Location: Mr. Brown's Room

The Book of Lost Things, by John Connelly

Andrea Konecki
Ryan Maguire
Marissa Nason
Sarah Crommett
Zack Glenn
Evan Coleman
David Waxman
Ali Merrill
Marc Brown (teacher)
Jenn Lainey (teacher)


Name, grade, rating of the book (1-10 scale) based on opinion of the book

Ten Words or Less:
Partner up and create a summary of the book in ten words or less. Have everyone go around and share what they have Other members of the group can offer comments or questions after each pair shares.

Passage Path:
One person brings a passage to the group that they felt was significant. He or she can explain why the passage was important to them. The rest of the group can find other passages that compare to or contrast the original passage. When one person finds a passage, he or she can briefly explain the connection to the original passage. Many additional passages can be shared that connect to the original passage.

Whip: Each person can share a plot event that they responded to, either positively or negatively.

Break- time to stretch, use the restroom, or get a drink of water

Another Point of View:
  1. Choose a scene or longer passage that is ripe for discussion
  2. Together, examine how the story is narrated. Describe the narrator’s position, level of power, and tone. Open discussion for three minutes or until you’ve covered it.
  3. After you feel content with the discussion in #2, re-examine the scene from another character’s or narrator’s point of view, especially a person who has a different level of power than the narrator.
  4. Discuss the scene/passage openly from both points of view.

Channel the Author:
  1. Divide the group into two.
  2. Each mini group composes a question directed to the author.
    1. Examples: What do you want a reader to learn from your book?, Why did you write this?, Why did you divide the book into these chapters?
  3. One mini group goes first and asks the other group their question. the other group gets a minutes to confer and then a minute to respond to the question in the voice of author.
  4. The whole group can openly discuss the response and ideas it generates.
  5. Repeat the steps with the other mini group’s question.

Discussion Questions:
-What do you think was the most important scene in the book and why? How do you think it helped David on his journey to adulthood.
- What character interested you the most, what about them did you like. Also what did you think was there biggest flaw.
-Connelly adapts many Bother's Grimm stories into his own dark creations. of these stories which did you find the most interesting and why?
-Can you make any connections with any of the characters in the book. If so what did you have in common.
- What do you think really happened while David was in this 'other land'?

David Waxman, Assignment E: write an additional chapter (during the book, after David leaves the dwarves' presence)
The Boy Who Cried Wolf
As David continued along the path, he began to feel tired and hungry. As if by some kind of strange magic, a small town appeared on the horizon. In all the excitement and anticipation of a meal and a warm bed, David forgot his fatigue and began running towards the town. Nearing the town, David noticed a small flock of sheep grazing in a meadow at the bottom of a valley with a lone boy sitting under a tree overlooking the valley. As the boy took no notice of David, David approached him in hopes of finding hospitable refuge in the boy’s home.
“Hello, I am David, and I am in need of food and rest,” the boy looked at David for the first time at the sound of his words, David noted that he seemed oddly unobservant for a sheep herder.
“I’d offer you stay and a meal in my home if I had room and food to spare, but I am a poor farm-hand and have little for myself.”
“And what about the other villagers? Would they take me in?” Up until this point, the boy had seemed quite relaxed and content in his shady spot beneath the trees yet at the mention of the villagers his mood turned sour.
“Those grumpy townsfolk? You’d be lucky to get a cherry pit to eat and a bale of hay to sleep on!” Having seemingly exhausted his anger, the boy leaned back on the trunk of the tree, fixing the brim of his hat over his eyes once again, “but I suppose you could try just the same.”
Confused slightly by this peculiar, volatile youth, David continued on his way towards the town square. Despite the shepherd boy’s warning, David met a friendly farmer selling corn in the market who had a spare cot and a hot meal for him. Later that night, after David was fed and wearing new clothes from the farmer’s son, he asked about the strange shepherd boy. Not unlike the boy’s earlier reaction, the farmer and his wife became immediately hostile.
“That young man is disrespectful and a liar,” the farmer spat as his wife sat behind him nodding vigorously, “he watches over the entire village’s sheep. He doesn’t have a sword or bow so when he sees a wolf he calls out, and all of us drop what we’re doing and come running. He calls out about once a week, but there’s never a wolf. He thinks it’s funny, but we hate it.” At the mention of wolves, David thought of the Loups, and he told the farmer about the party of beasts following him. David knew they couldn’t be more than a day behind him, so he decided he would leave early the next morning The farmer told David he would do everything he could to buy him more time with the Loups. David went to bed feeling uneasy and nervous for the day to come, but his weariness overtook his fear and he was soon fast asleep.
David awoke with the dawn, packed his things and silently made his way out of the village, hoping the villagers would safe when the wolves arrived. Leaving the town, David noticed the shepherd boy asleep, leaning against the same tree he had seen him under before.

