Sunday, December 20, 2009
A Tale Of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. Chapman and Hall, 1859.
Genre: Historical Fiction
A Tale of Two Cities takes place during the French Revolution. The tale is to describe a place and time of aristocracy, trouble, and everyday life, in London and Paris. It shows the social side to many characters. Charles Darnay, a French aristocrat, living in England is trying to hide his identity as a member of the Evrémonde family. His uncle, Marquis Evrémonde, is arrogant and cruel, and when revolutionaries try and seek him, they find astonishingly that he is murdered. Charles Darnay is to become the new Marquis. Sydney Carton, an Englishman, rather is a wastrel of his life. He chooses to defend Darnay, when he is convicted of treason. Soon when Darnay is executed Carton takes his place confidently.
“Stands as Dickens's most memorable effort to see a world in a very small space; a work short by its nature…yet curiously at its ease among giants.” - PUBLISHERS WEEKLY. “Detailed like everyday life, focused, and simple.”
Because Dickens writes with two narrators, it gives the book an uncommon edge. At times, the narrator is unknown, and sometimes might just be Dickens himself. It is often sarcastic, and sour. It seems, as is its stress after stress, because it all has to happen during a tough time, such as the Revolution. Other characters in the book are protecting Darnay from revolutionaries, and they all get their own time to speak. In the end it all comes together, and wraps itself like a present.
“This universal watchfulness not only stopped him on the highway twenty times in a day, by riding after him and taking him back , riding before him and stopping him by anticipation, riding with him and keeping him in charge.” (302)
When picking up this book, I knew it would have been something of my affection. I say this because; I had done quite some research on books set to the French Revolution. Last quarter, I read The Red Necklace. This book was also set to the French Revolution and that I rather enjoyed very much. I’ve never read anything by Charles before so this was my first and I have got to say his voice was spectacular. Over the top, I was really surprised and it’s a classic, which gives it more reason to discover. I’d pick up a Charles Dickens book any day now. It’s now or never, and I chose now.
Saturday, October 24, 2009
The Red Necklace by Sally Gardner. Dial Books, 2007.
Genre: Historical Fiction w/ tweaks of Mystery, Suspense and Romance.
The Red Necklace is a charming story about a young boy, (Yannick Margoza) and his journey over time to heroism. Taking place during the French Revolution in the year of winter 1789, Yann is a gypsy orphan brought up by a dwarf named Tetu. Yann’s has powers such as to be able to read minds and move objects. Yann experiences many challenges over a course of three years, from a young boy to a fine young gentleman, life is hard for Yann but his struggles make him who he is. It all begins one night when Topolain, a magician in group with Yann and Tetu, perform a show for a Count Kallivoski. In return for something Topolain had said, he had *accidentally* been shot. After that night things began to get fishy. Twists and turns, Yann eventually meets Sido a young heiress. Sido helps Yann and they form a connection. Throughout all the harm and chaos light brings them back together, in a rather quite interesting way.
“Stunning...Seamlessly meshing fact and fantasy, the author composes a suspenseful masterpiece.” –Publishers Weekly. “A book withholding many secrets unkempt. Leave’s every corner hanging.”
The Red Necklace is brilliantly written, every part is acceptable. Yann fights for his own will. This could be read by anyone of any age. It does not matter. If anyone were to say it was poorly written let them think again. The Red Necklace is a book for exploration and pleasure, delicately done.
“The sound of his feet on the pavement was the drumbeat that finally calmed him down. Gasping for breath he leaned against the corner of the building, grateful for the thick fog, and laughed out loud at his own stupidity.” (116)
Withdrawing this book from a shelf, I had little interest. I absolutely thought it was unnecessary to just even read the inside flap. Out of force I did, and in a way, I had a connection to it. I’ve realized now that I’ve read it what amazing work it has to it. I would never pick up a book by Sally Gardner and say, “Hey, I’m going to read this book because it looks interesting.” Historical fiction isn’t anything I’d go for. I really enjoyed reading it, it was rather sad, the Revolution and all, but it’s well done.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Time goes on and on, it never seems quite likely to stop. The world is constantly running over and over beating people down until no juice is left. When can we all be happy? When will things change...be like they were before? When technology was not needed to live a content life? Alternatively, will technology take over the world, killing it once and for all? No one knows, not even I, myself. Therefore, when time is quick, and life is hard, I live to my fullest.
