Monday, May 20, 2013

To Kill A Mockingbird Prompt 1 Essay

 To Kill A Mockingbird Essay
Every day of our lives we make a choices and some of them are good and others are bad. Maybe we make a choice to do something even though we know it is bad. We could also make a choice that you know will result in something good happening. Many of the choices we make don’t really have a huge impact on our lives. Every person makes decisions in their lives and their decisions result in consequences that can have a good impact, a bad impact, or not really impact our lives which is shown  in the book To Kill A Mockingbird.

  A choice Tom Robinson makes in the story that affects the rest of his life is to help Mayella Ewell. When Tom is being questioned,  he is asked why he went over to Mayella Ewell’s house and Tom says that he went over to help her fix things when she asked him to her. Mayella would usually ask Tom to fix something for her like a door or a chifferobe.  “ I was just trying to help her sir”( page 263). This quote shows that the reason why Tom Robinson went over to the Ewells house was because he would help Mayella when she asked him to.

    Tom’s decision to help Mayella Ewell was the reason why he was accused of forcing himself upon her. Mr. Gilmer (Mayella’s attorney) asks Tom why he ran away from the Ewells and Tom said because he did not want to get falsely accused of forcing himself upon her. “ No suh, I’s scared I’d be in court, just like I am now. Scared of arrest, scared you’d have to face up to what you did? No suh, scared I’d hafta face up to what I didn’t do” (page 263). This quote show’s that Tom Robinson was very afraid that he would end up in court and he knew that if he did, most people would not believe that he did not harm Mayella.

    After the jury takes a very long time to think about whether Tom is guilty or not they finally come to a verdict. The jury’s verdict is that Tom Robinson is guilty of forcing himself upon Mayella Ewing. “ He would look up at Atticus, then down at the floor, and I wondered if he thought Atticus was somehow responsible for Tom Robinson’s conviction” (page 280). This quote shows that Tom Robinson was found to be guilty of forcing himself upon Mayella Ewing.

    Due to Tom’s decision to be nice to Mayella and to help her when she needed something turned out to be the reason why he was falsely accused of forcing himself upon her. Atticus did a good job representing Tom and even showing that one of his arms was crippled which would not allow him to hit Mayella where she was hit. The town in the end is still too racist to believe that Tom was innocent and did nothing to Mayella and it was her father who beat her. Tom gets sent to prison and he is shot and killed for trying to escape. Tom’s decision in the book To Kill A Mockingbird was an example of a decision that had a very negative impact on the rest of his life. People can take away from this book that you need to thoroughly consider all of the possibilities whenever you make a decision to determine if something bad might happen because of your decision.  

Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Old Man and the Sea Book Review

The Old Man and the Sea: A Tale of Hard Work and a Tragic Ending
The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway, Simon & Schuster Inc.,1950.
Genre: Fiction

The story The Old Man and the Sea is about a very old fisherman who has not caught a fish in eighty four days. The fisherman is named Santiago and he is very poor and lives in Cuba. One day he decided to try his luck and go fishing hoping to catch a good size fish. Later on that day he has his line in the water and gets a big bite,the fish is a Marlin. For the next three days the old man and the marlin battle. The old man almost kills himself because he is trying so hard to catch the marlin. Finally on day three he catches the fish and he is very proud and he attaches the fish to the side of the boat. Tragically the blood from the fish attracts many sharks who the old man is able to fight off at first , but eventually he runs out of things to fight them with and his marlin is now devoured and worth nothing. The old man is very upset and returns home at night and sleeps. The boy who he is quite close to during the story checks on him and tells Santiago that he will go fishing with him once again. At the end of the story the man is very ill and dreams about when he was younger and lions on a beach.

“The great marlin that he struggles with is like a true fish, lacking personality or anthropomorphism, but just a powerful beast that does not want to die. There is no Moby Dick animosity, and the fish is under the water for the majority of the struggle. All of it, the sharks, the flying fish, the small boat and the ocean, each is what it is, lacking metaphor and saying that life itself is enough. No need to wax poetic” said Zack Davisson.

I agree with this quote because I believe that what Zack Davisson says about the Marlin is true. The marlin is just a fish who doesn’t want to die, nothing more, nothing less. For example on page 45 on the book, the quote says: “ This will kill him, the old man thought. He can’t do this forever. But four hours later the fish was still swimming steadily out to sea, towing the skiff, and the old man was still braced solidly with the line across his back.” I think that this line shows  what Zack Davisson was saying about the Marlin not wanting to die. Even though the marlin has a skiff in it’s back it still keeps going because it wants to survive.

