Readers Around the Country Join Primary Source for "Global Read"
Have you ever wanted the chance to talk to the author of one of your favorite books and ask about the inspiration for the book or their writing process? On Wednesday, November 28th, Primary Source brought together 230 readers from across the country to talk to author Laura Resau via live, online chat about her novel, The Queen of Water. Participants joined us all the way from Wyoming, Georgia, and Texas, and also included the book club at the University High School of Science and Engineering in Hartford, Connecticut, a group of 15 teachers from Burlington, Massachusetts, and a group of 35 high school students from Bar Harbor, Maine.
In the months preceding this Global Read, we encouraged teachers, students, and community members everywhere to join us in reading The Queen of Water, a coming-of-age novel based on the true story of María Virginia Farinango, an indigenous Ecuadorian girl who is taken from her family to be an unpaid servant in a mestizo household. Classrooms and book groups read together and discussed the novel using resources in our Teacher Toolkit.
On November 28th, Global Read participants connected online for a live chat and Q&A session with Laura, hosted by Primary Source. Laura brought María Virginia's story to life by showing photos of the people and places in Ecuador that make up the setting of the novel. Participants were excited to hear Laura talk about how she met María Virginia, the interviewing and writing process, how they decided what parts of the story to fictionalize, and more. A high school teacher from Afton, Wyoming, who attended with five students from her history elective course about justice and injustice, reflected that "being able to have students connect with a real author and ask questions and hear about her learning through exploration" was the most valuable part of the experience. Laura also addressed questions about servitude and the social dichotomy in Ecuador as presented through María Virginia's eyes in the novel.
Missed the live chat? Watch the recording of the live chat, visit Laura Resau's website, and use our Teacher Toolkit for resources and activities on discussing the novel (including video interviews with María Virginia Farinango). We encourage you to read this amazing novel with your classroom or community and hope you'll join us for a future Global Read!