Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

Husky

Sayre, Justin (Author)
Penguin Random House 2015. 268 pages
First published: 2015
ISBN: 9780448484136 (hardcover)
9780448484143 (paperback)
9780399540042 (e-book)
Original language: English
Book type: Novel
Book genre: Realistic

Text Elements:

characterization, point of view

Reading Range

 
Cycle
Elementary
Secondary
 
1
2
3
1
2
ELA
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

Davis is a 12-year-old boy growing up in a Brooklyn brownstone with his mother and grandmother. His granny is loud and Irish and calls him “Ducks” and his mother works non-stop running her own bakery. It is the summer before high school and he is growing increasingly aware that he is different. He listens to opera, his close friends are all girls and he is a bit overweight.

Told in a direct and genuine first-person voice through a series of small incidents and scenes, readers get to know Davis’s inner thoughts and begin to empathize with the young teenager on the brink of coming to terms with his identity. The unremarkable particularities of the vignettes in Davis’s summer have the cumulative effect of illustrating what it is like to wrestle with self-awareness, friendship and not quite fitting in.

Trying on new clothes for school becomes a near existential crisis: “I can be … anything, or anyone else perfectly, just because of some clothes. But I can’t. Trying on all this stuff today makes me think that whether I like it or not, I am the husky kid. I might not even get the chance to be Weird. Or Nerdy. Or anything else.”

Davis struggles throughout the summer, until he ends up just where he is meant to be: inside his own skin and surrounded by the people who love him.

  •  

    Read the opening scene together and discuss the use of terms such as “husky” or “fat.” Explore the way Davis describes these labels early on in the novel.

  •  In small groups, consider the ways the young adolescents are characterized in the text. Where are they located in the story? How are they described?
  •  In a reader-writer’s notebook, write a series of reflective texts about the novel. In addition to sharing what the book is about, include thoughts and ideas that the novel inspired during the reading process.
  • To exercise critical judgment
  • Personal and Career Planning
  • Personal Development
  • Uglies (S. Westerfeld) (Topic)