“ It is enough to live on the sea and kill our true brothers” (page 75). This quote made me think that the the old man felt bad about killing the fish since he considers them to be “our true brothers” which I don’t think Ernest Hemingway would have used that to describe the fish unless he wanted to tell the reader the old man cares about the fish in the sea. The metaphor made me feel surprised since the old man is a fisherman and he kills fish for a living, but even though he does that he feels bad about killing the fish since they are like brothers to us. This quote stood out to me because it made me understand that the old man felt bad about having to kill the fish in the sea instead of thinking that the old man kills fish and doesn’t really feel anything for the fish.

A book that is similar to the The Old Man and the Sea is The Hunger Games. I think that they are similar based on the main characters. In The Old Man and the Sea Santiago is poor and is having bad luck with catching fish. In The Hunger Games the main character, Katniss lives in the poorest district and has to go out and hunt and sell what she hunts  to support her family. The main characters are both very poor and have to catch their food to make money and to eat. The difference between these two books is that The Old Man and the Sea takes place in the 1940s and is about a man fighting a marlin so hopefully he can catch it to make money. In The Hunger Games Katniss lives in the future and enters the hunger games in place of her sister since she is so young. The main characters from both books are both struggling to survive with what they have.

I think that the quote “ A man can be destroyed but not defeated”. I think that this quote means that someone might not be able to accomplish something but they will never be defeated because they can always choose to try again. I do not agree with this quote, I believe that is should be the opposite way around because I think that if you are destroyed then you are defeated. If you are defeated, it does not necessarily mean that you are destroyed.

I didn’t love the book The Old Man and the Sea but I also did not hate it. I thought that the ending of the book where the old man finally catches the marlin and is battling the sharks was interesting and exciting. I thought that the middle of the book was kind of boring where he is waiting out the fish. I think that Ernest Hemingway could have added a little bit more action to it. I can relate to the book by knowing what it feels like to really want something and then to lose it. I remember when I was little I really wanted to get a balloon( I had a balloon obsession when I was little)  and my dad got it for me. I was really excited especially because I could have it in the car when we made the long drive to drop me off at my mom’s house. I remember getting out of the car and I was really excited to show my mom the balloon and then I accidently let it slip out of my hand and the balloon went flying up into the sky and I was really upset about it.

I give The Old Man and the Sea 3 paws- pursue it!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Short story essay

