Liar & Spy is recommended for students aged 9 to Consequently, these notes are aimed at upper primary and lower secondary classrooms (Middle School). Enjoy this sneak preview of LIAR & SPY by Rebecca Stead on sale August 7th ! When seventh grader Georges moves into a new apartment, he meets Safer, a twelve-year old coffee-drinking loner and self-appointed spy. Georges is happy to meet Safer because at school, Georges is. Editorial Reviews. From School Library Journal. Gr Georges's life is turned upside down Liar & Spy - site edition by Rebecca Stead. Download it once.
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The instant New York Times bestseller from the author of the Newbery Medal winner When You Reach Me: a story about spies, games, and friendship. The first . The instant New York Times bestseller from the author of the Newbery Medal winner When You Reach Me: a story about spies, games, and friendship. A Reader's Theater Script for. Liar & Spy. Written by Rebecca Stead. Script Adaptation by Gail Shipley, TBA Committee Member. Readers: Narrator 1. Georges.
Catching up, she calls it. Dallass sneaker is resting on the soft spot right below my solar plexus.
It hurts. I do some shallow breathing, because I dont want his heel to puncture any of my internal organs. We were losing anyway, I tell him, though I have no idea whether thats true. It was tied, he snarls, and I try to shrug, which is hard to do when youre lying on your back with someones foot in your gut. I want to tell him what I know, which is that the fate of the world doesnt hang on whether a bunch of seventh graders win a game of volleyball in some really old school in Brooklyn that smells like a hundred years of lunch.
Instead, I wrap my hands around his ankle, and lift. Ive been doing morning weights with Dad for about a yearjust these little blue plastic ones that tuck under my parents bed, but theres a cumulative effect. Dallas circles his arms uselessly and then hits the floor. Its a harmless bounce.
I would never want to hurt him. I know that soon all of this will be a distant memory for both of us. But pain is pain, and I would rather avoid it. Dad says Im holding the door, but the door is actually propped open with a scratched-up wooden triangle that reminds me of the blocks area in pre-K.
What Im really doing is looking down at that wedge of wood and thinking about how I used to make these super-long car ramps with Jason, and how Jason dresses like a skateboarder now, which he isnt, and how whenever Carter Dixon or Dallas Llewellyn calls me Gorgeous, Jason just stands there. I lean past the lobby door so I can see up and down the empty sidewalk.
Its super-bright out, and the trees make cool shadows on the pavement. Dads in the moving truck, making sure the furniture comes out in a certain order. Im guessing hes being about as helpful as I am, standing guard over my wooden wedge.
Im hearing a sound. Its a funny, high-pitched buzzing that I think maybe Ive been hearing for a while, without noticing. There should be a word for that, when you hear something 8 and simultaneously realize that its been swimming around in your brain for five minutes without your permission. I glance around to see whats buzzing, first at the ancient yellow chandelier above my head, then at the shiny silver intercom on the wall. Its the kind with a keypad and a little camera that lets the people in their apartments see whos in the lobby before deciding whether to let them in.
Dad has already shown me how the whole thing works. I take a step toward the intercom, and the buzzing stops. I go back to thinking about Jason, who was my every-dayafter-school friend until the end of sixth grade, when he went to sleepaway camp for seven weeks and then started sitting at the cool table in September like hed been there all along.
All of a sudden theres a whole lot of noise coming from somewhere right above me, a weird mix of rattling, clicking, and pounding that echoes around the tiled lobby, and then two dogs appear on the landing at the top of the stairs, a giant yellow one and a small dark one. Theres a boy about my size behind the dogs, holding the twisted leashes in one hand and trying to keep a grip on the banister with the other. I flatten myself against the open door, thinking the dogs will pull the boy past me and out the front, but they dont.
Instead, they drag him almost in a circle, to a door underneath the stairs. They make the turn so fast that he actually hops on one leg for a few seconds, almost tipping over sideways, like in a cartoon. The door under the stairs is closed. The dogs wait in front of it, wiggling and wagging, while the boy, not once looking at me, struggles to get a huge ring of keys out of his front jeans 9 pocket.
He picks a key, unlocks the door, and pushes it open. I can see another set of stairs, going down. The dogs surge, pulling the boy down the stairs, and the door slams shut behind them. And then everything is quiet again. I know exactly what Dad would say if he were here.
