HUSH Podcast #88 – Tell Me Three Things

HUSH Tell Me Three Things

Autumn Friedli  thinks everyone should read Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum. Listen in on the discussion in this episode of HUSH to see if hosts Thad Hartman, Miranda Ericsson, and Lissa Staley agree.

In this new series of You Made Me Read It! episodes, each podcast guest challenges the hosts with a book recommendation and – hopefully – everyone discovers great new reads.

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Sixteen-year old Jessie, still grieving over her mother’s death, must move from Chicago to “The Valley,” with a new stepfamily but no new friends until an anonymous fellow student emails and offers to help her navigate the school’s treacherous social waters. Is it an elaborate hoax? Or can she rely on the person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody for some much-needed help? Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum mixes comedy and tragedy, love and loss, pain and elation in a debut YA novel whose characters will come to feel like friends.

Show Notes – Tell Me Three Things

Lissa, Thad, Miranda and Autumn discussing Tell Me Three Things

Lissa, Thad, Miranda and Autumn discussing “Tell Me Three Things” by Julie Buxbaum

Book Discussion Questions for Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum

  1. Our main character’s favorite word is waffle. Why is this appropriate to her current situation?
    Waffle. Definition: waver, vacillate, equivocate, sit on the fence, fail to make up one’s mind
  2. Most of the main characters have been affected by the recent death of a close family member, but this book about grief focuses more on being alone than being sad. Why? How do the characters each handle their grief?
  3. At the beginning of the book, Jessie hates the Valley and wants to return to Chicago. What changes her mind by the end of the book? Is romance the only difference?
  4. Jessie feels very alone and isolated at the beginning of the book, especially when the differences between her and the ultra-intimidating students at her new LA prep school become obvious. How much of her loneliness is self-imposed?
  5. The book features email, IM and text conversations throughout. How did these add to the story? It is true that texting or email lets you be the best edited and revised version of yourself?
  6. Who would you cast in the movie version of “Tell Me Three Things”?
  7. What are your favorite tropes in teen romance or teen movies?
  8.  How does going back to Chicago for a few days help Jessie move forward?
  9.  Jessie isn’t the only person that Somebody/Nobody contacts. What are the benefits and risks of these anonymous messages?
  10. As Jessie is wondering who Somebody/Nobody might be, she has several ideas. Why does she suspect certain people? Why doesn’t she doesn’t believe that the real-life Somebody/Nobody could actually like her?

These original discussion questions for Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum may be freely adapted and reproduced.

Add this to your reading list

Coming up in three weeks, on the next episode of You Made Me Read It! – Daniel Fogt recommends The Martian by Andy Weir. Subscribe via iTunes or check back after May 3.

Thanks for listening!

Interested in hearing more like this? Check out some of our other popular episodes including Books into Movies, Best Books of 2015Kansas Notable Books, and interviews with regional authors including Angela Cervantes, James Young and Sandra Moran.

Thad Lissa Miranda work selfie
Thad, Lissa & Miranda

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Lissa Staley helps people use the library. She is a Book Evangelist, Trivia Emcee, Classics Made Modern book discussion leader, NaNoWriMo Municipal Liaison, and frequent library customer. She loves her kids, being a librarian, living in Topeka, and helping people form connections and community. (She's the Community Connections Librarian!) She reads a new book every few days, but is enjoying the audiobook of "Empress of Forever" by Max Gladstone, the ebook "When We Were Magic" by Sarah Gailey and is eagerly awaiting John Scalzi's "The Last Emperox" in April!