Leroi’s scout returned just as David was leaving, under the impression he was still there. The scout told Leroi of the village and how they might try to hide the boy they were seeking. Leroi knew, however, that the full weight of his growing army of wolves would be enough to overtake a small village if the need arose. Contrary to the scout’s warnings, when Leroi arrived outside the village, he saw a boy asleep under a tree. “Foolish boy,” he thought as he made his way towards his meal, “sleeping when you knew we were coming.” He laughed as he licked his lips, his mouth already salivating. The boy once again didn’t notice his guest at first. Only when Leroi had picked up the shepherd by his neck and pinned him against the trunk of the tree did he notice the situation he was in. He looked around but all his sheep were gone, the villagers had taken them while the boy slept. He let out one, final scream, but it was drowned out by Leroi’s jaws, never to be heard again, and none of the villagers came to help.

Ali Merrill: Assignment B -Write in the perspective of a character other than the narrator (The Crooked Man)
I will not beat around the bush. I am a man of impeccable taste: bitterness; despair; cynicism, all cradling the early childhoods of little boys and girls, although they may be below the surface at first. Beneath those toothy smiles is a minefield of angst and hate–adults are living proof that it exists. Like food, I need–no, savor these emotions in order to survive. Though adults are tainted with some sort of darkness, they are bland–too willing to bear the brunt of life’s belt. Maturity spoils everything, now doesn’t it? Children, on the other hand, they are simply wondrous! They are incapable of enduring. They don’t yet understand the meaning of willpower and perseverance. They do not hesitate to, say, wish ill upon another (or a sibling, as in David’s case.) Children are rash and deliciously gullible, and that is precisely where I, the Crooked Man, come in. I would be lying if I told you I refuse to have fun with my quest for the souls of young children. Needless to say, I certainly mix business and pleasure. Oh, I love games. These safe little worlds of supposed compassion and selflessness–I’d love you to find me one that hasn’t fallen to the mercy of chaos and betrayal. To watch these worlds collapse tickles me pink. I tell you, my friend, any other sensation cannot compare.
...And yet, as I pace across this bone-scattered floor, the howl of the wolves shattering the silence, my troubles suffocate me like a wet blanket. There is something gruesome and repulsive lurking in David’s eyes. I believe the mortal world knows it as ‘forgiveness.’ It seemed like only was yesterday that I was bathing in the shadows, watching David’s spite grow for delicate Rose and her infant son Georgie. As I see him grasp his sword with a newfound strength I’ve never before seen, Leroi bursts through the wall of men as if they were playing cards. I, of all people, know it sounds utterly preposterous, but what if there were little pockets of life where love was all that was there? I have remained committed for centuries to keeping my faith in the flaws of children, but David is the first to stump me. I was certain men would always indulge the evil inside of them, yet David has become terribly stubborn when it comes to yielding to his rage.
My secrets seethe my black heart. On occasion, when the mood strikes me, I’ll walk the streets of London’s mortal world. One lonely night, I was wading through the rubble, pieces of home where early morning dew should be – a city torn to shreds by German warplanes. I was looking at the ground and nearly collided with a milkman stumbling through the debris-strewn streets. It was 1941, and if Hitler’s plan to exterminate an entire people (let alone monthly bomb raids) had not broken England’s morale, then God knows what will. As the Loups descend upon us, threatening my right to live, I try to ignore that rare image of bravery and love, and I feed David some desperate line about the bloody world of warfare and death he was to return if he refused to disclose his step-brother’s name. Perhaps I deserve to die, for I have betrayed the only rule I’ve allowed myself to uphold: no matter the fruits that may tempt you, never believe in humankind. (Page 317-page 322)

