Project Blog Post

  • I feel like after reading that book I was able to see what racial injustice actually looks like, so for me the song “What About Us”by Pink. It helped me see how Justyce’s character would have felt a sense of hopelessness while going up against a system built around him.
  • I really loved that the book helped you see through the character’s eyes as to what certain situations in real life would actually be like. I absolutely loved how real and raw it was because this is a very prominent problem in our society, and the book addressed it beautifully. With the soundtrack that we made I feel like we were able to embody many different characters and situations very well through those songs. It was interesting to try and pinpoint a certain moment and then tie a song to it.
  • The only thing that I didn’t like about the book was honestly Manny’s death, I felt a little naive as I didn’t see it coming but I understand why it had to happen. But that was one part that I read and instantly had to set my book down because it was so sad.
  • Manny’s death made me sad, and Justyce being blamed for things he didn’t do made me mad. I also felt mad when Justyce was in court and it almost felt like other people were forcing him to say things and twist them to fit what they needed to be.
  • After finishing the book I feel like I have a brand new perspective on people in general, and I am really glad that I read that book.

Book Show and Tell- The Glass Castle

This is a memoir about the author, Jennatte Walls’ childhood as she tells this story of the many experiences she had while growing up. She reaccounts everything from her dad taking her out of the hospital after she has a severe burn injury, all the way to how she and her siblings worked together to have enough food for the week. It is a well told story and the whole time you feel like you are reading fiction. I really liked that this book was a very authentic story. She didn’t try to hide behind any of the things that she went through, and that made it such a good read. I would reccomend it to anyone who enjoys a really good story, or who likes reading memoirs. I thought it was a very eye opening while also entertaining book that I didn’t see what was coming next the whole time.

Blog #7- Taking Pictures

In the story “Dear Martin,” there is a death of a charater so I thought that the flowers were a good symbol to represent their death. In the story it relates a lot to what Justyce has to deal with after Manny’s death. After Manny dies and more towards the end of the book, when Justyce goes to visit his grave it is there that he talks to Jared and they find commonality with each other. This event helps them both mourn the loss of Manny while also create a new friendhsip.

The picture of the American flag represents this idea throughout the whole book that their is this sense of injustice for certain people and races. Justyce has to deal a lot with this as he is stereotyped and judged for the color of his skin. This injustice is shown as he is helping his friend Melo, but than get’s arrested because the police officer thought that he was doing something he wasn’t.

And the last picture is a sign to register for Debate. In the book Justyce and SJ decide to debate about the racial unjustice at their Debate tournament. In the story both of their connection to debate brings this tie of something that both characters support.

As the story was wrapping up I feel like you could sense how it would end, while there still being a few things you didn’t see coming. But the conflict was solved in a way that explained all of it, and I really liked how Justyce was able to get the justice and healing that he deserved.

Blog Post #6 Social Justice Background

  • Some of the issues that the book addresses is racism and police brutality. I feel that the book is also doing a very good job about bringing more awareness of what it would be like to be in Justcye’s shoes as he is arrested, and deals with that.
  • This issue is not a new issue, Martin Luther King Jr. and so many others have worked to bring awareness about the importance of equality and justice to everyone no matter their skin color, or ethnicity.
  • The author has tied this issue to the book by creating a very real situation that has happened before for other people, and she has created this new lense that we can better understand the situation.
  • I do like issue driven books that help you gain a new understanding about people and cultures that deserve recognition. Also showing that not everyone is out of the loop, some people are very aware of the problems that are occuring, it is just making this information accessible to everyone. Often times we just need to gain a bit more awareness about something and this book has helped me see that everyone has a different story and perspective that deserves a chance to be heard.

Blog Post #5 Final Steelheart Blog Post

  • What do you think we’re left understanding about villains and heroes from the novel?  Do humans have a real role in hero stories or do we need superhuman skills to be a hero? 
  • Once the book is over I feel like Brandon Sanderson has made you question his villains in the book. You see people in a new light, and every person whether they be an Epic or human has the ability to choose good or evil. Sometimes in stories a villain is someone who has merely made more “bad” choices that have been noticed. And I feel that no matter the character if they are characterized as a villain or hero, we need to understand that we each have the choice to make.
  • What did you like about the novel and what did you wish you knew more about or that Sanderson had written more about?
  • I really liked how in depth and thought out the plot was, I also thought the ending was extremely fitting. But I wish I knew more about Steelhearts character, I want to know why his character was motivated the way he was.
  • Finally, share what you and your partner are going to do for your podcast.  What themes are you focusing on and why were these so important?
  • For our podcast we wanted to focus on why characters make the choices that they do? It’s important because every choice made was fueled by some inner or external force that helped make that choice. And we just wanted to analyze some choices that were made at a new perspective.

