Markus Zusak I am the Mssenger. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. 2005.
Genre: Realistic fiction
Audience: High school
Read Aloud: I am the Messenger
Summary: Ed Kennedy is a 19 year old cab driver. One day, Ed and his buddy Marv swing by the bank to deposit a check. Little did they know that the bank would soon be robbed. Ed actually takes the initiative to help stop the bank robber. Thus, leading to a series of events. One afternoon Ed receives a card in his mailbox with addresses. Each ace reveals something different that Ed has to accomplish. He doesn’t know who is behind all this, but it makes him feel good to accomplish every task; so, he continues on with his mission for six months.
Themes: Compassion is one theme. This is because who in the world would take out $500 to help out a person they barely know? And, $500 is a lot of money for a teenager at the age of 19. He understands he needs to complete these missions. But, the fact that he goes to the extravagant to help these individuals in exactly what that want is amazing. Ed is very compassionate with most of the people he comes across; others he chooses to take another path of action.
Love is one theme too. Ed talks about being sexually attracted to Audrey. But, he more talks about how he would just like to hold and kiss her. I think what he did at the end when he just danced with her was so cute. What better way to show someone you just want to hold them for a second. Dancing is such a simple act. I mean not the dancing everyone does at the bar on a weekend night; but, simple dancing facing each one another hand-in-hand. It’s simple and cute and to the point. Ed really shows Audrey he cares about her in every which way and I love that last scene with them both.
I think real life could be a theme as well. A lot of the things Ed encounters are what we hear about on the news every day. We hear, see, and know people who have experienced at least one of these traumas. And, what do we do as people? I think this book would be wonderful to teach to high school students. It made me want to go help someone after reading it. I think it really can be associated with how our society lives our lives today. I mean even at school- it can be a cold atmosphere. People are always in a rush; not saying hello to one another; or, even taking the time to get to know a person. I think Ed really touches on how to get past our “real life” today.
Connections: I really connected to the role of Sophie. I used to be able to run before I had surgery last year. I ran both cross country and track in my high school and through my first two years of college. So, I’ve had some interesting races. People may think they’re boring, but there are really some funny stories. This one race I was in during high school; it was horrific conditions. In some spots on the course you literally could sink as far as your knees into mud. There were flights 1-7. I was in the fourth flight of the race. I was real nervous because it was one of my first Varsity races and as I start out, within fifty meters mind you, I lose a spike to the mud. I couldn’t run quite well with the other, it felt like I was in high heels. So, I took the shoe off and ran bare foot for three miles. I still finished fourth and I just remember how great it felt to run how I wanted to I guess. And, so the part with Sophie really connected to me. Yes, I didn’t win the race- nor did Sophie- but, we both felt accomplished about what we did.
Reactions: I absolutely loved the book. Honestly one of my favorite books in this class so far. I couldn’t put it down; and, just kept turning page after page. I was kind of freaking out because I got behind in the book this week. But, last night getting through it was a breeze. I really did not think I’d finish it. The book was awesome and if I were a teacher I would suggest teaching this to every single class. There are so many morals and different lessons that can come out of this book. And, the discussions you could have are endless. This book was magnificent.
Reception: First reception In this reception it is funny because this person thinks the book is awesome; minus the last ten pages. The ending I think is what throws everybody. And, it’s funny to hear it from someone even outside the classroom. I’ve been to this website before. But, if you go down and click book review you can find this person’s opinion of the book.
Second reception In this review, the author talks how this book basically changed his life. It is so funny because after reading this book I had dreams about it too. I’ve never really had that before. But, I’m not saying it changed my life like this author is saying; but, it definitely made me look at things a little differently. The author also gives a summary of the book as well in here.