Blog Post #6

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This picture depicts the scene in The Paper Magician when Ceony arrives at Magician Thane’s house and is staring up at it in astonishment because of how disconcerting and unwelcoming it looks.

Ceony quickly notices how cluttered and messy Magician Thane’s house is, and yet, it is neat and organized at the same time; everything is exactly in its place.

As Ceony explores the house and gets to know Magician Thane a little better, she notices that he has a ton of books. He has shelves full of them in his room and all around the house.

Magician Thane assigns “A Tale of Two Cities” to Ceony to read, along with multiple other books, to practice her imaging techniques, and also just because he likes the book.

Ceony is also assigned a human anatomy book, which she has a hard time understanding the point of. Little does she know that when Mg. Thane’s heart is stolen from his chest by Lira, an old lover, this book will come in handy in allowing her to Fold a paper heart that will keep the Magician alive until further notice.

This picture just reminds me of the moment when Ceony Folds six little birds and sends them out a window to track Lira, and Thane’s heart, down.

This picture reminded me of when Ceony found the giant glider Folded neatly in the room Thane had told her not to enter, and followed the little bird to the place that Lira was hiding. She was thrilled that she had the ability to fly.

I think this image is an interesting perspective of how, maybe, the paper that has been Folded and brought to life has the ability to see and perceive what is going on around them.

The conflict of The Paper Magician is coming together well. I did not expect that it would take this dramatic of a turn, but it was a welcome surprise. I think the author is moving the story along well, and I’m enjoying this cute little book so far. 🙂

Blog Post #5 – Book Gifts

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I have received books as both Christmas and birthday gifts, and I loved them. I did let my mom know each time which series/books I’d like to add to my library in my room, and then she chose from there which ones to get me. Usually I will be in the middle of a couple of books during the holidays so I have to wait until after I’ve finished my reads to start the new book gifts. I absolutely love getting books for Christmas, because, for the most part, quality hard cover books can be a little more on the expensive side, and it’s nice not to have to pay for them. I have never gotten a book as a gift that I didn’t want or didn’t like, mostly because I always ask for books/series that I’ve read before and would like to own so I can reread them as many times as I want. 🙂
There are four ‘official’ books in the Fallen series, which is the series that I’m reading for the Series Project. There is also an ‘in-between’ book, and then the last book follows the love story of one of the prominent characters, Cam, because the book before this one finishes the story of the previous main characters. I would most definitely give this book to anyone that is interested in time travel, fantasy, otherworldly, and angels vs demons types of books.
We don’t have any special plans for the holidays, we’re just planning on going up to my grandparent’s house for a Thanksgiving dinner, and then for Christmas we will most likely have some cousins come over through Christmas and the New Year. Other than that, I don’t think there is anything unusual that we will be doing. But I am still VERY excited 🙂

Blog Post #4 – Social Justice Issues

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The book Dumplin’ was written to address the issue of size and body discrimination. Main character, Willowdean, has been overweight and larger than average her whole life, but up until now, she’s always been fairly comfortable in her own body due to her loving aunt Lucy’s advice and guidance.  But now that she’s kissed a boy far out of her league, she’s become more aware of her size and shape.

The whole issue involving socially acceptable body weight and size began not long ago. The word “fat” became an insult fairly recently, whereas it used to be the equivalent of showing off your wealth and your high-and-mighty position/social status. It meant that you were rich enough to pay others to do the work for you, and you had time to sit around and gain weight because of the abundance of food you could afford. But then obesity was discovered to be a health risk, and in the 1940-50’s, it was decided that “thin” and “lean” were the new beauty trends and the ideal health expectation. It was also decided that “obesity is caused by gluttony”, as an article featured in the Life magazine describes it.

