Readers have called my young adult novel Evidence of Things Not Seen “edgy.” Readers have had a lot of questions about the characters profiled there. Some of those questions have been, well, edgy themselves. With only a chapter spent with each, readers fiercely want to hold the characters accountable and make sure they get the respect they deserve.
1. You spend a lot of time putting people into separate groups and using social labels. (“Isn’t that how nerds act?” page 6) And yet you call James a segregationist. How are your thoughts and behavior different from his?
2. Why did you feel it was important to start the Latinitas club?
3. Why do you think it’s so “hard to break out of stereotypes and be different”? (page 7) In what way do you yourself hide out in groups?
4. Name even one small thing you had in common with Tommy Smythe.
5. You talk a lot about choosing our actions. What, if anything, do you think you could have done differently to change the outcome of Tommy’s disappearance?
Readers have also seen themselves in characters or seen their friends in the pages. Some of things they see about themselves and others make them curious, some scare them, and some offer hope. Each set of questions is followed by some websites and organizations where you might get answers. I call them “resources” for lack of a better name. But they could also be called a lifeline, a revelation, or evidence of things not seen. Don’t be afraid to look for answers.
Want help busting out of those stereotypes and cliques? Click here.
Does your school have major issues with separation, cliques, and bullying? The amazing people at Challenge Day have answers!