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Why We Broke Up
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Why We Broke Up
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I'm telling you why we broke up, Ed. I'm writing it in this letter, the whole truth of why it happened.Min Green and Ed Slaterton are breaking up, so Min is writing Ed a letter and giving him a box....
I'm telling you why we broke up, Ed. I'm writing it in this letter, the whole truth of why it happened.Min Green and Ed Slaterton are breaking up, so Min is writing Ed a letter and giving him a box....
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Description-

  • I'm telling you why we broke up, Ed. I'm writing it in this letter, the whole truth of why it happened.
    Min Green and Ed Slaterton are breaking up, so Min is writing Ed a letter and giving him a box. Inside the box is why they broke up. Two bottle caps, a movie ticket, a folded note, a box of matches, a protractor, books, a toy truck, a pair of ugly earrings, a comb from a motel room, and every other item collected over the course of a giddy, intimate, heartbreaking relationship. Item after item is illustrated and accounted for, and then the box, like a girlfriend, will be dumped.

 

Awards-

About the Author-

  • Daniel Handler has written for grown-ups under his own name and for younger readers under the name Lemony Snicket. He was dumped at least three times in high school.
    Maira Kalman, acclaimed artist and designer, has created many books for both grown-ups and children. Her heart was broken in high school by a boy who looked like Bob Dylan.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from November 14, 2011
    Handler and Kalman (13 Words) craft a book-length breakup letter from Min (short for Minerva) to her ex-boyfriend, Ed. Accusatory yet affectionate—directed at “you, Ed”—it accompanies a hefty box of souvenirs Min accumulated during the two-month romance. Between chapters, readers gaze at Kalman’s almost totemic still lifes of each nostalgic item, which range from handwritten notes (“I can’t stop thinking about you”) to secondhand-store finds and movie tickets. Min loves classic cinema, and Handler invents false film titles like “Greta of the Wild” that Min and her platonic pal Al name-drop like an “old married couple.” Proceeding chronologically, Min recounts her doomed affair with Ed, a basketball star who shrugs at movies and commits gaffe after embarrassing gaffe in front of Min’s friends. They can’t understand what she’s doing with him, but readers won’t have that problem—Handler shows exceptional skill at getting inside Min’s head and heart. Halfway through Min’s impassioned epistle, readers may
    realize that Ed, even if he cares, lacks the wherewithal to read it—lending real pathos to Min’s memorabilia and making her sorrow all the more palpable. Agent: Charlotte Sheedy Literary Agency. Ages 15–up. (Dec.)■

  • AudioFile Magazine Min is writing the mother of all break-up letters to Ed, which she will add to a box of mementos of their doomed relationship and dump at his door. Khristine Hvam, surprisingly, never lets bitterness or regret take over her first-person narration as the jilted girl. Hvam particularly shines in the voicing of Min, Min's friends, and Ed's friends. The story is well trod, but what sets this tale of heartbreak apart is the collaboration between Handler's bittersweet prose and Maria Kalman's quirky illustrations. For the audiobook, the artwork comes in PDF, but nothing cues the listener to view the images. Instead, seemingly random sound effects vary in clarity, quality, and effectiveness. This is why the printed version of this book is the better choice. M.M.O. (c) AudioFile 2012, Portland, Maine
  • School Library Journal

    April 1, 2012

    Gr 9 Up-Min, short for Minerva, met Ed at her best friend Al's bitter 16 party. They dated, fell in love, and eventually broke up. To get on with her life, Min must dispose of her box of treasures-mementos of their relationship that she has kept since the night of that party. She writes Ed a letter, inspired by every token in the box and the memories surrounding their acquisition, detailing why they broke up so she can leave it all on his doorstep. A classic movie buff, Min compares the events of her life to scenes from her favorite movies and weaves these into her letter. The final CD includes each lovely full-page painting of a memento that introduces each chapter-movie tickets, bottle caps, rose petals, and more. Khristine Hvam's narration has a pleasant cadence and she provides subtle voice changes for the different characters in the novel (Little, Brown, 2011) by Daniel Handler. Her pauses and emphases are a perfect fit for Min's character. There are some f-bombs lightly sprinkled throughout and some mild sexual descriptions. This pleasant story will resonate with anyone who has ever been jilted by the one they thought was the one.-Cynthia Ortiz, Hackensack High School, NJ

    Copyright 2012 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    Starred review from November 15, 2011
    A toy truck, bottle caps, rose petals, a cookbook and a box full of other seemingly unobtrusive mementos are dumped on the doorstep of Ed Slaterton by his ex-girlfriend, Min. Their unlikely romance lasted just over a month. On the exterior he's a gorgeous basketball-jock douchebag; she's an outspoken, outsider, romantic-movie buff with frizzy hair. They're opposites, and no one else in the novel sees why they're together. But as objects from the box are revealed in Kalman's vividly rendered paintings, readers are taken beneath the surface of what will no doubt be one of the most talked-about romances in teen literature. Handler frames their lives together with a sharp, cinematic virtuosity that leaps off the pages. Their relationship sparks and burns with so much passion, honesty, enlightenment and wonder that readers will feel relieved when they finish those chapters that don't end with "…and that's why we broke up." The ordinary becomes extraordinary: A thrift-store cookbook explodes into a madcap dinner party for an aging imaginary film star. A rubber band causes readers to wince in pain when it's ripped from Min's hair. Torn condom wrappers induce smiles of knowing amusement as Min jokingly describes her first time. All is lovingly connected via a roster of fantastically drawn films and stars that readers will wish actually existed. The novel's only fault lies in its inevitable conclusion, which can't help but be a letdown after 300+ pages of blazing romance. A poignant, exhilarating tale of a love affair gone to the dogs. (Romance. 14 & up)

    (COPYRIGHT (2011) KIRKUS REVIEWS/NIELSEN BUSINESS MEDIA, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.)

  • Booklist

    Starred review from November 1, 2011
    Grades 9-12 *Starred Review* This novel may sound like another tale of boy meets girl, but, folks, it's all in the delivery. In faltering pitter-patter dialogue and thick, gushy, grasping-for-words paragraphs, Handler takes a tired old saw, the romance between senior basketball cocaptain Ed Slaterton and junior cinephile Min Green, and injects us into the halting, breathless, disbelieving, horny, and nervous minds of two teens who feel different only in how they define themselves in contrast to each otherthat dumbstruck, anthropological joy of introducing foreign films to a dude schooled only in layups, and vice versa. The story is told from Min's perspective, a bittersweet diatribe of their breakup arranged around objects (a matchbox, a bottle cap, a dish towel, anahemcondom wrapper) of varying importance that she intends on returning to him. (Kalman's full-color drawings of these objects were not available for review.) It is fitting that the chapters center upon these items; the story itself feels like blurry photos, snippets of stray recordingsall the more powerful because of how they evoke truth more than any mere relaying of facts. Yes, the relationship breaks apart like a predictable song, but Handler's genius is to make us hear those minor-key notes as if they were playing on our firstand lastdates, too. In the mood to break additional hearts? Pair this with Pete Hautman's The Big Crunch (2011). HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Yes, Handler is mostly known to the younger set as Mr. Snicket, but this effort finds the perfect spot between his youth and adult novels, a fact born out by the high-caliber promotional plans.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2011, American Library Association.)

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