as a piece of overall education. I think young people are more empathetic than most adults and capable of learning hard things when done in the right way. 4d
TheBookHippie @IndoorDame I agree. It could be done well in a classroom setting with materials and other stories to get the whole picture. I think the Holocaust should be taught to very young people. I‘ve always believed if kids can live it other kids can learn about it. Parents and teachers to help them, of course. 3d
TheBookHippie Sorry I was late! Long nap yesterday. Life caught up to me. I‘m glad I finally read this it was on my shelf since it‘s pub date. Thank you so much this was a difficult one to navigate. 3d
32 likes4 comments
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megnews
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IndoorDame I‘d change (or cut) the scene where Karolina escapes from rat prison into the forest and crosses to our world. The whole prison bit sticks in my head really vividly, but the scene just struck me as really weak, and if Romero was going to portray the crossing between worlds I think it could have been done in a way that tied the 2 storylines together better. 4d
Butterfinger I cannot get over how he got the children out. I didn't like it one bit. The nurse who smuggled children out of the ghetto as laundry was every bit a miracle and should be in a children's story. I know. I am probably the only one who doesn't like it, but I keep thinking about those who didn't make it. I wished the Dollmaker's magic was spent fighting the persecutors, I guess. 4d
sblbooks Great point @Butterfinger I also wonder why he didn't use his magic against the Nazis. 4d
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IndoorDame @Butterfinger @sblbooks don‘t you think he kind of did use his magic against the Nazis since he charmed an SS officer with it who ended up helping him and turning a blind eye to things he did? 4d
megnews @indoordame I think he did. I can get what @Butterfinger is saying though. Another example of magical realism written into tragic historical fiction is the Underground Railroad by Colskn Whitehead. I had a very difficult time liking the book because it seemed too easy and took away from the great hardships and dangers enslaved runaways experienced. As I read The Dollmaker I kept thinking the same thing. How tenuous it was for the helpers and 👇🏻 4d
megnews 👆🏻those helped. And how this made it a little too easy. I‘m not saying I didn‘t care for the story. It was something that just bothered me somewhat and I wonder what message it sends the intended audience. 4d
Butterfinger @IndoorDame I meant to fight them. To keep the Nazis from rounding up the Hebrew. 4d
IndoorDame @megnews I definitely hear that. Skipping over the danger in that section made me think of The Book Thief that hones in on that piece, and on the fear, but still works for the same age group. 4d
IndoorDame @Butterfinger I guess can see why you‘d want that, but I would have found it deeply unsatisfying. I think that take would seem to me like it was trying to change the history, or trivialize it, or something… (I would also really prefer it if you didn‘t say the Hebrew unless you‘re referring to the language) 4d
Butterfinger @IndoorDame I will say Yiddish then. I don't personally like"Jew" I have heard it used too many times as racist or slurs. 4d
Butterfinger @IndoorDame I just googled the term. It can mean descendants of the ancient people or language. Please educate me so I will know better. 4d
IndoorDame @Butterfinger Yiddish and Hebrew are simply inaccurate. Jewish may be used in a derogatory way sometimes, but it‘s the name of a contemporary worldwide religion, the others are not. 4d
megnews @Butterfinger this is my understanding. Hebrew is an old term for Jewish people that they no longer use, except referencing the language. Yiddish is completely different, like a mix of Hebrew and Russian maybe? I think Jewish people now prefer to be called Jewish. I‘ve also heard the term Jew used by Jewish people. For me I use the term Jewish because I have heard non-Jewish people use the term Jew as a racial slur too much. 4d
IndoorDame @megnews @Butterfinger that‘s a very good explanation. Hebrew referencing people is mostly a biblical term. And Yiddish is a mix of Hebrew, English and German, though very few people in the world still speak it. I also use the term Jewish and tend to avoid Jew, though I‘m not that careful about it having grown up within the Jewish community in an area without much anti-semitism. 4d
Butterfinger @IndoorDame @megnews thank you. I never want to offend anyone. 4d
megnews @IndoorDame thanks for the info on Yiddish. I tried to do a quick search because I thought it was a mix of languages but couldn‘t find it right away. 4d
IndoorDame @Butterfinger thanks I appreciate that 🙏 4d
TheBookHippie @megnews my grandma and great grandma spoke Yiddish to me as a child, I use what I still know in speech without knowing it and some to my grandson so it carries on, what‘s interesting is the kids I‘ve mentored from Pakistan Afghanistan know it a little too. @IndoorDame 3d
