English 341: It’s Like This

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OH NO… we’re almost done

OH NO… we’re almost done

Overall, I enjoyed the graphic novel “Anya’s Ghost”. I’ve never read a graphic novel before but I liked reading this. I was skeptical about it at first because I enjoy creating my own characters and images from the authors words. However, Brosgol left enough mystery between scenes, or pictures, for the readers to kind of fill in the blanks on their own.  There wasn’t a distinct order to follow with your eyes as to which scene you should move to next, but it was pretty natural when my eyes moved from box to box.  I really loved the detail put into the illustrations. The color fits the story perfectly because it’s all about teenage angst and it’s a pretty dark story throughout. I love Anya and Emily’s facial expressions depending on what’s going on within the story, and even Emily changing her style was an interesting twist.

I’m not sure if I would like to use this graphic novel in the classroom.  There are a few curse words, which I’m sure the mature ones could handle, but there is a scene that implies sexual interactions that I’m not totally sure the younger grades would comprehend.  I’m also not sure what main theme my students would be able to get out of this book, or if I agree with everything that the book portrays.  The main character, Anya, struggles with her self-esteem, which most girls do, but there’s no turning point in this.  There is never a defining moment when Anya realizes that no body is perfect, but she is beautiful, flaws and all.  Also, some characters in the book smoke cigarettes and illustrate it as being cool, which is not something I would want my students to think.  However, I did enjoy reading this book and it’s definitely turned me on to a new genre that I never would have thought of reading beforehand!

So far I really like “The Book Thief”.  It took me a while to get passed the introduction and get used to the writing format.  Now that I know more about the characters and also understand who is narrating, I’ve enjoyed reading it much more.  I actually like the excerpts from time to time because it gives more information to the characters and what’s going on in the story.  I’m intrigued to see how it ends, although I’ve heard it’s really sad.  And I’m also excited to watch the movie once I’m done with the book!

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