Wednesday, July 11, 2018

July 11: Shiloh

It's a story about a boy and a dog. It is set in West Virginia and I didn't read it as a kid--I read it while I was student teaching a fourth grade classroom. I loved this book, and in my mind, Marty's family lived in that little house I lived in when I was 10--tight, too small to breathe in or relax, just enough to get by. Marty's dad is a mailman and it is clear that the family isn't in dire straits but is not middle class as we define it in the US.

The villain in the story starts out very black and white and as the story moves, the reader realizes that circumstances make the man. It's a good lesson for kids, actually, and it was the focus of my reading this book to my class that year. Why was Judd the way he was? How might things have been different if...

They made it into a movie. I went to see it, alone as an adult, feeling silly and a little creepy but I went anyway.

Judd was just a bad guy. Nothing redeeming or gray about his character at all.

But worse: the family lived in a big rambling country house, beautifully furnished and bigger than they needed by far.

It was gross.


  1. I flinch whenever I see that a really good children's or young adult novel is being filmed. So little good comes of it.

  2. I love this book. I read quite a few of Phyllis Reynolds Naylor's books -- all as an adult.

    I think I need to do a post on her.

  3. Did something bad happen to the dog? Wait, don't answer that...

  4. Ugh. How could they get the movie so wrong?
    I've never heard of this book. I think my 10-year-old dog-loving niece would like it though.

  5. I'm grateful for the happy ending, and I haven't even read the book.

  6. I haven't seen the movie, but I loved the book when one of my kids brought it home from school.