Mao; The Unknown Story-Non Fiction Blog Post

Mao; The Unknown Story

In the book, Mao; The Unknown Story by Jung Chang and Jon Halliday, it tells Mao’s early life to his potent rule over China and to his death. This book has some bias parts as it also makes up the theme the authors are trying to tell. The theme of this book is how Mao was an atrocious leader and killed millions of innocent people. For example, it says that Mao’s second wife, Kai-hui was arrested by the Nationalists and was going to be executed. “Months later, she [Kai-hui] herself was dead… Mao made no effort to extricate her and their sons, or even to warn her. And he could easily have saved her… Yet he did not lift a finger”(Chang and Halliday, 91). In this part of the book, the wording like, “even” and “yet”, illuminated that Mao was selfish and even willing to save his own family members. Also, by reading this part one can feel the dislike of the author and Mao.

Another example is that Mao banned civilians from leaving Changchun and starving people hanged themselves and knelt in front of the soldiers. “Even the hard-hearted Lin recommended letting the refugees go. There was no reply from Mao.” (Chang and Halliday, 325) In this part of the book, Lin, a horrible man, showed sympathy for these refugees as Mao did not feel or do anything and let these people starve and suicide. The authors wanted to compare these two men together and depict that Mao was evil and horrific.

Mao needed and wanted help from Stalin so he offered to pay for it with food which caused “famine and deaths from starvation… over 10,000 peasants died of starvation in 1947. Mao knew the situation very well, as he was traveling in the region that year, and saw village children hunting for stray peas in the stables of his entourage… Great Famine, which was likewise Mao’s creation: again the result of his decision to export food to Russia.” (Chang and Halliday, 310). The authors word choice again, really affects the theme as they use the word, “again” which expresses the sarcasm the authors are saying.

This is a link about the author of the book explaining why she is banned from China because of this book and her other book, Wild Swans:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/10314619/Jung-Chang-interview-why-Im-still-banned-in-China.html

This is a link about some history of Mao and what happened:

https://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4967077

The Girl with No Name-Resolution

The book, The Girl with No Name by Diney Costeloe demonstrated that hope can keep people going through even the most hopeless circumstances. [Spoiler alert!] On page 87, the narrator says, “Lisa had been keeping a tiny flame of hope alive in her heart” that her parents, her brother, and her friend, Harry, are still alive. This is the theme because at the end [Spoiler alert!], Charlotte/Lisa receives a letter that her mother and Harry are still alive from after the war. The conflict of this book is person vs society because the main character, Charlotte or Lisa, goes through various problems while living through the time of World War II. [spoiler alert!] For example, Lisa lost her memory by being bombed by the Germans. So, society, would be Germany. Another conflict would be person vs person, because Hitler had ordered the bombings and declared war. Also, Charlotte/Lisa was named to be a Nazi by people in London because she came from German although she was a Jew. On page 76, her classmates bully her, “…shooting out their arms in Nazi salutes, shouting, ‘Heil Hitler!’”  In addition, on page 134, Lisa and her foster parents “heard the grim news that Hitler had invaded Poland.” The word, ‘grim’ made it clear that Hitler was one of the problems in this book. In conclusion, the theme is that hope can keep people going through even the most hopeless circumstances.

Hyperlinks:

Information about the bombing of London during WW2

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Blitz

The Kindertransport where children like Charlotte/Lisa were transported to safety

https://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/article.php?ModuleId=10005260

Sonnet to Lucky and Marley

 

Sonnet to Lucky and Marley

 

Shall I grieve for the day I lost you two

The most precious things I had ever had

the memories and love I knew was true,

Ah! I would walk around in sadness clad

The one no bigger than a bleached sea mew

With his astonishing fast minute legs

His tender curly auburn fur like dew

His wet tiny, teeny snout as he begs

And the one that grew like a huge jackpot

Coal and wan downy fur made me a path

His love for the ball that was always caught

Eyes two globes of lustrous black after bath

 

I wait to have you again my Lucky

And no less for you my dearest Marley

 

-Grace Wang

Always and Forever, Lara Jean’s Diary-Climax

Lara Jean’s Diary

My book is called Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han. I created a diary using quotes from the book to express the climax.

