Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Book Lovin' : Gabriel Finley

A couple of months ago my class had the privilege of having an author come and visit our class! George Hagen's first novel for adults was published 2004, but in 2014 he published his first novel for young adults, Gabriel Finley & The Raven's Riddle.

He talked to our kids about the writing process and what inspires him. I had just finished mini-lessons in  my writers workshop narrative unit about where good writers draw inspiration from and his timing couldn't have been more perfect! He talked about stories he read as a child, people that are important in his life, and places that mattered to him that influenced his novel.

My kids ate it up and were engaged the entire time! He also gave my students an opportunity to ask questions, and I loved how thoughtful their questions were. One of my boys asked "Do you use figurative language?" and George responded "Every chance I get!" I could see my students' eyes light up and the wheels start turning in their head. It was so much fun to see them making the connection between what they were doing as writers and what professional writers do!

George was incredibly generous and gifted signed a copy of his novel to my classroom as well as our school library! My students couldn't wait to finish our current read aloud so that we could start on Gabriel Finley! By the end of the year, many of my students cited this book as their favorite that we read all year! It follows the story of a young boy who becomes wrapped up in a world of mystery and legends that he didn't even know existed, following in the footsteps of his father. It's a magical coming of age story reminiscent of Harry Potter.

I'm so grateful that our media specialist was able to set this up for us, because he made such an impact on our class with his insights into the writing process and introduced us to an awesome novel! I highly suggest it as an addition to your class library or as a read aloud!

What are some of your favorite books for a read aloud?

XO Emily


  1. Sounds like a great book for the kids! George sounds like a lovely man, how nice that he signed a copy for the classroom.

    1. He really was! Such a great experience for my kiddos :)


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