The Giver (Dec 15th)

The Giver is a book I’ve been reading recently, written by Lois Lowry. In this “utopian” world, everybody is equal. During birth, every baby will be checked for anomalies, as soon as they discover it, they would be “sent”away; every day, everybody will inject themselves with a dose of chemicals, that makes everybody unable to dream, unable to see in color, unable to sense fear, love, guilt, or jealousy.

People in this world does not understand fear, they do not understand war, they do not understand love. But one. The person who knows is known as the Giver. Each year, they elect a new giver, or Reciever of Memories, these memories of war, love, massacres, fear, are all stored in one person to give wise suggestions in case a war happens.

When Jonas, the new Reciever of Memory is on his way to release all of his memories of war, love, fear. He was stopped by his best childhood friend, Asher. By now, Ashe is already a pilot, one responsible for scouting the outside world and keeping things in place. One of my favorite quotes from the book is when Asher catches Jonas as he runs away from his house to the outside world. When Jonas meets Asher, he stops him and says, “why are you outside in the middle of the night?” Jonas says: “Something good.” Asher, a kid who always disobeys, says: “If it is something good, why is it against the rules?”

This shows how this society, how the environment can change anyone into someone good, or bad. This is also what this book, the authoer Lois Lowry was trying to show.

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DEAR: Thirteen Reasons Why

Over the holidays i read more than one book, but this particular one caught my attention. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher is a book that will change anyone’s life.The story is of a 16 year old girl, Hannah, who committed suicide but that’s not the sentimental part; before her death, she recorded 13 cassette tapes of the thirteen reasons why she killed herself. Each reason is about a different person, but some people appear twice on the tapes. The tapes are first mailed to the first person on the tape, Justin, Hannah’s first kiss. Then, Justin had to mail the tapes to whomever is next on the list, Alex. Everyone on Hannah’s list did something to her that made her upset in so many ways. Rumors, lies, stories. Everyone made things up about her and she just couldn’t take it anymore. The book is from the point of view of a student on the tapes, Clay Jensen. But he is the only person on the tapes that didn’t do anything to hurt Hannah Emotionally. Hannah liked Clay, he was probably the nicest person she met. But he was too shy to ask her out because he was afraid that the rumors about her might be true. In the end, he was too late for her.

Thirteen Reasons Why is a heartbreaking novel that changed the way i view at the world, the way i look at the people around me. Even the smallest lies can become a thunderstorm of damage. If a book changes the way you act around others, if it changes the way you view life, than you know it’s not just some random book. I loved this novel. It will make you smile at times and cry at others, and yoyo will never be the same again.

I can’t think of anyone who shouldn’t read this book. I would recommend it to everyone; boys and girls. The novel teaches the reader that anything you do can effect people in the simplest ways. This book is so worthwhile reading.

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Wave – Journal Entry

Written by Sonali Deraniyagala, Wave is a heartbreaking memoir that recounts the author’s encounter of a nearly unfathomable tragedy – losing her husband, sons and parents in the 2004 tsunami – with grief. The memoir further narrates the author’s life before the tsunami, as well as her attempts and failures to cope with the event’s aftermath in the following years. The memoir commences with Sonali’s family vacationing on the coast of Sri Lanka on an ordinary day, only to realize that the ocean looked a little closer to the hotel room than usual. Oblivious to the rising waves, her family gets swept away by the tsunami. Miraculously, Sonal survives the tragedy and gets rescued. Within minutes, her world gets torn apart when the realisation of losing her beloved ones gradually sinks in, like blades that slash at her consciousness second by second, leaving wounds that bleed relentlessly.

“For three years I’ve tried to indelibly imprint they are dead on my consciousness, afraid of slipping up and forgetting, of thinking they are alive. Coming out of that lapse, however momentary, will be more harrowing than the constant knowing, surely.” Every page of the memoir unravels the author’s unbearable loss, pain, grief, guilt, and craving for a different life. The descriptions of her sentiments are heartfelt and pure; her account of events so brutally honest that you cannot help but to mourn with her.

Wave is surely one of the most depressing yet powerful books that I have ever came upon, it is also a page-turner that tempts you to read the book non-stop. This book is certainly not recommended for the light-hearted nor those who seek traditional novels and anticipate happy endings, but for readers who seek to read the twists and turns in life, as well as heartfelt accounts of personal tragedies.

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DEAR- Let It Snow

Let It Snow if in fact three short stories in one book written by Maureen Johnson, John Green and Lauren Myracle. All three stories are set in the same place, all happen around the same days and are all winter love stories. A Christmas Eve snowstorm transforms one small town into a romantic haven, the kind you see in cheesy movies. The stories are different yet intertwine with each other. Only at the end things start to make sense, you find unexpected characters in one story then the next is about that one character. The first story is about a senior girl called Jubilee. She finds herself going to see her grandparents because her parents ended up in jail due to a small brawl. The train gets partially submerged under the snow as a consequence of the unexpected snow storm. Little does she know that this storm is what leads her to the hot stranger who will steal her heart. The same snow storm affects Tobin from “A Cheertastic Christmas Miracle” (story 2). Tobin and the Duke (Angie) are best friends so the most part is expected. They both love each other but don’t know it. Many struggles happen throughout this story but in the end the end up together, hence three holiday romances. Last but nit least, the final story is narrated by Angie, the protagonist. She has recently broken up with the love of her life over a stupid fight. Her best friends think she is a little flu of herself so she tries to help others, and through that she captures her love’s heart again.

I would not recommend this book to people who like a lot of fantasy and action, although there is a lot of drama. I think people who like less action and more romance would enjoy this book. John green is a great author so if you have read previous books from him, this would be a god one to read as well.

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DEAR : Catching Fire

Throughout the holidays I have been enjoying reading the second book in the series “Hunger Games” by Suzanne Collin. This book in the victors from the 74th annul hunger games thought they had finally got peace from the capital, but little do they know that they have to enter the Games again, due to the fact that the Capital wants to keep things fresh, so they select all the victors from all the 12 districts.

Snow, the President of the Capital doesn’t believe that Catniss and Peeta’s love is real, so tells Catniss to make him believe that their love is real, because he saw Catniss’s feelings towards Gale. Catniss needs to prove this through the Victor Tour, this is when all the victors go around to the different districts and say what they feel about the hunger games that they attended. But really, they just read from cards that Effie wrote out for them. Catniss could sense a rebellion towards the Capital from the districts.

Before the Hunger Games are taken place all the tributes have a chance to make allies, Haymitch; Catniss and Peetas’ mentor tries to get them allies. Catniss is so stubborn that she doesn’t accept who he wants them to ally with. Effie, district 12’s escort gives Peeta and Haymitch a golden token, because Catniss has here golden Mocking Jay, and she has her golden hair and she thought it was only fair if the boys also had one.

At the beginning of the games Peeta and Catniss side along with Maggie and Finick, Maggie volunteered, she’s around 70 years old. Finick win his hunger games when he was 12. He saved Peeta’s life when Peeta got hit by the force field. Catniss feels betrayed as she looses Peeta. She feels the need for vengeance, so she wants to kill Finick, but she fails because she notices he posses Haymitch’s golden token.

This book is filled with a mixture of Adventure, Action and a touch of romance, so its great for readers that like each of these genres. The book keeps you captivated and brings hope for a good ending. I wouldn’t recommend this book to readers that prefer reading fantasy, sci fi readers or readers that enjoy reading about mysteries.

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DEAR JOURNAL – 1st of January 2015


Written by Gillian Flynn, Gone girl is a serious page turner. The story is sickening and shows the darkest part of humanity. Nick Dunne and his wife, Amy, moves from New York City to North Carthage; Nick’s childhood home. They’re marriage was held together by a thin thread, however, they both act as if everything is fine between them. Even Nick’s twin sister, Margo, whom he is very close to did not suspect that something was wrong. Nick finds it troubling knowing that his wife would be dissatisfied with him even before he steps into the house hence he took one of his graduate student as a mistress. As their fifth anniversary came, Amy’s sudden disappearance catches the attention of the entire town and beyond. Due to his lack of knowledge about his wife’s personal life and health information, the police becomes suspicious and starts suspecting Nick to be the possible murder/kidnapper. Amy, who loves riddles and games, left clues behind for Nick to find and follow. As the story progresses Nick, with the help from Margo, discovers an ugly secret; it was all a set up.   Amy, who can be considered as a sociopath, is convinced that Nick had killed her. Not killed as in dead, she meant something must worst. He had stripped her of her value, her social life and most importantly her personality. In order to get her revenge on her husband, she mapped out her own murder/kidnapping. Planning every single detail carefully that the evidence would be strong enough to lead back to Nick and send him to jail. Nick, being framed by his own wife for her murder/kidnapping starts playing along with her game starts a battle between the two. However, as they tried to make the audience like them and dislike the other; Amy saw in her twisted mind the Nick she fell in love with.

