Posted in 2013-2014 Club, Not Mock Newbery

The Tragedy Paper, by Elizabeth Laban

Tragedy PaperSummary: While preparing for the most dreaded assignment at the prestigious Irving School, the Tragedy Paper, Duncan gets wrapped up in the tragic tale of Tim Macbeth, a former student who had a clandestine relationship with the wrong girl, and his own ill-fated romance with Daisy.


Find it at WCPL


3 thoughts on “The Tragedy Paper, by Elizabeth Laban

  1. I really liked this book. The writing style fit the story so perfectly. It created a semi-depressing, partly mysterious, somethings wrong kind of mood. The setting is well described and unique also fitting the story perfectly. The plot is hard to explain, but basically there is this one student at the boarding school who feels guilty about a certain “incident’ (we don’t know what it is yet) that happened last year at the school. He is trying to forget about it but then he finds some CDs in his room that a student involved in that ‘incident’ left him containing that student telling his story. Throughout the book he starts understanding more about that student’s story and meanwhile his own story starts unfolding and the readers start figuring out more about last year. Tied into all this, is a paper that the students have to write called the Tragedy Paper. That paper kind of puts this whole book together.
    I really liked the plot and I loved how the one students story is getting told through recorded CDs, it is such a good idea. The only thing I didn’t think was great was sometimes the two chatacters’ stories were too similar and I had a hard time seperating them other than that, I think that this book could win the newbery.

  2. I really enjoyed the Tragedy Paper. The plot was interesting and definitely had highs and lows. There were times the main narrator chose to put the story aside and that gave us time to anticipate what was going to happen next. The style was very moody. Characters were well developed and acted in accordance with their characters. The story was great for teens. The only thing is I feel this is more of a Printz type book than a Newbery. The voice is definitely a teen voice and portrays the “teen experience,” which is very much a Printz trait. I am not sure that kids would have the same thing. There is a lot of romantic angst in these books. Could the average child relate?

  3. After further discussion at our latest meeting, we reluctantly agreed that this book was written for high school kids older than the Newbery criteria. We intend to pass our copy on to the Mock Printz book club with high recommendations for consideration there.

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