                                                The Landing
It is four am in the morning and the first droplets of dew are forming on the grass. At  three am this morning I got the a phone call about some alien like pod landing in Washington, DC. When my boss told me about this pod I didn’t believe him, I thought he was joking or possibly losing it, until I noticed the very urgent and serious tone in his voice. “Elizabeth! Elizabeth! Over here!” I turned my head and saw Bryan standing with a large group of scientists huddled together. I walked over and saw their pens scribbling  back and forth almost in sync with one another. I saw the pod, it had weird almost geometric shapes carved on the cover and the geometric shapes were somewhat transparent, but not enough for us to see what was inside.
“We need to figure out what is inside of this thing” said Craig. “Wait, shouldn’t we wait until we get the pod into an isolated area. What happens if this thing can spread? “ I asked. “Elizabeth, you think too much and do too little. Just let the people who are more experienced than you deal with the situation. I don’t even know why you are here, stand back and watch. One last thing, keep your mouth closed”said Craig.  Typical Craig, jumps in head first at every opportunity he gets. He’ll learn his lesson though, one day, I just hope it’s not tonight, I thought to myself.  Bryan looked sympathetically at me and I just smiled back at him and walked away from the crowd that surrounded the pod. Craig grabbed a drill and began to start opening the pod. After a few attempts it finally opened. A grey gas quickly came out and the gas stung my eyes, I felt paralyzed just bending over and coughing. I wasn’t able to walk around for the fear of walking into someone or something. Great idea Craig, now we’re all exposed to a gas that we have no idea what it is or the effects that it will have on us” said Bryan.  “Keep your mouth shut Bryan, go join your girlfriend over....” . A creature emerged from the pod and it was almost the size of a six foot man. This... thing looked ferocious and very furious. All of us just stared at the creature with a blank expressions on our faces.“Why are you here?” asked Craig with his voice sounding shaky. The creature stared at him for a few more seconds and answered in a booming voice: “ All of you discovered my planet and are planning to send a crew out to get samples. To try and grab our people since there are signs of life. We do not want this happening, we want to be left alone. You humans, so ignorant and daring. I am here to delete all of the information that you have collected on our home and our people. All of you who know about it will be destroyed.” 
 We all looked at each other and our faces showed pure shock and fear. What planet is he talking about? I don’t remember anything about an unknown planet with signs of life. I have a high level of classification , but not as high as all of the other scientists here. They are my colleagues and we have to consult with each other on some things , but not everything.  “We’ll do anything you want. Just please don’t hurt us” begged Craig. “Shut your mouth Craig” shouted John. The alien looked at us for a few more seconds and then he went for his wristband. What is he doing I thought to myself? He pressed the button and it released a grey gas, I felt lightheaded and the next thing I remember is falling on the ground and passing out.
I awoke due to the heat and a clanging sound that seemed to come from pipes. I opened my eyes, my head hurt and I was really nauseous. Where am I? I looked around again and realized where I was. I’m in the basement of NASA and tied to John and Brian around a pole.
I nudged Brian and he slowly opened his eyes. He almost fell asleep again , but I nudged him one more time and that seemed to keep him awake. “What...” he started to say but trailed off suddenly remembering what happened. I tried to nudge John a few times, but he was still passed out from the gas. “ What are we going to do?” asked Brian.” I don’t know Brian. Brian what does he mean you found a planet with life on it?” “ Look, we found it two weeks ago, we tried to communicate and we got something back. We were told to keep it as classified as possible so no one in the media gets a hold of it. None of us thought that they would come to Earth. We were planning a mission set for next month that would go to the planet and collect some samples and find out who was communicating with us and what type of  life form was on the planet.” “ How did it know you found out about it’s planet” I asked Bryan. “Craig sent a message saying that we wanted to communicate and that we were planning a mission there to find out more about them. Against all of our opinions, you know Craig he dives in head first at anything”. “Great idea, so now we have an alien who wants to get rid of this information and kill anyone who knows about their planet. I have an idea, i’m not sure if it’s a good one though.” “Just say it, anything is better than being tied up down here in a basement waiting to be killed by an alien” said Bryan. “ The pod seemed to be broken or turned off when it came right? The parts where the shapes were I think used to glow and if it is not glowing then that means that the pod is broken or it is in some sort of sleep mode. “
“Yeah, I remember now that it glowed when we came to the site. Shortly before you came it stopped glowing, so hopefully it isn’t broken, maybe just in some sort of sleep mode” said Bryan. “ You know about mechanics, you helped design some of the equipment we use for other missions.  So since you are the tech guy how about you start working on how to get that pod going again?” “I could try , but I don’t know anything about alien technology.’’ “ Well as long as we try it will be better than nothing.” “ How exactly are we going to get out of these ropes” asked Bryan. “ Hang on a sec, I think that I can slip through it.” I slowly picked up some of the rope since luckily it wasn’t tied around us skin tight. I slid through it section by section and finally made it out.
I helped Brian out and we began to move to the supply closet. “What are you going to do?” “ I’m going to find our alien and try to lure him back to the park. From here to the park shouldn’t take too long since he brought all of us here without anyone noticing. I’m going to try and get him to chase me to the park. I know where the walkie talkies are so we can use those to communicate. You just have to let me know when you and if you get that pod opened.” “ Sounds like a plan” said Bryan. “ Here we are.” I opened the door quietly and grabbed the walkies.
“Radio me when you get to the park and when you get that pod running.” “Okay, be careful Elizabeth.” “ Thanks, good luck” Brian.” Brian started sprinting towards the door and I began to search for the alien. I heard some banging around upstairs. That must be where the alien is, hopefully it ran out of that gas. I walked up the flight of stairs slowly and when I got to the top of the landing I peeked around the corner and saw the alien trying to login into the computers and paper was thrown everywhere. “Squeak”, oh dang it, my shoe must still be wet from the grass.The alien turned it’s head quickly , but luckily I was one step ahead of him by  already cramming myself into the corner. I heard it’s footsteps approaching and I hoped he wouldn't look too closely. I heard the footsteps stop, then slowly the alien started it’s way back to the research lab. Phew. A few minutes after  Brian radioed me:  “ Elizabeth, i’m at the park and trying to work the pod. I think I can figure it out.” “Great”, I whispered very softly so the alien couldn't hear me. “Hurry I don’t think I can hide from this alien forever before it finds me. I already had a close call when my shoe squeaked.” “ I’ll try my best.” I silenced the walkie and and waited for Brian to radio me again. Time passed by so slowly and I started to feel butterflies in my stomach. Oh great, now all I need is even more nausea to top off my mood. Then after what seemed like forever Brian radioed me. “ I got the pod to work, hurry up and get the alien here, I don’t know if this thing will go off again and I don’t want to find out when you and the alien arrive.” “All right, i’ll hurry, see you in a few Brian.” Okay, showtime, I thought to myself.
I looked around the corner quickly and the alien was still really busy. I took a deep breath and walked into the room. “Hey, what do you think you’re doing to the data?” the alien turned around and looked ferocious. I saw the one last file on the table that he did not shred yet and I grabbed it and ran. I heard it’s footsteps thudding behind me and I knew I had to run faster. Down the stairs and out the door I ran, I could see the trees from the park and I knew that if I made it there I would be okay. I looked behind me and still saw the alien chasing after me. I burst through the trees and saw the pod glowing and it was opened. Brian was standing about 500 feet away. I ran faster and faster and once I was close enough to the pod I stopped and looked at the alien. When the alien looked at me I held up the last file that contained the data and ripped into halves and then quarters. The alien growled and started charging after me. I threw the pieces into the pod and ran. When the alien went to dive into the pod he hit his head on the cover and was knocked unconscious. Brian ran up and slammed the cover down.
Once the alien was in the pod and the cover was on, a bright light blinded us and the pod disappeared into the early morning horizon. Brian and I looked at each other and smiled. “Good work Elizabeth, I did not know you could run that fast.” “ Thanks, you did good with operating alien equipment. What do you say we get the rest of our colleagues out of the basement?” I said.  “Sounds good to me, how are we going to explain this to our boss?” asked Bryan. “ I don’t know, all that matters is that alien isn’t on the Earth anymore”. Brian and I smiled at each other . "Let's go get them" I said and we began heading back to NASA.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Second Quarter Outside Reading Project