This story shows the ugly side of marriage. Which is the fact that marriage is like a game. No matter how twisted the game is, as long as both people involved are willing to play the game it’ll work out. Gillian Flynn points out the idea that marriage is also very similar to being in jail. No matter now much you want to escape, theres sill something holding you back. In Nick’s case, its his unborn child.

I suggest this book to those who are looking for something more challenging to read. However, this book is very twisted and dark. Not a lot of killing is involved but the way the story is set up and presented may make you fell lightheaded.

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DEAR- The Hobbit

I have finished re-reading ‘The Hobbit’ by J.R.R Tolkien in anticipation of the third and final movie adaptation which has been renamed ‘The Battle of the Five Armies’.

It is a 305 page story of a hobbit, a small person about half the height of people, who embarks on an adventure with Gandalf the Grey, a wizard, and a group of dwarves who are on a journey to the Lonely Mountains where a dragon viciously guards a mountain of gold and treasures.

I think it is one of those books that everyone should read once in their lives. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading adventurous and high-fantasy stories and books. Parents could also read it to their kids or for themselves. This book may also be very enjoyable to those who are ‘young at heart’. ‘The Hobbit’ is a ceaseless modern classic and most people would enjoy it although there are many who dislike it. I find that teenagers and people that don’t read very often don’t really seem to enjoy reading “The Hobbit” and find it boring. ‘The Hobbit” does not have much romance (apart from Thorin’s love for the Arkenstone) and may not appeal much to most girls as much. As “The Hobbit” is a high-fantasy book, people who prefer reading more realistic books should not read it.

As to whether or not I like the ‘The Hobbit': yesssss… yessssss we likes it a lotsssss. It’s one of those books that keep you up till 1 o’clock in the morning because of that one lie we would keep telling ourselves- “I’ll go to sleep after this chapter”.It is a combination of a few of my favorite genres: fantasy, action and adventure. I am enchanted by the magical world that Tolkien has created and it makes me want to just enter the book to Middle Earth. I like reading about the elves, dwarves, hobbits, orcs and other the mystical races. There some parts of this page-turing book I really liked; ‘Riddles in the dark’ being one of my favorite chapters.

A box without hinges, key, or lid,

Yet golden treasure inside is hid.


  This thing all things devours:

Birds,beasts,trees, flowers;

Gnaws iron, bites steel;

Grinds hard stones to meal;

Slays kings, ruins town,

And beats high mountain down.

Poor Bilbo sat in the dark thinking of all the horrible names of the giants and ogres he had ever heard told in tales, but none of them had done all these things. He had a feeling that the answer was quite different and that he ought to know it, but he could not think of it. He began to get frightened and that is bad for thinking. Gollum began to get out of his boat. He flapped into the water and paddled to the bank; Bilbo could see his eyes coming towards him. His tongue seem to stick in his mouth; he wanted to shout: “Give me more time! Give me more time!” But all that came out with a sudden squeal was:

“Time! Time!”

 Finally, to those who say ‘The Hobbit’ is bad:

Screen Shot 2014-12-27 at 5.44.29 PM

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DEAR: The Fault in our Stars

Ah yes, the coming of age action-adventure comedy-drama tragedy-romance realistic-fiction thriller novel that sparked widespread critical acclaim across the globe presented to you by the brilliant writer, John Green. His sixth and arguably best book brings to life a dauntingly real depiction of an everyday teenage life – with a mix of cancer.

Ever since the beginning of the first page, readers are brought into the 16 year-old mind of one Hazel Grace Lancaster – a seemingly normal teenager – save for the fact that she has suffered through a life long battle of thyroid cancer. She’s a ‘professional sick person’, only living to wait until her cancer comes back to finish what it had started, until she meets Augustus Waters. Long story short, she likes him and he likes her and the two star-crossed lovers embark on a finite everlasting journey across love and all its vices. Heart warming moments and tear jerking events are all of which is brought by the paper bound book, creating a lasting image that will be remembered by the readers for a long time. I’ve been reading the stellar novel for the past week and found the inner-monologue and narrative of Hazel to be very intriguing, enough so to become the hallmark of the book. Between her and Augustus’ smart and creative dialogue there’s no flaws standing between the pages of the novel, embracing the readers with a roller coaster of emotion that only goes up, and then down all the way to the ground. I myself enjoyed the book quite much, and think that many others would as well. Though some mildly inappropriate are contained within the text, its suitable for all readers who might want a good nights read, and almost guarantee-ably will bring satisfaction. Better yet, there’s a film adaptation for those who loathe words on a page.

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Odd Hours – Journal Entry

Over the past few days, I began reading the novel “Odd hours”, written by Dean Koontz. The thriller novel is set in an obscure town in Pico Mundo, and the protagonist has the extraordinary ability to communicate with the dead. While taking a stroll one morning, the protagonist comes across a woman whom he had been repeatedly seeing in his dreams. However, their encounter has been cut short by the pursuit of three strangers, which he is assaulted and nearly gets murdered.

I particularly liked the evocative description of the ocean at the beginning of the novel: “The Pacific was grey and awash with inky shadows, as if sinuous sea beasts of fanatical form swam just below the surface (page 2).” By comparing the pitch-black shadows reflected on the surface of the ocean to the twisting silhouettes of fictitious sea beasts, the writer reveals the stark resemblance between the two and evokes the image of appalling beasts swimming underwater. This description is an instance of foreshadowing that connotes the commencement of a series of unpleasant occurrence, which takes place further on in the novel. The language employed in the novel is captivating and evocative, which grasps the reader’s attention and leaves them yearning for more.

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Peril at End House – Dear Journal

I am currently reading a crime and detective fiction novel called Peril at end House, written by Agatha Christie. Personally, i think she is one of the best detective novel writer in history.Once you think you know who is the murderer, Christie will always find a way to deceive what you think.  The quote i have chosen is part of a discussion between the retired detective, Mr. Poirot, and his “sidekick”, Mr, Hastings.

“What a suspicious old devil you are!” (55)

This quote is quite short, but has a powerful meaning to it. In the situation, Poirot is investigating an attempt at murder at a woman who refuses to accept that it was an attempt to her life. Poirot gets very suspicious of things, and when he does, he doesn’t share his thoughts with Hastings. That is why Hastings called Poirot an old devil, because the devil can be mischievous and suspicious at times. I liked this small quote because it uses the metaphor that compares Poirot to the devil. This quote describes how Poirot acts towards his close friends, we can tell that he is sort of secretive about himself.

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DEAR: Paper Town

I have just finished reading Paper towns by John green and I must say I loved it, just like any other John Green book. He creates such funny and entreaging stories. I would not recommend this book to readers who like a lot of action and drama, although there is some drama going on. This book is mostly for people who enjoy reading stories about ordinary people with not-so-ordinary lives. Paper Towns is about a young mysterious girl who just wants to escape reality, she does this by running away and leaving clues behind, however always comes back. Will she come back from her master plan to be with the ones she loves? I really enjoyed the book because the characters are absolutely amazing, Margo Roth is one of the main characters, what I love most is that she is so mysterious because the book is written from Quentin’s point of view. Paper Towns is the kind of book that leaves people pondering what would happen next. It may not have a lot of action of fantasy in it but it sure is worth reading. It’s also not a very long book, however jaw-dropping.

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The Hunger Games; Catching Fire

Over the holidays, I have been enjoying re-reading The second book of the series Hunger Games, where Katniss Everdeen the winner of last years hunger games has been selected to attend the 75th annual Hunger Games, where participants of earlier winners come together and fight the same arena. The Hunger games is like a reality show where all 12 districts have participants to attend. Peeta Mellark which is one of 2 men that have won the hunger games before, he enters the 75th hunger games with Katniss, they are the participants from district 12. The pair of them are supposed to be ‘in love’ but the just do it for the camera.  “May the odds ever be in your favour” this is said by Effie, she goes to the districts and selects the participants for the hunger games by randomly handpicking names from a large bowl, before she chooses she always says “May the odds ever be in your favour”.

