IRJE #4: Sinners Condemned

In the book Sinners Condemned by Somme Sketcher, Rafe is a man who owns multiple casinos in Las Vegas, he is part of a really big family of gamblers. He had been sitting outside of a gypsy’s wagon and then when the lady came out he had asked her to read his cards for him.

Internships at Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan. A master’s degree from Harvard Business School. Hell, the only reason I bought a casino in Vegas was to learn the ropes before I built my legacy back home.
Home. Fuck. I’ve always thought home is where my family is, but now I’m not so sure. I know I could always go back to the Coast. Uncle Alberto would take me on as a Caporegime for the Devil’s Cove outfit, or if I wanted to keep my hands clean, he would give me a position on the board at his whiskey company in Devil’s Hollow. (p. 18)

I chose this quotation because it made me think about home. How some people may not think of their family as home but rather something else. Perhaps, they feel home isn’t with their family but at school with friends, work or a place like the beach. For me I feel like I have multiple “homes.” Of course I have my actual house and that’s one home with my family. I also feel like when I’m at my friends house, I’m also at my home. I also feel like rivers are another “home” I have. However, this is different with Rafe. Rafe isn’t sure wether he feels that home is with his family or if its down at the Coast and I think that that’s normal, to not know because you have more then one place you call home.



Personal Writing: Molly PW #3

The day we got our puppy was one of the best days ever. I remember we drove form our house in Metchosin all the way to around parksville. We had been blasting music and was really exited to be getting her. Once we got there we say her and her sister run out of the house and head straight for a dirt pit where they began rolling around. The lady who was giving us one of them had talked to us, then went over and picked up the smaller of the two and passed her to my mom. We were laughing because either Molly wanted to greet her right or she got so excited she peed on my moms shoes. We could tell right away she was a trouble maker because she kept running to the grape vines and trying to eat them, which you most certainly should not eat.

Once we got her in the car and shed said good bye to her sibling and mom we pilled into our van and began discussing names. We drove all the way to Alex and Will’s lake cabin so she could have a break. We took her down to the lake and she began playing in the water with me and my brothers. She sat on mine or Isaacs lap when we drove all the way back to our house. Once she got there our grandparents came to meet her and our cousins came.

We decided her name would be Molly and that’s how we got a new puppy.

IRJE #3: Iron Widow

In the book Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Zhao there are these large monster like creatures, called Hunduns, that are trying to break into the peoples home. The people use the dead corpses of the Hunduns to create Chrysalis to keep them out of the city. There is a girl who gets sold by her family to help pilot one of the Chrysalis. The book continues with how she becomes one of the best pilots, powers up their Chrysalis and then near the last part of the book when Zetian is fighting with every other Chrysalis, trying to wipe them out once and for all, something happens that changes the whole plot of the book.

“Zetian, it’s all a lie! Everything’s a lie!”

I blink. “I know-”

“No it’s nothing about the pilot system! It’s the planet! This isn’t our planet!”

“What . . . ?” I breath. In the yin seat, Qin Zheng stirs sharply to attention.

Yizshi sounds so winded that he struggles to speak. “My people recovered a quartz drive of documents in the planet rubble. The entire idea that the Hunduns destroyed our previous civilization- its not real! Our ancestors were dropped onto this planet! The Hunduns are the natives not us-!”

(page. 390)

I chose this part as it made me quiet confused as well as shocked. The author had written the book, building up this whole image in my head. The way everything was written suggested that the Chrysalis had inavded the planted. However in the last chapter or so the writer completely destroyed that thought, instead making it the humans who had invaded, and destroyed their home, though most were unaware of that.

IRJE: #2 It Ends With Us

In the book It Ends With Us by Love by Collen Hoover, one character named Atlas is a homeless boy who was kicked out by his stepfather and mother. There is an abandoned house by Lily Bloom’s house and he has been living there. Lily had helped Atlas, made sure he had food, blankets and eventually they grew close, until he moved away to Boston.  Later in the book Lily runs into him in Boston at a restaurant.