World War Z brings the history of the Zombie War alive

World War Z by Max Brooks. Three Rivers Press, 2006. Genre: Fiction

Max Brooks (author of the book) is the protagonist and acts as the reporter who interviews survivors from the zombie pandemic. World War Z takes place 12 years after the Zombie war has ended. In these accounts there are detailed descriptions of when people heard about some of the first outbreaks to the Great Panic and how people had to survive until the outbreak was under control. The people who tell their stories range from doctors to soldiers to people who were just a child. In the pages of this book you hear about the struggle and how hard it was to survive the Zombie War.

“ Posses more creativity and zip than entire crates of other fiction titles. Think Mad Max meets The Hot Zone... It’s Apocalypse Now, pandemic- style. Creepy but fascinating” says ,USA Today about World War Z.

I have not read other books by Max Brooks , but I think that he writes very uniquely. Whenever I read this book I felt like this sounds like a real interview and I have not read anything written in an interview format before. This book reminds me of the book The Eleventh Plague by Jeff Hirsch. The Eleventh Plague is similar to World War Z because it tells how a teenager survives a terrible plague that has killed more than half of the people in North America. In both of these books they tell of the survival of people during and after the terrible flu outbreak. I thought that how people survive while the living dead pandemic is happening and how the people are forced to survive in North America after the flu are similar to each other. In both books people have to abandon their homes and only take things that are necessary to them. Lastly, people setup their own camps and don’t get along very well with other survivors.

“ I came up spluttering, choking, and the first thing I saw was the whole swarm coming at me” (pg. 182) .

Ever since I saw my first zombie movie I have always been fascinated with zombies. I love how they are so creepy and yet even though they might not be thought of as a tough creature since they don’t have unbelievable strength, they are very hard to get rid of because they can only be killed if their brain is destroyed. I thought that this book did a really good job of showing the struggle of dealing with a zombie pandemic to life really well.

World War Z is 5 paws- Devour it.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

What is value?

What Do You Value?

 Everyday our lives are jam packed with things to do and places to go. Everyone is in a rush, either to get to work on time or to catch the school bus. Living in a world where it seems like everyone and everything is so fast paced, how much do we think about what is valuable to us? We now have so much technology to make our lives be so much easier, things that our parents never had while they were growing up. People waiting for hours in a line to get that new iPhone or iPod touch. People can have the internet in the palm of their hand and use it pretty much anywhere and anytime they want when they want as long as you have WiFi  How many times in the course of a day, in a week do you think about what is valuable to you? Is what you find valuable an item or a moment?