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Vampire Academy

I have recently finished a book called “Vampire Academy” by Richelle Mead. This book is about two teenagers girls: Rose Hathaway and Princess Vasilisa Dragomir. Rose Hathways is dhampir (half human and half vampire) guardian in training (trained to protect Moroi (good vampires who control special abilities) and kill strigoi (bad vampire who drink to kill). These two teenagers are best friend and developed an special bond. There are enemies who seek to harm the princess and throughout the book Rose protects Lisa and tries to find the enemy.

Readers who like fiction and vampires would like this book. I would recommend it to teenage girls because this book contains unbreakable friendship and endless drama. Readers who are not a fan of fiction would not like this book because this book is unrealistic. I love this book because i find it interesting and I love the how the writer portrayed Rose Hathaway as a reckless, loyal person. The use of adjectives are very detailed when describing a person’s actions and emotions. As if a movie is playing in our heads.

The first line in the book: “I felt her fear before I heard her screams” immediately caught my attention. The first sentence created anxious questions in my head such as: what was so scary that she screamed? How can someone feel fear before the scream? Who is I and who is she? This sentence made me want to read more of the book and I think many other people are thinking of the same thing.

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She was a Phantom of Delight – William Wordsworth (Imagery)

She was a Phantom of Delight by William Wordsworth is filled with many types of imagery. The most common is the image of perfection. This woman that the speaker is talking about seems to have everything he ever dreamed of in his eyes. The first line ‘She was a phantom of delight’ (1-1) as well as ‘a lovely apparition’ (1-3) resembles something unobtainable, like a ghost or a phantom of perfection.

He compares her to the twilight multiple times (‘Her eyes as stars of twilight’ (1-5) and ‘like twilights too, her dusky hair’ (1-6)) gives off the impression of beauty and serenity as twilights are peaceful and pretty.

As well as comparing her looks, he compliments her personality and charm. For example, ‘motions light and free’ (2-3). This shows she is free spirited and cheery.

Finally he mentions that she is ‘a perfect woman, nobly planned’ (3-7), again linking into the unobtainable, dream-like woman.

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Twist and Shout – Gabriel

Twist and Shout is a currently unpublished book by Gabriel set in 1965.

It starts at a party in which bad boy, Dean Winchester, crashes. After that, Castiel Novak, who was at the party leaves by foot to his apartment only to be picked up by Dean’s. Their love blossoms until one day Dean is deployed to Vietnam for the war, leaving Cas to his studies.

When he returns, he is a changed man. Dean doesn’t leave the apartment for weeks, falling into a constant state of depression. After a few weeks of isolation, Dean leaves the apartment, leaving Castiel behind.

After a year had past, Dean receives a call from Castiel’s older brother saying that Cas is sick and dying in the local hospital. Dean decides to visit Cas once, to give him closure but ends up staying until his last days, in which he passes away.

Although this isn’t a published book, it is by far the best piece of writing I have ever read. All the details from this period of time are correct which is one of the best things for me. The most interesting (yet sad) part about this attention to detail is the ending. When Cas is in the hospital, he is showing all the symptoms of HIV however, in 1965 they didn’t know about the AIDs virus yet, leading the doctors to think it was pneumonia. Overall, this book was very enjoyable but tragic.

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Prophecy of the Sisters

I am currently reading a book called “Prophecy of the sisters” by Michelle Zink. This book is about a pair of twin sisters Lia and Alice Milthorpe who had become orphans. They discover their roles in a prophecy, which turned them into enemies.

The opening two sentences of this book caught my attention.


“Perhaps because it seems so appropriate, I don’t notice the rain. It falls in sheets, a blanket of silvery thread rushing to the hard almost-winter



These two sentences are describing said from Lia’s point of view. She is attending her father’s funeral. The way in which the author approached to describe Lia’s grief with “seems so appropriate” makes me feel like there is no other way to describe it more correctly. It also creates questions like where is she? What seems so appropriate? Also, the second sentence gave a imagery of what the weather is like. As if I am there myself. “Falls in sheets” describes how it is raining really hard and “silvery thread” describes how the rain was coming down fast and harsh. “Almost-winter” gives the character of Lia. It shows me she likes to be accurate and she observes everything in detailed.

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Tiger in the Menagerie

The tiger is described as very mysterious and violent. No one knew how he got into the menagerie. The language of this poem is very simple but the metaphors and imagery in the lines gives the tiger its characteristics. ‘The bars were the lashes of the stripes
the stripes were the lashes of the bars’ The tiger and the bars in this line seems like it merged together. The line ‘when the sun rose they’d gone’ conveys many questions such as whether the tiger has killed all the animals? Or did the animals escape?

This poem creates frustration because it makes me question many aspects of this poem. Also creates anxiousness of what would happen next.


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The Uninvited – Dear Journal

For the past few weeks, I have been reading “The Uninvited” by Tim Wynne-Jones, only recently have i completed this book. This book is a mystery thriller and it is set in south Canada around the countryside. The main reason I admired the author is the way he builds up tension throughout the chapters. Even though beginning the stalker was already known to us from the beginning, it still has some unexpected suspense and tension in certain chapters. It is written well enough to have me sweat and feel tense during times.

This story talks about two protagonists, Mimi and Jay, who meet in a “hunted” house owned by their father. Unknown to them they are step sister and brother because their father have tons of affairs. They are then trying to figure out the mystery of the awkward yet bizarre objects appearing around the house.

I enjoyed this book very much, however i would only recommend this book to slightly older reader as it contains tons of vulgar language. I haves improved my vocabulary through this book as the author used powerful and descriptive verbs and adjective, that is why I would recommend this book to anyone that are interested in improving their vocabulary. The only down side of the book is that the ending was underwhelming.

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december dear post

Recently I have started to read maze runner .I think that it is a very intresting and a good book to read.There is a lot of suspense and tension throughout the book mostly when the gate won’t close.I think that it is a good book for people around my age to read due to the fact of there not being to much complicated part but still hard enough to challenge the reader a the story the plot is mainly about a group of people who live in this maze that is guarded by gates that close at night to stop the monsters from coming in,eventually in the climax of the book the gate stops and the civilization is now in danger of extinction.personally i would give this book 7 out of 10.

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Love (III) by George Herbert

George Herbert shows his passion to Christianity through the poem ‘Love (III)’. He uses the rhyme scheme, ABABCC… At the beginning of the poem the poet talks about the fear of gods punishments and as the poem progresses, he talks about the love of good forgiveness. ‘Guilty of dust and sin.’ (2) gives the readers the impression that the persona had done something in the past that is not modest. Later in stanza two, ‘I the unkind, ungrateful?’ (9) also suggest that the persona had done something unforgiving while he/she was in a relationship.  Stanza two, Love is forgiving and tries to persuade the persona that everyone deserves a second chance when it comes to love; this is suggest when the writer wrote, ‘Love took my hand…’ (11). This creates the image of Love helping the persona out by lending a hand to him/her. The third stanza states that the persona had given into love and decided to give it another chance. ‘You must sit down, says Love, and taste my meat: So i did sit and eat.’ (17-18) This paints the image of the persona finally deciding to have another taste in love and stopped fearing what his actions in the past would do to him in the future.

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“Lovers’ Infiniteness” – John Donne

In ‘Lovers’ Infiniteness’, the poet John Donne’s selection of diction and structure exemplify a coherent image contrasting the conventional lover, with the lover non-persistent, giving up on his love. The repetition of ‘all’ in the beginning and end of each stanza suggests lust for a totality of affection, and a refusal to acknowledge any less. It implies the stark reality that a complete love is hopeless, but nevertheless the lover is compelled to believe the impossibility is created by ‘other men’ (15). Comparison brought from the first stanza and the second, lines 6 and 16-17, outline the suspicion of the ‘other men’ who may ‘outbid’ the lover for the lovee’s affection. Donne also crafts his lover’s unease for the infidelity of the lovee, which ‘may beget new fears’, indicating a semi-sexual procreation of said fear by the new men (18).  The irregular pattern of rhyme conveys an inconsistency of the love given and received by the lovee and lover respectively.

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The Lost Woman – Patricia Beer

In “The Lost Woman,” the poem connotes the fact that the daughter is really the ‘lost woman,’ although this isn’t distinguished until the end. The poet also creates an imagery of the mother’s ‘supposed’ life. Firstly, the language used in the beginning of the poem is quite typical, however as the speaker starts to create her own version of her mother, the language changes slightly. The speaker creates and image of how her mother met her husband in war (15-18). She also portrays her mother as something better than she thought she was, they had a tenuous mother-daughter relationship hence the fictitious fantasies. All the imagery is visceral.

