Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Summer Reading

Over the summer, you were asked to read at least two novels of your choice.

1) Briefly tell me what you read, including the titles and authors.
2) I want to know what you liked about the books, what you learned and, more importantly, what matters to you about the book's content? How does it resonate with you?
Please do not give me a summary; I care more about what you took away from the book.

*Make sure to adhere to proper conventions and proofread your response. If, for some reason, you did not read two novels, tell me about two novels you have read and answer the above.


  1. for summer reading this year I read the Book Thief by Markus Zusak I liked the way he used "death"to narrate the story. And the way it is set in the time of world war two, from the perspective of a Nazi family. The reason I picked it is because it was set in world war two and that is one of the wars that fascinates me.
    Second I read Thirteen Reasons Why By author Jay Asher I liked the book because it was about a suicide. I was a very interesting format the way it was written. It was an easy read.

  2. I read "Band of Brothers," Stephen Ambrose. It was a good book but gory. In on part a privet throws a grenade in a room and runs in before it blew up and it blew up in his face. They explained in detail how gruesome it was.

    The other book i read was "Black Hawk Down." i loved it i would recommend it to people who like war. it tells the story of a troop going through Mogadechu anb being shot down and trying to live.

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  4. Over the Summer I read the whole Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins but on the card that we turned in I listed the final book Mockingjay. I really liked the final book because it showed so much of a struggle for Katniss after her whole world was turned completely upside down in under 2 years. What I really found enticing in the content was the brisk pace of the story but having some of those parts be really precious and understand and not leaving you thinking “What just happened?” I also always enjoyed the ending because after reading long series or trilogies you really hope for a good ending that sums up the story and I feel that Suzanne Collins did a good job with that.

    Another book that I read was Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom. I have read several other books by Albom and I thought that it would be a really good idea if I read one of his most famous ones! What I found so interesting about the book was that it was a true story involving the author and I could tell the meaning and importance of every word. I also felt like the character Morrie seemed so real to me because he was so well described that it seemed like her was just one of my neighbors living down the street.

  5. This summer I read Band of Brothers by Stephen Ambrose. The book was amazingly good, but sufficed to say the author did not spare the details. The book was about the 101st Airborne Regiment (specifically Easy Company) in WWII, and how strong the bond between the company was. I really liked the book because it gave a peep into what life would be like if you were a soldier in Europe. I liked the fact that the author actually took writing and notes from interviews with some of the actual soldiers in Easy Company. The book shows how close the group of men were, many describing it as "closer than brothers". Ambrose did a good job showing the hardships of being a soldier, and the rewards that it brought. The book especially reached me because I have a cousin who is a marine, and although combat has changed in the past 70 years, it gives me a chance to see what he might experience if he is ever sent overseas.

    The other book I read was The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. This book was particularly intriguing, as it is a fiction about a shepherd in Spain who meets a mysterious man and goes to find his destiny. The book is mind boggling, with twists and turns that make it difficult to predict where the story was going to lead (most people have seen Inception right? pretty similar). I particularly liked this book because it is about a teenager making his way through the world, even though the book is set in the past and has magical people in it. It seems like the author made it so close to what modern life is like, but at the same time made it so different that it isn't like reading about yourself.

  6. This summer I read Ttyl and Ttfn by Lauren Myrcle

    These books are a bunch of IM (Instant Messaging)
    conversations between 3 girl best friends, they have your typical girly friendship i chose to read Ttyl (talk to you later) because it came about as a friendship that was mwnt to last together but things werebound to break them apart. All of theses girls aren't alike. Theres Maddie whgo is the on always doing the crazy things and woriied about being popular, Angela is more of the boy crazy one she is all about finding the perfect guy. Zoe is the good girl who does all of her work follows rules and never wants to get in trouble. I liked this book because it showed me that you could have a best friend that isn't like you at all but you can still have the great friendship.

    The second book I read was Ttfn, (ta ta for now)
    this is the squeal to Ttfn the same girls battle staying friends through all the high school drama.Angela is forced to move to California around the same time Maddie is interested in a boy who is involed with drugs, while zoe wants to be more spontaneous like her firewnds I liked thi9s one because I could relate to alot of the stuff Maddie was going through and it made me laern that good things can come out of really bad things as long as you have friends there to help you and support you.

