A Video Tribute to a Novel Inspired by the Blues
by Traci Swain
A blues harp, a harmonica, a mouth organ—no matter what you call it, after reading Clayton Byrd Goes Underground by multiple-award-winning author Rita Williams-Garcia, Book Boy Max can’t wait to grab one and play in this video tribute to the novel and the music that infuses its pages.
Watch the Book Boys video with your class to get students excited to dive into this heartfelt novel of family, love, and the blues. Inspired by Clayton’s underground adventures, Allister, Elliott, and Max visit New York City, where legendary bluesmen performed, and share their favorite moments from Clayton Byrd Goes Underground:
• Max plays some tunes in Washington Square Park and truly appreciates Rita Williams-Garcia’s lyrical writing.
• Elliott ventures onto an E-train subway platform and reflects on the fascinating “underground” world of blues musicians.
• Allister hops on the train and muses on the characters’ human imperfections that make them so real to him.
What did your students think of this bluesy novel? We’d love to hear from you! If you’re able, please share with readers and other Scholastic Book Clubs teachers on Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #ScholasticBookClubs.
The Book Boys work in different departments at Scholastic Book Clubs. They formed a group to share a wide range of books and introduce students to the world of reading. Each week, the Book Boys select a book to feature. They make stories come alive by creating fun, educational, and engaging videos for teachers and families to use in the classroom or at home. The Book Boys, like everyone at Scholastic Book Clubs, want all kids to love to read and be proud to declare: “I am a reader!”