The poet uses half rhymes to give a bit of a sinister and unsettling effect, the fact that the whole poem is arranged in six stanzas each with six lines also gives this effect. The rhyme scheme used consists of  half rhymes such as ‘pain, lane’ (2,4) and ‘acquired, desired’(20,22) delineates a sonic pattern as they are each two lines apart, this consists in most stanzas. The poet uses words like ‘shocking white’ to illustrate not only the fact that the entire thing was scandalous, but that the ambulance itself brought out a disturbing aroma. The speaker says her ‘ivy-mother turned into a tree’ which shows her feeling towards he mother. In the beginning, the poet portrays and effect of confusion and sadness at the start: ‘my mother went’ instead of simply saying ‘my mother died.’

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December 1st DEAR journal

Lately I’ve been reading the novel, ‘The rise of nine’ by Pittacus Lore. It is the third novel in The Lorien Legacies. The novel includes a mixture of romance, science-fiction and adventurous. Through-out the first two novels in the series, the main characters John Smith, Sarah, Number Six and Sam battles against the Mogadorians as they desperately tries to gather the rest of the Garde before its too late. The Garde is the small group of nine Loric survivors who had escaped to Earth, away from the Mogadorians who had taken over their plant. I have only just started the third novel, however, i really enjoyed the first two novels in the series. The novels contains a good mixture of three of the favorite genres; romance, science-fiction and adventure. The writer has a wide range of imagination hence this series is like nothing I’ve ever read before. At times it can be horrifying, the way the Pittacus Lore uses imagery to help the readers picture how the Mogadorians look like and the bloody battles the Loric and Mogadorians have. But other times, the novel sounds like just another normal teenage book where its all about love and the biggest problem they have is what outfit they should wear; not having to worry about saving their own planet and Earth. That is the biggest reason as to why i enjoyed this series, Pittacus Lore has such a enthusiastic way of writing; he makes you want to keep on reading to find out whats going to happen next because it is very hard to predict it. In my opinion, this series is a very good read for those who are looking for entertainment; but for those who are looking to improve their language through reading, its not a very challenging book to read hence it might not be the best help.

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‘She was a Phantom of Delight’ – William Wordsworth

The poet’s diction emphasizes the description of his lover. He describes her as a “lovely apparition” which resembles a supernatural idea of a phantom. Wordsworth uses similes to Her “dusky hair”(6) and “eyes as stars of Twilight” (5) portrays an image of dark hair and eyes that shine bright as the stars, just like the night. They way the poet uses metaphors to portray the image of his lover being a ‘phantom of delight’ is unique. Usually, ghosts do not get related to as being delight, but rather frightful and haunting. It is almost an oxymoron that he uses here. The choice of worlds at the end of each line makes a rhyme scheme of AABBCCDDEE. In throughout the poem these end words describe the woman’s appearance and personality. In stanza three, Wordsworth uses adjectives and adverbs to convey the idea that his lover is a “perfect woman”. “Nobly planned” delineates the conception of her having fine personal qualities or high moral principles (28). This quote can be interpreted as an appearance or personality. The “command” (29) implies that his lover can instruct and give orders, which is to do with her personality.

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Father Coming Home – Dilip Chitre

Some of the words in the poem emphasise the sadness and the depression of the man in the poem. “Eyes dimmed” (line 6) this gives importance to show that he doesn’t have any glow or hope in his eyes which means that he has no life in them, he doesn’t have much to care for but his dull children who don’t care for him, they refuse to even share secrets or even talk to him anymore (line 21). After coming home from long days of travelling. He doesn’t get any attention from family and ‘loved ones’. The writer compares the father’s clothes to his mood. “His shirt and pants are soggy and his black raincoat stained with mud” (line 4). This shows us that he is cold, wet and dark. In this poem the writer uses specific works to emphasise the fathers feelings and emotion.

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‘Father Returning Home’ – Dilip Chitre

In “Father Returning Home”, the poet employs meticulous diction that conveys the mundaneness in an old commuter’s life and the alienation he undergoes in the present world. In the beginning of the poem, the poet portrays the monotonousness of the old man through depicting his train journey while returning home on one sultry, rainy evening. “Suburbs slide past his unseeing eyes” (3) connotes that the old man rides on the train on a daily basis, which the scenery of the suburbs have become familiar sightings to him. The word “unseeing” conveys the inattentiveness of the old man, since we hardly pay attention to familiar surroundings, unless it is characterised by unusualness or riveting aspects. Through the diction of “dimmed” (6), the poet encourages the reader to envision the dullness and lack of colour in his eyes, which is resulted from ageing and weathering the harsh circumstances of life. Moreover, it further implies the lifelessness reflected in his dimming eyes, as well as the fact that he is finding it difficult to move about in the dark as he returns home. Monsoon is the rainy season accompanying the wet monsoon, which “humid monsoon night” (7) implies the suffocation the old man feels due to the ambience of the surroundings and his situation in life. Through the simile “like a word dropped from a long sentence” (9), the poet evokes the image of an old man hurrying off from the train as if he is no longer relevant to it. The old man experiences alienation even in his own house, which he drinks insipid tea and devours stale, unleavened bread: “I see him drinking weak tea eating a stale chapati” (13-14). This phrase implies the fact that he does not reach the adequate requirements on a daily basis due to his negligent and sullen family members, which reinforces the old man’s estrangement from the “man-made world” (16).

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Tiger in the menagerie – Emma Jones

Various of words in the poem have been used to display the tiger’s nature, which is killing. There is great imagery which describes the colour of the tiger ‘too bright’, ‘clear orange’ (line 15, 13) the colour of the tiger is related to the last line in the first stanza ‘too much like the painting of a tiger’. This almost describe that the tigers killing is fake, that it is unrealistic. The tiger is too fast or ‘too flash’ for the other animals (line 2) this emphasises how the tiger has unnoticeable actions and moves swiftly, while hunting its prey. The other animals in the menagerie are terrified of the unstoppable killing machine, the tiger. ‘If the menagerie could, it would say tiger'(stanza 6) to prove my assertion.

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Dear Journal Entry – Percy Jackson:

Lately, I have been reading Percy Jackson, Titians Curse. I have finished it quite some time ago and I found it very interesting. In The Titan’s Curse Percy Jackson’s friend Annabeth  and Artemis, who is a goddess of hunting, and they both get kidnapped. They stay at a place called Camp Half blood. An oracle speaks a prophecy which states a group of five have to go on a mission to look for artemis. Percy isn’t chosen into the group. Instead Bianca, Zoe, Thalia, Phoebe and Grover get sent on the search. Percy is eager to join the quest so he goes secretly and follows the group on a magical PHOENIX on their search for Annabeth and artemis.  This book offers a lot of action and adventures, my favourite part is when they are at Hoover Dam where there are humans and have to fight skeletons and the humans could not see them fight. they existed by 2 angel statues.

People who might enjoy this book are people who love reading about action and adventure. This book also adds in some fantasy with all its different mysteries and creatures they meet on their quest. The readers who wouldn’t enjoy this book are the readers that prefer reading about sad, emotional stories or who read romance. The Percy Jackson series do not offer romance.

I really enjoyed reading this book because I love reading action and adventurous books. Percy Jackson provides plenty of action in his adventures that he goes on with his best friends.

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‘Tiger in the menagerie’ -Poem analyse

Some words and phrases poet used shows the natural killing instinct of a tiger in the poem. ‘Too flash’ (line2) emphasise the swift and unnoticeable movements and how the event happened suddenly. Even though there is a huge contrast between eh cage bars and the tiger’s stripes.But at night they seem to have merged together. Striking imagery conveyed through ordinary language. ‘Clear orange’ ,’Too blue'(stanza 5/1),use of colour corresponds to the first stanza ‘too much like the painting of a tiger'(stanza 1), making the tiger’s killing spree seem unrealistic. ‘If the menagerie could, it would say ‘tiger'(stanza 6), shows the helplessness of little animals and their fear toward the ruthless predator. The poet only wrote scenes when the tiger enters and leaves the menagerie, but not the details of its massacre. This hints that what the tiger did was too cruel too be told. But on the other hand, the tiger did what it had to for survival.

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December Dear Journal

Lately i have been rereading the book called ‘The Easy Day Was Yesterday’ by Paul Jordan. I am really enjoying this book at the moment because it gives you a inside of what happens to a soldier. This book is an auto-biography about how Paul Jordan was arrested and was kept hostage for three years in and around Asia. Paul Jordan shares his experiences when he was a child growing up, fighting in the wars, the dirty jails he was thrown in and how he was tortured. The reason i like this book so much is because it shows me how petrifying and unpleasant it is to be thrown around. This book is realistic unlike many of the other books published nowadays. As the book progresses, Paul Jordan slowly realises that friendship and human dignity is the key to surviving in this cruel world. Paul Jordan describes every situation in detail, this helps the readers picture the situation and understand how he felt during the time. I find this book really fascinating that is why i am going to reread this book again in the future.

