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The Resource October mourning : a song for Matthew Shepard, Lesléa Newman

October mourning : a song for Matthew Shepard, Lesléa Newman

Label
October mourning : a song for Matthew Shepard
Title
October mourning
Title remainder
a song for Matthew Shepard
Statement of responsibility
Lesléa Newman
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Relates, from various points of view, events from the night of October 6, 1998, when twenty-one-year-old Matthew Shepard, a gay college student, was lured out of a Wyoming bar, savagely beaten, tied to a fence, and left to die
Storyline
Tone
Character
Award
  • Rainbow List, 2013.
  • YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults, 2013.
Review
  • /* Starred Review */ Grades 8-12 On October 6, 1998, 21-year-old Matthew Shepard, a gay student at the University of Wyoming, was lured into a truck, driven into the country, savagely beaten, tied to a fence, and left to die—which he did, five days later. In the 68 poems that make up this novel-in-verse, Newman re-creates the events and circumstances surrounding this unspeakably vile hate crime and offers a moving tribute to a young man she regards as a martyr. Her poems are told from multiple points of view, including that of the fence, the rope that bound the boy, and a doe that stood watch over him. The beautifully realized selections are also written in a variety of forms, ranging from haiku to villanelle, from concrete poetry to rhymed couplets. Each form (discussed in an appendix) matches the tone and mood of its content, creating an almost musical effect that is both intellectually and aesthetically engaging. Written with love, anger, regret, and other profound emotions, this is a truly important book that deserves the widest readership, not only among independent readers but among students in a classroom setting, as well. Most importantly, the book will introduce Matthew Shepard to a generation too young to remember the tragic circumstances of his death. -- Cart, Michael (Reviewed 09-15-2012) (Booklist, vol 109, number 2, p68)
  • Gr 9 Up — Matthew Shepard, a gay college student, died nearly 14 years ago, of wounds inflicted during a violent beating. Just before his brutal attack, he and other students had been planning a Gay Awareness Week; Newman was the keynote speaker at this event, which took place a week after the assault. Through 68 poems, she captures facets of the event that were likely never uncovered before. The poems' fictitious narrators, ranging from Matthew's cat to hateful frat boys at nearby Colorado State to the fence on which Shepard was abandoned, appear and then return later as the narrative unfolds. What impact will the depiction of such an event have on today's teens, many of whom were just born at the time of its occurrence? Put simply-a tremendous impact. Newman's verse is both masterful and steady-handed. Each poem is beautiful in its subtle sophistication. The overarching narrative will be appreciated most by readers who have read a brief overview of what happened to Matthew, but those who haven't will certainly be inspired to do so immediately following. Many teens will see how very far we've come, while others will see how far we still have to go. Either way, the book will be a valuable addition to poetry and fiction collections.Jill Heritage Maza, Montclair Kimberley Academy, Montclair, NJ --Jill Heritage Maza (Reviewed November 1, 2012) (School Library Journal, vol 58, issue 11, p124)
  • Just days after 21-year-old Matthew Shepard was killed in 1998, Newman (Heather Has Two Mommies) visited his school, the University of Wyoming, as the keynote speaker for its Gay Awareness Week. Writing from this personal viewpoint, Newman crafts 68 poems, imagining the perspectives of Shepard, his convicted killers, the stars above, the fence to which he was tied, a nearby deer, and many more. Despite the variety of voices and poetic forms Newman uses (haiku, pantoum, villanelle, and others), the poems read as a somewhat repetitive chorus of rage, shame, and disgust (“I can take anything/ I’m tough as time/ But when I saw him/ between the two of them/ trapped in that truck/ it made me want to heave,” says the road). It’s a visceral, painful read, but it’s difficult to say how singsongy couplets from Shepard’s cat (“Where is the boy? Will he ever be back?/ I’m cold and I’m lonely and I need a snack”) or a punny offering from the rope used to bind him (“They roped me in/ I was fit to be tied”) make this tragedy more real. Ages 14–up. (Sept.) --Staff (Reviewed July 30, 2012) (Publishers Weekly, vol 259, issue 31, p)
  • Nearly 14 years after the unspeakable tragedy that put Laramie, Wyo., on the hate crimes map, lesbian literary icon Newman offers a 68-poem tribute to Matthew Shepard. Readers who were infants on October 6, 1998, may learn here for the first time how the 21-year-old Shepard was lured from a bar by two men who drove him to the outskirts of town, beat him mercilessly, tied him to a fence and left him to die. Ironically, months before Shepard's murder, Newman had been invited to Laramie to speak at the University of Wyoming's Gay Awareness Week and actually delivered her keynote address on the day he died. This cycle of poems, meant to be read sequentially as a whole, incorporates Newman's reflections on Shepard's killing and its aftermath, using a number of common poetic forms and literary devices to portray the events of that fateful night and the trial that followed. While the collection as a whole treats a difficult subject with sensitivity and directness, these poems are in no way nuanced or subtle. For example, Newman repeatedly employs personification to make inanimate objects, such as the fence, road, clothesline and truck, unwitting accessories to the crime, and she imitates William Carlos Williams' "This Is Just to Say" false-apology format no fewer than four times with mixed results. Though somewhat heavyhanded, these poems are sure to instill much-needed empathy and awareness to gay issues in today's teens. (Poetry. 14 & up)(Kirkus Reviews, August 15, 2012)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10145783
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Newman, Lesléa
Dewey number
811.6
Index
no index present
Intended audience
NP
Intended audience source
Lexile
Interest level
UG
LC call number
PZ7.5.N49
LC item number
Oct 2012
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 9
  • 12
Nature of contents
bibliography
Reading level
5.2
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Study program name
Accelerated Reader AR
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Shepard, Matthew
  • Shepard, Matthew
  • Novels in verse
  • Murder
  • Gays
  • Hate crimes
  • Laramie (Wyo.)
Target audience
adolescent
http://bibfra.me/vocab/lite/titleRemainder
a song for Matthew Shepard
Label
October mourning : a song for Matthew Shepard, Lesléa Newman
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
902191
Dimensions
24 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
xi, 111 pages
Isbn
9780763658076
Lccn
2011048358
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780763658076
  • (OCoLC)774490636
Label
October mourning : a song for Matthew Shepard, Lesléa Newman
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
902191
Dimensions
24 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
xi, 111 pages
Isbn
9780763658076
Lccn
2011048358
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780763658076
  • (OCoLC)774490636

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