April/May 2012

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Listening With . . . Jack Gantos Author Boston, Massachusetts Author Jack Gantos had just two days to record his Newbery Medal-winning semiautobiographical novel, Dead End in Norvelt. "When I stopped talking at the end of those days, there were no words left inside my brain. It was just cotton balls in there." In spite of that, he enjoys capturing all the emotional layers of the material as narrator of his own audiobooks. It was especially useful for Norvelt—which just happens to star a character named Jack Gantos. "I have the built-in pictures in my mind of the entire location, so when I'm reading about going down to Miss Volker's house, I know exactly how to walk to Miss Volker's house, and I know how long it takes to get there, and I know where the funeral parlor is, and I know where the Roosevelt Center is. Every portion of that book is like the back of my hand." —Jennifer M. Dowell "I listened to the book, and I thought, oh my god. I'm from Norvelt! I have the voice!" 72 s AudioFile/ Photo by Anne Lower

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