  7. Over the summer i read the two books, "Playing for Pizza" by John Grisham, and "The Call of The Wild" by Jack London.

    "The Call of The Wild" is a book about a dog named Buck who gets kidnapped and taken to alaska. I like this book because it has a good plot that is easy to fallow and the story is fun to read. Reading the book i learned that where you are and what you are doing and who is around you form who you are. in the story he goes from an easy living life, to a free spirited wild "wolf". it is one of my favorite books now because of its vivid story amd plot.

    "Playing for Pizza" is a book about a football player named rick dockery who lost a big game and got really injured and had to play in italy. I liked this book because I love football and that is what this book is based on. I didnt really learn much from this book, it was more of an entertaining read for me but that is one of the big reasons that i liked this book, because it was fun. But one thing i did learn was keep your options open, because there are many opprounities for many things throughout the world.

  8. Over the summer i read, "13 reasons why" by Jay Asher. It was a book about a girl who committed suicide, but before she did she made tapes to explain all of the reasons why she was going to kill herself. Although this book was very dark and sad, i really liked it because it was suspenseful in a way. It was excited waiting to hear about each story and how they all connected to eachother. The book was narrated by a boy Clay Jenson who happened to be on the list. The book would quote everything that the tapes would say, and then would go back to Clay's emotions and what he was doing while listening to the tapes. I liked the reading style this gave it.

    The other book i read was, "Beautiful" by Amy Reed. This was a book about a girl who moved to a new school and just wanted to be called beautiful. To do this, she decided to get in with the wrong crowd, and she started to do drugs, she drank, and did things she didn't even want to do. It was about how she overcame it at the end. I liked this book because it kind of showed how people will do anything to become popular, and how it teaches you that looks are not everything. It taught a lot of lessons about not loosing yourself, and i enjoyed that.

  9. Over the summer I read Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen. This was the first book I read from her and I really liked it. I really liked how she showed how much of a struggle it was for Ruby, the main character, in the beginning when her mom left her and how throughout the book she slowly learned to accept help. As the book went on it talked about her past and when it did things fell into place like a puzzle piece and I really liked that. This book was written at a pace that was easy to follow and you could think about what was happening and I was able to relate to the book. In the end I learned that when someone offers to help you and you know that you need help its ok to accept their offer and sometimes you might need to ask for help.

    Another book I read was Anything but Normal by Melody Carlson. This was a good book because it talked about a girl who got pregnant over the summer and she grew up believing that doing that before getting married was wrong. Her friends would make comments about other girls who were in the same situation and she would go along with it even though she was just like them . Later on she told her parents what happened and shortly after her best friend found out. She was ashamed to tell anyone and because she kept it a secret it tore her friendship between her and her friend apart. Out of this book I learned that even when something like that happens you have to be honest and tell someone, especially your parents. Even if what you did was really wrong you need to tell someone and face the consequences.

  10. For my summer reading I choose to read "Water for Elephants" by Sara Gruen. What I liked about this book is that it is a true story. I also loved how emotional it was. While reading the book I felt as if I were the characters and could completely understand everything they were feeling. I also liked how the book would change time periods, one chapter it would be from Jacob Jankowski's point of view while he was on the circus, chasing after his dream girl but in the next chapter it would be from his point of view as an old man. I learned that you should always follow your heart even if it will be a hard and long journey but eventually you will reach happiness. The book resonated with me because it showed the journey that the two main characters Jacob and Marlena took to finally be together.

    The second book I read was "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett. I liked this book because every chapter was from a different characters point of view. That way it was much easier to understand all of the emotions/opinions of the characters. I learned that you should never give up on what you believe in and should never stop fighting for your own rights, no matter how hard it may be. This book resonated with me because it made me want to fight for what I believe in and to never give up.

  11. For my summer reading I choose to read Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier and Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom.