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DEAR journal – Paper Towns

The novel begins with a backstory about Quentin (the protagonist) and Margo’s relationship from when they were young. Both grew up together, yet still disconnected. One night, Margo is in for an adventure but to his surprise, asks Quentin to join her. Soon enough Margo is missing. Margo is this mysterious girl everyone wants to know, and everyone thinks they know her. On the contrary, they are conscious of nothing but little of her.

Margo always loved mysteries. And in everything that came afterward, I could never stop thinking that maybe she loved mysteries so much that she became one.” (Prologue, p. 8).

“Thats always seemed so ridiculous to me, that people would want to be around someone because they’re pretty. It’s like picking your breakfast cereals based on color instead of taste.” (37)

The first quote is spoken by Q (Quentin). Margo indeed is a mystery and thats what I love about tis quote. It fits in really well with the whole book because we know so little about Margo that she is a mystery to us readers but to people who know her, she’s a totally different person. She’s a mystery as everyone she knows sees her differently like they’re all looking at her through different mirrors. Q sees her as a mystery, her closest friends think they know her but they really only see the Margo she wants them to see. This was one of my favorite quotes because it really makes you ponder about yourself and others and what you’ve become.  I actually think this quotation has another meaning, maybe it’s backwards. Maybe Margo loved mysteries so much because she was one herself, and always found herself caught in other people’s mysteries.

I also love the second quotation the most because of the powerless of the simile; it really does affect the your thought about the people you think you know. it relates well with the book because, as mentioned before, everyone sees a different Margo, everyone sees what they want to see. Margo is the Queen Bee of their school, she is gorgeous and everyone wants to be friends with her, this is why she says this to Q (who is madly in love with her). This quotation is powerful because of the meaning behind it, both quotations raise questions about society and how it impacts on yourself. Paper towns has many quotes that affect the way you think, thats why it’s such a great book.



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Journal Entry – Between Shades of Gray

Written by Ruta Septeys, Between Shades of Gray is by far one of the best books i have every read. In terrifying detail, Ruta creates a World War two story that is you’ll never forget.  The novel is set in 1941, during the Second World War. The atrocities of Hitler are well known all around the world, but few know the story of Joseph Stalin and how he killed over 20 million people in the time period of terror.

The novel is a historian fiction that delineates the story of a fifteen-year-old girl from Lithuania who is preparing for art school over the summer. One night, the Soviet Secret police barge into Lina’s house viciously, deporting her along with her mother and younger brother. She travels a long and suffering journey to Siberia, and finds out that her father has been sentenced to death in a prison camp. Lina fights for her life, and risks documenting her experiences through her art and drawings, hoping that they will make their way back to her father to tell him they are still alive.  Lina finds herself in love with an eighteen-year-old boy, who helps her family as much as he possibly can. Fear that the truth of her imprisonment might be lost forever, Lina  buried her drawings and letters of the years she spent in Siberia in capsules, risking death if they were found. Suffering, hope, and love is what pulls Lina and her family together through each day. But will it be enough?

I LOVED this book. I think people who don’t like to read supernatural or fantasy books would love this novel just as much as i did. It creates mysterious ideas at times, and raises questions that are unresolvable. That is what I like about this book; even after you have finished the novel, it will get you thinking. Personally, I find the novel not only intriguing, but quite educational in some levels. It captures your heart and reveals what human nature is really capable of doing.

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Northanger Abbey (Jane Austen) – Journal Entry

“No one who had ever seen Catherine Morland in her infancy, would have supposed her born to be an heroine” (page 22). As the opening of Northanger Abbey, the narrator introduces Catherine Morland as the protagonist and begins taking the reader on the heroine’s riveting, labyrinthine and mysterious journey of life. I have chosen this quotation because the openings and endings of novels are usually the lines that convey significant meanings and spark questions in the reader’s mind. In which the significance of this opening is to present the reader to the protagonist of the novel and arouse interest in the reader’s heart. After reading the opening, some readers might commence to contemplate about the real identity of Catherine, for instance why would anyone who had never seen Catherine in her early years suppose her to be an heroine, and what incidents of her infancy prevented Catherine from becoming an heroine at an early stage.

By referring Catherine as a heroine, the author – Jane Austen – compels the reader to perceive that Northanger Abbey is merely a novel with fictitious plots and characters. Moreover, Northanger Abbey declares its own identity as a novel, mainly because the affectionate Catherine views herself as the heroine in a novel. From this quotation onwards, the narrator builds upon the contrast between how the flawless life of a fictional heroine should be like and how things actually are for the imperfect Catherine. This leads further on to Catherine’s realisation of the dangers of believing life is the same as fiction, as well as the fact that things are not what they seem at first.

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DEAR: The Girl who Played with Fire

Only Stieg Larsson would be able to craft the compelling masterpiece know as “The Girl who Played with Fire”.  The crime and mystery thriller that built suspense with each page, woven with delicately placed details mixed with intricately written dialogue left me wanting for more. Good thing it’s the second book in a trilogy.  To put it frankly, the books good. Very good. Excellent in fact, to the point where it actually has been made into  a movie. The suspense is what hooked me on, and the eventual unraveling of all the answers  to the seemingly endless conspiracy was enough satisfaction to enjoy the masterpiece.

The story follows two protagonists, Mikael Blomkvist and Lisbeth Salander after their recent return from a rather intense adventure. Blomkvist, a devilishly handsome investigative journalist working for the monthly  magazine Millennium, nearing his half – century age, with military experience. Salander is 27 and deemed ‘socially incompetent’, but not without a particular set of skills, including a photographic memory, exceptional computer hacking skills, and a calm demeanor that betrays any emotion she feels. Blomkvist is propelled into the world of international publicity after exposing a corrupt businessman, while Salander is trying to avoid all human contact and trying to live her life in peace. The world as they knew soon disappeared in a chaotic string of events, which involves a murder with all evidence pointing to Salander as prime suspect. Convinced of her innocence, Blomkvist battles against reporters, the police, and stirs up a long buried government secret, which may lie deep within Salander’s troubled past.

I personally enjoyed the book very much, despite the odd scene of methodically detailed murder. It was a fantastic read in my opinion, but it may not be suitable for everyone, as it touches on very sensitive topics. As I said before, there is the occasional death which Larsson exploits to full potential and leaves a scarred image for those who read it. So as a whole, it’s an interesting book with many subjects within, but more catered to the ‘mature’, so people who don’t particularly like murder mysteries or conspiracies should steer clear away.

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Dear: Inferno

I’ve been reading ‘Inferno’ by Dan Brown recently. It is about Robert Langdon, a professor of symbology, trying to find out what happened during the days when he was blacked out; at the same time, uncovering the truths to a secret plan on reducing human population. This book includes not only italian history from the 1500s, also relates them to concerns the world is facing now, e.g. over population.  The link between the two seemingly unrelated things is ‘Inferno’, or in other word, ‘hell’. Botticelli’s  painting of hell is based on Dante’s description. It is the first image of hell the world had ever seen. To the part i left  off, Professor Langdon followed the clues left on an altered version of Botticelli’s painting, ended up finding a unique painting of a scull, supposedly looking through the eye of death.

“Langdon’s crashing headache had suddenly returned, and yet for the first time since waking up in a strange hospital, he felt a piece o the puzzle tumble into place. His grim hallucinations obviously had been stirred by seeing this famous painting.”

This is  a description when Professor Langdon saw Botticelli’s painting of hell. It’s amazing how even though there isn’t a single word used to describe the painting of hell, it still gives reader a gruesome feeling and notice the faint existence of demons.


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DEAR journal – If I Stay

I have just finished the book If I Stay by Gayle Forman. It is actually quite a short book compared to everything else I read but it is great. If I Stay in the first book of two with a sequel Where She Went. I really enjoyed the book as it fiction but isn’t anything abnormal… well not exactly. It sure does have some mystery and something a little abnormal but that’s what makes it such a good book, its normal but not quite.