Andrea Konecki, Assignment B: write in the perspective of a character other than the narrator (David's father)
Of A Father's Love
Sitting by the boy's bed, David's father watched him sleep. He watched as David’s chest rose and fell with each undisturbed breath, and he knew that inside was a wounded heart--a boy should never grow up without his mother. He was certainly afraid that he had made too swift of a transition after the loss of his wife. However, he knew his wife wanted him to be happy, and for life to go on as close to normally as it could for him and David. Although David did not at first take a liking to Rose, David's father had noticed a certain respect and appreciation between David and Rose-- even David and Georgie seemed to be getting along more like real brothers since he’d recovered.
Something about David seemed more adult. He had an aura of bravery--maturity. It was as if he’d taken a step out of his body, and had a chance to look back and consider what was important in his life. How had his little boy, who used to lose himself in the world of his fairytales, grown into such a sensible young man? It was as if he’d woken up from a dream and was now able to see what had begun to take for granted in his short life.
David’s father took a good look at his son and brushed the hair back from his forehead, thinking of how closely he resembled his mother. Suddenly his attention was drawn to a book which had fallen from the shelf in the corner. He walked over to retrieve the book, one with a tattered binding and worn pages. It was open to a page that had been scribbled upon--the image of a handsome woodsman with an axe swung over his shoulder lay staring up at the ceiling. David’s father picked up the book and looked more closely at the woodsman’s expression in the moonlight. It seemed satisfied, almost... proud. He closed the book and ran his hand across the cover. He replaced the book upon the shelf and quietly shuffled back to his room, not before looking back to David, peaceful in his dreams of home.