 I see it advertised whenever I am watching tv, I get emails about it from Apple. I hear about it being totally redone to make it be an even better phone. How the phone is thinner, how it has 4G and even new ear buds so you can listen to your music and have fantastic sound. It is the iPhone 5. I had always wanted an iPhone ever since seventh grade. I love listening to music and I thought it would be so great to have it on my phone so I don’t have to carry an iPod and my cell phone around with me( hopefully so that I have one less thing to lose). At the end of eighth grade, my mom and I were both seriously considering getting one. My mom told me I should wait since Apple usually has a new iPhone come out about once a year in the fall. I went home and looked up the iPhone 5 on my computer and I saw that it was set to be released in September. After learning about some of the “bugs” with the previous iPhones I hoped that this one would be a great one and could eventually be mine.

 The day came, the day the marvelous iPhone 5 was released. I looked up all of the reviews on my computer and heard pretty much positive reviews. My mom and I finally decided that the iPhone 5 would be the phone that I could get. I was so excited, after all of these years of saving and hoping to get it, I would finally get one. the day came in the middle of November. The anticipation escalating as we drove to the Verizon store, in the middle of the day. I walked into the store, signed in and walked around waiting to be called on. After about five to ten minutes it was our turn.I saw the woman come out and ask what phone I wanted and I had to contain my excitement from jumping up and down. I said calmly, the iPhone 5. The lady said okay and asked what color I wanted, I said black. I picked out a case, one with the most protection, because I know my poor phone will end up getting dropped by me. Finally it was purchased and the phone was mine. I was so happy and I couldn't wait to get my music on it and download some apps (specifically temple run).

 Now that I have owned the phone for a couple months I use it all the time. I use it when I get to school in the morning. My bus gets to school before 7 am and sometimes the wait for school to start can seem like it will take forever so having music that I love makes it all go by faster. I also use my phone when I am commuting back and forth from my parent’s houses. My Dad lives two hours away, in a town that is close to Boston. I use my phone for almost the whole two hour drive which makes everything go by so much faster. I love my iPhone and I really enjoy what I can do with it.

Although I value my iPhone I also value my  Friday and Saturday nights are the best nights of my whole entire week. I look forward to them as I trudge through the sometimes very long week. I love to stay up late, and I really hate to go to bed early ( not to mention wake up early). On Friday and Saturday nights I feel like I can relax, and that I don’t have to do anything. I know that everything is done for the day and nothing needs to be done urgently. I turn on the TV  load one of my many movies into the tray and wait to press play. I put the headphones on so I don’t wake anyone up with the sound of the movie and begin to relax. Some nights I don’t end up watching a movie, I end up watching music videos off of on demand for hours. I sit in my chair, and watch my dogs sleep soundly. Sometimes even my cat decides to join me in relaxing.Every once in awhile my dogs wake up for a little while , but usually fall back asleep pretty quickly. Around 2:30 or 3 am I begin to shutdown my TV and head up to bed.

 My iPhone 5 and my Friday and Saturday nights are similar to each other. They both provide entertainment for me. My iPhone provides it through music and surfing the internet. My Friday and Saturday nights provide entertainment when I am watching movies. The one thing that my Friday and Saturday nights provide for me, that my iPhone doesn't is true relaxation. I enjoy listening to my music, but the places I listen to it in, I don’t feel like I can fully relax. Probably because the day isn’t close to nearing an end and it feels like there are still so many things that I have to do before the day is over. I value both my iPhone and my Friday and Saturday nights. On days where I just feel very stressed I really appreciate my Friday and Saturday nights. During my day though, I really appreciate the convenience of having my little source of entertainment in the palm of my hand.I love how fast the phone is and especially the internet speed. In my life these are some of the things that I truly value you the most.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Matt Alacran editorial: Why Do We Not Accept People Who Are Not Like Us?

