Cath is a Simon Snow fan. Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan…. But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving. Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fanfiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere. Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.
Genre: romance, life, family
Themes: coming of age, identity, fandom, loss
1. Write it: Asks students to create their own Simon Snow story or continuation of the story from where Rainbow Rowell left off. They could write about the magical world of Watford, Simon’s adventures, or the relationships between the characters.
2. Storyboard it: Get students to create a ‘book trailer’ to advertise the novel! They can storyboard their key scenes with captions for the voice over/speech.
3. Put it into poetry: The power of imagination! Ask students to write a poem about the power of imagination and how it can shape people’s lives. Consider how Cath’s love for fanfiction and writing allows her to escape from the challenges of her life.
4. Vision boards: Cath’s vision board includes her favourite quotes, people she finds inspirational and a picture of her twin sister, Wren. Get students to create their own vision boards which represent their goals and aspirations. They can use images from magazines, draw, use images online or a combination of all of those!
5. Debate it: Divide the class into two teams and conduct a debate about an issue from the book, such as whether or not Cath should continue to write fan-fiction or if Wren’s behaviour is selfish. Encourage students to use evidence from the book to support their arguments.
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