He wouldnt mention the weird stuffhow the dogs ran straight to a mystery door under the stairs, or the kids enormous key ring. Dad would only say, Look, Georges! A boy your age. Its not a real Seurat, because that would make us millionaires.
Its a poster from a museum.
I feel a little better as soon as I see it on the wall above the couch, exactly where it always was at home. I think we both do. Two summers ago we went to Chicago, where the real painting takes up one entire wall of the Art Institute. What you cant tell from our poster is that the picture is painted entirely with dots. Tiny little dots. Close up, they just look like blobs of paint. But if you stand back, you see that they make this whole nice park scene, with people walking around in old-fashioned clothes.
Theres even a monkey on a leash. Mom says that our Seurat poster reminds her to look at the big picture. Like when it hurts to think about selling the house, she tells herself how that bad feeling is just one dot in the giant Seurat painting of our lives. When I was little, I thought my parents were calling our poster the Sir Ott, which is how you pronounce Seurat, the name of the artist from France who painted the picture. And 11 I still think of the poster that waylike its this guy, Sir Ott, who has always lived with us.
In my head, Sir Ott has a kind of personality. Very polite. Very quiet. He watches a lot of television. Seurats first name?
It was Georges. Heres a piece of advice you will probably never use: If you want to name your son after Georges Seurat, you could call him George, without the S. Just to make his life easier. After Sir Ott is up on the wall and perfectly level , Dad and I start with the kitchen stuff, unwrapping dishes and glasses.
Liar & Spy
Its amazing how much work it is to move just twelve blocks. Im tossing all the silverware into a drawer until I remember that Dad will probably have a heart attack because he cant stand to see things all jumbled up like that, and so I stop and do it rightforks with forks, tablespoons separate from teaspoons. We make a good team, and soon we have about ten giant plastic bags stuffed with the crumpled-up newspaper everything was wrapped in. Let me show you the basement, Dad says.
Thats where the garbage and recycling go. Because the garbage is my job. At our house, doing the garbage meant wheeling two big plastic bins out to the curb. I could take both at once, steering them in two directions around the crack on the broken concrete path and bringing them back together again on the other side. Its not as easy as it sounds. Its a big crack: I tripped over it when I was five and chipped my front tooth.
I imagine the new owners of our house hitting that crack 12 on trash day, their cans tipping and their garbage going everywhere. Dad and I toss the bags of newspaper into the hall, making a small mountain.
When the elevator opens, theres a guy in it, standing next to two big suitcases. Hes wearing a baseball cap with a fish on it. Dad tells him well take the next one. Dont want to drown you, he says, pointing at our massive pile of recycling.
I appreciate it! Dad and I watch the beat-up metal arrow on the wall above the elevator move from 3, to 2, then L, for lobby. Dad loves old stuff like that, like the big yellow chandelier downstairs and the tiled hallway floors that will never, ever be clean again.
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He calls it faded elegance. Thats sort of his job nowhes officially still an architect, but ever since he got laid off last year, he mostly helps people make their new houses look old. Which I think is a little crazy, considering that there are plenty of old houses they could just download in the first place. Dads getting fired has a lot to do with why we sold our house.
Mom says it was partly a blessing in disguise because Dads always talked about starting his own business, and now hes finally done it. So far he only has three customers. Or clients, as he calls them. The basement has bumpy gray walls and a few lightbulbs hanging down from the ceiling on neon-yellow cords. Theres a line of garbage cans against the far wall.
Dad and I stack the bags of paper in the recycling area. One of them says superintendent. Theres a pad taped to it, with a stubby pencil hanging from a string, and a Post-it that says: date your work requests..
I cant tell how old the paper is, but its a little curly around the edges.
N e w f r o m N ewbery A wA rd w i NNiN g A u t h o r of When You reaCh me!
Dad is studying it. What a ridiculous sign. I knowdumb. I mean, how are we supposed to attend the meeting if they dont announce the time? Ha, ha. Im serious. Dad takes the pencil-on-a-string from the superintendents door and stretches it over to the Spy Club notice.
When Dad gets an idea into his head, its no use trying to stop him. So I just watch him do it. Dad writes with these perfectly even block letters. They teach you that at architecture school. Can we go now? Upstairs, Dad has me flatten a stack of empty boxes while he puts the books on the bookshelves.
