Sometimes We Tell the Truth

Sometimes We Tell the Truth In this contemporary retelling of The Canterbury Tales a group of teens on a bus ride to Washington DC each tell a story some fantastical some realistic some downright scandalous in pursuit of th

  • Title: Sometimes We Tell the Truth
  • Author: Kim Zarins
  • ISBN: 9781481464994
  • Page: 109
  • Format: Hardcover
  • In this contemporary retelling of The Canterbury Tales, a group of teens on a bus ride to Washington, DC, each tell a story some fantastical, some realistic, some downright scandalous in pursuit of the ultimate prize a perfect score.Jeff boards the bus for the Civics class trip to Washington, DC, with a few things on his mind Six hours trapped with his classmates soundsIn this contemporary retelling of The Canterbury Tales, a group of teens on a bus ride to Washington, DC, each tell a story some fantastical, some realistic, some downright scandalous in pursuit of the ultimate prize a perfect score.Jeff boards the bus for the Civics class trip to Washington, DC, with a few things on his mind Six hours trapped with his classmates sounds like a disaster waiting to happen He somehow ended up sitting next to his ex best friend, who he hasn t spoken to in years He still feels guilty for the major part he played in pranking his teacher, and the trip s chaperone, Mr Bailey And his best friend Cannon, never one to be trusted and banned from the trip, has something big planned for DC.But Mr Bailey has an idea to keep everyone in line each person on the bus is going to have the chance to tell a story It can be fact or fiction, realistic or fantastical, dark or funny or sad It doesn t matter Each person gets a story, and whoever tells the best one will get an automatic A in the class.But in the middle of all the storytelling, with secrets and confessions coming out, Jeff only has one thing on his mind can he live up to the super successful story published in the school newspaper weeks ago that convinced everyone that he was someone smart, someone special, and someone with something to say.In her debut novel, Kim Zarins breathes new life into Chaucer s The Canterbury Tales in a fresh and contemporary retelling that explores the dark realities of high school, and the subtle moments that bring us all together.

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      Published :2019-08-06T13:27:12+00:00

    About "Kim Zarins"

    1. Kim Zarins

      I m a medievalist at Sacramento State University, and I also teach a ton of children s literature I m coming out with my debut YA novel in Fall 2016, a modernized retelling of the Canterbury Tales called Sometimes We Tell the Truth You don t have to know anything about Chaucer to enjoy the story, and if you know the Canterbury Tales, you ll see the novel on a whole other level I hope you ll like it If you want to chat about books, it would be great to hear from you.

    511 thoughts on “Sometimes We Tell the Truth”

    1. I accidentally clicked that I wanted to read my own book--oops! May as well go full-scale cheesy with excitement, with all five starts glittering, and tell you I loved writing this book so much. I'm a medievalist, so retelling Chaucer's Canterbury Tales with modern teens was a dream come true. Whether you have never read Chaucer or are a complete fan, I hope you'll like my debut novel!


    2. I am obsessed with this book. I generally enjoy modernizations/adaptations of classics, and as a medieval lit student, I knew I would like this book. I didn't know I would LOVE it. Zarins pulls off the framing narrative deftly here, with nods to the pilgrims of the original without relying on the Canterbury Tales too much. Each of the students --and the teacher and bus driver as well--are well-developed without too much exposition. You can tell each of the characters have lives outside of the st [...]


    3. I was blown away by this book and okay yes I'm a Chaucer fan but that's not why I loved it so much. Interestingly it reminded me of Rowell's Fan Girl, with its mix of original fan fiction and storyline. Jeff Chaucer's confusion with his friendships and his sexuality were so well done. In fact all the characters-and there's a LOT are so fully realized. How Zarins managed to keep so many voices distinct is just amazing. I loved all the stories the students told-even Cookie's! There was a little so [...]


    4. *Received bound manuscript via YALLWest! Aware that this is not the final copy and that there will be typos; this did not hinder my experience.*-First Canterbury Tales retelling I've ever heard of and read-main character ponders his sexuality, also class diversity, thumbs up for diversity!-theme of discovering and how there is always a story behind the story-evidence how there is always hints of the author in their books.-liked the ending-chapters were short --> fast-ish read (considering how [...]


    5. Oh wowThis book, guys. It SLAYS. Yes, it's a genius contemporary retelling of The Canterbury Tales, but it also has this fantastic Breakfast Club vibe that's brave and honest and raw. It's about loneliness and togetherness, and it's about turning away from things and accepting things, and it's about finding out who you are by discovering who you aren't. A riveting story that I couldn't put down.Bravo, Kim Zarins.


    6. Seconds after reading it: "Oh my fuck. This. Finally! The first book of the yr I want to shake in people's faces and scream, "READ THIS FUCKING BOOK NOW!""First, I’ll admit it.‘The Canterbury Tales’ collects dust on my shelf and I can't recall where I got it, though I am pretty sure I stole it from the work lounge, because, after all I am like a non-cannibalistic Liv Moore, and my craving is books.You'll be able to relate to this one, trust me! It conjures up camping trips, substitutes wil [...]