TheBookHippie @Butterfinger They have to leave kids behind or it isn‘t real. That‘s life. I find kids who don‘t live cookie cutter lives don‘t have as hard of time with true Holocaust history because they know that is how life goes. Too sanitised and you take away the reality that Nazis killed children, babies and it cheapens their lives that were lost. To save one life is to save a nation and they‘ve done that. To speak of the dead honors them even in this. ♥️ 3d
TheBookHippie @IndoorDame I grew up having grandparents say never tell anyone your Jewish (by blood) never tell the government- they were so afraid. So incredibly sad. 3d
IndoorDame @TheBookHippie cool that some of your students have picked up Yiddish words! I don‘t know any that aren‘t in the vernacular. (edited) 3d
IndoorDame @TheBookHippie That fear is so incredibly sad. But common for that generation. I hope we can start to remember and honor them well without passing on their fear. 3d
TheBookHippie @IndoorDame Me too. Although I‘ve been quite relieved none of them are alive to witness these last years. I‘ve never felt that in my life. 3d
TheBookHippie @IndoorDame A lot of times it comes out without me knowing as it‘s part of my speech I‘ve had many smiles from elderly when that happens, almost like a secret code or relief that it‘s used. Fascinating to think about. 3d
BarbaraJean @Butterfinger The way he saves the children didn't work for me, either. I don't think the Dollmaker's magic fit in the story very well. I liked the other fantastical characters (Karolina & the folklore characters), but with the SS agent & the Dollmaker it felt forced. I wonder if another issue for me is meshing magical realism with historical fiction. @megnews I haven't read Underground Railroad yet but had similar issues with The Water Dancer. 3d
megnews @BarbaraJean I was listening to The Water Dancer and DNF‘d halfway through for the same reason. 2d
27 likes26 comments
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megnews
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IndoorDame Karolina made the dollmaker believe in his magic and take more risks with it, so I see her as a sort of catalyst for him helping the children. 4d
megnews @IndoorDame I agree. I think he was so withdrawn from life that he never would have taken those steps without her encouragement. Not that he wasn‘t a kind person who didn‘t want to help, but a bit like Eeyore, “whatever‘s going to happen is going to happen. Nothing I can do about it.” 4d
IndoorDame @megnews I like idea or him as Eeyore 😞 totally fits 4d
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Butterfinger The scene when he went into the line for the chambers and Karolina was forced to leave him. 😭😭 4d
sblbooks @megnews that's a great analogy! 4d
TheBookHippie Eeyore is the perfect analogy. 3d
22 likes6 comments
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megnews
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Butterfinger I liked it. I like the character in the church that the Hebrew people were visiting for help. I liked the spirit who stayed by Auschwitz - the Hebrew in Poland has folklore of the golem coming to life to help them in time of need. So it wasn't too far fetched for me to understand the magical realism. I just think some aspects went too far. 4d
sblbooks I prefer books that are just strictly historical, I still liked the story. It sort of reminded me of a fairy tale. 4d
IndoorDame @Butterfinger I think you mean the Jewish people? I didn‘t think of the comparison to the Golem myth. That‘s such an interesting take! 4d
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TheBookHippie I feel like she tried all these things and should have fleshed it out more edited it more and then told the story. It‘s like we‘re here for the process mess and not the good edited result. A little magic is okay this was eh.. something not quite right but it‘s hard to explain what other than it seems a work in progress. Too much. 3d
megnews @TheBookHippie that‘s a good explanation of what‘s going on here. She could have made it two separate books. 3d
BarbaraJean @TheBookHippie Agreed—this could have used a bit of reworking. I loved the magical elements in the real world (the characters from folklore, etc), partly because it made Karolina feel like a more natural part of that world. But the doll transformation part and the Dollmaker‘s magic itself felt forced to me. 3d
megnews @BarbaraJean I liked the magical parts in the real world and that would have been enough for me without the Doll Country. I didn‘t mind the Dollmaker‘s magic, reminiscent of Pinnochio, but shrinking the children was a bit too easy. 2d
17 likes7 comments
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megnews
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IndoorDame It‘s hard to know for sure without reading the doll country aspect developed more fully, but my sense is that just that piece as a Holocaust story wouldn‘t have worked because you couldn‘t really have gotten enough gravity from it. 4d
megnews @IndoorDame there were parts of the doll country I enjoyed and others not so much. I had some trouble blending the two stories together. When I read the author‘s notes on the development of the story, I wished she‘d dropped the rats and went with the new story. I think there was enough magical realism with Karolina in the real world. 4d
IndoorDame @megnews I think you‘re right and it would have worked just as easily without it. I loved the idea of doll county, but she didn‘t do nearly as much with it as I imagine she might have. 4d