Liar & Spy
I catch myself thinking about that Spy Club sign, and how some kid might 14 get excited that someone is actually coming. But that sheet of paper has probably been stuck up there for months. Years, even. I should probably take some of these boxes downstairs, I say. Want me to come? Dad is looking at the bookshelves, deep in thought, deciding exactly which book should go where.
Once, Mom came home from work and discovered that he had turned all the books around so that the bindings were against the wall and the pages faced out. He said it was calming not to have all those words floating around and creating static. Mom made him turn them back. She said that it was too hard to find a book when she couldnt read the titles. Then she poured herself a big glass of wine. I can handle the basement, I tell Dad. You finish the books. Downstairs, I prop the boxes against the wall and glance over at the Spy Club notice.
Now Dad has gone and raised the hopes of some kid in the building. I stand there for a minute, then stretch the stubby-pencil string over to the paper the way Dad did. OK, I write. When I get back upstairs, Dad has a book in each hand and hes just staring, like his life depends on which one he 15 picks.
Hes surrounded by five boxes, all still full of books. Hell never be done. The blue one, I tell him. He nods and puts it on the shelf. I was leaning toward the blue. He stands back. What do you think so far?
And its less echoey in here now. You want to call Mom at the hospital? We can fill her in, tell her how its going. Maybe later.
I dont like the way Moms voice sounds at the hospital. I need lunch, Dad says. I say yes to pizza. But can we make it quick? I ask. I have a meeting downstairs at one-thirty, thanks to you. Dad stares at me for a second and then bursts out laughing. The Spy Club? I was sure that sign was ten years old! But of course he loves that Im going through with it.
What if its a seven-year-old or something? I complain on the way to DeMarcos. Only one way to find out, Dad says cheerfully. As if he isnt to blame for the whole situation. The Spy Club door is open, just a crack, and theres light coming from inside.
Im holding a little bag of crumpled-up newspaper, for camouflage, in case it is a seven-year-old. I carry my bag down to the last trash canthe one closest to the open door. Making as much noise as possible, I open the lid and dump my garbage in. But no one comes out of the room.
Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead - extract
I stand in front of the door and listen. There is no sound at all. I push the door with one finger, so that I might have just accidentally bumped it. It swings wide open. Its a tiny little room, almost a closet, with dingy walls, a concrete floor, and one lightbulb dangling from the ceiling in a way thats slightly creepy.
Experiment 1 explored whether fixations exposed concealed person recognition of three different familiar face types: newly learned via one exposure, famous celebrities, and personally known. Multiple fixation measures exposed recognition when liars denied recognition of famous celebrities and people who were personally known.
Memory for newly learned faces was revealed during honest recognition solely in fewer fixations, with a trend in the number of fixations to suggest memory in lie trials. Experiment 2 emphasised monitoring of memory and eye movements during a similar concealed recognition task. Effects of memory were observed in multiple fixation quantity measures and in fixation durations. The pattern of results for newly learned faces was the opposite of results found in Experiment 1.
Unexpectedly, no effects of memory were found during honest recognition of newly learned faces, but fewer fixations and run counts were observed during lie trials. Experiment 3 monitored fixations during concealed recognition of objects and scenes. When participants told the truth about personally familiar scenes and buildings memory effects were observed in fewer fixations, run counts and interest areas visited.
During lie trials, effects of memory were only robust for the number of fixations. Similar to Experiment 2, lies about items newly learned-to-criterion produced no effect of memory in truth trials but revealed fewer fixations, run counts and areas of interest visited during lies.
In both Experiments 2 and 3, a reduction in the variability of verbal confidence ratings was associated with recognition of personally familiar faces.But can we make it quick? Theres a boy about my size behind the dogs, holding the twisted leashes in one hand and trying to keep a grip on the banister with the other.
Bad to the Bones. My dad thinks hes funny, and he was the one who Dont worry, she interrupts, its not my stupid club. Does it matter to whom the lie is told? Lying down on the floor was a mistake. The combination of seeing that word and breathing the smell of the first floor, which is the smell of the cafeteria after lunch, creates some kind of echo in my head, like a faraway shout. But of course he loves that Im going through with it.
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