Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Peer Review #1- Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Insurgent
 

In response to this review: http://loveliterature713.blogspot.ca/2012/09/insurgent-book-review_18.html by my peer Danika.

In their review of Insurgent, my peer explained how she could emphasize with Tris, the main heroine. I however had difficulty connecting to Tris throughout some of the novel due to her excessive hostility. Though I understand that this is a part of Tris’s demeanor and character, it made reading the novel less enjoyable. My peer expressed how she wished that Veronica Roth (author of Insurgent) had provided more insight into why the factions were created. Before finishing Insurgent, I felt the same way. After finishing the book, I think that Roth has purposefully avoided explaining the origin of the factions and that it will be revealed in the final book of the trilogy. Though I disagreed with some aspects of my peers review, I agree with their sentiment on the books theme: “appreciating those you love and valuing your own life”. Leading up to the climax, Tris is faced with what seems to be her own death. While faced with such a daunting reality, Tris’s character reflects on her situation and gains a greater understanding of her own life and learns to appreciate those who are important to her instead of pushing them away.

Insurgent was a unique read. The book was, at times, fast paced and action packed, but at others it was thoroughly underwhelming. Areas of the book that lacked climactic scenes became drawn out and dry (for example when Tris was camping out with the factionless) which led to me being disengaged in the book. At a few points in the novel, information was thrown out very abruptly and you were not given enough time to analyze the information which got bit confusing for me as a reader. For example, when Tris believes she is about to die I was (along with Tris) emotionally preparing for her death, but within a few sentences she had escaped because of a seemingly pointless reason, leaving me puzzled and trying to keep up. A different aspect of the book I thought was extremely well done was the scene-specific settings. Throughout the novel, Roth did a masterful job at creating believable, well detailed settings. When Tris walks into an Abnegation home, you immediately resonate with her and feel as though you have been transported into the house with her you are emotionally resonating with her memories, their magnitude at that point in the story, and Tris’s losses. Though Insurgent had its merits, it was not one of my best reads.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Litspiration Challenge Term 2


Litspiration Challenge Term 2

Here are, in no particular order, 50 of my favourite quotations from my favourite author, John Green. (author of Paper Towns, An Abundance of Katherines, Looking for Alaska, and The Fault In Our Stars).

If you are wondering which book a certain quote is from, ask me! I will gladly tell you.

If quotations are bolded, they are my absolute favourites!

______________________________________________________________________________

“I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, then all at once,”

“My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.”

“When adults say, "Teenagers think they are invincible" with that sly, stupid smile on their faces, they don't know how right they are. We need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We think that we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die. Like all energy, we can only change shapes and sizes and manifestations. They forget that when they get old. They get scared of losing and failing. But that part of us greater than the sum of our parts cannot begin and cannot end, and so it cannot fail.”

“The only way out of the labyrinth of suffering is to forgive.”

“That's the thing about pain...it demands to be felt.”

“Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.”

“So I walked back to my room and collapsed on the bottom bunk, thinking that if people were rain, I was drizzle and she was a hurricane.”

“You can love someone so much...But you can never love people as much as you can miss them.”

“I'm in love with you," he said quietly.
"Augustus," I said.
"I am," he said. He was staring at me, and I could see the corners of his eyes crinkling. "I'm in love with you, and I'm not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I'm in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we're all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we'll ever have, and I am in love with you.”

“There are infinite numbers between 0 and 1. There's .1 and .12 and .112 and an infinite collection of others. Of course, there is a bigger infinite set of numbers between 0 and 2, or between 0 and a million. Some infinities are bigger than other infinities. A writer we used to like taught us that. There are days, many of them, when I resent the size of my unbounded set. I want more numbers than I'm likely to get, and God, I want more numbers for Augustus Waters than he got. But, Gus, my love, I cannot tell you how thankful I am for our little infinity. I wouldn't trade it for the world. You gave me a forever within the numbered days, and I'm grateful.”



“You are so busy being YOU that you have no idea how utterly unprecedented you are.”

“What is the point of being alive if you don't at least try to do something remarkable?”

“The town was paper, but the memories were not.”

“Did you know that for pretty much the entire history of the human species, the average life span was less than thirty years? You could count on ten years or so of real adulthood, right? There was no planning for retirement, There was no planning for a career. There was no planning. No time for plannning. No time for a future. But then the life spans started getting longer, and people started having more and more future. And now life has become the future. Every moment of your life is lived for the future--you go to high school so you can go to college so you can get a good job so you can get a nice house so you can afford to send your kids to college so they can get a good job so they can get a nice house so they can afford to send their kids to college.”


“Maybe its like you said before, all of us being cracked open. Like each of us starts out as a watertight vessel. And then things happen - these people leave us, or don’t love us, or don’t get us, or we don’t get them, and we lose and fail and hurt one another. And the vessel starts to crack in places. And I mean, yeah once the vessel cracks open, the end becomes inevitable. Once it starts to rain inside the Osprey, it will never be remodeled. But there is all this time between when the cracks start to open up and when we finally fall apart. And its only that time that we see one another, because we see out of ourselves through our cracks and into others through theirs. When did we see each other face to face? Not until you saw into my cracks and I saw into yours. Before that we were just looking at ideas of each other, like looking at your window shade, but never seeing inside. But once the vessel cracks, the light can get in. The light can get out.”

“And all at once I knew how Margo Roth Spiegelman felt when she wasn't being Margo Roth Spiegelman: she felt empty. She felt the unscaleable wall surrounding her. I thought of her asleep on the carpet with only that jagged sliver of sky above her. Maybe Margo felt comfortable there because Margo the person lived like that all the time: in an abandoned room with blocked-out windows, the only light pouring in through holes in the roof. Yes. The fundamental mistake I had always made—and that she had, in fairness, always led me to make—was this: Margo was not a miracle. She was not an adventure. She was not a fine and precious thing. She was a girl.”


