In Caitlin's world, everything is black or white. Things are good or bad. Anything in between is confusing. That's the stuff Caitlin's older brother, Devon, has always explained. But now Devon's dead and Dad is no help at all. Caitlin wants to get over it, but as an eleven-year-old girl with Asperger's, she doesn't know how. When she reads the definition of closure, she realizes that is what she needs. In her search for it, Caitlin discovers that not everything is black and white-the world is full of colors-messy and beautiful. Kathryn Erskine has written a must-read gem, one of the most moving novels of the year. A Discussion Guide to Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine Read Kathryn Erskine's post on the Penguin Blog.
In my seven years of working as a resource teacher, I have encountered several students with Aspergers Syndrome. Hence, my interest in reading Mockingbird by Kathyrn Erskine about ten-year-old Caitlin who sees everything as black and white because of her syndrome. Caitlin’s older brother Devon used to help her figure out the in-between stuff, except now Devon is dead as a result of school shootings. The latter is a topic that also resonates with me because most teachers, no matter how safe their schools, have encountered violent students. Perhaps because Erskine draws on both research and personal experience, Mockingbird is one those rare books which not only provides accurate information but also strikes a perfect emotional chord.