readergirlz is a literacy and social media project for teens, awarded the National Book Foundation's Innovations in Reading Prize. The rgz blog serves as a depot for news and YA reviews from industry professionals and teens. As volunteers return full force to their own YA writing, the organization continues to hold one initiative a year to impact teen literacy. All are welcome to "like" us on Facebook!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Featured Title: TRUE GRIT, by Charles Portis

Hey readergirlz:
Happy Monday and welcome to another Featured Title that perfectly exemplifies this month's theme, Risk-taking: True Grit by Charles Portis. 
This cult favorite novel has had a resurgence of popularity of late, due to the equally-riveting Coen brothers' remake of the movie of the same name. In case you've managed to miss both the book and the movie, here's the synopsis via Amazon: 

True Grit tells the story of Mattie Ross, who is just fourteen years of age when a coward going by the name of Tom Chaney shoots her father down in Fort Smith, Arkansas, and robs him of his life, his horse, and $150 in cash money. Mattie leaves home to avenge her father's blood. With the one-eyed Rooster Cogburn, the meanest available U.S. Marshal, by her side, Mattie pursues the homicide into Indian Territory. 

True Grit is eccentric, cool, straight, and unflinching, like Mattie herself. 

The Wall Street Journal had this to say about the book: 
"Charles Portis details the savagery of the 1870s frontier through an astonishing narrative voice: that of the 14-year-old Mattie Ross, a flinty, skeptical, Bible-thumping scourge."

If you haven't guessed by now, Mattie would have fit right in among the readergirlz - she's a fearless character who faces risk and danger without flinching, even when men twice her size - not to mention her age - falter. 

Now, we divas would never suggest watching the movie instead of reading the book, but it's nice to have more than one mode of storytelling to compare, contrast, and enhance our experience of a work. Here's a clip of Hailee Steinfeld taking about the character of Mattie. 
Enjoy! And tell us about some of your favorite books-to-movies featuring kick-butt, risk-taking female characters! 


Melissa Walker said...

Loved the movie (second one; didn't love the original film as much) and I adore Mattie. I can imagine her being a favorite book girl--must read!

Erin said...

I LOVE this book. I haven't seen either of the movies (really want to see the newer one) but the book is terrific and everybody should read it. :)

Lorie Ann Grover said...

This is so cool, Micol! Thank you, postergirlz for the pick. I have to both read and see TRUE GRIT. Now!

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