Marissa Nason, Assignment B:rewrite an episode or scene from another character's or narrator's point of view
This is a scene that has been re-written in the point of view of the main character David.
It was while I was sitting in the tree enjoying my apple that I saw a flash of movement in the bushes below. I instantly thought of the loups and imagined Leroi emerging from the woods to drag me off just like the Woodsman. I tried to hide behind the cover of a branch but realized that the wolves would most likely be able to detect my scent from the ground. The animal broke through the brush and stood still in the clearing for a moment. I gasped. The animal turned its head and looked up at me. I guess I wouldn’t call it an animal, for it had the body of a deer but the face of a girl. I could see the red welt from the mark of where her neck ended and the body of the deer joined it. The girl was young and seemed to be very pretty. Her long silvery hair was plastered to her sweaty face from racing through the woods. She spotted me in the tree, her striking green eyes searching my face.
“Help me!” She pleaded. “Please.” I wasn’t sure what she was running from but I debated whether or not I should descend from the spot I was in. I decided that I would stay in the tree, hoping that whatever it was that was chasing this hybrid-thing wouldn’t notice me. I looked back down at the girls face and noticed that she didn’t appear to be more than nine years old. Just then I saw a horse and rider bearing down upon the clearing, with a bow drawn and ready to release its arrow. The girl must have heard the rider approaching, for her back legs tensed and she bounded toward the cover of the forest. She was in midair when the arrow struck her neck. Her eyes widened in shock as she looked up at me and then continued to fall over. The deer-girl’s mouth opened and closed as she tried to speak her final words. Her back legs kicked at the dirt, her body trembled, and then she stopped moving.
The hunter rode out of the woods on a white horse and approached the girl who was now lying at the base of my tree. He was hooded and dressed in the colors of the autumn forest. In his left hand he held a short bow, and a quiver of arrows hung across his shoulder. He dismounted from the horse, drew a long blade from his saddle, and approached the body on the ground. He raised the blade and struck once, then again, at the neck of the deer-girl. I looked away after the first blow. I covered my mouth with my hand and squeezed my eyes shut. Curiosity got the best of me and I dared to glance once again at the scene unfolding below me. I could see the hunter carrying the girl’s severed head by the hair over to the horse, her dark blood dripping from the neck and staining the forest floor. He tied the head to the saddle and the head hung against the flank of the hunters' horse. The rider was about to pull himself up onto the horse when he suddenly stopped. I followed his gaze to where an apple core was laying on the ground. Instantly he had an arrow set in his bow that was pointed directly at me.
“Come down.” The hunter ordered. “Come down or I’ll shoot you down.” I had no choice but to climb out of the tree. I was so scared that my hands trembled as I slowly descended from the tree. Salty tears were running down my cheeks as I reached the base of the tree. Once I got to the ground I thought about making a run for it, but any hunter that could kill a leaping deer would surely have been able to hit a fleeing boy.
“Lie down.” The hunter said. “On your belly.”
“Please, don’t hurt me,” I begged.
“Lie down!” I slowly knelt down on the ground and then forced myself to lie flat. I heard the hunter approaching me. My arms were wrenched behind my back as the hunter took some rope and tied my wrists and ankles together. I was lifted into the air and then thrown onto the back of the horse alongside the deer-girl.
The ride to wherever we were going was a long, painful, and not to mention, very gross ride, for the entire way there the girl’s body rubbed against my face, smearing blood across my cheek, my horrified face reflected in her eyes. Just as my body started to cramp up from the uncomfortable position I was in, I could see that we were approaching a small stone house in the middle of the forest. There was a small stable to the side of the house where the hunter tied up his horse. I could see other animals here too, such as a doe in a stall chewing some straw and looking at the new arrivals.
The hunter dismounted the horse and carried me, and the deer-girl’s head, into the house, where he tossed me onto the hard stone floor. He walked around the inside of the room and one by one lit all the lamps until I could finally see the inside of the hunter’s house.
The walls were covered with heads mounted onto a wooden board and secured to the rocks. I saw heads from animals, deer, wolves, a Loup, and some human heads. There were a few adult heads and three heads of old men, but most of the other heads were from children. Two large oak tables took up the space of most of the room. They were stained with blood and had various tools and chains scattered across them. From where I was laying I could see a rack of knives on one side of the table. On several shelves there were many different bottles of all shapes and sizes, some filled with liquids and others containing body parts.
Suddenly I heard footsteps approaching and before I knew it, the hunter was standing in front of me. He lowered the scarf that covered his face to reveal the face beneath. It was a woman. She knelt down and gripped my face with surprising strong hands. She turned my head back and forth looking at me like I was some sort of newly discovered creature.
“You’ll do,” She said. I began to wonder what she meant and if she had any plan in mind that involved her monstrous tools.
She turned around and walked over to a desk on the other side of the room. She left me laying on the floor for what seemed like hours until she finally brought over the deer-girl’s head that was now mounted on a piece of dark wood.
“She’s pretty, don’t you think?” the huntress asked me.
I looked at her and shook my head, but I didn’t say anything to her.
“You disagree? Perhaps you feel sorry for her. But think: in years to come she would have grown old and ugly. Men would have used her. Children would have burst forth from her. Her teeth would have rotted from her head, her skin would have wrinkled and aged, and her hair would have grown thin and white. Now, she will always be a child, and she will always be beautiful. And soon, you too will be like her.”
“Who are you? What are you doing this?” My stomach twisted in disgust and fear of this woman.
“I am a hunter,” She simply stated. “A hunter must hunt.” I couldn’t believe what this woman was saying.
“But she was a little girl,” I reasoned. “A girl with the body of an animal, but still a girl. I heard her speak. She was frightened. And then you killed her”
“Yes,” The huntress said while she softly stroked the deer-girl’s hair. “She lasted longer than I expected. She was more cunning than I thought. Perhaps a fox’s body might have been more appropriate, but it’s too late now.” The huntresses words stuck in my mind as I registered what she was saying.
“You made her that way?” The huntress looked at me with surprise when she realized I was judging the justification of her actions.
“A hunter is always seeking new prey,” She admitted. “I grew tired of hunting beasts, and humans make poor game. Their minds are sharp, but their bodies are weak. And then I thought how wonderful it would be if I could combine the body of an animal with the intelligence of a human. What a test it would be for my skills! But it was hard, so hard, to create such hybrids: both animals and humans would die before I could bring them together. I could not stem the bleeding for long enough to make the union possible. Their brains died, their hearts stopped, and all my hard work would turn to nothing, drop by red drop.
“And then I had some good fortune. Three surgeons were traveling through the forest, and I came upon them and captured them and brought them here. They told me of a salve that they had created, one that could fuse a severed hand back upon its wrist, or a leg to its torso. I made them show me what they could do. I cut the arm from one of them and the others repaired it, just as they said they could. Then I cut another in half, and his friends made him whole again. Finally, I severed the head of the third, and they fixed it again upon his neck.
“And they became the first of my new prey,” she told me as she pointed out the heads of the three elderly men on the wall. “once they had told me how to make the salve for myself. Now each prey is different, for each child brings something of itself to the animal that I fuse with it.”
“But why children?” I asked.
“Because adults despair,” she told me, “while children do not. Children accommodate themselves to their new bodies and their new lives, for what child has not dreamed of being an animal? And, in truth, I prefer to hunt children. They make better sport, and better trophies for my wall, for they are beautiful.” She stepped back and gave me a once over. I imagined what she had planned for me. I thought about what she said about how children dream about being animals and how I too had often imagined what it would be like to be an animal. I shuddered at the thought of how the huntress could make that dream possible, and how that would never be the way I would want to end up like an animal.
“What is your name, and where have you come from?” she asked me. “You are not from these lands. I can tell from your scent and your speech.”
“My name is David. I came from another place.” I told her.
“What place?”
Eng-land,” the huntress repeated. “And how did you get here?”
“There was a passageway between my land and this one. I came through but now I can’t get back.” I briefly thought about the Crooked Man, and how I was supposed to be on my way to the castle. I guess I wouldn’t be getting home at all now.
“So sad, so sad,” she interrupted my thought train. “And there are many children in Eng-land?”
I didn’t reply to her. I knew by now that I wasn’t going to get out of this situation alive or at least normal. She grew angry with me and grabbed my face. “Answer me!”
“Yes,” I said even though I didn’t want to.
“Perhaps I will make you show me the way. There are so few children here now. They do not wander as they once did. This one” -she pointed at the deer-girl- “was the last that I had, and I had been saving her. Now, though, I have you. So . . . Should I use you as I used her, or should I make you take me to Eng-land?” I didn’t answer. “I am patient,” she said. “I know this land, and I have weathered its changes before. The children will come again. Soon it will be winter, and I have food enough to keep me. You will be my last hunt before the snows descend. I will make you a fox, for I think you are even brighter than my little deer. Who knows, you may escape me and live out your life in some hidden part of the forest, Although none has yet managed it. There is always hope, my David, always hope. Now sleep, for tomorrow we begin.”
She turned off the lights and left me strapped to the table. I laid there all night and didn’t sleep at all. Instead I thought to myself of tales I’d heard before when I was younger. I thought of these tales as I began to form a plan.