Blog Post #4- Series Planning

The series that I chose to read is actually a couple of books by the author George Orwell, I’ve been meaning to read his book, “1984.” And found this to be the perfect opportunity to be able to read a few other books by him. So I will be reading “1984”,”Animal Farm”, and “Down and out in Paris and London.”  I plan on starting “1984” over the weekend and will begin working my way through the other books and will be finished before the end of the semester.


Blog #3 Bookish Comforts

Some of my bookish comforts include the feeling of holding a book, reading by a candle, waking up early to read before your day. Reading with a warm blanket, the feeling of walking around an aisle of books, reading while in bed, and getting excited about what book I’ll read next.

I could relate to many of the things that he had mentioned and just even as he was saying one, I would smile just thinking about it. I think that reading for me is more an activity that I look forward too, so hearing some bookish comforts reassured me that they are “normal.”

Books for me have brought a level of hope and understanding. I love to read books about real people and events, because I feel that it brings about this wonderful atmosphere of compassion for people in general. They are also a window of truth so I can step back and see that other people can conquer hard things as well.

My most perfect bookish activity would be sitting somewhere comfortable with a nice candle, a cup of warm herbal tea, rainy weather, and a good book.

Book Show and Tell: The Alchemist

I read “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho for my Book Show and Tell. It follows the story of a young shepherd boy who has dreams of going and seeing the world, but he is too afraid to leave all that he has ever known. Until he meets a king who tells him to follow his personal legend, so he decides to take his advice and sets out on his journey. I won’t spoil too much of what happens, but he definitely has his moments of up’s and down’s along the way. I absolutely loved this book as there is a beautiful theme that runs throughout this whole book, and it givens a reason to think about what it is we want in our life. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants a good adventure or some deep insightful learning. It is really a book everyone deserves to read.

Blog #2 Steelheart’s Backstory

The corner is dark and cold and I watch the warm glow of light dance across my hands. It brightens for a moment before leaving me in the shaded darkness. I can hear kids laughing as swing sets creak under the sound of metal. I slide even closer to the wall as I feel the smooth brick against my back. For a moment I am a normal kid, but my thoughts are soon interrupted as the air seems to shift and two dark figures stand towering over me. I hear their quiet exchange as one of them kicks my leg.

“Hey you, aren’t you the one with the weird glowing hands.” They both snicker as I try to melt into the wall. Nothing good ever came of my powers. The two boys seem to be at least two years older than I am, and I suddenly wish to be anywhere but here at this moment. The second one speaks to the other as he says, “Yeah, I heard that he can make his hands light up with his mind.” Their laughs fill my ears as I stand up and grab my small backpack. The older moves in front of me as he says, “Where do you think you are going.” I glance up at his face and see a crooked smile and cold eyes stare down at me. “Just leave me alone,” I quietly mutter under my breath. They both block my exit and I am trapped against the corners of the school. “Come on,” he says, “We just want to see these magical powers that you have.” He hits my shoulder and I crumble slightly by the blow.

I stand and try to move past him but he pushes me again and I am left shoved against the wall. “Come on, glowing hands show us what you’ve got.” I reluctantly stare down at my hands as I try to focus and bring the energy to my hands. Slowly a soft glow begins to envelope my hands, I begin to smile as I see their faces illuminated by the light but I soon feel the heat begin to burn and tingle my hands. It’s too much and I feel the tearing pain of the energy. A burst of energy slips away and I hear a loud crash as it hits metal. I open my eyes and see the swing set in the playground, as it’s been torn apart because of me. I see people running away from the collapsed metal as I feel myself get knocked to the ground as they begin to beat me up.

I feel the sharp pains as their fists dig into me, and I can hear the loud screams of other people as they see the mangled swing set. As glimpses of sunlight fall between the corner I try to push myself up, but only feel the weight of being forced down. Soon voices come around me and the boys’ fists stop hitting me. Someone gently helps me onto my feet as I open my eyes and see as the two dark figures are pulled away from me. The only thing remaining on their faces is pure hatred and enjoyment in beating me up. Everything else tunes out as I focus on the one thing that remains. The boiling feeling of anger as I see them walk away. I vow to never again be the one powerless to another, and feel something shift inside me as my hands begin to glow with a stronger energy than before.

Post #1: Introduction

Hello! My name is Ali, I absolutely love to read and have been reading for as long as I can remember. One of my favorite books was “The Giver,” by Lois Lowry as well as “Because of Winn-Dixie,” by Kate DiCamillo. I enjoy reading outside in the sunshine, or on any comfortable chair. My favorite genres right now consist of non-fiction, memoirs, historical non-fiction and fiction, and biographies. And I will confess that I tend to read multiple books at once, I just enjoy the diversity of stories that I can’t seem to only read one book at a time.

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