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Letter to Katherine Paterson, author of Bridge to Terabithia

Emma Stevenson
Sewanee Elementary School
4th - 6th Grade

Dear Katherine Paterson,

I read your book Bridge To Terabithia. This book challenged me in many ways. It really made me think about how I treat others. Am I helpful or hurtful? Am I a bully? Am I willing to help someone even though they are different from me? Am I someone I would want as a friend? The answer is: I strive to be the person that is friendly and willing to help those in need.

Jesse was inspiring to me. Seeing the challenges that Jesse faced made me realize how easy I have it and how I should be grateful for all the blessings I have. I am pretty artistic myself, and I found that I really felt a connection to Jesse because of his love for art as well. Jesse and Leslie had very vivid imaginations and it shed a new light on my own imagination and how limitless it can be.

Leslie was my absolute favorite character. She showed me that I can be myself and still be a good friend. She was loyal and kind. Leslie didn't care about what others thought about her and she was okay with everyone thinking she was different or weird. Although Janice had been a bully to both her and Jesse, she felt compelled to still talk to her when she was in the bathroom crying. The situation about Janice and her dad also got me thinking about others and how hard life can be for them. I am so thankful for the family God gave me.

The part that really hit home to me was when Leslie died. I saw that someone my age can die. I felt the pain Jesse felt when he learned of Leslie's accident. I was glad when Jesse took May Belle to Terabithia and showed her the land he and Leslie had created together. I felt the happiness and satisfaction that Jesse felt. It had a great ending even after all the sadness and hardships Jesse and Leslie had faced.

I definitely know that this book really changed the way I view others. Just because they are different or mean to me and others, doesn't mean I should treat them in a way that is hurtful. I also learned I need to just be myself no matter what people say or how they treat me. I just need to be the best sister, daughter, friend, and student I can be! I am glad I had the opportunity to read this book!

Emma Stevenson