What you need to know before signing up for the Pop Lit course

Last year I signed up for Pop Lit, this year I took it. We read “The Book Thief” and “A Monster Calls,” both very good books in my opinion. Mr. Green has good taste in books, add that to the pros list.

Another good thing about this class is that the assignments and site are very accessible. I would say there is a pretty challenging workload, but it’s pretty fun to do in a way math never was. But that’s just my opinion. This class also consists of the schools largest library besides the library itself, organized in alphabetical order. That’s pretty neat. The only thing which I have found frustrating is the workload I mentioned earlier. After a while you will have to read more and more each night, but it’s easy to do if you can make time for it.

Wow, look at your pros list now. Once I heard a kid make a speech about how you should take risks and do hard things instead of regretting not even trying. So… You should take this class.

The Meaning of Stories

Stories are commonly known for their morals and lessons. It is what the whole story is built around. What if there is no lesson? What if the purpose of the story is to not tell you, but to let you learn for yourself? I think maybe this is the purpose of the Monster’s stories.

There are many times when I read a story or watch a movie and learn something besides the moral, the big idea the story aims to teach. Stories can give you an understanding of certain things or ideas to expand on. They can give you a seed and now you have to grow it. Although most stories don’t intend to, I think the Monster aims to let Conor figure out what he needs to from the stories it tells.

The Book Thief Film Review

What the movie did well: 

I think the film portrayed the emotions and settings very nicely. The acting was, in my opinion, very good. Music in the background also added a lot to the film along with the colors in certain situations (saturation, warm, etc.).

What the movie did poorly: 

Though it got most of the important events, I think because it is a movie it was a bit hard to get in the small events because of the very limited timing. I think the small ones are somewhat important in the timeline and if I hadn’t read the book first I would be very confused on what was going on.

Ways the movie was like the book: 

Both the movie and the book show you a lot about the characters. They show you both sides of Rosa, for example.

Ways the movie was not like the book:

The movie was not able to jump around the timeline the way the book does. It isn’t split into chapters the way the book is so everything must be in order.

What I thought of the movie overall:

Overall I think the movie was pretty good, though it may not have hit every angle of the story. It really brought the book and the emotions to life.

A Little Light in the Darkness

At this point in time I often wake up just not feeling good. I feel drained, even after a full night of sleep. There are a lot of reasons why, and a lot of thoughts that pass through my mind, but there are two things that will probably always help me.

I spent this last weekend in a small town about and hour from here. There are mountains wrapped around the cluster of little buildings where people often drive around in motorbikes and four-wheelers. When I get upset, my dad allows me to take the keys to our four-wheeler and drive around. When I do it lifts my mood instantly and everything in the world seems like it would when you’re a little kid again. If that isn’t an available option, I will start a chain of thoughts about space and time and how I should just live life because I can. These are the simple things that help me find light in the darkness.

A Book Thief Is Born

In “The Book Thief” Liesel goes through some drastic changes in just two years. Although she has held on to most everything about her, she has added on to those traits, as well.

In the beginning of the book, Liesel is just a little girl. She is stubborn and youthful. Despite being poor, she doesn’t have much experience in the real world, so when she moves in with the Hubermanns and her brother dies it’s no surprise she has a rough time dealing with it. I think if that happened to her at this point in the story, around two years later, she would’ve taken it even more harshly. Before Liesel probably wouldn’t lash out and would be easier distracted from harsh times with soccer and such; when you’re a kid, you don’t think as much about these types of situations.

Max Abandoned His Family

When Walter Kugler announced the possibility of life for Max, but Max only, the jew protested. He claimed he would stay by his family’s side. In the end, Max left his family behind. Was it the right thing to do?

Even though his family knew the outcome would be brutal for them, his mother pleaded for him to go. I think of it as her death wish, as dark as that may sound, and I believe Max did do the moral thing to carry it out. No one wanted the fate his family had and Max’s mother did not want it for him. I don’t think he betrayed his family by leaving them, I think they were instead glad he could leave.

On Stealing

For Liesel Meminger, stealing started out with just one book. After picking up the dropped book and growing so fond of reading despite her lack to, she stole more and more books, later on food with Rudy Steiner. What goes into and comes out of stealing for Liesel?

At first, I would say she wasn’t doing much wrong. Her brother had just died and she was probably still in shock when she stole the first book. I think later on it does become a bit wrong, but she stays moral in some ways along with Rudy. As he said, they may be criminals but they can still be moral, or something like that.

The Book Thief So Far

The Book Thief has a good reputation. It gets good reviews, good ratings, etc. Do I agree with these people who claim this book is such a good one?

So far, the only problem I’ve had with The Book Thief is myself. Sometimes I read things over multiple times even if I got it the first time just to be sure, and I do so more than necessary. Overall the book has been pretty good. I love the idea of Death as a character, watching the life of Liesel Meminger pass by with the little free time he has. I think Markus Zusak is an incredible author and really knows how to set the mood and create an image in the reader’s mind with simple things such as the color of the sky. There is so much I love about this story, and I would agree completely that it is amazing.

Word Nerd- “Divulge”

On page 293 of Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins she writes, “I move it from this way and that, viewing it from different angles, covering portions and then revealing them. Trying to make it divulge its purpose to me.” The dictionary describes divulge as to “make known (private or sensitive information).” I would describe this as “revealing private information in a private conversation” or simply “telling secrets.”

 

Deep Thinkers- “wind in my mind”

On page 293 of Catching Fire, Suzanne Collins, the author of this novel writes, “I conjure up such a wind in my mind, letting it freeze my cheeks and numb my fingers, and all at once, the piece of metal half buried in the black earth has a name.” At this point in the story Katniss receives a spile from Haymitch while sitting in a hot desert and remembering District 12 and the cool breeze it offers. Given this, she could not have felt the wind from the surrounding area. I believe she was just so invested in catching up with her memories she could almost sense it, or maybe it even gave her chills. I like this because of the figurative language it uses. It gives you a better idea of what is going on in Katniss’s mind. Throughout Collins’s books I noticed this is something she does not do too often so when she does use it the phrase will stand out.

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