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Audiobooker

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Mary Burkey, a teacher, librarian, and audiobook addict, writes about listening, learning, and the joy of headsets

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Friday, November 16, 2012 7:21 am
Freebie Friday: The Misfits by James Howe
Posted by: Mary Burkey

Today is the 5th birthday of Audiobooker! Celebrate with Full Cast Audio’s The Misfits, an essential recording for every school and public library. To mark the fifth anniversary of my blog, I’ll be giving away FIVE freebie copies of The Misfits, hopefully to teachers and school librarians eager to introduce this title to their students. Just leave your name in the comments below, and I’ll announce the winners in two weeks. Howe’s powerful story about middle school misfits who band together to overcome the cruel taunts of their classmates holds even more importance today than when published over ten years ago. Especially significant is the audiobook’s interview with the author, where Howe shares his personal experiences that inspired the novel. Those who seek resources to reduce bullying in our schools have a tremendous resource in No-Name Calling Week, and the project’s bank of resource materials. Here’s more about the initiative:

No Name-Calling Week was inspired by a young adult novel entitled The Misfits by popular author, James Howe. The book tells the story of four best friends trying to survive the seventh grade in the face of all too frequent taunts based on their weight, height, intelligence, and sexual orientation/gender expression. Motivated by the inequities they see around them, the “Gang of Five” (as they are known) creates a new political party during student council elections and run on a platform aimed at wiping out name-calling of all kinds. The No-Name Party in the end, wins the support of the school’s principal for their cause and their idea for a “No Name-Calling Day” at school.

Motivated by this simple, yet powerful, idea, the No Name-Calling Week Coalition created by GLSEN and Simon & Schuster Children’s publishing, consisting of over 40 national partner organizations, organized an actual No Name-Calling Week in schools across the nation. The project seeks to focus national attention on the problem of name-calling in schools, and to provide students and educators with the tools and inspiration to launch an on-going dialogue about ways to eliminate name-calling in their communities.

The audiobook of The Misfits features a full cast of over twenty narrators, with teens providing the key roles, a perfect fit with Howe’s funny and touching totally tween voices. I’m especially thrilled to feature The Misfits today on Audiobooker. It was exactly five years ago, November 16, 2007, when I wrote the very first Audiobooker post. On that day, I had the great honor of presenting an audiobook panel at the National Council of Teachers of English convention with authors James Howe and Bruce Coville, founder & president of Full Cast Audio. Creating the original Audiobooker blog was my way of sharing the presentation outline & notes. Little did I think that I’d still be going strong five years later! I owe a huge debt of gratitude to Bruce Coville and the entire audiobook community for their support in the creation of both this blog and Audiobooks for Youth: A Practical Guide to Sound Literature, my book that  is a direct result of that guidance. A tip of the birthday hat to everyone who has helped along the way!

9 Responses to “Freebie Friday: The Misfits by James Howe”
  1. Susie Says:

    Sounds like a good one I am reading the paperbook of Locker 572 by L.T. Kodzo right now which I also recommend as a good book on bullying.

  2. YvonneJ Says:

    Happy 5th anniversary! I look forward to reading your blog on Fridays (sometimes I even sneek a peek in the middle of the week just to see if there’s anything new.) Thank you!

  3. Jennifer Iley Says:

    Sounds great – would love to give as a gift to my niece and nephew.

  4. Carrie Says:

    Loved this one! Also met Mr. Howe once – a sweet, charming man. Happy Anniversary!

  5. Margo Jantzi Says:

    Thanks for considering our students for this wonderful giveaway.

    Gratefully,
    M.Jantzi
    Cub Run Library

  6. Karen Smith Says:

    Fantastic idea, and would love to be able to introduce our school’s librarian to the wonders of audiobooks (our family is addicted. We’re currently on the last in the Immortals series by Tamora Pierce, having previously listened to everything by Diana Wynne Jones, Lloyd Alexander, all of the Percy Jackson books, the Harry Potters, etc. My kids are only 11 and 9! Audio books are full of awesome.)

  7. Amy Rubinate Says:

    Congratulations on 5 years of an excellent blog! This book sounds wonderful. I remember listening to my first Full Cast Audio book, Fairest, by Gail Carson Levine. I had about an hour and a half to go on the book, and my car held my only CD player. I drove around the lonely hills above San Jose in the middle of the night so I could find out what happened! I’ve been a fan of Full Cast (…and Bruce Coville…and Gail Carson Levine) ever since. P.S. If I win, I”ll donate the book to my hometown library after I’ve finished listening! :)

  8. Wendy Says:

    This book is one of my favorites, I think it would really well as full cast.

  9. Mary Burkey Says:

    Congratulations to winners Wendy, Amy, Karen, Margo, and Susie! I’m thrilled to be able to share this audiobook with you :-)


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