The climax of the book is that the main character, Lara Jean, is rejected by a university that is where she wants to go and because of this, she will have a long-distance relationship with his boyfriend, Peter Kavinsky.

In the diary, I wrote a writing to herself like what she does in the book. In the book, it is first person so we know exactly what the protagonist is thinking. For example, in p71, Lara Jean is sad about how she didn’t get in the university that she wanted to be in, “And that’s when I start to cry again, because that’s when it finally feels real.” In this quote, you can feel what she is feeling and be a part of her story.

I showed the climax by putting in the quotes of sadness and her actions that express herself, for example, in my diary I wrote, “When I got home and lied in my bed and cried.” This quote explains that she is so depressed that she won’t talk to her dad or her sister about it. She just wants to lie down and just cry. I also expressed the climax by adding the quote, “He’s afraid when I’m in another university and he’s in another, our relationship won’t work out. Like my sister Margot’s.” This is also a suspense, cause this part of the story is actually in the previous books which have the reader most likely read the first two books. But in this quote it explains one of the problems that is escalating. I also used that in my diary because in the book, Peter says to Lara Jean, “Remember than person who transferred to UVA?” This quote illuminates that he wants Lara Jean to transfer back just like that person did. That’s why I put that inside the diary.

https://www.topuniversities.com/blog/what-do-if-your-university-application-rejected

https://www.wikihow.com/Deal-With-Long-Distance-Relationships

 

Exposition

 

My book is called Winger by Andrew Smith. I created SMS messages and put them into a big collage to express the exposition (setting, characters, and conflict) to the novel.

The setting of the book is the modern times, basically a normal life of a teenager right now. And now, during the 21st centuries, many kids use their phones to text and call people. For example, on p271 Ryan Dean says, “I called my mother from the airport.” This gives a message that Ryan Dean has a phone and also the word ‘airport’ gives a hint of the 21st century.

In the SMS messages, I wrote conversations between the protagonist, Ryan Dean West, and his friends in Pine Mountain, his boarding school. The texting with his friends also gives the information about the characters in the book. I used some quotes from the book, such as, when Ryan Dean is explaining about how he got into opportunity-hall on P10, “…after they caught me hacking a cell phone account so I could make undetected, untraceable free calls.” I also used this quote in the conversation between Annie and him.

I showed the conflict by expressing the feeling of Ryan Dean being concerned about being in opportunity hall. For example, the first text with JP is, “Yo Seanie, I can’t believe I got put in O-hall.” This text gives a hint of the regret for him hacking into a teacher’s phone. In the book on P41, Ryan Dean said, “It was time for dinner, and I missed my friends.” This quote also illuminates that Ryan Dean does not want to be there and regrets it. The second conflict I included was the with Annie. In the conversation between them, Annie says, “Aww… what a cute little boy.” this gives a hint of how Annie thinks of Ryan Dean, she thinks of him as little boy. This was also a quote from P28 when Annie looks at his ID.

 

Found Poem

Night cold, fire burned,

‘The wind’‘The wind’

Candle flickering

Pulsating shadows

Fears woke up

Angry mad angry

Possessed

Trapped

Silence

Darkness

Death

 

This is a found poem from the short story, “The Monkey’s Paw” which is written by William W. Jacobs. The concept of the poem is about the setting. The words in the poem were not found in any specific pages, they were chosen because it fit well in the setting of the story.

The poem shows setting because the words chosen describes the surrounding, for example, on the 2nd line, there’s a repetition of ‘the wind’ and it describes the coldness of the weather. I also drew a picture of a house that is worn down with broken windows and roofs. The weather surrounding the house is a storm with black crooked trees. In my poem, it’s mainly about the weather and the fear rising and taking over someoneor something.

I used the lines, ‘Fears woke up” and then, “Possessed, Trapped, Silence, Darkness, Death” because it gives a sinister feeling of who or what is being possessed and trapped. It can be a person or an object, the reader can decide.

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About The Blogger

A compassionate, humorous, fun –loving girl, sister to a 19-year-old egotistical brother

and a musical wave dancing violently inside her.

An avid reader, intense basketball player, a feral dog lover.