Evan Coleman option B:

There was a strange silence that fell over the woods where Roland sat and ate. He wished David would speak, but he knew his young eyes were still astonished by the previous nights events. Roland hoped the thought of bringing the beast to Fletchers village was not among Davids thoughts. The Creature would have made its way sooner or later. Roland decided to end any thoughts of the Beast inside of David’s mind and called him over. “David! I need to speak to you.” There was no answer. “David? Did you not hear me?” Roland stood and looked to the stream, but David was no longer sitting upon his rock. “David?!” Roland shouted as he dashed over to Scylla and scanned the woods for his companion. Scylla shuffled around uneasily, sensing something was wrong. Roland knew David would not have run from him, or that any creature in this forest could have taken him away for it would not have been a silent act. Getting around Roland’s notice would not have been an easy job. He sped to David’s rock and saw a large hole in the snow, large enough to fit a boy through. Roland could feel, for a brief moment, the unsteady earth beneath him vibrate. Then, in the smallest of voices, his name was called.
Roland began to dig in the deep, icy snow. “David! Can you hear me? David!” he shouted as he got deeper and deeper. More shouts from below vibrated the snow around him and Roland wondered how this could have happened. Could the Beast have possibly returned? Or had it’s offspring shared the same intentions as their parent? “No,” he said aloud. This is not the performance of any creature, but a man. A twisted man, a Crooked Man. His underground lair was a dangerous place and not many were able to tell of their tales inside once they were taken down. Roland had finally hit soil and was careful to keep what was underneath him form collapsing. He was getting close and called Davids name once more. “David! Where are you?!” He was close, but the Crooked Mans damage has surely beed done. Whatever had been said to David could not be taken back now. The ground began to crumble. Roland saw a lump in the dirt and pulled David out by his shoulders. “David. Talk to me, tell me what happened, tell me.” David said nothing, but curled himself up into a ball and cried until he was unable to anymore.

Zack Glenn

Roland Enters the Tower of Thorns, the dark fortress said to be home to a sorceress of great power to find what has become of his closest friend Raphael.