If I Stay is about a teenager who has to deal with difficult choices and life changing events. Of course a story like this is nothing without the feisty best friend or the rock but gentle boyfriend. I think people who like a little romance but something funny as well would enjoy this book. It is full of surprises and mystery so if you like that then this is the book for you. If you are looking for something a little more surreal and with a lot of action than I would definitely not recommend this book. This book is all about the choice: to stay or not to stay. Readers who love Percy Jackson or Harry Potter may enjoy this book as it is very divergent but I wouldn’t recommend it if you love something I like.

I really enjoyed the book because I love romance and comedy so it’s a 2 in 1 book. Mysteries are something I also love reading about a lot so this book really fit in with me. I’m also looking forward to reading the second book as the story is not finished quite yet. In the end we don’t know what choice the main character made and that’s what bothers me. I also hated the fact that it was so short however challenging it may have been.

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DEAR Journal Entry – Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984)

Written by George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984) is one of the most intriguing yet appalling novels I have ever came upon. The novel depicts a dystopian society where every single action of its citizens is being monitored through the use of technology, even their conversations are secretly recorded, unknowingly. Daunting posters of the ruling Party’s seemingly omniscient leader – a figure known as Big Brother – are found everywhere, and often followed with the slogan “BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU”. The official slogans of the party are associated with the indoctrination of its citizens, which they are: “War is peace”, “freedom is slavery” and “ignorance is strength”. The party has complete authority over every aspect in the community where the protagonist lives, including the ability to rewrite history and prevent political rebellion by implementing an invented language known as ‘Newspeak’.

I personally enjoyed reading the novel and picturing the nightmarish imaginary society presented within the book, despite having to encounter certain parts that were utterly disturbing, for instance the part when the protagonist is encaged with countless, filthy rodents. This novel has given me an insight into a completely contrasting society to the one that we are currently living in and the menacing impacts totalitarianism and psychological manipulation can have on a community. Readers who take pleasure in reading dystopian novels, thrillers, classics or science-fictions might find Nineteen Eighty-Four compelling, since it creates a strong sense of imagery. Whereas readers who enjoy reading non-fictions, fantasies or autobiographies might find the novel petrifying and disturbing.

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“Breaking Dawn” – Stephanie Meyer

Breaking Dawn fits into the genre paranormal romance and young adult fiction. This is the fourth book in the Twilight Saga. The book is divided into three parts from two different narrators. The first part from Bella’s point of view, where she gets married and goes on her honeymoon with her new husband, Edward. Soon, Bella finds out that she is pregnant with a half human, half vampire child. They get in contact with Carlisle, who confirms she is pregnant. But the baby is growing ant an unnaturally accelerated rate. Part two is from Jacob’s point of view, Bella’s werewolf best friend. In this part, Jacob witnesses Bella’s pregnancy condition, which makes her extremely sick. She’s at the point of death in this part of the book. The third section is from Bella’s pointer of view… but her body had to change in order for her to survive… Bella describes her painful transformation and finds herself changed into a vampire. She’s enjoying her new life and her special abilities with her newborn baby, but a tragic event is about to occur in the future…. you’ll just have to read the rest of the book to find out.

I personally find that the last book in the Twilight Saga in the best of the four books because more exiting and event occur and things happen that are quite unexpected. The their section of the book really describes how Bella has changed from what she was before – a pawn – into a strong queen, hence the book cover.  I thought the book cover was really creative and fits with the book really well. At first, I wasn’t sure why the author had chased that cover, but once you get to read the book, the answers are in-between the lines. I loved this book, probably one of the best books I have ever read.

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes paranormal or vampires stories of romance. Readers who like more utopian fiction wouldn’t really enjoy this book s much.

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‘The Clod and The Pebble’ – William Blake

Hello. We were studying ‘The Clod and the Pebble’ by William Blake.

We wanted to know why Blake wanted such a tight rhyme scheme. For example in verse 2 line 6, he changed nature by saying cattle’s feet instead of cattle’s hooves.


Thank you.


– Ms. Holden’s IGCSE class

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DEAR Journal – Looking for Alaska

I am currently reading Looking for Alaska by John Green. The book is narrated from Miles Halter’s point of view, the main character. Miles sets out on a quest to find his “Great Perhaps”. Deciding that he isn’t going to find it in Florida, he makes the decision to leave his family and attend Culver Creek Boarding School, in Alabama. There Miles finds his nickname Pudge, a prank master as a roommate and a girl named Alaska Young. A different, unique and mysterious girl. She’s wonderful, terrible all together, yet falling apart and Miles can’t help but fall for her. Before Culver Creek everything was boring and tedious but that was before Alaska. Culver creek Boarding School is where it all started

“Such a wide smile on her narrow face might have looked goofy were it not for the unimpeachably elegant green in her eyes. She smiled with all the delight of a kid on Christmas morning and said, ‘Y’all smoke to enjoy it. I smoke to die.’ “

This quote starts with Miles’s narrating then Alaska starts to speak. I chose this quote because i think it fits in really well with the rest of the story. Alaska is meticulous so she knows what to say at the right time. There’s no need to question her because everyone knows how mysterious she is. I love characters that have two personalities and are unexplainable, they bring a joyful and yet different aura that makes the reader feel excited in a way. I also love Miles’s description of Alaska right before the quote, how he referred to her smile as a simile and the words he used to describe her face & the way she looks. This quote really affects the book because it makes Miles not only question her a lot but also want to learn more and more about her. I love how in this whole book nothing is really cliché, this quote certainly isn’t which is what I like most about it. Alaska has a difficult ending ahead of her which makes me wonder if she’s foreshadowing about her future. I just really enjoy this quote in general and how it really affects reader’s preconceptions about Alaska and her life.

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Dear Journal – Breaking Dawn

Braking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer is the fourth and final noel in the Twilight series. The book talks about a vampire, Edward Cullen, who has fallen in love with Bella Swan, a normal human. They get married, go on their honeymoon and end up having a child. To understand this quote, a little both of background information on the characters is needed. Charlie and Renée are Bella’s birth parents but they got divorced when Bella was a child. Renée remarried and her new husband is Phil.

” The las image i registered was one of my parents. Phil had both arms wrapped tenderly around Renée. She had one arm tight around his waist hut her free hand reached out to hold Charlie’s. So many different kinds of love, harmonious in this one moment. it seemed a very hopeful picture to me. “

I like this quote because it talks about how two different kinds of love can cooperate without a fault. Renée used to love Charlie, now she still does, but in a different way. Normally, in this kind of situation in the real world, husbands get jealous and don’t let their wives talk or even see their former husbands. But not in this case. Here we see a bond between divorced families and new families, and a bond between two different kinds of love.

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Matched by Ally Condie

I am presently reading a book called Matched by Ally Condie. Matched is a very interesting book. This book is about a girl who is living her life and waiting to be matched. Matched with her soon to be perfect other half. This quote is set on a banquet on her very special night were she finds the perfect boy for her which society chooses. They receive a micro chip card which contains information about the boy who they are going to spend the rest of their life with.

“A girl in a green dress stands waiting, her heart pounding. Me. the screen is dark. That can only mean one thing.” Loc 159

This quote is important because while she in this banquet on her special night she stands up to be matched but the screen is dark and no face appears like when other girls stood up to know their match. Everyone starts looking at her and she feels very uncomfortable. She is scared of what will happen next or if anything would happen. She knows that something is obviously wrong.

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Personal Response; Identity Papers

When I read Identity papers by James Hsu, it made me think about the different stereotypes and racist comments that people make and say to other people. Once you make this comment and tell it to different generations, this racism and un-called for stereotypes will become a habit then other people will start to believe what they’ve been told.


The article made me think about what if the person who offered to swap the money actually did exchange the cash instead of stealing it, would the story that James Hsu was told ever exist? Would the stereotype “Mainland Chinese are thieves” exist?


The story told to James Hsu starts with his Aunts went on a trip to mainland china and they needed to exchange the money they had into the currency in China. A man aged about 30 offered to help them but what they didn’t know was he was a thief.

James Hsu was told that their situation that they were in could have went worse because how once a bunch of pirates robbed a group of tourists and killed them afterwards, threw them into the sea to let them rot.


He moved away from Taiwan to Canada at an early age of 7 and he considered himself Canadian over Taiwanese. Many citizens of china tried to escape away from China to reach Canada. Hsu gave this people a nick name “FOB” which is an acronym for Fresh of the boat.


As a child, James Hsu would have had that idea that mainland Chinese were thieves. This is all because of that one man, if he didn’t steal the money, that whole family tree would think different about the mainland Chinese. Throughout his life he was racist to chines, about their “Slanted eyes” how there was “serial murders” and even tanks.


When he decided to move to Beijing as an adult, to start his career. He always wanted to believe that the incident with his Aunts did not happen. An action can change an individuals’ opinion on an object or someone.