Surely that wasn’t really Atlas. But those eyes- his mouth. I know it’s been years since I saw him, but I’ll never forget what he looked like. It had to be him. I know it was and I know he recognized me, too, because the second our eyes met . . . it looked like he had seen a ghost. (page. 132)

I chose this quote because it brought a punch of emotion with it. After reading about how Lily recalled her memories I felt really sad for Atlas even though he was just a character written in ink. Reading that Atlas had made it through being kicked out and before that abused made me feel quite happy, even if I know its not real but it made me wonder about others who became homeless because of reasons like those. I remember growing up when we saw someone homeless we would try to offer them some things we had, like food, but I had always wondered what had gotten them into that situation.

‘This is home’ IRJE #1

In the book Red Queen, by Victoria Avenyard, Mare, who as well as most of the population is in poverty, has been taken from her home and family in exchange for her brother and best friend to be excused form a war that lasted more than a century. The war is still going on. She is taken to live in the palace, having to go on a boat to get there.

“Yes, the shoreline is already familiar to me. I know that mangled tree, that stretch of bank, and the echo of saws and falling trees is unmistakable. This is home.” (pg. 280, third indention)

These three sentences stood out to me because it made me think about what it would be like to have to go through what she went though. It made me feel quite sad because though it has been a long time, and she has had so many changes in her life she still can recognize her home, no matter how much they try to change her she wouldn’t forget her past. I suppose the reason this specific section hit me is because when I move away and lose those I love, I don’t think I could ever forget the way back home, all the little but big details like the tree to Mare .


Soldier’s Home

Reading the novel All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque and then also reading Soldier’s Home by Ernest Hemingway I noticed similarities between the main characters, Paul and Krebs, both who fought in the war yet on different sides. though I noticed similarities I also noticed how some things were different, the attitude of the characters I suppose.

“All of the times that had been able to make him feel cool and clear inside himself when he thought of them; the times so long back when he had done the one thing, the only thing for a man to do, easily and naturally, when he might have done something else, now lost their cool, valuable quality and then were lost themselves.” (page 1, Soldier’s Home)

This excerpt form Soldier’s home explained how Krebs, unlike Paul, actually seemed to enjoy the war, it made him feel at ease and clear. Krebs found that war was not awful, he found it was better then being at home. Paul on the other hand as written in several parts of the book, hated to war, and though Paul also didn’t feel at like he belonged when he went back home, he did not find the war good at all. Thus, it shows how there are similarities yet also differences.

“Suddenly my mother takes my hand and asks falteringly: “Was it bad out there Paul?” Mother, what should I answer to that! You would not understand, you could never realize it. Was it bad, you ask. – You, Mother, – I shake my head and say: “No, Mother, not so very.-” (page 161, All Quiet on the Western Front)

The above excerpt shows how like Krebs, Paul lied about how the war was, he didn’t want to frighten his mother. The difference between what they lied about was Paul tried to not make them worry, while Krebs, he enjoyed the war, lied about how he actually viewed the war, not wanting to seem weird for liking it.

Krebs and Paul are different because while Paul has an extremely negative view on war, Krebs has the exact opposite. Though they are also similar as they both feel alone and unconnected to their home.

Overall, though Krebs and Paul had different experiences when they came home, they still shared similarities such as feeling lonely and almost out of place.


Eva Salvador-Brown, Soldier’s Home.

Personal Response to All Quiet on the Western Front

All Quiet on the Western Front was a book I actually enjoyed reading; I was rather surprised to see that I enjoyed the book as it isn’t the type of book I would usually read. I think I enjoyed it so much because of the way the author wrote the characters and just the way he wrote it in general. The way he wrote some of the paragraphs that when looked upon in closer inspection had a hidden meaning on just showed something else and lastly how the author took his own experience and wrote it into fiction. It made the book have so much more depth, turning the way people often de-humanizing people during war and showing everyone that they are just like us, just normal people who were told of the “glories” of war, wanting to be seen as a hero, and not wanting to disappoint their family and country.

