This was a novel I was assigned to as part of a seminar on Human Rights I was assisting in. When the Emperor was Divine by Julie Otsuka is a short pieThis was a novel I was assigned to as part of a seminar on Human Rights I was assisting in. When the Emperor was Divine by Julie Otsuka is a short piece of literature that follows the journey of a Japanese-American family in the height of World War II hysteria. The mother is separated from her husband- their children from their father in a story that truly does make one second guess everything they know about the nature of the second world war within our own borders. I rate this story at 2 out of 5 stars and rate it at 27% out of 100%. Though the novel's topic was interesting the story lacked an essence that should have connected the reader with the events of the time and with the characters themselves. Many of the students taking the course had a difficult time finishing this books despite it only being 144 pages. I myself had a rough time returning to its pages. I am sure there are better novels based on this time out there.
This novel is obviously not one of my personal favorites. The writing style is very different from most of the novels I choose to read. You never know the names of the family in this ordeal. I felt very disconnected from the whole of their experience. I feel the story could have been much more with a better personal connection to those characters.
However, the novel did succeed to bring the issues of the time to the forefront of discussion through the perspective of confused children. They are perplexed by the changes they witness around them as outstanding friends and neighbors turn to hatred and accusations in a time of post- Pearl Harbor hysteria. Their family is torn apart as their father is dragged from their home in his nightclothes and slippers for being a suspected enemy alien. Within a few months the rest of the family is forced into a life of living in stalls and being contained by barbed wire and soldiers with big guns. Much of this story is completely lifeless. Even the dis-justice of the situation sticks to the page instead of leaping off. Only the last bit of the story, titled "Confession," and is outstanding! The father, a character we know very little about becomes one of the best in the whole book. I like how confrontational and loud it is when compared to the rest of the novel.
War and Genocide by Doris L. Bergen is one of the best versions of written Holocaust history I have read so far. I greatly recommend this edition andWar and Genocide by Doris L. Bergen is one of the best versions of written Holocaust history I have read so far. I greatly recommend this edition and book for any history lovers or anyone interested in human rights. ...more
I was forced to read this book as part of my curriculum for my Western Civilization II class at the local University. Despite my love for history I waI was forced to read this book as part of my curriculum for my Western Civilization II class at the local University. Despite my love for history I was never a fan of war stories. War seems to be one of those topics that seem alien to me. I honestly believe that the concept cannot be fully understood unless one has gone through the ordeal themselves. I found this story to be one of great intrigue and entertainment despite the horrors. History is said to always be written from the winning side. I believe that this story is greatly important because it shows the terrors of war from the losing side of Germany. This book is full of great descriptions and the stories that compose this book are well worth the read for anyone looking for a great work describing war and inhumanity. I rate this book four out of five stars or an 82%. A full review will be coming soon. ...more
12 Years a Slave is a book that was required reading for my Composition of Human Rights class at my University. Being a history major, I was happy to12 Years a Slave is a book that was required reading for my Composition of Human Rights class at my University. Being a history major, I was happy to read this story of one free man's perspective during his years of unrelenting bondage. I am usually not one who picks up a classic on a whim but this book was an amazing story of which I give four out of five stars, an overall 84%. Below follows a review which includes a compare and contrast of the book and movie. (view spoiler)[ “And what difference is there in the color of the soul? (Northup 179)” For eons human kind has dwelled on the differences between themselves and fellow men. Race has always been one of numerous differences effecting many people throughout history and in our world today. 12 Years a Slave by Solomon Northup is a heart wrenching story of a free man kidnapped and sold into slavery. Solomon Northup’s story, which is now a major motion picture, has reached multitudes of audiences and has allowed for the topic of human rights to reach the surface of many minds. The son of an emancipated slave, Northup was born a free man and lived in Saratoga, New York. The type of comfortable life which Solomon was able to lead in the Free State was amazing. Solomon was often invited to play his violin at parties and had many friends and kind neighbors. He and his wife were well off and happy despite the fact that they were often looking for work. The need for work is what led to poor Solomon’s poor fortune. The kidnapping scene, in both the movie and book, were fully eerie and forbearing to the tortures soon to come for the free man. Solomon goes from a suit wearing, hopeful man to a man in slave rags and chains. Within the first day of his confinement, Solomon bears his first violent harm by the hands of slave pen