However, in today’s society, we have created Body Positivity movements to reduce fat-shaming and help overweight people feel more comfortable in their own skin. There have been many waves of body positivity movements as the decades have progressed and more people have found their voices among the crowd. Books, movies, motivational speakers, and many other forms of spreading the news have focused on getting rid of the concept of the “ideal body”. People such as radio host Steve Post, author Lew Louderback, model Tess Holliday, etc. have been a huge part in spreading awareness involving this particular issue. @EffYourBeautyStandards was created by Tess Holliday herself to address this world-wide issue.

Dumplin’ is a modern book that ties all of these beliefs and movements and issues into the main character and the life she lives. Will is able to introduce her own way of thinking, which includes not caring what you see in the mirror and enjoying yourself, no matter what you look like. She is like by her friends, coworkers and even some popular boys because of the confidence she retains through all circumstances of her life.

I am loving this book so far. Not long ago, I read a book called Please Stop Laughing at Me, which is a memoir based on the reality of bullying and the way it can impact the victims’ life. These kinds of books entertain you in a new way and bring to light the pain and suffering that victims endure due to people not understanding their situations and being inclusive and nonjudgmental.

Blog #3 – Series Project

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I decided to read the Fallen Series for this project. I began this series a couple of months ago and had to set it aside for a while to read a few assigned books, but now I am able to pick it back up again. I’ve read the first two of the five books, and I plan on finishing Passion by October 31st, Rapture by November 15th, and finally, Unforgiven by November 30th.

Book Show and Tell

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For my Book Show and Tell, I read the book Vixen. It is the first book in The Flappers trilogy, which I have also finished. This series follows multiple characters, but mostly goodie-two-shoes-turned-flapper Gloria Carmody. Her best friend, Lorraine, fiancé, Sebastian, and cousin, Clara, are all stars in this riveting series as well. We are thrown back in time to the Roaring Twenties, where girls no longer want to follow rules and play nice for the men. Gloria is known for her Good Girl reputation, until one night she takes a stand and sneaks out to a speakeasy. From that point on, hers and the lives of her companions are turned upside-down and backwards and they find themselves and discover true love.

Blog #2 – Steelheart’s backstory

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I close my eyes as I reach for the piece of blank paper sitting on the hardwood floor in my room. I carefully set my hand down on top of it, holding my breath. I know that if I don’t learn to control what’s going on inside of me soon, they’ll come for me. The air rushes out of me as my hand finally touches the paper. Too cold. I open my eyes, though I already know what I’ll see. The paper is now just a slat of solid steel. But I’m surprised, and mortified, to find that the steel coating is slowly spreading across the floor of my room. I rip my hand away from the paper, hyperventilating, and push myself up off the floor. By the time I’ve grabbed the piece of lead that I always keep in my dresser drawer for emergencies just like this, most of the floor is pure steel. I’ve learned that lead bullets, lead pencils, lead paint, etc. are the only things that can dull my power and render me mortal and vulnerable. I was relieved when the news announced, a few years ago, that new and improved guns were going to be using steel bullets alone, and lead bullets have now become very rare.

I squeeze the small rod of precious lead against my chest and grit my teeth. It’s not working. It’s not working. I swallow the enraged scream that is rising in my throat and turn away, walking out of the room and closing the door.

Just as I’m sliding the cylinder of lead into my pocket, just in case, I tell myself, the front door bursts open down the hall. I hear my mother yelp and I’m torn between hiding and running to her aid. But then I hear the deep, gravelly voices in the hallway, roughly questioning my poor mother. “Where is the boy?” They repeat, and I immediately turn and tiptoe back into my room. They know, I panic to myself internally. They know what I am. But before I am able to crawl out of my tiny window and into the bright afternoon sunlight, my door is broken down and they’re rushing in, grabbing me, pointing guns at me. I yell and thrash and beg for mercy, but they don’t listen, they don’t care; they’ve gone through this procedure enough times to be immune to my desperate exclamations of innocence. I attempt to use my power against them, anything to escape this doomed fate, but then I remember, with a jolt, the lead that is still weighing down the pocket of my trousers. I sob, going limp as they drag me out the rickety front door. My mother follows us, begging for my release, and my eyes widen as I notice my small, courageous younger sister at her heels. I try to yell for her to get back inside, but everything is chaos, and my voice is drown out. She bravely steps out from behind my mother, grabbing the sleeve of one of the enforcement officers, a plea for mercy sparkling in her big, brown eyes. I watch as the officer turns and carelessly slams the butt of his huge gun into the side of her temple. I open my mouth in a silent scream as she falls, almost in slow motion, at my mother’s feet. I know instantly that her tiny, fragile brain wouldn’t be able to handle the hit, and with only a small cut left as evidence of the blow, she is dead.