    7. I was able to read an ARC of this book, and I loved it. The voices of the teenagers were so great, I immediately felt like I was on the bus with them. And while, at first, some of the kids, the boys especially, seemed superficial, their stories, and the reactions to other's stories hinted at depths that made them really come alive. Jeff is the narrator, and he has many secrets that eventually are revealed, with several more only hinted at. I'd love to see these kids in another book maybe on the [...]


    8. This is a well written book, however I'm not going to rate it because it didn't hit what I happened to be in the mood for in my reading. That's no fault of the book. I wanted something light and breezy and fast and this was not that.This book would work well in a discussion group be it a book club, or even better, a classroom. It's a retelling of the Canterbury Tales. It's set in a contemporary setting. The narrator/mc wasn't someone I could relate to or that I even liked for most of the book un [...]


    9. This was an absolutely AMAZING read!I've never read the Caunterbury (?) Tales and probably only heard of it a few times so, I can't say much about how these two stories relate to one another. I do know that as a a modern high school setting book I thought this was done really well.For starters, I thought it was cool how the cast was -somewhat- diverse. Really, we only know the skin colors of a few of the teens and I think that is cool because it leaves everyone else open for interpretation. Also [...]


    10. Let me say flat out, YOU NEED TO READ THIS BRILLIANT DEBUT by Kim Zarins. You need to know absolutely nothing about Canterbury Tales (C.T.) to fully enjoy it. Zarins takes the C.T. format - travelers coming together on a journey who each tell a tale - and makes it her own masterful, engrossing and moving story. The majority of the action takes place on the bus from Connecticut to DC and each student on board tells a story - fact or fiction - for the ultimate prize of an A in Mr. Bailey's class. [...]


    11. After sitting 4-hours-a-day, 3-days-a-week for 11 weeks in a lecture ALL about Chaucer, I was DONE. That class was not easy to sit through without checking FaceBook, E-mail, or texting a few friends to come rescue me. Chaucer was not my beloved Bard, and he certainly wasn’t someone I planned on re-reading — unless it was on the M.A. Exam.Thanks to a 2-week summer course, I was given the opportunity to read an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) of Sometimes We Tell the Truth. Let me tell you, I [...]


    12. Kim Zarins's SOMETIMES WE TELL THE TRUTH is a story within a story within a story, each one entertaining, and each hiding wisdom at its core. First, there's the story of a class of hormonally hyped-up high school seniors, on their way to DC on a bus, who've been challenged to a storytelling contest by their teacher. Second, there are the no-holds-barred tales they tell, both raunchy and far-fetched, to win the prize of an easy A: a zany mix of tales that mirror those of Chaucer's bawdy pilgrims [...]


    13. I picked up this ARC at ALA (American Library Association) Annual conference since I forgot the book I was reading and needed something for the plane on the way home. I didn't realize that it was a retelling of The Canterbury Tales when I started, but something seemed familiar. I dig stories about storytelling, the power of story and how much the stories we tell reflect ourselves. I thought this was great - sad, heartwarming, funny, fantasy, fanfic, and even zombies! Great debut, I think teens w [...]


    14. The time has finally come for me to write a review for this book! I was supposed to do so right after finishing it, whoops. But I LOVED this book. Like a lot. Not just the casual “I thought this book was great” kind of love, but the “I GOT SO ATTACHED TO THE CHARACTERS” kind of love. There are many things I loved about this book. First being that it was a modern retelling of a classic story. Like, how cool is that?! How many authors can write a retelling of a book written centuries ago a [...]


    15. Graded By: BrianCover Story: Now Draweth Cut, Er That We Ferrer TwynneDrinking Buddy: Wel Loved He by the Morwe a Sop in WynTestosterone Level: To Lyven in Delit Was Evere His Wone, For He Was Epicurus Owene SoneTalky Talk: In This Viage Shal Telle Tales TweyeBonus Factors: In Felaweshipe, and Pilgrimes Were They Alle, That Toward Caunterbury Wolden Ryde; Here Bygynneth the Bookof the Tales of CaunterburyBromance Status: I Saugh Nat This Yeer So Myrie a Compaignye Atones in this Herberwe as is N [...]


    16. 4.5 StarsEASE READ THIS BOOK!I stumbled upon it at the library, and it is a gem. Zarins is able to modernize the Canterbury Tales in a way that feels fresh and relevant, and she is able to create 24 completely unique character voices. The characterization is spot on, and the teenage humour is nailed perfectly. The references are very relevant, and the characters all seem so real. At times it can be a bit melodramatic, with the "everyone's got a story that could break your heart" theme, but the p [...]