Identity Papers is generally about the perspectives that you have on someone or something through the stories told by James’s mother told by her sister. Its also about a perspective of a Country from another countries opinion.

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James Hsu’s Identity Papers

Hsu mentions that he held both strong positive and strong negative stereotypes about Chinese people. This is strange until he explains that he bad-mouths the Chinese to rebel against his mother. “Part of why I did it [bad-mouth segments of Chinese people], I’m sure, was just to piss off my mom. I was living out a kind of delayed teenage rebellion.” (P3, S2) He held some of the beliefs (positive and negative) because he was partially Canadian, and Canada has a different system of government than mainland China does.

He also held some of the positive stereotypes because, in some schools of thought, Taiwan is still part of China and therefore he may be Chinese. “But at the same time, I would passionately defend the entirety of Chinese culture from non-Chinese. How dare the white kids talk about slanty-eyed people or the chinks, I thought.” (P3, S2) This is an example of Hsu defending the Chinese.

Hsu compares himself to children, because he and young children both do not feel ashamed about using labels. “I felt the need to label other people – fob or banana, Honger or Twonger. It was the slang of the day, and I didn’t think too hard about it. It’s like how kids today use words like faggot and tranny without really meaning to, in the arrogance and ignorance of youth.”

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Identity Papers – James Hsu

Identity Papers by James Hsu can be interpreted in many ways. The first time I read it I thought about how people can have different perspectives of the same thing after different ages. This piece of writing is like this because the writer, Hsu, changes his opinion many times as his age progresses. After reading the writing a second time I also saw how a single act of kindness can change someone’s opinion about something or someone. In this case, a lowdown act of stealing money from unknowing tourists and how it changed how a whole family thinks about entire mainland China. People’s perspectives can change on a small scale at a personal level or grow to a local or maybe even global belief.


Hsu’s begins with the story about how his Taiwanese aunts were on a trip to mainland China and met a man offering to exchange their Taiwanese dollars to Chinese Yuan. They took out their money and the ‘makeshift moneychanger snatched the bills from my poor aunt’s hands and gunned for a nearby alley.’ You can see how this would alter someone’s opinion about the Chinese if they didn’t know anything about them. His mother told him another story about how a Taiwanese tour boat was attacked by pirates, which robbed the tourists of their possessions, killed them and threw their bodies into the water. This happened when Hsu was younger so he still had a confused opinion, like any young person. These stories caused Hsu to grow up with this mental image that mainland Chinese were malicious and/or dishonorable people.


Growing up with this image continued to alter his perspective on the Chinese. In his teen years he learned about different communist leaders at school, including Mao. He stated, ‘how dumb was communism?’ Hsu had moved from Taiwan to Canada at the age of seven so he considered himself more Canadian than Taiwanese. Soon after he learns about June 4th, 1989, the day of the Tiananmen Square protest. This only fuels his dislike towards the Chinese.


There were often Chinese citizens attempting to “escape” China, making their way to Canada. Hsu said he used to call them ‘fobs – fresh off the boat’, a derogatory name for new coming Chinese. After learning all these grim tales, Hsu expected them to be ‘hicks with tattered clothes.’ Therefore he was surprised when they were ‘well-dressed, polite and normal.’ I personally thought that this might have changed his opinion about the Chinese but I was wrong.


Later on in Hsu’s life, he began to become a true racist against the Chinese. He would tell his mother crazy news ‘about serial murders, or the tanks, or how small Taiwan’s economy was.’ His mother would try to undo his mental image of China and Taiwan that she had planted in his head so many years ago. He couldn’t believe white kids talking about Asians as ‘slanty-eyed people or the chinks’ even though he was being just a racist about the Chinese.


When Hsu was an adult he ended up moving to Bejing attempting to find a ‘new beginning’ to his ‘life and career.’ Even after all his hatred towards mainland China, he moved there. However, he still slightly ‘cynical about many things’ but he tried to view them from a different perspective. Somehow he wants himself to believe that if that moneychanger had never robbed his aunt that his perspective would be completely different than it was.


Every action can affect someone’s opinion can change their opinion/perspective about something or someone. In Hsu’s case, a small, malicious act on someone close to him started a spark of hatred towards Chinese that followed him for his whole life. The Tiananmen Square event of 1989 also affected his opinion however it affected hundreds of millions of other’s opinions as well on a global scale. Some actions can affect people at a personal level, like Hsu and the moneychanger incident, at a regional scale, such as the pirates attacking the tour boat, or, finally, at a global scale, such as Tiananmen Square.



Identity Papers is overall about different perspectives over a single country and their people from a single person. There are millions of different opinions on every topic in the world, China being one of the more debatable ones. Hsu becomes less and less fond of the mainland Chinese throughout this piece of writing but comes to a final realization at the end of the text that he is Chinese and they all ‘have got to stick together.’ As you know, opinions can change from a single event all around the world or can simply affect you.



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Descriptive writing

Descriptive writing

The wind rustling through the trees with their long dark brown arms brushing the leaves of the others members of the slowly growing forest surrounding the near by field.  Their arms stretching for each other hands and never letting go. they stand so close they grow into one. their hands clasping and growing green together. The newly grown, persimmon fruits emerge from the dense foliage. Reaching out to take the suns warmth enriching their saturation of colour.

The air so crisp and clear you could see miles across the open fields. The crops on the farmland are growing at a vast pace and the flowers are reflecting the glory of the day, almost every one standing proud no matter their size. Every single sun flower following the sun as the day passes with their heads searching for the light. As the light shines on to the fields everything starts to sparkle and looks like a perfect summer day.

Occasionally if the moment allows you, you may glimpse the sleek brown coated hare bound across the pathways trying to escape the dangers know only to him. More rarely, the hushed sound of the bird of pray majestic in his feathered beauty. Appears as if from nowhere. With an evil intention he swoops and slays his prey back toward the canopy of trees.

A minor wind blowing across the braches disturbing the peaceful birds who then spread their chromatic and vibrant coloured wings gracefully and to fly to the next immense bare looking shrubs which smell like pine trees to find safety in them once more. The wind makes the trees arms tangle up like long willow trees hang in spring time over the teal water.

The bikes passing by in the remaining shimmering puddles giving off sight splashes as they drive through them. She looks in them looking at her own reflection little children chuckling as they biking along the grey lifeless pathways. The children with exited but fragile smiles wearing colourful shirts and pants stoping to playing with little ants or rolly poly’s until it curles up into a perfectly spherical orbid rolls

Grey, dull stones on the pavement representing the wall which used to stand here. People remember the bad things that happened here. The empty wall standing was so terrifying cutting everyone off but now the field are peaceful.

As the sun comes up every morning it peaks through the trees and displays shadows on the ground; the image so captivating to gets stuck in your mind and you can never forget you have been here. The summer air heating up her pale skin, making her feel warm inside. Looking up in the piercing sun coming up above the hills

As the day goes by and the puffy white clouds move across the sky the air gets cooler and evening comes by. Ravens flying across the upper blue atmosphere which is slowly turning pink as the sun starts to set. As the day turn to night the sun sets along the skyline going lower and lower as the bright yellow sun turns into a dark red and the moon shows its face giving of light like a fireflies at night. Uncountable stars to calculate when she looks up into the stunning and fascinating deep blue almost black night.

At autumn everything looks different than it would in a normal summer day. Green, brown leaves fall on these pavements that people walk everyday. As you walk over the leaves they crunch together making the perfect sound like eating a chip. The trees look pale and empty as all the leaves slowly fall off. She can only see the branches hanging on a trunk not looking like a complete tree. The air is cooler and dryer than normal making it feels crispy and chilly in the evening.

The winter holidays are the nicest to go on these fields. Snow is covering the small flowers on the side of the pathways. A layer of frost lays shallowly across the fields. She sits on a brown sleigh on top of a hill looking down on the tree tops which have a layer of white snow like a coat keeping it warm at nigh.

All flowers start blooming by the time it comes to spring. Layers of new leaves hang on the trees and the green grass. weeds starting to grow on the little walkways which got tramped down.

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The Bar Code Prophecy – Suzanne Weyn

The The Bar Code Prophecy is a dystopian book set in the future where everyone has a small barcode tattooed somewhere visible on their body, hence the name. It is the third book in a trilogy called Barcode. Every barcode is different for each person and has their personal information on it. They can use it as a credit card as well.