“An hour passes. I sit there tensely and watch his every movement in case he may perhaps say something. What if he were to open his mouth and cry out! But he only weeps, his head turned aside. He does not speak of his mother or his brothers and sisters. He says nothing; all that lies behind him; he is entirely alone now with his little life of nineteen years, and cries because it leaves him. This is the most disturbing and hardest parting that I have ever seen, although it was pretty bad with Tiedjen, who called for his mother – a big bear of a fellow who, with wild eyes full of terror, held off the doctor with a dagger until he collapsed.” (page 31, third indentation)

The paragraph/ excerpt from the book above shows how the writer put thought, and likely their own experiences into it. It is quite sad, when reading of the losses that happen, and how each soldier who dies may die differently, either crying until death greets them or trying to fend death off as best they can until it consumes them. The writer had written it in such a way that if I had been alone I would have weeped as well, as death is such a thing that when written well, in a sad, yet well constructed paragraph, can really make you think about how awful it must have been. As it was only the start of the book, I’m sure only a few would find this sad, but as we read the book, and got to understand more about each chareter, got to see into their lives and perspectives, when I look back at this it saddens me greatly.

“There I drop down on my knees, but have still enough strength to fall on the side where Kat’s sound leg is. After a few minutes I straighten myself up again. My legs and my hands tremble. I have trouble in finding my water bottle, to take a pull. My lips tremble as I try to think. but I smile – Kat is saved. After a while I try to sort out the confusion of voices that falls on my ears. “You might have spared yourself that,” says an orderly. I look at him without comprehending. He points to Kat. “He is stone dead.” I do not understand him. “He has been hit in the shin,” I say. The orderly stands still. “That as well.” I turn round. My eyes are still dulled, sweat breaks out on me again, it runs over my eyelids. I wipe it away and peer at Kat. He lies still. “Fainted,” I say quickly. The orderly whistles softly. “I know better than that. He is dead. I’ll lay any money on that.” I shake my head:” (last indentation on page 289, over to page 290)

This part is from the last couple of pages of the book. By now we understand the  characters a lot more, we understand all the losses Paul has gone through, and know how Kat is a very very dear friend, possibly to be called a father figure to him. Now as we read, Kat has been dying, shot in the shine as shown above. Paul runs him back to the place for help, only to be told Kat is dead, but Paul doesn’t want to believe it. As the last little part of the written part above shows, Paul seems desperate, not wanting to believe his last friend has left the world. The way Erich, the author, wrote that was in a very powerful way, or at least I would say so. It made the readers feel Pauls pain, you could tell how hard it was on Paul, and when he finally realized, or I suppose accepted it, it seemed almost as though the last breath of hope had been knocked from his soul.

“He had fallen forward and lay on the earth as though sleeping. Turning him over one saw that he could not have suffered long; his face had an expression of calm, as though almost glad the end had come.”  (the page after the last chapter ends, no number)

I have chosen this as my last excerpt from the book because it sums up what I’m trying to show, or explain as well as brings the book to an end in an almost peaceful way. By explaining that Paul had a expression of relief on his face, and by giving us one final death that this time was quick and calm, showed how awful war was. what I mean by this is it was telling us he looked happy now he didn’t have to deal with it anymore, that death was better then going on in the awful times.

In conclusion, the author Erich Maria Remarque wrote the novel in a way that was skilled and well described, the perfect mix of fiction and real life, showing how awful war was, while keeping it in a form that many could read and sympathize to.

Eva Salvador-Brown, personal response to the novel All Quiet on the Western Front.

First reflection

My name is Eva, I was born in Canada and the moved to Singapore shortly after, then moved back to Canada. I hope to improve my vocabulary as well as my writing skills, I would also like to improve my ability to write good essays, to be able to understand how to persuade or to make others understand my point or view through writing