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Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale

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Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale Cover

ISBN13: 9780689849244
ISBN10: 0689849249
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Reading Group Guide

A Reading Guide for TITHE, VALIANT, and IRONSIDE

By Holly Black

ABOUT THE BOOKS

Holly Black's first Young Adult novel, the urban fantasy/faerie tale Tithe, focuses on a sixteen-year-old girl named Kaye who is actually a pixie, only at first she doesn't know it. Kaye starts to piece together the strange story of her real identity when she and her mother return to the New Jersey town where she grew up, and Kaye comes in contact with the faeries she used to play with as a child and a wounded knight, Roiben, who will change her life forever. Black's second book, Valiant, picks up where Tithe leaves off, but follows a different girl — a human named Val — who catches her boyfriend and her mother in a compromising position and runs away from home. In New York City, Val hooks up with a strange group of homeless teens and joins them in living in an abandoned subway station. It's not long before Val learns that these teens are not like anyone she's ever met — they work as couriers for a troll and come in contact with faeries on a regular basis. Ironside, Black's third book, returns readers to Kaye's story, beginning two months after the ending of Tithe. Roiben is about to take the throne of the Unseelie Court and there will undoubtedly be a war, but then Kaye makes a foolish declaration and is sent on an impossible quest. Luis and Dave from Valiant become an integral part of the story as Kaye is forced to visit Silarial, the Seelie queen, to try to save Roiben and herself.

DISCUSSION TOPICS

How does Tithe compare with other fairy tale books you've read in the past? Did you like the modern setting?

If you were Kaye, what gift would you have given to the kelpie if the broken carousel horse had not been available?

What other orders would you have asked Rath Roiben Rye to carry out if you suddenly knew his full name? (Don't forget his skill of turning leaves into money!)

For New Jersey and New York readers: Name all of the real locations that were mentioned in the three books — for example: Allaire State Park, CafÉ des Artistes, etc.

If you were able to choose, would you want to be a part of the Seelie court, the Unseelie court, the solitary fey, or the human world? Why?

At the end of Tithe, what do you imagine happened to Roiben and Kaye? Before you read the sequel, how did you feel about the ending of Tithe? Would you have ended the book differently?

Were you excited to see cameos by some of the characters from Tithe in Valiant?

Who is your favorite character from Valiant? Why? What qualities does this character possess that make him/her most interesting to you?

If Valiant was made into a movie, what current film or TV stars would you cast as Val, Lolli, Dave, Luis, Ravus and the others?

Put yourself in Lolli's shoes — tell the story of Valiant from her point of view. What do you think happened to Lolli at the end of the book?

What did you think of the use of the faerie drug "Never" in the story? Did you think that the book showed enough of the downside of using drugs? If Dave had never taken the drug, how do you think his story would change? What about Lolli? Val?

We know that Kaye got her GED during the two months between the end of Tithe and the beginning of Ironside. What else do you think happened during this interim? How did Kaye cope with the loss of Janet, her mom moving away, her relationship with Roiben, etc.?

Ironside obviously takes place in December — what are the clues that tell you what time of year it is?

If you were cursed like Corny, would you immediately get to the ocean to cure yourself or would you attempt to touch someone or something? Whom or what?

Do you think it was a mistake for Kaye to have the young human brought back to Ellen? Do you think the girl will grow up to be a normal person?

If you were in Kaye's position with no need for college and the ability to create a new life for yourself, what would you do? What do you think of Kaye's coffee shop plans and her idea of dividing her time between it and Roiben?

Which adventurous duo do you think had a more challenging or exciting task: Val and Luis going after Mabry for Ravus's heart or Kaye and Corny traveling to the Seelie Court to strike a deal with Silarial?

Should there be additional books in this series? How would the story continue? Which character besides Kaye or Val would you like to see explored in another book?

Were any of the quotes at the beginning of each chapter familiar to you? Choose a few of your favorites and discuss how they relate to what happened in the story at that point.

RESEARCH AND ACTIVITIES

Create a Tithe board game that follows Kaye's travels between the Seelie and Unseelie courts and the human world. Playing pieces can represent something about each character — Kaye's purple cat suit, Roiben's long white hair, Corny's beat-up car, etc. Use obstacles like iron, thorns, ogres, and the Unseelie queen. Make minor characters part of the game (Janet, Kenny, Ellen) by detouring major players to save them from the kelpie. Be creative!

Make a clay sculpture, a painting, a drawing, or other piece of art of your favorite character from any of the books. What do you think they would actually look like?

Make an Unseelie feast! Re-create dishes that Kaye sees when she sneaks into the Unseelie court, then invent your own interesting recipes.

