Dear Mr. Oppel,
Aren't you clever? This Dark Endeavor was totally YA. Early Victor Frankenstein all wrapped up in raging hormones, demanding quests and daring feats of great strength. Teens love that. Being a Nancy Drew girl myself, you had me at secret passage. And all of those little English major bits you hid from the kids...in plain sight! The tiresome folks who always insist on laughing loudest when watching films of Shakespeare's comedies to make it very, very clear that they get all of the jokes (especially the ones that aren't particularly funny) will be all over that.
The best part was your timing. Or was it my timing? This book was a welcome break from last weekend's breaking news. You know that guy who gets paid to talk incessantly and anger women? No. The other one. Yeah, him. He was really pushing my buttons. And I know that your book is fiction-- but your Margaret was top rate. After all, if you're putting together a prequel worthy of Mary Shelley, daughter of Mary Wollstonecraft, you have to be serious about that undertaking. Margaret was neck and neck with Victor and Konrad, even besting them on occasion. After all, isn't that what we want teens to know about life? We're all strong and weak, brave and afraid, AND passionate about being who we are, boys and girls alike.
And that scene when Margaret volunteers to be the one that-- You know what I'm talking about. I couldn't stop thinking about it while I was gnawing on some slow roasted pork ribs that same night. I did have the manners to keep that plot point to myself until my dinner companion was done for approximately two seconds.
Thanks, Mr. Oppel, for being thoughtful in creating characters that run the spectrum of what being human is. I'm glad for all of our students that this book now lives in our school library...and that there's a prequel sequel about to hit the shelves.
Truth sure was stranger than fiction last weekend. I'm glad I had a good book to carry me through. Thankfully art can keep one's soul afloat in times of truly dark endeavors.