Ms. Hempel Chronicles - Sarah Shun-Lien Bynum

Sarah Shun-Lien Bynum was a National Book Award finalist for Madeleine Is Sleeping, and her new book of interconnected stories is a delightful portrait of a young teacher early in her career. Ms. Hempel Chronicles (Harcourt, $23) is the perfect present for a grade-school teacher, but any reader will find “pure pleasure,” as Jonathan Franzen says, in reading about Ms. Hempel, a seventh-grade teacher who begins the year having her students read Philip Larkin’s “This Be the Verse.” She’s persistently concerned with what’s appropriate and what’s not, and not only when teaching sex education. In English class she selects Tobias Wolfe’s This Boy’s Life, an obscenity-laced memoir of a dysfunctional family, and struggles over presenting such a failed adolescent portrait. Bynum has made a wonderfully endearing character out of Beatrice Hempel.

Ms. Hempel Chronicles By Sarah Shun-lien Bynum Cover Image
ISBN: 9780547247755
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Mariner Books - September 18th, 2009