Archives for posts with tag: middle school

fizafaceTwins clash and a teacher is ruined by his peers in Raman and Sunny: Middle School Blues, author Fiza Pathan‘s inspiring new full-length novel. It is a crown of jewels to entertain readers and sit atop her several award-winning books.

  • She tackles bullying, being a twin, parenting and suicide risk while disastrous tween-age errors in judgment and villainous teacher politics wreak havoc. Her fresh outlook as a child of the nineties (now a seasoned teacher and tutor of grade-six-plus students) brings sound content and intelligent resolution to the story.Raman and Sunny ebook (1)Raman Sharma, only a few minutes older than his brother Sunny, is fed up with leading the life of a twin and desperate to establish his own, separate identity. At the beginning of the book they don’t even walk to school together any more, although they are in the same class. Uncontrolled emotions of lying, anger, jealousy and revenge take over, leading to despicable acts of betrayal and violence. A new teacher with a revolutionary philosophy of education as a “holistic experience” made up of “Question, Research, Debate” arrives on the scene. Sunil Sir is exceedingly popular with the students and, also, a pretty good detective.
  • Pathan’s work attains classic standards with its interesting plot, satisfying structure, universal theme (of redemption), suspenseful climax and elegant style. It falls into the categories of ‘literary’ fiction for its social commentary and in-depth characterization, and ‘paraliterary’ fiction for its fast pace and focus on action. The “pizza” forgiveness scene made this reader cry.
  • The novel is set in Pathan’s native Mumbai, with a few chapters retreating for a bittersweet interlude at a school for orphans surrounded by beautiful roses, but occasionally disrupted by unwanted wild life.
  • This book is very worthwhile reading, particularly for children and their parents involved with middle schools. Unforgettable sentences such as, “A child with an inquiring mind will always achieve academic excellence” and “Now I realize the importance of having a brother in my life who cares for me” could even transform readers’ lives.

Happy Reading from Cozy Book Basics


6209113I’ve discovered a fantastic e-book and suggest you may want to buy a copy too (for $2.99) and write a review to encourage the author. Here’s why:

  • At age 23, Fiza Pathan of Mumbai, India feels “totally cool and self-actualized” due to reading the classics since childhood
  • reading a classic a week or a month is a habit she’s trying to spread to all parents, teachers and students
  •  her 90-page Amazon e-book, Classics: Why We Should Encourage Children to Read the Classics, states her case with passion, personality and  precision. The 90-pages divide into 17 mostly four-page chapters
  • she lists favorite girls’ and boys’ classics as voted on by her students
  • language skills and vocabulary, imagination, general knowledge, love for literature, descriptive powers and morals develop from reading them

The content is particularly rich with details of her own and her students’ development.  Artistic and scientific temperaments are dealt with engagingly in the chapters entitled My Encounter with Dracula, Frankenstein and Science, and Classical Characters Who Have Influenced My Reality.

Pathan’s insightful tips are gems for the reader to take away:

  • choosing the right first classic is very important in the education process
  • classics cause children get better grades, speak and write articulately,  and grow up to be happy people
  • classics are like bound movie scripts for our brain production house
  • classics are the safest and most time-tested method to ignite the flame of creativity
  • classics are defined as “books of all time rather than books of the hour” and “clean, decent fiction written primarily to tell a story rather than make money”
  • classics are tools of information that encourage the student to think practically
  • more than anything else, classics give a middle school student some direction in life
  • The world is not a humdrum affair of facts but an adventure without limitations
  • Children need a bit of good fiction to nourish them in a world that seems out to kill them
  • A good writer will manage to help the reader create a good ending for him or herself in real life

Teachers will want to adopt Pathan’s original techniques for enlivening English classes. Parents and grandparents will be empowered to see how they can have an effect. It’s easy to follow her prescription of reading a classic a week or month by downloading classics available free due to the Gutenberg project.

As well as feeling “totally cool and self-actualized”, Pathan also writes, “The growing globalized society of the late 1990‘s has developed to such greatness that though I am 23 I feel completely ancient”. In wisdom, yes, she is ancient. With our support, her book can be a work of rejuvenation, not just for literacy but for humanity also.

Margaret Kell Virany   lover of language and literature, note-taker of Northrop Frye, journalist, editor, author