It’s the last class of the day and I’m finding it hard to concentrate. I can hear the clock’s ticking so loudly it’s scaring the crap out of me! It’s too quiet, and I am squirming in my seat for I am very uncomfortable. I can hear sounds of slick pens sliding over papers. Including mine, this wasn’t so much writing, but rather tapping very loudly, that I startled a couple students at my sides. 10 minutes left. Now this clock is really aggravating me. I continue to tap my pen not realizing how disturbing it was and was asked to stop. At 5 minutes, I took a rest. At 2, I was packed up and slightly leaping for the door. As the bell went, I dashed down the crowded halls towards the doors. I pushed them with great, might and took a deep, phlegmatic breath. Now this is freedom.
A jolly, grin on my face, I skip to the car where my brother awaits. When there, I swing the door open, toss my bag in and hop in after it. The door slams behind me and I roll the windows down. Now my brother gets in and gives the car a start. His rough hands reach for the volume and turn it up. Who may it be? Oh, it’s only Mr. Chesney!
Kenny Chesney is one of the greatest in country. His hits are astounding! So cruising on the street with my bro, playing Chesney, life can’t get any better. The thing about Chesney is I can always be elated when listening to his music. There is never a frown on my face for the air outside is hot, and I can never resist its oh-so-nice breeze blowing in the windows and smoothly brushing my face. This is the time, that when I think about it, it’ll have ‘High School’ written all over it.
Throughout everything, I’ve got to say someone really turned my life around. This was much unexpected. It’s hard to think that one day everything will be alright, when you know it really won’t be. However, for the past recent months I’ve spent much time with my best friend. He showed me everything will be alright, and not to dwell over the past, the things that should matter are withheld in the future. Of course I know if a bad day has come there will always be a better one. Out of everything we have done together, I’d rather choose not to get into much detail at all, on them. Those memories should be forever sacred.
I came a long way, and he absolutely helped me so much. Everyday and night he’s always there for me. People criticize me or are judgmental, who cares about them. All that matters are the people I love and the people that love me, because we are all a great family. My friend matters most. What people say is not always accurate. Being with him means the world and I’d never want to change that. Starry nights are to die for. In addition, his warm smile is always inviting and makes me feel so ecstatic.
Therefore, my high school days with my bro and Chesney, and being with my best friend are both very valuable moments in my life time. I really wouldn’t ask for anything exceptional. Even though they are two different things I enjoy having the time to have an experience with them both. What I mean is, being in the car; you need the technology...the car, the CD player, and Kenny Chesney’s album. It comes in electronics. My best friend on the other hand, I can see him wherever and whenever I want. We don’t need technology when we are together because we adore each others company. I can have fun with my best friend any day. Nevertheless, once high school is over, so is Kenny Chesney.
Moreover, time will go on, people will grow older, and maybe that means no more Chesney, but so what? We all know his music will live on. Moreover, the memories I have of his music in my brother’s car. Therefore, I shan’t worry. I’ve got my best friend to and it is a possibility to keep that forever too. However, like I said, I’m taking life now, before I lose it. In addition, of course the world will always be altering, but there will always be a gratifying bud, and a “Perfect song on the radio.”
Saturday, September 12, 2009
I’m sitting on my bed. It’s quiet. Too quiet. As I try to think of something to keep my mind occupied, I’m finding it quite difficult. I could draw, but I always draw. I could call a friend, but I have no friends. I could read comic books, but that is just tiring after a while. So here I lay now, on my smooth bed sheets, oh so very comfortable. I’m just not tired, I’ve been up all night its 3 a.m. I wish there was someone to talk to, really, I do. Because without friends, life is complicated. It’s hard to understand, so don’t try to comprehend it. It’s not going to work. By the way, I’m Junior. Half Indian, and half white. I go to a school outside of my reservation. The reservation s’where I live. The res is okay. However, reaching out to a new school is a big step. I really had the courage as an Indian to walk into a school with all whites. That’s quite some courage. And although my village friends feel like I’ve betrayed them, there is nothing I can do. I have to live my life the way it was planned to be. Just. Like. This.