Write a spell for creating a glamour, then read it aloud to the group. Describe the new look you have created.

Choose your favorite scene and act it out in front of the group. If several people wish to be involved, choose a scene that features many characters. Make your performance as simple or as elaborate as you choose by adding costumes and props or just reading dialogue aloud from the book.

Assuming that Kaye's grandmother lives in Long Branch, New Jersey, get an atlas and map out the route that Kaye and Corny (and later, Luis) took during the course of their travels in Ironside.

Design your own sword — either patterned after the glass one Ravus used to teach Val how to fight or one of your own creation. Draw a detailed picture of your design.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

crowyhead, May 10, 2008 (view all comments by crowyhead)
This was a re-read, but since I want to read Ironside and Valiant in the near future, I thought I'd re-read Tithe first. As I noticed the first time, it definitely feels like a first novel; there's a certain self-consciousness to parts of the book, particularly Black's tendency to name-drop favorite singers and authors, and the interactions between the characters are sometimes a little stiff. But she gets the amoral (and sometimes malevolent) nature of Faerie down very well, and it's a fun, fast read.
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(5 of 6 readers found this comment helpful)
Stephanie Johnson, April 6, 2008 (view all comments by Stephanie Johnson)
I was hooked the first 3 pages. the first two books, tithe and valiant, are so different but the third, ironside, really put a good twist to connect it all together. do read!
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780689849244
Author:
Black, Holly
Publisher:
Margaret K. McElderry Books
Author:
Spalenka, Greg
Author:
Cremer, Andrea
Author:
Levithan, David
Location:
New York
Subject:
General
Subject:
Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Magic
Subject:
Children's 12-Up - Fiction - Fantasy
Subject:
Legends, Myths, & Fables - Other
Subject:
Magic
Subject:
Supernatural
Subject:
Fairies
Subject:
Fantasy & Magic
Subject:
Children s-Science Fiction and Fantasy
Subject:
Love & Romance
Subject:
faeries; fey; changeling; trickster; dark; elfpunk; Modern Faerie Tales; nomad; alcohol; YA; teen classic; fantasy; magic; drugs; wings; Newbery Honor Winner; award winner
Copyright:
Edition Number:
1st ed.
Edition Description:
Hardback
Series Volume:
106-946
Publication Date:
October 2002
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
from 7
Language:
English
Illustrations:
f/c jacket
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
8 x 5 in 12.145 oz
Age Level:
12-17

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Related Subjects

Children's » Science Fiction and Fantasy » General
Young Adult » General

Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$8.50 In Stock
Product details 320 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9780689849244 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Tripping the dark fantastic with newcomer Black means pixie dust may very well include blood spatter, sharp thorns and bits of broken glass....A gripping read."
"Review" by , "Dark, edgy, beautifully written, and compulsively readable, this is sure to be a word-of-mouth hit with teens, even a few usually unmoved by magic and monsters."
"Synopsis" by ,
A magical romance between a boy cursed with invisibility and the one girl who can see him, by New York Times bestselling authors Andrea Cremer and David Levithan.

Stephen is used to invisibility. He was born that way. Invisible. Cursed.

Elizabeth sometimes wishes for invisibility. When you’re invisible, no one can hurt you. So when her mother decides to move the family to New York City, Elizabeth is thrilled. It’s easy to blend in there.

Then Stephen and Elizabeth meet. To Stephen’s amazement, she can see him. And to Elizabeth’s amazement, she wants him to be able to see her—all of her. But as the two become closer, an invisible world gets in their way—a world of grudges and misfortunes, spells and curses. And once they’re thrust into this world, Elizabeth and Stephen must decide how deep they’re going to go—because the answer could mean the difference between love and death.

From the critically acclaimed and bestselling authors Andrea Cremer, who wrote the Nigthshade series, and David Levithan, who wrote Every Day and co-wrote Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist with Rachel Cohen and Will Grayson, Will Grayson with John Green, as well as many other novels, comes a remarkable story about the unseen elements of attraction, the mortal risks of making yourself known, and the invisible desires that live within us all.

"Synopsis" by , Welcome to

the realm of

very scary

faeries!

Sixteen-year-old Kaye is a modern nomad. Fierce and independent, she travels from city to city with her mother's rock band until an ominous attack forces the sixteen-year-old back to her childhood home. There, amid the industrial, blue-collar New Jersey backdrop, Kaye soon finds herself an unwilling pawn in an ancient power struggle between two rival faerie kingdoms — a struggle that could very well mean her death.

Newcomer Holly Black's enormously powerful voice weaves teen angst, riveting romance, and capriciously diabolical faerie folk into an enthralling, engaging, altogether original reading experience.

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