owner, William Burch. The man beat him horribly demanding him to repent to his new status as a “black liar, a runaway from Georgia… (Northup 22)” This act, and many more just as cruel, left me cringing during the film and narrative. The movie was a very great and artistic interpretation of Solomon Northup’s true story. However, there were many differences between the two. One of such difference was apparent on Northup’s journey to Louisiana. In the movie, a slave named Robert was killed by a sailor of the ship Orleans whilst attempting to defend Eliza from rape. In the book, Robert died aboard the ship because of an attack of small pox. Another difference between book and movie would be the character of Master Edwin Epps. In both the film and the book he was shown as a cruel and horrible master- of which is entirely true. Though the real Edwin Epps was crueler than actor Michael Fassbender portrays him to be in the movie. In addition to Edwin Epps being overcome by "dancing moods", Epps also had his "whipping moods". Epps usually found himself in a "whipping mood" when he was drunk. He would drive the slaves around the yard and whip them for fun. “The younger children, and the aged, who had become inactive, suffered then. In the midst of the confusion he would slily [sic] take his stand behind a cabin, waiting with raised whip, to dash it into the first black face that peeped cautiously around the corner. (Northup 118)” Yet another difference between movie and book, a difference I found to be of the most inappropriate to a human’s history, was the request that Patsey was said to have made to Solomon. This difference may not have been intentional but a mistake on the reading of a few lines from the actual book. In the book, Northup is discussing the misfortune of Patsey who was lusted after by her master and therefore hated by the mistress. “Nothing delighted the mistress so much as to see her [Patsey] suffer, and more than once, when Epps had refused to sell her, has she tempted me with bribes to put her secretly to death, and bury her body in some lonely place in the margin of the swamp. Gladly would Patsey have appeased this unforgiving spirit, if it had been in her power, but not like Joseph, dared she escape from Master Epps, leaving her garment in his hand. (Northup 124)” In the book it was not Patsey who bribed Solomon for her untimely death, but the mistress of the plantation. I find this change to be a sort of disgrace to a person who bravely took her abuses, yet I also find that the change may have been needed for the film to show the desperation of many slaves during the time. 12 Years a Slave is a wonderful story regardless of any differences between the book and the movie adaption. Solomon Northup’s tale of injustice is a great importance to the human condition despite the change of times. I find that I am still very much curious of the story as an entirety though the novel and movie are both very descriptive in the core of the man’s story. The trials that Solomon brought to court, Solomon Northup’s mysterious death, and the lives of the other characters in this book leave the reader thirsting for more knowledge and justice. (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
I Am Malala is an astounding story composed of truth, hardship, passion, and love. I was told to read this book as a part of my Composition of Human RI Am Malala is an astounding story composed of truth, hardship, passion, and love. I was told to read this book as a part of my Composition of Human Rights class at my University. I found this book to be not only an easy read but a highly enjoyable one. Malala Yousafzai is a wonderful teller of her own story as she struggled against the norms in her country to fight for the rights of millions of girls who do not get to go to school. A recent winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, Malala is to this day a fighter for this important cause. A full review will be posted shortly. I give this book a solid 100%, A+. Many books can tell a good story but this one is one of those that moves and inspires. ...more
Quite honestly, I had been looking forward to reading this book when my teacher announced that we would be completing it in class together. Though theQuite honestly, I had been looking forward to reading this book when my teacher announced that we would be completing it in class together. Though the story was a good one, I could not get passed the fact that I would be bored to tears chapters at a time. It felt like a daily chore to pick up and read. However, as I read on against all my other judgements I began to like some of the characters and had respect for their situation in that time. Overall: I liked the story but you could not pay me to read it all over again. ...more
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green was a great read! I will forever love my amazing librarian for suggesting this for book club. If you are lookingThe Fault in Our Stars by John Green was a great read! I will forever love my amazing librarian for suggesting this for book club. If you are looking for a well written, gut-wrenching, amazingly witty, and fun novel look no farther than The Fault in Our Stars. This story will have you turning the pages filled with laughter and tears.
This has to be one of my favorite classics I have read yet! I loved the setting of historical New England and how Hester's punishment of wearing the sThis has to be one of my favorite classics I have read yet! I loved the setting of historical New England and how Hester's punishment of wearing the scarlet letter effected everyone in the story. Overall, I was very pleased and cannot resist from rewarding this book five stars. ...more