    The Girl with a Pearl Earring was about a girl name Griet, whose family is poor. She works as a maid for a richer family to earn money. While she is gone with her maid duties, her sister dies of the plague. There are some people in the household that do not like her and one of the daughters tries to get her fired any chance she can. Along the way of the story she develops a soft spot for her master/painter and falls in love with a butcher. I like this book because its has a unique story line and everything doesn't go as you think it would. Also it has art through out the novel and that attracts my attention because i love anything to do with art! I learned many ways just of how people lived in the 1600s but also how Vermeer used different techniques on how he painted his paintings.

    The second book I read was Tuesdays with Morrie. This book moved my heart because it's about an old guy, a young guy, and life's greatest lesson. Because it's a true story it made it even better. Mitch (the author) was a student of Morrie in College and after 15 years past he receives a sign to visit Morrie. Morrie was slowly dieing from a disease that fills his lung with poison. Young Mitch would ask wise Morrie about some of the biggest life questions. They met with each other every Tuesday and the last Tuesday they met they talked about good-bye. This book not only gives you information about life but the characters also move you as you read on. I think that's why I liked the book so much is because I actually felt like I knew everyone in the book and I could relate to them.

  12. This summer I read The Painted Boy by Charles De Lint and Absolutely Maybe by Lisa Yee. The Painted Boy had a awesome golden etched cover with cool illustrations which caught my attention. I liked this book because of the storyline, about a boy coming to grips with becoming a part of his ancestry as a yellow dragon. The book gave a great sense of friendship between everyone and great characters, and a small bit of fantasy that had a cool twist on the overall book; but not so much that it was totally unbelievable, which I really liked. De Lint did a great job overall, not skipping a beat with fun characters, a very original storyline and a overall good tone to the book.
    The second book was Absolutely Maybe by Lisa Yee. In The Painted Boy, the storyline was my favorite part it the book, whereas in this story, the characters were. This book was about Maybelline, named after her mom’s favorite brand of mascara, trying to find her place in the world, and her father. Maybelline was cute and original, along with her two friends that were made in a way that they brightened the book, and had unique qualities. The storyline was fun, however, there were twists, and turns in the book that were not the best. The quirkiness of the characters made the book complete enough to read. Lisa Yee did a great job in covering the characters personalities thoroughly enough to make the book fun and heartfelt.

  13. Over the summer I read two books. I read Charlie St. Cloud. By Ben Sherwood. I picked up this book and started reading it because i saw Zac Efron was in it, which i am a big fan of. He plays as Charlie. (the big brother)Everything is going great in his life, he couldn't ask for anything better. He just accomplished being a sailor. He has everything going for him in life. He lives with his little brother and his mom. Then all of a sudden a tragic thing happened. He had to keep a promise to his little brother who had passed away in a car accident, or keep going on with his life and falling in love. This was a very sad/dramatic/emotional book. Which I like. I learned that good things will always happen in life, but bad things will also come and go. I can related to this book, because i had someone very close in my family die also. I have also have some hard decisions to make in life.

    I also read Ttyl, by Lauren Myrcle. It's written in Instant Messaging. I choose to read this book because it was about three best friends who are all very different but still very close. They all have different beliefs and interests in life. I learned that even if your best friend likes something that you don't, you can still get along and be close. I can relate because sometimes my best friend and I don't always have the same interests but we are still very close!

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  15. 1) This summer I read the whole Harry Potter series, but what stuck with me most was the Deathly Hallows. I don’t think I could have expected the amount of intensity in how the book was written. By page 3 I was already living the book, which surprised me since I’ve never been a big reader. I felt every emotion each character felt like it was me. I loved how J.K. Rowling could make me feel like I was entering another realm when I opened the book. I learned so much about literature and how real it can feel when reading it. If every book I read was like this one, I wouldn’t even have to be told to read.
    2) Another book I read was Whirligig by Paul Fleischman. I thought it was going to be some boring book that had nothing to do with me, but then I was shocked during the first chapter. It was about a boy around the same age as me who had to fight through many hard obstacles. Throughout the book he had to go to a different place around the country and construct a whirligig, so the author had every other chapter tell a story about someone in each place. At first I didn’t appreciate this, but then I realized that each side story made the book better. The book was told by a narrator’s perspective, which I enjoyed because it made me feel like the story was being told to me. It may sound cheesy, but my biggest lesson from this book is that you truly cannot judge a book by its cover; it may surprise you.

