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School of Fear (Teen Fiction)?

"Everyone is afraid of something..." [publisher's tag line] is the way this new book series is pitched for teens. Fiction yes, and reality also yes? I think so. Gitty Daneshvari (2009). School of Fear (NY: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers) caught my attention because of the opening page, where Daneshvari "cutely" (politically?) makes us as readers (young or old) imagine what would it be like to have a school dedicated to helping people with fears. Hmmm... Here's the first page: 

SCHOOL OF FEAR (The wilderness outside Farmington, Massachusetts; exact location withheld for security purposes) Direct all correspondence to: P.O. Box 333, Farmington, MA 01201. 

Dear Applicant, 

I am pleased to inform you of your acceptance to the summer course at School of Fear. As you already know, School of Fear is an exceedingly select institution, run by the elusive Mrs. Wellington, aimed at eradicating children's fears through unorthodox methods. The small group of parents, doctors, alumni, and teachers awre of our existence vigilantly maintain our anonymity....We strongly advist all incoming applicants and their families only to discuss School of Fear in the confines of their home with the television on, water running, and dog barking." 

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That's a great intro. to how to introduce anyone to a School of Fear [lessness]... and, I applaud the author for this tongue-in-cheek descriptor and imaginary. Wow, wouldn't it be great to have a school so dedicated to "eradicating children's fears through unorthodox methods." Yes, bring it on.... and, I guess in fiction is the first step. Also note the author is well aware, humorously, but seriously, that indeed, such a school would have to be hidden from anyone (other than a rare few awakened individuals outside the fear-based trance of society) who may have unfriendly reception to such a school because it would actually be dedicated to freeing children from oppression (fearism-t)... 

 

 

 

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