“Every Student, every teacher, every parent - every person should read
this wonderful, magical collection about what it means to learn and grow. It will creep you out and enchant you utterly - often in the same line, like life.”
—Amber Sparks, author of The Unfinished World
Enter a school
full of spies, full of girls who turn to rabbits, a school that detaches itself from the earth and, untethered, floats away. A school of bees. A school of stardust. A school downloadable, into a foot-port, over a summer. In these twelve tales, Dana Diehl and Melissa Goodrich unpack each magical classroom and the all-too human characters who inhabit them.
Eerie and haunting as feral children at play, this brilliant collaborative collection coheres around themes of childhood, technology, consent, and pleasure. Each story concocts a complete world, believable characters steeped in complex ethical dilemmas, at once humorous and disturbing, compassionate and distorted. Parents build children byte by byte; children vanish into subterranean classrooms where recess is their only hope of engineering an uprising; a bee enrolls in school to escape the groupthink of the swarm. I loved reading this sly, edgy collection. It made me look for hidden seams, signs of an imaginary world as dazzling and delirious as this one.
—Carol Guess, author of Doll Studies: Forensics and With Animal
If the Magic School Bus was driven by Kelly Link, you’d end up in The Classroom, a space between Nth period daydreams where your growing pains leap from cubby holes just to share their pudding. These fantastical lessons should be on everyone’s reading list.
— Sequoia Nagamatsu, Where We Go When All We Were Is Gone
Wherever The Classroom’s astonishing teacherly tales begin—the arrival of an android child, a substitute teacher who instructively time-travels his students, a school that uproots from the earth and floats into the sky—they will always reroute you right back to yourself, brilliantly, with grace, in style, on a wonder-trail of grounded, glimmering truth. Diehl and Goodrich have given fabulism a bravely compassionate glow. These stories lead with and land in the heart.
—Joseph Scapellato, author of The Made-Up Man and Big Lonesome
This collection is a wonder. From a classroom of young magicians to a school that untethers itself from the earth and floats into the stratosphere, Dana Diehl and Melissa Goodrich draw us into educational spaces filled with boundless curiosity and extraordinary imagination. In The Classroom, the entire world is a tutorial filled with awe. These stories are absolute magic.
—Anne Valente, author of Our Hearts Will Burn Us Down
ATTICUS REVIEW, 2019
“The stories in The Classroom mix an eerie sense of confinement and force of its titular space against the spirited natural being cast. Children have the center of attention, but sometimes teachers need it too. Both are learning and growing. Though things may sometimes feel ordinary, there is always another layer forming, another story that could be peaking through. In The Classroom, there may be more to a story than what presents itself in the first read. Allow yourself to learn.”