  16. This summer my two of the books I read were Bringing Down the House by Ben Mezrich and Change Up by John Feinstein.
    Change Up was the first book I read. I enjoyed this book because it had to deal with baseball and kids my age so I could relate to the book a lot. One thing I learned from this book is kids can do anything. They were 14 year olds who worked for a news paper with a bunch of adults. That proves that just because you are young does not mean you are incapable of doing things that adults can do. One thing that matters to me is the characters kept going even if there was not a lot to their story at first but they worked through it and got all they needed. The same goes in life keep going work a little harder to get what you need.
    The second book I read was Bringing Down the House. Read the book because it was the base of the movie 21. I like seeing how the movie became using the book. Another reason why I loved the book was seeing just how much trouble these kids got themselves into and how they worked their way out. I learned that money cannot buy happiness no matter how much it may seem. Yeah I admit it’s nice to blow money but in the end I would rather have family any day. The book it demonstrates that they have nicest places in Las Vegas but, know where to turn when they need a hand. I would hate to loose that.

  17. I read the secret year. It was about a boy and a girl that secretly dated for a year. The girl went to a party and got drunk. As her and her friend were driving the car crashes and the girl died.

    I also read another book but I don't recall the title. It was about a teenager that has divorced parents and they both live far away. The teen decided to go visit her father. So she goes on a train and travels. While on the train she sees a teen mom with a 2 year old son. He had lots of bruises on his arms from being abused. The teen mom left the boy and so the girl decides to take care of him and raise him.

    The secret year: I learned you should never cheat on someone. It makes life more difficult. Other than that I didn't really Learn anything super important in the book.

    The other book: I learned that no matter what your age is it is very difficult to take of a child. Especially with college and such. I also learned that parents need to be more truthful.

  18. The first book I read was The Art of Racing in The Rain by: Garth Stein. This was a very unique book. It is told in the perspective of a golden retriever named Enzo. I enjoyed this book in its entirety. One thing I took away from this book among many was that sometimes the end doesn't justify the means. Enzo's owner's wife died of cancer. Her parents, trying to do the best for his daughter,Zoe, sued him for custody of his daughter simply because they were richer than him. In this case I would definitely say the ends don't justify the means.
    The second book I read was Eight Grade Bites By: Heather Brewer. This book was a good light read. It didn't have very much depth. One thing I did lear however was things aren't all that they seem. The main character at a glimpse would seem normal, but he has a secret. He is a vampire! So not only does he have to worry about being a teen he has to worry about his vampire state. I feel that this book could also translate to show everyone has a secret that they are hiding.

  19. Over the summer, I read two novels. One is called "Tuesdays with Morrie" By Mitch Albom the other is, "All Creatures Great and Small" By James Herriot. What I liked about Tuesdays with Morrie is it was a young man, an old man, and life’s greatest lesson. The old professor is reunited with his favorite collage student and quickly learns that his old professor, Morrie, has a fatal disease and will not live much longer. What I like about this book is that they meet every morning like they used to, and had classes. They were very special classes about life’s greatest lesson. All Creatures Great and small was the other novel I read over the summer. What I liked about this novel is that first of all, it has animals in it! This book is about a young man that has just started a job as a vet in England. What I like about this book is that it’s sometimes funny, something sad, and often very factual. This book consists of large farm animals. (Cows, horses, etc...)Both of these books were wonderful but were both very different!

  20. I read the book " Hush Hush" by Becca Fitzpatrick. This book was by far the only book I have read in my whole life that i could not keep my eyes out of. The book was great because it was dark,mysterious and romantic at the same time! One of the main characters in the book was a fallen angel name Patch. Being able to imagine everything i read was great. I had a blast reading this book. The book relates to me because im a dark kind of person and that is how the book is. What i love about this book is the romance! It is so cute and happy and makes you kind of mad wishing you could find the perfect man( we all know that is only in our dreams. )So this book i would recommend to any girl who love drama and romance. This was the best book.