Thursday, December 17, 2015

40 Book Challenge Blog

The Help
By: Kathryn Stockett
Pages read so far 1-142

Summarize what you just read
Describe the major conflict. What side are you on?
If the author were here, what would you say and ask him/her?

          The book I am reading is called The Help, by Kathryn Stockett. So far this book is about how three women's lives are during 1962 in Mississippi. Their names are Aibileen, Minny, and Skeeter. Aibileen and Minny are maids who work for white women, and Skeeter is a soon to be journalist who wants to write a book about what it it like to be a maid in their town. The main conflicts of this book are racism and fear. Since Skeeter wants to write a book about that sensitive topic, if the people who employ Aibileen and Minny find out they would fire them, or worse. There are moments in the book where you are terrified for the characters, and there are times where you feel sorry for them. This book has been really entertaining so far. 

          The major conflict in my book right now is if two of the main characters should agree to help write a book about their jobs. Their jobs are working as a maid for white women, their jobs are really hard. They don't get paid the minimum wage and they work hard cleaning the whole house and taking care of the children. Aibileen and Minny might not help make the book because they could put some of their experiences in there that the people they work for don't like. In the book they could put how awful their working conditions are and share personal stories about their employers. They might get extremely mad and fire or kill them. I am on the side to write the book. I think that if they were sneaky enough and they didn't get caught then it would be a major breakthrough for their community. The town could use the perspective of a lower class citizen. If a lot of people read it then they would feel bad for them and maybe change how they act. The jobs could be nicer, the employers would cut them some slack, and they might get paid more. Their whole lives could change.

           If the author was here I would tell her and ask her many things. One of the things that I would tell her is that her book has changed my perspective on things. I now realize how little jobs there were for women during the 60s. Another thing I would tell her is that her book will affect people in different ways. Some people could totally see her perspective and that others could disagree with her. One thing I would ask her is how she got all of the information about being a maid during that time. Did she interview a person who was a maid, or did she read someones writing about it? Besides of asking her how she got her information I would ask her why she chose to write about it. Maybe she felt like it was her obligation to inform the new generation about what life was like back then, or maybe she just thought that this topic was very interesting. Those are some of the things I would tell her and ask her. 


Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Nonfiction Blog 11/30/15

Women of the Wild West
By: Katherine Krohn
The nonfiction book I am currently reading is called Women of the Wild West by Katherine Krohn. This book has mini biographies in it about daring women who lived through the wild west. Each of the women I have read about were considered odd to do something that was not considered usual. In the book the women I have read about are Calamity Jane, Annie Oakley, Sacagawea, Mary Jane Caples, Luzena Stanley Wilson, Virginia Reed, Eliza Hustler, Molly Sanford, Narcissa Whitman, Abigail Hathaway King, Laura Ingalls Wilder, and Margret Tobin Brown. The book describes the hardships and experiences that the women endured. Some of these women faced events that a normal person wouldn't have been able to survive, with their endurance and faith they did. 
       A passage from the book that is very interesting to me is, "In her later years, Annie kept busy shooting in local competition and teaching women how to use guns. Annie gave free shootings to more two thousand women. She trained more than 15 thousand women in firearm safety and marksmanship. She also gave benefit shooting performances. All proceeds went to children's charities and to young women who wanted to pursue a college education. Annie helped over twenty women attend college. On November 3, 1926, in Greenville, Ohio, Annie Oakley died after a short illness. Just a few weeks later, Frank Butler followed his beloved wife. Throughout her life, Annie Oakley reached out to help those in need. She cared about people, especially children. Annie made one final act of generosity shortly before her death. She had her many silver and gold medals melted down and gave the money they earned to a children's charity." This passage is interesting to me because it describes how Annie Oakley did so much for women and children. It made me realize how generous she was and how she devoted part of her life to other people. It is interesting to think that one person could help and touch the lives of so many other people. She helped numerous people change their lives and careers. I feel like she was one of those people that would do whatever it takes to improve a life of an unfortunate person. I was astonished when I read this passage that she had her medals melted to give to charity. This passage was very interesting to me.
     After reading this book I will remember a lot of things. One of these things is that women had a certain role during the Wild West. Women were usually taught to care for children, cook, clean, and serve their husbands. The people in my book broke these rules, they provided for themselves and they didn't take orders from anybody else. I will always remember how they broke the rules of society and the rules of role playing. Another thing that I will remember was how determined the women were that I read about. Some of these women went on journey's for months or years to find a better life. Sometimes with only faith to keep them going. Being that determined helped them make a better life for themselves and kept them from dying. One of these women was Virginia Reed. She was a survivor of the Donner Party, if she didn't have persistence to keep moving forward she would have died. I will alway remember that some women who lived during the Wild West had a certain role and they broke it, and that these women were very determined. 

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