Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

The Girl Who Drank the Moon

Barnhill, Kelly (Author)
Workman 2016. 390 pages
First published: 2016
ISBN: 9781616205676 (hardcover)
9781616206567 (e-book)
Original language: English
Book type: Novel
Book genre: Fantasy

Text Elements:

character, characterization, figurative language, multimodal, point of view, setting

Awards

Newbery Medal – 2017
E.B. White Read-Aloud Award – 2017

Reading Range

 
Cycle
Elementary
Secondary
 
1
2
3
1
2
ELA
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL Intensive & Enriched
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

Lavish language creates the fairy-tale world of the Protectorate: as lively, fluid and full of menace as the volcano on which it stands. “It boiled streams and cooked mud and sent waterfalls disappearing into deep pits, only to reappear miles away.”

The book’s large cast of characters are a richly imagined delight, for both their whimsy and wisdom: “‘Death is always sudden,’ Glerk said … ‘Even when it isn’t.’ He wanted to clasp Xan in his third and fourth arms, but he knew the Witch wouldn’t stand for it, so he held Luna a little closer instead.” As Luna grows to the age of 13, a wealth of additional storylines and perspectives provide context, backstory and root cause of the sorrow pervading the Protectorate—despite what the tyrant claims: “There is no such story … I started the stories … I did. They all came from me.”

Luna’s ebullient and “enmagicked” personality reflects the novel’s call for transformation of sorrow, like the caterpillar in its chrysalis. “Every bit of itself—even its knowledge of itself—turns to mush.” In this tale, an abandoned baby becomes a beloved youth, a lost young man finds himself, and false sacrifices are replaced by true ones, so that sorrow may be banished from the Protectorate.

  •  

    While reading the first few chapters, start a graphic organizer to track and identify the characters and their relationships. With your group, discuss how these characters reveal their true personalities through their actions.

  •  What real-life situations or events are you reminded of as you read? Use a T-chart to record your connections.
  •  Who would you cast to play the main characters in a movie adaptation of this book? Explain your thinking.
  •  

    What would happen in a sequel to this book? Write a comic strip, dialogue, blog post, monologue or additional chapter.

  •  

    Brainstorm and make notes on what you notice about the characteristics of the text. Consider how the constructed aspects (structures, features and conventions) have a specific impact on the reader.

  •  

    In small book club groups, discuss who is speaking in the first chapter and who they might be addressing. Discuss the way point of view is used to shape the narrative.

  •  

    Use the text as a model for the production of fantasy narratives. Make notes in a reader-writer’s notebook as part of the immersion into text of the production process.

  •  

    Scan several chapter titles from the beginning and the middle of the novel. Using these, in addition to the cover and title, what predictions can you make about this story?

  •  

    Select one of the poems. Copy it into your journal and explain its meaning. Discuss and share your ideas with the class.

  •  

    In Luna’s magical world, there were strange rules. If you lived in a magical world, what would be your top 10 rules for an orderly and happy society? Explain and defend your ideas in small teams.

  • To communicate appropriately
  • To construct his/her identity
  • To exercise critical judgment
  • Health and Well-Being
  • Personal and Career Planning
  • Personal Development