    17. "I would have told you all to follow your hearts and put your own experiences before anyone else's advice. No one knows you better than you do, so be true to that."


    18. What a nice surprise!Sometimes We Tell The Truth (SWTTT) is a contemporary retelling of The Canterbury Tales.I didn't even know The Canterbury Tales when I picked this tittle, so my opinion is based on this book alone, not goin to compare this book with The Canterbury Tales whether this retelling live up the original work or not.SWTTT is when teenagers not overly angst over everything, and you'll surprised how much fun they are. A group of teens on a bus ride to Washington, DC, for a field trip, [...]


    19. This is a great book and a great retelling. The one thing I disliked was that there were no trigger warnings for this book. This book has a lot of discussions on consent and many times uses non-consensual stories to prove a point. I still enjoyed the book for the most part, because of the great writing, stories, and discussions, but I couldn't fully enjoy it due to the content of some of the stories.


    20. Posting review here soon. Was waiting for book tour date.I am so excited to be a part of this blog tour because I was so curious about this book! I haven't ever read a retelling of the Canterbury tales, but this was hilarious, creative, thoughtful, and perfect for today's readers.This is the story of six teens aboard a bus for a school trip to Washington, D.C. Sounds pretty lame, right? You would be WRONG. The student's teacher, Mr. Bailey, has something up his sleeve. All of the students must t [...]


    21. I loved Sometimes We Tell the Truth. It was so good. I read it around two weeks ago (maybe longer) and I still am not over it. I am having a hard time thinking I'd something else to say other than I loved it and it was so good without spoiling the book. I just have so many feelings for this book. It was so interesting and captivating. I didn't ever want to put it down. I had to take a break to watch Wonder Woman with my family and I ended up having a hard time focusing on the movie because I jus [...]


    22. Okay I know that because i'm a 12th grade English Teacher i'm automatically more inclined to totally nerd out over books that adapt the material I teach but YOU GUYS! This book is freaking FLAWLESS!As I was reading I was picking things that I could use in class to supplement our reading and I was lucky enough to get to talk on Twitter with Kim Zarins about the ideas i'm having for how to incorporate her book with my teaching.She does EVERYTHING I do when I teach these stories. It helps SO MUCH t [...]


    23. When I read the first story about zombies vying for the love of a human scientist, I knew I would be in for a wild ride in this modern retelling of the Canterbury Tales, set on a senior class bus trip to DC. Kim Zarins has done a masterful job of weaving together stories that are funny, tragic, bawdy, romantic, and surprising--much like the characters who tell them. The narrator, Jeff Chaucer, is particularly compelling as he faces both the usual struggle of trying to fit into the high school so [...]


    24. Who thought a Chaucer could become a 21st Century storyteller? This is a beautifully told, fun and heartbreaking story about a group of teens and their multi-layered journey to Washington DC, as they interact, joke, offend, and learn about each other, divulging their personal truths through stories. Zarins, and so the reader, move seamlessly between the reality of the bus ride and the teens' tales, which range from bawdy to platonic, from zombies to kings and queens to Harry Potter and beyond. T [...]


    25. A retelling of the canterbury tales??? as a student of anguage and literature how could I not be excited about this?? I NEED THIS NOW!


    26. “It is a fact universally acknowledged, that a young, unmarried woman is in want of a dolphin.”In a modern day retelling of Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales, twenty-two high school seniors sharing a Civics class, their young, hopeful teacher, Mr. Bailey, and a disgruntled bus driver take a class trip to Washington D.C. How does Kim Zarins’ debut novel, Sometimes We Tell the Truth, adapt The Canterbury Tales to a modern day high school field trip? Zarins has each student tell a story and wh [...]


    27. To be honest I went into this book with no previous knowledge of Chaucer or his Tales. My mom had gotten me a copy at a Harry Potter event, so I decided to read it(It was signed personally to me! How could I not be interested?). Anyways I instantly was hooked after reading the first page and I fell completely head-over-heels for this book after reading the prologue!The uniqueness of this story astounded me, there were many references to things I loved but the plot was something I had never seen [...]


    28. Sometimes We Tell the Truth is a book I was introduced to during a college-level Chaucer class, but never got the chance to really read through it. As I am introducing Chaucer to my high schoolers, I found myself remembering how fun & engaging this book seemed and that it would be worth revisiting. Sometimes We Tell the Truth is a great rendition of the classic Canterbury Tales that has humor (although we can't deny Chaucer didn't have humor) & a playful writing style to keep readers eng [...]



    29. Such a fun, clever retelling! I love how the author modernized medieval writing, and I loved watching the students connect as they shared their stories. I've read a few stories from The Canterbury Tales (not the entire book though), and while I wish I had been more familiar with the source material, you don't need an extensive knowledge of medieval literature to enjoy Sometimes We Tell the Truth. And the author's note provides a helpful overview of how the YA retelling relates to its medieval in [...]


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