Your Own, Sylvia by Stephanie Hemphill

November 20th, 2007 by Brian Leave a reply »

a natural lyrical gift

Rarefied as Rembrandt,
a student like this appears once

Your Own, Sylvia is probably one of the most accessible biographies for students. Hemphill does a great job presenting the birth and death of Sylvia Plath.

The Beautiful

  1. There are lots of interesting details, presented in a way that is intriguing. (I never would have pictured famous poet Sylvia Plath as a guard on the high school basketball team.)
  2. Each little snippet is a poem – but a fictionalized poem by one of the people that knew her. The above quote is from Wilbury Crockett, her high school English teacher. But what’s extremely cool is that this quote uses words that Crockett actually said.
  3. The accessibility/readability of the book helps to paint a bigger picture of her life and motivations. The footnotes amidst the poems help to put events in historical context.

The Tragic

  1. Sylvia Plath ended her life violently. The book leads up to this, but does not paint it as the focal point of her life.
  2. There are no traditional paragraphs, only poems and footnotes.

Fans of Sonya Sones or Kelly Bingham will definitely enjoy this.


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