“As long as we don't die, this is gonna be one hell of a story.”

“I always thought of it like you said, that all the strings inside him broke. But there are a thousand ways to look at it: maybe the strings break, or maybe our ships sink, or maybe we’re grass—our roots so interdependent that no one is dead as long as someone is alive. We don’t suffer from a shortage of metaphors, is what I mean. But you have to be careful which metaphor you choose, because it matters. If you choose the strings, then you’re imagining a world in which you can become irreparably broken. If you choose the grass, you’re saying that we are all infinitely interconnected, that we can use these root systems not only to understand one another but to become one another. The metaphors have implications. Do you know what I mean?”

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


“Imagining the future is a kind of nostalgia. You spend your whole life stuck in the labyrinth, thinking about how you'll escape it one day, and how awesome it will be, and imagining that future keeps you going, but you never do it. You just use the future to escape the present.”

“I may die young, but at least I'll die smart.”

“It always shocked me when I realized that I wasn’t the only person in the world who thought and felt such strange and awful things.”

“He was gone, and I did not have time to tell him what I had just now realized: that I forgave him, and that she forgave us, and that we had to forgive to survive in the labyrinth. There were so many of us who would have to live with things done and things left undone that day. Things that did not go right, things that seemed okay at the time because we could not see the future. If only we could see the endless string of consequences that result from our smallest actions. But we can’t know better until knowing better is useless. And as I walked back to give Takumi’s note to the Colonel, I saw that I would never know. I would never know her well enough to know her thoughts in those last minutes, would never know if she left us on purpose. But the not-knowing would not keep me from caring, and I would always love Alaska Young, my crooked neighbor, with all my crooked heart.”

“And then something invisible snapped insider her, and that which had come together commenced to fall apart.”

'Suffering,' she said. 'Doing wrong and having wrong things happen to you. That's the problem. Bolivar was talking about the pain, not about the living or dying. How do you get out of the labyrinth of suffering?...Nothing's wrong. But there's always suffering, Pudge. Homework or malaria or having a boyfriend who lives far away when there's a good-looking boy lying next to you. Suffering is universal. It's the one thing Buddhists, Christians, and Muslims are all worried about.”


“And that was it. She didn't leave me enough to discover her, but she left me enough to rediscover the Great Perhaps.”

“Scared isn't a good excuse. Scared is the excuse everyone has always used.”

“We are as indestructible as we believe ourselves to be.”

“Like the way the sun is right now, with the long shadows, and that kind of bright, soft light you get when the sun isn't quite setting? That's the light that makes everything better, everything prettier, and today, everything just seemed to be in that light.”

“If only we could see the endless string of consequences that result from our smallest actions.”

“There will come a time when all of us are dead. All of us. There will come a time when there are no human beings remaining to remember that anyone ever existed or that our species ever did anything. There will be no one left to remember Aristotle or Cleopatra, let alone you. Everything that we did and built and wrote and thought and discovered will be forgotten and all of this will have been for naught. Maybe that time is coming soon and maybe it is millions of years away, but even if we survive the collapse of our sun, we will not survive forever. There was time before organisms experienced consciousness, and there will be time after. And if the inevitability of human oblivion worries you, I encourage you to ignore it. God knows that’s what everyone else does.”

“It would be a privilege to have my heart broken by you.”

“Grief does not change you, Hazel. It reveals you.”

“The world is not a wish-granting factory.”

“Without pain, how could we know joy?' This is an old argument in the field of thinking about suffering and its stupidity and lack of sophistication could be plumbed for centuries but suffice it to say that the existence of broccoli does not, in any way, affect the taste of chocolate.”

“I believe the universe wants to be noticed. I think the universe is inprobably biased toward the consciousness, that it rewards intelligence in part because the universe enjoys its elegance being observed. And who am I, living in the middle of history, to tell the universe that it-or my observation of it-is temporary?”

“That’s part of what I like about the book in some ways. It portrays death truthfully. You die in the middle of your life, in the middle of a sentence”

“Because you are beautiful. I enjoy looking at beautiful people, and I decided a while ago not to deny myself the simpler pleasures of existence”

“It's a metaphor, see: You put the killing thing right between your teeth, but you don't give it the power to do its killing.”

“Look, let me just say it: He was hot. A non-hot boy stares at you relentlessly and it is, at best, awkward and, at worst, a form of assault. But a hot boy . . . well.”

“The weird thing about houses is that they almost always look like nothing is happening inside of them, even though they contain most of our lives. I wondered if that was sort of the point of architecture.”

“Headline?" he asked.
"'Swing Set Needs Home,'" I said.
"'Desperately Lonely Swing Set Needs Loving Home,'" he said.
"'Lonely, Vaguely Pedophilic Swing Set Seeks the Butts of Children,'" I said.

“We’re as likely to hurt the universe as we are to help it, and we’re not likely to do either.”

“Books are the ultimate Dumpees: put them down and they’ll wait for you forever; pay attention to them and they always love you back.”

“You don't remember what happened. What you remember becomes what happened.”

“What matters to you defines your mattering.”

“That's who you really like. The people you can think out loud in front of.”

“He liked the mere act of reading, the magic of turning scratches on a page into words inside his head.”

“That smile could end wars and cure cancer.”

“You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in this world, old man, but you do have some say in who hurts you. I like my choices. I hope she likes hers.”