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Butterfinger Totally agree. I liked the magical spirits and even the witchery, but the doll land and the horror of the rats made me upset. Just focus on the Holocaust. This was really a tough book for me. 4d
sblbooks The magical realism was not my favorite part. I would have preferred if it was left out but I thought that's just me 4d
TheBookHippie @megnews I agree I wish she would have went with the new story. 3d
BarbaraJean It‘s interesting to hear the Doll Country part was her original idea! Knowing that, it feels like she was too attached to it & tried to do too much by keeping both. I liked the parallel narratives but I felt the Doll Country storyline wasn‘t as well-developed as it should have been. I agree with @IndoorDame that just the doll story by itself wouldn‘t have worked well as a Holocaust story—she needed the real-life part. 3d
20 likes8 comments
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megnews
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IndoorDame I think it takes away some fear and suspense that would otherwise be there for young readers because Karolina knows what to expect from the “witches” at each step since she already experienced it with the rats and can tell about it having already survived. 4d
megnews @IndoorDame do you think that‘s a good thing? I liked some suspense at that age but not fear so much. So I think so. 4d
IndoorDame @megnews I think so too. Holocaust narratives can be really traumatizing for kids if they‘re too harsh, but obviously we‘re not teaching them anything if we sanitize the stories, so I think creative solutions like this one are really good for navigating that line. 4d
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Butterfinger That's a good point @IndoorDame I know there are literature with alternative universes or timelines and I assume that was the author's purpose - to show - I don't know what the purpose was. Nazis and rats are similarly evil - and kindness is needed. If more people were kind like the Dollmaker. 4d
sblbooks I agree with @IndoorDame it's a way to tell the story of the Holocaust to younger readers, that is hopefully not as traumatic. 4d
TheBookHippie It also shows what some kids did or were taught -even by their teachers that went along to ghettos- in order to survive. When they‘re older and read about it they can come back and relate this book to the narrative. I don‘t believe in sanitising anything either I‘ve always believed if kids lived it kids can read about it this is a nice compromise if that I think. 3d
megnews @TheBookHippie that is my saying too! 3d
BarbaraJean @IndoorDame @sblbooks Absolutely agree that it was an effective way to soften the narrative a bit without downplaying the realities of the Holocaust. I liked how it foreshadowed the events in Krakow in many ways, but in a fantasy setting that seemed safer because it was more remote. That “safer” setting then served to prepare kids for reading about similar events in the real world. 3d
18 likes8 comments
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megnews
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Dear #MGBuddyRead -ers,
I was supposed to be sitting comfortably in a hotel this evening to do discussion after dropping my daughter at college. Unfortunately, I am fleeing the NC/WV winter storm warning and just stopped with 5 hours to go and plans to leave early to get ahead of the storm in the AM after being in the road 15 hours today. I‘ll post questions tomorrow. Sorry!!

TheBookHippie BE SAFE !!!! No worries about us! 5d
IndoorDame No worries. Stay safe!!! 5d
sblbooks I'm glad you got out in time, they're calling for about 10 inches where I live. Safe travels. 5d
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megnews @sblbooks I just heard that on the news. I‘m in beckley an hour from Charleston wv. It‘s supposed to start snowing at 8 here and 10 in Charleston. I‘m leaving by 6 to try to beat it home. I‘d planned to stay overnight in Pembroke. But I practically had tessa jump out as I drove by. Not quite but it was a very short drop off. (edited) 5d
megnews @TheBookHippie @IndoorDame @sblbooks thank you all for understanding. Left at 5:30 this morning and made it the rest of the way home ahead of the storm. My daughter has been getting freezing rain since sometime last night. Supposed to end by this evening. So glad they accommodated her moving in early and I decided to turn right around. Exhausted though and took a nap. 4d
IndoorDame Glad you made it home safely! I hope the rest of the storm is less stressful. 4d
megnews @IndoorDame by the time it starts here at 7, I will be hunkered down for a couple days of reading! Yay! 4d
Butterfinger Glad you are home. The whole map of NC was either blue or pink today. I wanted to know if Abby was getting it in Raleigh. Our girls will be fine. 4d
megnews @Butterfinger 😊 Tessa made it across campus to the dining hall so I‘d say she‘s good. How‘s Abby faring? 4d
Butterfinger She is fine. 4d
BarbaraJean My weekend has been so packed I wasn‘t able to get on Litsy until now, come to find out your weekend was much more eventful in a completely different way!! Glad to hear you were able to drop off your daughter and are home safe for cozy reading!! Jumping into discussion now. 😊 (edited) 3d
43 likes11 comments