Why do we not accept people who are not like us? As you go about your everyday life, do you ever notice how many people don’t accept people because they are not like us? I am a clone, I am the clone of the drug lord El Patron, who used to be the great ruler of the country Opium. I’m sure that many of you have heard all of the stories about Opium, how people who don’t do what El Patron wants become Eejits. Basically they are zombies except that they are alive and have a chip controlling their brain. If you don’t tell them when to eat or drink they won’t, they’ll die. During my time living on the Alacran estate I had my fair share of not being accepted by the many people who lived and worked their. I remember the day as if it was yesterday. When I was little, I used to live in this small house with a very kind woman named Celia. She took care of me everyday and told me she worked at a house for a rich family. One of the days when she was at work and I was home alone, I saw children from outside our house. This was the first time that I had seen anyone other than Celia. I was curious and wanted to go out to meet them, instead when I tried to get out, I hurt myself really badly and had to be brought to the big house. There I found out that I was a clone, I had “property of Alacran Estate” printed on my foot. As soon as they found out everyone immediately did not accept me. First I was thrown out onto the front lawn and was only brought in when the doctor said I need to be treated by him. The doctor was not a nice man and I disliked him deeply. I was put under the care of Rosa ( another employee at the Alacran Estate). She was a very bitter and mean lady, I was treated like an animal. I was thrown into a room with a dirt floor and I had to go to the bathroom on newspaper. When El Patron came and saw how I was being treated he stopped it all. I was able to have a life, I was assigned one of his bodyguards. His name was Tam Lin and he took very good care of me.Tam Lin treated me like I was a true human being. Iwas taught many things and I excelled at music. El Patron used to have me sing to him. Truly only Celia, Tam Lin, Maria ( one of El Patron’s grandchildren) and El Patron treated me well. People would avoid me, I snuck around the house and enjoyed watching and listening to Felicia play the piano. I remember how on Emilia and Steven’s wedding I was not invited and not allowed to be seen. All of my life I have not been accepted by other people. I am a clone, but I am also a boy, a human boy. No one else could tell that I was a clone except for the mark on my foot. I just don’t understand why people won’t accept someone who is different. Every human is different from one another. People have different hair colors, eye colors, heights, personalities. People have different talents whether it is music, art, writing, etc. Everyone likes different kinds of foods, some people love pizza, others hate it. Some people love chinese food, mexican food. What is it about someone who is a clone that makes everyone hate them. We are the clones of another human being. We grow, mature, and have skills. I was different from El Patron in that I had a talent for music. I am not an evil person who makes others live in misery. My point, my reason for writing this column is to tell people to accept people who are not like us. I have shared my experience of growing up in a place, a world where I was not accepted by most people. I hope this convinces you to accept other people who are different than us. Give someone a chance, get to know them. They might be someone who is worth getting to know and becoming your friend. Sincerely, Matt Alacran

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Quarter Outside Reading Book Assignment

The House of the Scorpion- What science has come to in the future? House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer. Simon Pulse, 2002 Genre: Fiction The House of the Scorpion is about a child named Matt Alacran. He is not an ordinary child, he is the clone of a very powerful druglord named El Patron who rules the country Opium. The story is set in the future where many monsterous things happen. On the Alacran estate and off. Putting chips in people's brains if they don't obey. Making children do very harsh labor and in very harsh places. Matt's world is filled with danger and people betraying him at every turn. "This is a powerful, ultimately hopeful story that builds on today's sociopolitical, ethical, and scientific issues and prognosticates a compelling picture of what the future could bring. All of these serious issues are held together by a remarkable coming of age story", from Booklist. I have not read any books by Nancy Farmer, but The House of the Scorpion did remind me of another book that I have read. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins reminds me of The House of the Scorpion. The two stories have the main character's homes be like the housing of the past even though the rest of the world is in the future. Katniss is from district 12 and her home looks like it is from a very long time ago. There are no high tech things that are in the future today. The capital on the otherhand and some of the other districts have a lot of technology. Matt grows up near El Patron's home and eventually inside of his house where it is very old fashioned (El Patron does not even have an air conditioner in his house) while the rest of the world outside of Opium (Matt's home) has more high tech things. "There was a level of terror and despair in that sound that made the hair stand up on his neck. This time he did grab Maria's hand" (118). I enjoyed reading The House of the Scorpion due. I think that the characters are developed really well as the years pass by during the book. I thought that she does a great job of describing what Opium is like and the horrors that happen on the Alacran estate. Lastly, I thought that she does a great job of putting the reader into Matt's shoes, you can empathize for Matt as you read the book, you can imagine what it must feel like to be treated so horribly, less than human. I think that what made this book so great was Nancy Farmer's writing style. I give The House of the Scorpion 5 paws- Devour it