Everything is quiet. My wrists ache from the handcuffs that were locked onto me amidst the chaos, and my ears ring from the utter silence that followed all the yelling and screaming and crying. I’m locked in a dark, damp holding cell. My body is numb; my mind is numb. I hear voices outside of my cell. “How old?” A nasally male voice asks. Papers shuffle. “Fifteen, Doctor,” another voice replies, somber but uncaring. A third voice chimes in, high and musical; a female. “I’ll take him. I don’t like the abilities listed here; odds are he doesn’t know how to control it, and people could get hurt. What else do we know about this boy?” More papers shuffle. “Besides turning things to steel, he’s robbed a couple banks and whatnot for his family; claims they’re living in poverty. Guess he can fly, but we don’t have much else on record for him.” Silence. I squirm, trying to see through the darkness. Anger flows through my veins, tears stream down my cheeks, my eyes are swollen and stinging. My throat aches and my head pounds; my jaw has been clenched for so long that I’m unsure if I still have the ability to open my mouth. I try anyway. “They killed my sister! You murdered my baby sister!” I yell into the darkness. My voice cracks and shakes, the words barely escaping my raw throat. The woman sighs, either oblivious, indifferent, or both to my agonizing accusations. “Alright, we’ll run some tests, see what he’s been hiding from us. Doctor?” The nasally man agrees, and the door of my cell is heaved open.

Next thing I know, I’m in a room: bright lights, white walls, the smell of disinfectant burning my nose. My hands are still cuffed. The woman belonging to the voice I heard outside my cell looks me over. “You’re big for a fifteen-year-old.” She pauses when I don’t respond, and pulls something out of her lab coat pocket. I look away. “Found this in your pocket. Kind of a strange thing to be carrying around, don’t you think?” My lead. She smiles, but there’s no kindness behind it. I say nothing. “Alright, we both know how this is gonna go; you won’t respond to any of my questions, and you won’t show me your abilities, so eventually I’ll have to bring in some handymen to help me get information out of you. Nevertheless, blood tests and basic dissection should show us about as much as you could tell us. So we’re just going to skip the ‘eventually’ part, and get right to it.” She turns and walks out of the room, just as a small, fat man enters, pushing a cart full of procedural tools. He pulls on his bleached white lab coat and a pair of gloves, carefully rearranging his tools. He presses a button that lowers the seat I was roughly pushed into so that I’m lying on my back. He gives me a sickly sweet grin. “I ain’t gonna promise this won’t hurt, because it will, kid.”

As the echo of my screams fades in the absence of the fat little surgeon, the only thoughts I can keep in my mind are control. I have no control. My powers give me no power. I will get revenge. I will see the day Chicago falls into my hands, pays for my pain and my sweet sister’s death. They will bow down to me one day. I will have a heart made of steel; a Steelheart.

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First Post

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I love to read. I became interested in reading around 6th grade, when my best friend introduced me to some good books. I’ve always been a moderately good reader, but as I’ve continued to read throughout my life, I have gotten faster, and improved my ability to understand words in the context of the sentence. I really loved the Inkheart trilogy, which is the series I was introduced to by my best friend. I can read pretty much anywhere, but I prefer to read when I’m alone, without any people or distractions or loud noises around me. I read a lot of fantasy, fiction, romance, sci-fi, etc. types of books, but I can appreciate almost any genre. I usually end up reading several books at a time, whether it be my choice, or if I am just trying to read my own books while also reading assigned books.

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