The courtyard was quiet as I stepped past the gate passing by the dead knight’s remains. His body was all but gone although his armor and weapons looked as if they had been polished yesterday. I looked back past the gate and spied David warming himself by the fire. Saddened I though of what would become of him if I did not return from this accursed place. The courtyard that I had entered was barren and devoid of all life besides the torn bush’s that grew plentifully around the walls. The tower before me all but dark except for a small light source near the top. As I walked towards the the only door I saw, my boots made a slight crunching noise as I walked across the cracked stone ground.
I thought of my father and of the day I was banished because of the only person I had truly loved. It angered me but although it had been cruel I took solace in the fact that in his heart he still loved me. I stilled my inner thoughts, I needed to focus on the task at hand. I entered the door into a large dinning room with stairs in the far back of the room. The room seemed cold although nothing seemed amiss. The great table before me was set for a feast although its guests were no where to be seen. I continued past the table and began to climb the winding stair case that seemed to continue forever. I had no doubt as to where Raphael might be, I was sure he was there. I had prayed everyday that when I found him he would still be alive and we would be reunited again, although lately my mind had been drifting into what i fear most that Raphael was gone, but I had to know how it happened, What had happened to the one who had been there for me throughout times of trial. I climbed that last of the stairs and found myself in a long hallway with several doors on ether side and braziers next to each. A door at the end of the hall seemed like the best bet, so I continued on.
As I continued down the hall I tried each door to see if it would open, none of them gave an inch so I gave up. The door at the end of the hall continued to seem closer but at the same time I seemed to be gaining no ground. I stopped to rest when a brazier at the far end of the hall i had come from extinguished. I jumped to my feet as the closest torch to that one went out as well. Knowing complete darkness would soon find me I drew my sword and ran on. I kept my distance from the quickly vanishing light. I reached that far door just as the last light went out, and quickly pushed my way through the door. When i regained my senses I examined the room around me. The room was a large, well lit room, with seemingly no light source to be seen. A vaulted celling covered in a tangle of branches and gruesome thorns the size of a small child. The celling made me uneasy, but this disappeared when I saw Raphael. Raphael lay on a large stone alter that sat in the center of the room. Raphael’s voice carried across the room “ Roland you came for me” a longing filled his voice that filled me with both sorrow and joy.
I ran to his side, but stopped short. How could I have been so stupid I thought to myself. The witch, the witch that holds this fortress under her spell. I raised my sword tentatively, wondering if this truly was Raphael before me. Roland’s eyes and lips were closed but his voice game from seemingly no where. “ Roland I'm so glad you came for me, we can be together now just kiss me and we can be free of this evil place”. Overwhelmed with emotion and losing all of my senses, I kissed him. At the moment his eyes opened and who I saw before me was not that man I loved. His form had changed, He was now my father but somehow more, more menacing and full of malice then I could have scarcely imagined he could have ever been. And his eyes.... his eyes were the most frightening part, they were black as black as the most moonless night I had ever witnessed. What I saw before me was something of unnatural evil and I had falling for its trick.
I raised my sword to strike with all my force and skill but what ever the creature was moved deftly and avoided my blow with ease. I raised my sword to strike again but I knew it was over. I had failed David at the cost of learning my friends fate. My second blow managed to connect, and the creature screamed with anger. It rushed me with unthinkable speed and pummeled me to the ground. I lost the grip of my sword and it clattered to the ground. I made no attempt to stand up that fight was over and I was as good as dead. My father raised the blade and it was over.

Ryan Maguire

Everything escaped, taken
Everyone ignored, left
Unexpected and quick, arrival
Turning back to where it went wrong, departure
Should have come to terms, reality
But then it seemed perfectly fine, bliss
Now emotions poison and stab me, forewarned
And the people outside of it, dissipate

Unchartered territory scares me, dark and dreadful
Complete, full, alluring, breathing
Woodsman, Scylla, Leroi, family
This one is relaxed; total serenity
And getting in by chance, you, mom
I know it was not a coincidence
But the rest is chilling.

The woodsman cares for me, I know my mother arranged this somehow. I longed for a realm,
She was the one who helped create it, so thoughtful
But it isn’t what it seems
I don’t know where to go from here
Fear engulfs me, fear
I just want to help, to be a part of something greater
I’m torn between the two worlds