Write a review of Up at the Villa as if you are a literary critic in the 1930s. Now write one in the present time. How do they differ?
Have everyone bring in pictures cut from magazines that illustrate their idea of what Mary, Edgar, Rowley, Karl, the Princess, and Nina look like. Have the class vote on the pictures and make a poster with the five winning pictures. Write a brief "biographical" sketch beside each picture.
Write a screen play of the scene between Mary and Karl or the one where Mary and Rowley are disposing of Karl's body. Have the students act it out.
Writers often ask themselves "What if?" when looking for plot twists and story development.
Choose a point in Up at the Villa where you might say "what if," and develop...
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