Tuesday, 28 September 2010

The Outcasts of 19 Schuyler Place by e.l. konigsburg

Margaret's parents are in Peru for the summer and her beloved Uncles Alex and Morris have declined to let her visit with them for the vacation, so she picks a summer camp to attend.  Unfortunately she doesn't like it there one bit and refuses to participate in any of the activities. 

That being said, this story really isn't about that summer camp, it's about adults and what they want to do and why they want to do it.  It's also about why it takes a child to point out the error of their ways.  Margaret is that child and it's up to her to find a way to save the original towers that have been constructed in her uncles' back yard. 

I loved every minute of this story, particularly the conversations between Margaret and Mrs. Kaplan, the camp director.  I also enjoyed the contrasts between the stuffy Mrs. Kaplan and her more free living son Jake.  My favourite passage in the book is one where Jake is talking about what the towers mean to him:
"They are telling me a story.  A story full of sense and nonsense.  They are saying that if life has a structure, a staff, a sensible scaffold, we hang our nonsense on it.  And they are saying that broken parts add color and music to the staff of life.  And they also say that when you know that your framework has been built right and strong, it's all right to add color to it, too.  The towers are saying, there is no why - only a why-not."
Wikipedia link for E. L. Konigsburg

I learned about this book from Sherrie at Just Books when she reviewed it in August 2010.

Read my review of From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler also by E. L. Konigsburg

1 comment:

bookdout said...

Thanks for sharing the review!