I enjoyed the books we read. It is definitely a class that you would only take if you enjoy reading a lot. I liked that we did a lot of blog work, it made it easier for me to stay on top of it. I don’t know if I necessarily “improved” as a reader but I do think my taste in books changed a bit (Skulduggery is still my favorite) I have a better understanding for certain types of books. I would absolutely take this class again. I don’t think there was a whole lot of work in this class, just some reading outside of class. Hardly any homework and it’s really chill. I don’t think this class would be considered challenging, but it was fun and I definitely learned things, which is kind of the whole point. I absolutely loved the books we read, I had already read A Monster Calls before, but was glad to have an excuse to read it again. I didn’t necessarily dislike anything about this class, it was all fun and interesting. I didn’t like that we have to watch the movies of the books, because I didn’t really like them, but that’s my opinion, you should take the class and form your own opinions yourself, because that’s not MY job.
I think that Conor wants to be seen because he needs boundaries, he feels like people gave up on him and that they won’t take him seriously because he is a victim, but he doesn’t want to be seen as a victim. He pushes away the people that see him, in my opinion, because he isn’t used to it and he doesn’t like the way he gets attention. He wants to be seen in a certain way, not just seen or pitied. Conor wants to be punished because that would make him more normal, no longer invisible, he would finally get what he feels he deserves. This all ties into Conor’s mom and the monster in the way that the whole reason he feels invisible is because of his mom and the fact that she may or may not be dying. The monster, in this whole thing doesn’t make sense to me because that thing seemed to have a pretty good moral compass and everything. The monster seemed to punish those who need it, but he seems to come unhinged just as much as Conor does, or maybe Conor is imagining that. Being seen is important because that means we get consequences and help when we need or deserve it. I think many people do many different things when they feel unseen, some good, some bad. Every person is different and so there really doesn’t seem to be a concrete answer for what we should do when we feel unseen.
I think everyone is different and has different beliefs, which makes the requirements different. I think this is one of the better stories the Monster tells Conor because it relates to believing and stuff like that. This story, I think anyone can relate to. I think there are two ways this relates specifically to Conor. Number one: He needs to strengthen his belief that his mother may die. I believe that he doesn’t fully believe that and that is part of the reason why Conor is dealing with things the way he is. I think the Monster is trying to show Conor what he needs to believe in more, but it isn’t what he is expecting.
To start, I think it is interesting that we tell little kids stories about good guys and morals and lessons, but as we get older, we get taught and told that there is not always a purely good person. I think we tell them because that in itself is a lesson. One of the obvious lessons we can learn from stories with gray areas is that there are grey areas in real life. The question is a paradox. I think we read those kinds of stories because of its realness. A book or story about a Disney princess is not realistic and doesn’t relate to us as well as a story with a conflicted protagonist that has bent the rules or not been holy their entire life. The last question Mr. Green asked is “what can we learn if there is no lesson?” And to that I say there is a lesson in stories with “no lesson” you just have to look at it in a certain way in a certain life.
I have been through a couple hard things, and the one I’ll talk about happened more to my parents than to me, but it still affected me and we still talk about it and the affects. I think getting through hard things makes us stronger and I think this is a great example of that. A few years ago, my aunt died from lung cancer, she had 3 kids and a loving husband. She had 4 sisters and a brother (my dad) and it was one of the saddest days I’d ever had back then. I personally wasn’t there when she died in the hospital, and I wasn’t at her funeral either. But it has affected me, my dad, and my aunts. Getting through that, for our whole family involved talking about it, thinking about the good memories and being able to see the good in it. I personally was too little to really understand it, but when I got to the age where I finally understood it, it took me some time to mourn. I cried and I just thought about all the fun memories and everything she had done for me and the rest of my family. Loss is hard, tough times will always come, but we always get through it.
What the Movie Did Well: I think the movie captured Max Vandenburg pretty well, he was the closest to his image in the book of all the characters in the film. I also think that they did a pretty good job on making the atmosphere match the atmosphere we imagined that Germany was at that time. It followed all the major plot points well. Most of the actors did an amazing job. They added quotes from the movie
What the Movie Did Poorly: They got the characters wrong. They kicked Tommy out of the whole movie. The whole ending section was out of wack. Rudy was too young, Liesel was too old. Their house was too big for how poor they were supposed to be.
Ways the Movie Was Like the Book: They had all of the main characters in there. They took direct quotes from the book
Ways the Movie Was Not Like the Book: Rudy stayed the age of 8 the whole movie. There wasn’t a whole lot of character growth, in the book there’s so much and it makes the book even more interesting because you get to follow that journey with Death and the characters
What I Thought of the Movie Overall: I didn’t enjoy it, it wasn’t the best and I would rather have watched Flicka or something. I think the movie could’ve been really awesome, if only Markus Zuzaks had done most of it himself.
The positive did outweigh the negative, the negative of course being EVERYONE dying. I think that the darkness had to be there to make the light more enjoyable, it was a roller coaster. The light that I found was basically just a well written book that made me kind of rethink my attitude towards a few things. It kind of puts it all into perspective. I have rough days, but my rough days are not everything I know being blown up or taken away. In my opinion, the darkness was not that bad, sure, there were a lot of depressing parts, I may have cried at some points, but the darkness was still broken by the smattering of light at the end. The end of The Book Thief, if you ask me, was one of the best book endings I have ever read. It was bittersweet. I personally am not a fan of the “fairy tale” ending and am glad this book, with all its gritty realism didn’t have a terrible, unfit ending.
Source: Skulduggery Pleasant: Death Bringer by Derek Landy page 459
Context: “Miss Cain, this is my son, who has taken the grand and noble name of Hansard Kray, and I am his embarrassing father, the scurrilous and drunken Arthur Dagan..”
In Their Words: making or spreading scandalous claims about someone with the intention of damaging their reputation.
In My Words: scoundrel or no good
This whole thing, in my opinion, is really refreshing, I like the perspective of events from an adult’s point of view that isn’t Death, although, he’s just an entity, not necessarily an adult. The significance of this story is the way that Max interprets their relationship and the events that have happened, it shows the power behind the two of them. The tree represents, in my opinion, their friendship and what they were able to accomplish together, then it comes down after it has been finalized, because what good is a tree that doesn’t bear any new fruit. It shows a creative solution. Words are super powerful and I’ve already written a whole blog post on strictly how powerful words can be. In this situation, all words are powerful, the negative and the positive, but what really mattered is what the people did with those words.