It starts as the main character, Grace Morrow, comes home only to find her adoptive parents missing and her house surrounded by a group of police called Global 1, the company in charge of the barcode tattoos. She is saved from the cops from a guy named Eric from the climbing wall she would go to. Soon after you find out about things called nano-bots that were injected into anyone that got the barcode tattoo but were shut down because they could kill people with a single flip of a switch.

This is why a, anti-barcode tattoo organization called Decode is working against Global 1. As it turns out, Eric works with Decode and helps Grace. The story progresses and you begin to find out about a Hopi legend about the end of the world starting with the barcodes.

I would say that compared to the first two books in the trilogy, this book is sort of disappointing but it’s still a good book. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys sci-fi and dystopian fiction.

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Dear journal – perfect people

The book i’m reading now is called ‘perfect people’. It is about a married couple who close their 4 year-old child to a rare genetic disorder. They desperately wanted another kid but when they found out they both carried genetic disorders (meaning that their next child has a high chance of having the same disorder) they were devastated. They then heard about a geneticist doctor who can help them solve their issue. At first all they thought he would help do was separate their genetic disorders so they have another child who would be perfectly fine but it turned out that that wasn’t the only thing the doctor could do. The doctor would be able to help create someone who would be classified as a ‘perfect person’ to the couple. The couple would be able to choice the eye colour of the child, sporting abilities, his/her personality. They could literally design their own child. But something this insane would of course come with worst side effects…

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Descriptive writing- manly beach

As I make my way down the familiar road, the sun dips low on the distant horizon, its light turns the sky into beautiful shades of red and orange. This place is my getaway. The gleaming white manly beach seems to stretch on endlessly, the massive expanse of Cerulean water is all I could see ahead. Exquisite seashells washed onto the sand, like jewel of the coast; seagulls flying off into the sunset at the last rays of the sun, leaving their footprints behind; hatched baby turtles waddle out to the sea, an adventurous journey awaits them. Little kids building their sand castle or frolicking in the ocean, with happy smiles on their faces. Manly has waves like no other. Brilliant, fierce, yet unpredictably dangerous. Still surfers are catching unbelievable waves and barrels. Swimmers that are so far out in the ocean, only a small shadow of them could be seen. Sometimes I wonder how they managed to get back. Even further out, Sail boats cruising against the relentless waves, exploring the deep ocean. A road lies between the beach and some coffee shops. On the road, few skaters, cyclists, drivers and workers, all hurrying to the beach.

Soon, stars begin to appear behind the veil of cloud. The sky is dark navy, like in the painting ‘Starry Starry Night’. It is almost silent, noises of rising tidal waves crashing into the cliff like a furious beast, and faint guitar from busking, seemingly accompanying the musicians of nature. Street lights are switched on, adding colors to the lonely darkness. The humid summer breeze leaving salty scent of the ocean everywhere it goes.

During summer, almost everyone’s at the beach. Because it’s holiday season for Christmas, people want to relax and have some fun. The beach sometimes is so packed, it’s hard to spot sand on the beach. Lots tourists pay a visit, not that there is any site seeing to do, but to experience the different life style. Some laying on the beach, as the blistering sun shine on them; some taking photos of the ever changing ocean. Even the beach gets decorated for Christmas. Santa wearing board shorts and flip-flops, kangaroos pulling the slate instead of reindeers. There would be an enormous Christmas tree placed right next to the life guards’ cabin, full of ornaments shaped like surfing Santa and mini seagulls. I still remember, my dream was to become a lifeguard at manly beach, because they can stay on the beach all day long and would always paddle far out in the ocean, at the time this kind of life seemed like paradise.

In spring, manly beach would oftentimes host the Australian open of surf. People from all over the world gather here to watch professionals compete and catch waves that seem impossible and breathtaking. Huge billboards are set up to show the updates and newest ranking of the heat. Gear hiring places are lined up with countless people, waiting impatiently and thrilled to surf. Although majority would find surfing as easy as standing on a concrete road, there are exceptions. I’ve seen dozens of people falling into the water countless times, but still manage to climb back and try again, after a few hours, eventually being able to stand up and surf perfectly.

Winter is the season of emptiness, just howling wind and swells, transforming the beach from heaven to hell. Despite the harsh weather, no matter if it is a storm or the ice cold water, there are always risk takers out in the water. Visitors come by the beach, usually sitting by the stairs, watching the monstrous grey water picking up grains and dragging them out to the unknown of the ocean, while a group of seagull squeaks around, staring with their little eyes at the food tourists are holding. I have learnt not to feed birds after an incident: once I was giving bread to seagulls, but when I ran out of food, those little birds followed me around annoyingly for almost an entire afternoon, demanding for more to eat. Locals like to go to ‘ribs and rumps’ across the beach, and spend their afternoon chatting or watching sports.

I have been to manly beach more times than I could remember, but it never gets boring. There is always something cool happening or different from the last time. Its priceless natural beauty is indescribable unless you have been there to see for yourself.

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Descriptive writing – the beach

Columns of white clouds tinted with orange and pink stripes complimented the sky as the twilight set in; the light shone from the low hung sun and reflected off the calm, wavering, cerulean, water that gently caressed the soft golden sand. Fifty different shades of brown little pebbles were scattered unevenly across the drenched ground, making the golden shine of the sand even more noticeable. Slowly but steadily, two dark silhouettes appeared on the untouched landscape, followed by two sets of different sized footprints. Hand in hand, the aged couple gradually made their way towards the fragile yet sturdy rock placed at the furthest corner of the beach that came to be known as theirs. Repeating the same movement they had done everyday for decades, they comfortably sat down on the smooth, glittering surface the rock had offered. Just like a fairly-tale ending, together, the couple sat with their old, wrinkled hands intertwined, unconsciously staring at the endless beauty of the mysterious, smoothening waves created by the light whistling wind.

Laughter of a young enthusiastic child filled the air on the right of the passionate couple. Without a care in the world, the brunette with long silky hair ran energetically towards the crystal clear substance, squealing as the ice-cold liquid rushed over her stubby little feet. Swiftly, two large hands engulfed the oblivious girl causing another round of laughter to be heard, like music to ones ear. Once the laughter faded away, a small lingering smile could be seen on the innocent girl who started to fumble around in the safe arms of her father. Carefully, like placing diamond on glass, the man set the precious angel back onto her feet. Slightly tilting her head upwards, the girl with sparkling, crystal blue eyes stared at her very own version of superman, silently asking him to join her in discovering the undiscovered. Without another word to be heard, the father and daughter ran as one towards the big orange orb of burning gas as it melted into the water, signifying the end of the day.

A tiny, ruby red crab haltingly made its way around the golden sand, looking for a safe place to stay until the wild brunette and well-defined man leave its territory. Each time the clear liquid washed over the naïve crab, it would stiffen as if the unknown substance would suddenly swallow it as a whole. Standing its ground, the fearless crab battled against the animalistic waves, clipping and clapping its claws furiously; however, no matter how many times the crab snaps its claws, no damage could be seen on its enemy.

Like an overprotective parent, the moonlight glares down on the irresponsible teenagers sat around the blazing fire that is locked inside a wooden cage. Under the watch of the disappointed moon, girls and boys who would be considered underage by law drank from the brown glass tube. Talking and laughing, the reckless teenagers all stood as the unsupervised, celebration for nothing started. The overconfident boy moved from his place next to the warmth of the untamed bonfire to adjust the volume of the inappropriate music. As he spotted a shy unmoving girl with angelic features, he slowly pulled up the right side of his lip, fluently making a beeline for where she was stood. With wide humble eyes, the blond goddess with pink tinted cheeks look up and gasped. Using her hair to hide her beauty, she stuttered as she tried to make conversation. However, the boy, blinded by the beauty in front of him, was unaware of how embarrassed the girl was. Desperate to see the girl in more depth, gently, he tucked the blond stings behind her ear. Granting him his wish, the girl on cloud nine flashed him a blinding smile.

The night stars shone like diamonds in the sky, creating a truly breath-taking scenery. Under the wish filled sky, the aged couple steadily made their back into their old cozy cabin, calling it the end of yet another wondrous day. The sound of soft constant breathing replaced the cheerful laughter of the young oblivious girl. The man held the sleeping angel in his arms, taking her back to the safety of their home. Not missing a single beat, the miniature crab crawled back onto his territory reclaiming it as his. Nearing midnight, the irresponsible teenagers started separating, each having a different destination. As the dazzling light from the bonfire faded away, only objects shone on by the moonlight could be seen. The sound of waves moving back and forth was all that could be heard. Just like nothing has ever happened, the beach returned to its natural form; untouched, just waiting for memories to be made.

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