In Cynthia Lord's Touch Blue, Tess’s hope that Aaron, her new foster brother, will be more like Anne of Green Gables and less like the Great Gilly Hopkins got me thinking about other characters who make literary references.
This is one of those moments when I wish I were sitting at a table with three or four other book-lovers to come up with more. I know there are more. The example that leaped to mind, of course, was Mira in When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead, and her many references to Meg in Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time. And, though it’s slightly different because Jack becomes fascinated with Walter Dean Myers as an author rather than one particular character in his work, I do love how Miss Stretchberry starts Jack on his way in Love that Dog by Sharon Creech, with examples of various poets, and then he finds Myers’ work and mines the author’s books himself. In John Green’s Paper Towns, Walt Whitman’s “Song of Myself” from Leaves of Grass holds clues that are key to the mystery of Margo’s whereabouts, but that’s (obviously) not a children’s book.
I know there are more. Can you think of other books whose characters make literary references to sum up their situation? We’ll have a virtual round-table discussion.