So here I sit, wasting my life away. By the way, I’m in my dark room with no lights on. It doesn’t creep me out. But to other people, yes. Because being nocturnal is unusual for any human being. Nevertheless, it’s not like I live that way every night of my life because that’s definitely not it. Some people just don’t get it.
Well I fell asleep. And now I’m up again. I really thought I wasn’t that tired but I guess I should have doubted that. I’m a poor, tired, reservation boy, with no friends and absolutely nothing to do! I am so bored! But I guess I should go back and snooze. I’m out.
Well good morning again. Today will be a great day. I’m making myself breakfast then heading out! And guess what...to do absolutely nothing! But it’s a nice day for a walk. I hope I don’t get mauled over by any tough reservation guys...crazy drunks. Eggs are in the pan. I’m buttering my toast and, “Rapp, Rapp, Rapp,” at the door! Who could be here? Nobody comes in the morning. So, I walked over and opened the door very casually of course.
“Hey dude, could I use your bathroom?” asked a somewhat shorter boy than I was.
“Uh..sure,” I said. Therefore, I let him in and showed him where to take care of his duties. When he got out, he stopped in the kitchen.
“Thanks man, I really appreciate it.” The boy said.
“Yeah, sure thing,” I replied. But as I said what I had too, the boy was already storming back to the door and out.
“HEY!” I yelled after him. He slowed and turned.
“Yeah?” he responded with a surprised look, eyebrows forced up.
“Your name, you never told me your name..”
“Oh it’s Ender, Ender Wiggin, don’t worry, I’m positively sure we will meet again. Alright?” he chuckled. Made me think of something. This boy made me think of lots of things. Some I am not even sure of, but this boy...Ender...I had a feeling that there was something good about him. I was sure.
I started my walk soon after breakfast. Listening to the birds and just thinking of nice things. Trying to distract myself from all the chaos in my life. And I came across a shoe. A dark blue dingy shoe. Who would leave their shoe here I wondered. I didn’t know whether to pick it up or just leave it there. Therefore, I picked it up and chucked it into the woods nearby. Whoever’s that was is now going to have a harder time finding it. Their fault.
At dinner that night I remembered about the shoe I had chucked into the woods off the side walk earlier that day. I really thought about it. And how I’d feel if I lost my shoe. So after dinner I went out again, to find the shoe. I t took a while because it was getting dark. Nevertheless, eventually I found that thing lying underneath leaves and a bunch of other objects.
I took it home with me and studied it. It was a pretty decent shoe. Better than mine, at least... (Shoplifted from Kmart) I was determined that within the next week I was to find the owner of the shoe.
5 days later...
I took my rusty bike out today for a spin. The sunshine was beautiful. The elegant rays of light spilled through every tree branch in the neighborhood. And the temperature was perfect. I was approaching an intersection in town and I saw a boy he looked really familiar from the back. However, I couldn’t recall for the distance between us was so scarce. He started crossing the walk. I swear I knew this guy. Therefore, I decided just to call out and stop him before I lost him.
I pedaled so fast! I felt my heart would fall out in the middle of the road! Alternatively, even possibly my old rusty bike would have fallen apart. But through all agony, it didn’t.
“HEY! HEY YOU!” I started yelling so loud. Moreover, when I finally got his attention he signaled with his hand a hello.
And when I finally caught up to him, I was totally out of breath. Panting so hard, I thought I’d die at the spot. But I eventually caught my breath and said, “I’m Junior, do I know you from somewhere?” The boy looked at me,
“Probably,” he answered. “Actually, I used the bathroom at your place just the other day, I’m Ender...remember?” I suddenly remembered slowly.
“Yes. Ender! That’s it. I knew I had known you from somewhere!”
By the way, um...” I suddenly looked at his shoes, and realized they looked exactly like the ones I found on the side walk the other day!
“Hey! Your shoes,” I pointed at them.
“What about them,” he asked.
“They look like...come with me.” I said. So, he followed. “You lost a side the other day didn’t you?”
“Yes, actually as a matter of fact I did.”
“OH!” I said.
Therefore, I brought him to my house, and showed him the shoe. Ender was very thankful. Especially about how observant I was on his shoes. He asked to hang out sometime; he says it’d be pretty cool. I’m excited. Ender is a great guy, and although I met him in the weirdest way, I was proud of myself for doing something nice. And most of all, making a great friend...”Ender Wiggin”