 

 

  1. Basketball (n): I chose this word because I love playing basketball and I love shooting and dribbling.
  2. avid (adj): I used this word to describe my love for reading because when I start a book I get very excited and is into it.
  3. wave (v): I chose this word because it describes how i love music and the word gives it a better feeling.

 

I chose this picture because they are the two things that I love and they keep me going every

day.

 

Immigrants of Child Labour

The wind whistled by and rain started pouring. A chill went through my spine, I stood there shaking in the muddy rain staring at the abandoned school. One side of the wall was torn down and the other with a number of hammer marks. There were messy writings on the wall everywhere. I couldn’t understand them, but I could tell from they were something unpleasant. It seemed the writers were very furious or desperate. Why couldn’t we go to school? Imagining the school full of students with books on the tables, I signed and walked away. The school was built by Americans last year, but the government had rushed them out of Bangladesh.

“Kanzah!” I screamed out loud. Kanzah trotted over and fell into my arms.

“I’ll go with you to the factory,” I said softly in Kanzah’s ear.

“Me want go inside! Me want go inside! Me don’t want go work Chaitali!” Kanzah screamed while pulling  me toward the empty school.

A tiny tear rolled down her cheek. I sighed. Even an 8-year old girl with down syndrome knew that work was tiring.

               “Come on Kanzah. You don’t want to be late do you? You don’t want the manager to get mad do you?” I said.

Kanzah hung her head and followed me. Kanzah was my best friend, like my little sister. Kanzah was only 8 years old and I was already 16. Even though she had down syndrome, Kanzah still had to go to work. She toiled at the factory next to the short watchtower. In the factory they had to build sewing machines, but every Friday Kanzah and I went to a special prayer service and prayed 5 times a week. Most people there seemed not to think much of education. Working and making money was their primary concern. I heard people said that most children in America went to school and had some free education. I wish Kanzah and I could have education, too.

“Carry! Carry!” Kanzah cried out while jumping around me.

“Ok,” I replied.

“Next stop! The sewing machine factory!” I announced.

Kanzah laughed out loud.

“Ok! Kanzah. Hurry in. I’ll come and check on you after work okay?”

Kanzah nodded and waddled in the factory while the manager shouted at her to hurry up.

I sighed and went to the sweatshop. I hurried up because I was required to make three pairs of shoes at the end of the day or else my pay would get cut. My parents wouldn’t be happy about that.

After work, I went to Kanzah’s house. She was sitting on the floor. She had a cut on her right skinny arm and tears were running down her pale face. I rushed over.

“Kanzah! What happened!” I screamed so loud that the neighbors barged in and started to see what was happening.

The neighbors weren’t surprised by the red arm and just left. How could they not help a little girl that’s only 8 years old! I took a shirt on the ground and wrapped it around Kanzah’s cut.

“Kanzah. Tell me.” I said softly in her ear careful not to alarm her.

“Sew machine fell top me.” Kanzah cried out loud while she buried her head in my arms. “Manager scream me.”

I shook my head in agony. Who would scream at a little kid that had down syndrome and not even care about the injury? Who wouldn’t do that?

America! I’d heard tons of people said that America doesn’t have any child labour and the country funds children like Kanzah to go to a special school. But how would me and Kanzah afford the plane ride? If I counted my money, I only had three dollars. Kanzah only had two dollars since her wage was cut by the dumb manager. We only had five dollars in total. One plane ticket was 1,000 dollars. And our parents didn’t have that much money. They only had money for food, rent, and water. Still, I wish Kanzah and I could go to America… I couldn’t give up.

Kanzah realized what I was trying to do. Even though she didn’t have any education, she was still very smart.

“Don’t. Won’t able do it,” Kanzah said.

“Kanzah, you must know that you should never give up!” I replied in a strict voice. I shook my head.

I couldn’t let Kanzah live like this anymore.

I was about to give up.  But my eyes caught a glimpse of hope.

Several posters appeared in the street today. Adult men, stopping from drinking their tea, were crowding around the posters. I was so frustrated that I couldn’t read it. I wish I could have gone to school and read it. All the words on the poster made my head dizzy.

“Excuse me sir? What does that poster say?” I shouted out loud so that the man next to me would hear me.

“That poster? Why do you care? It means that the manipulative foundation are taking children under 18 to America. It looks like a free ticket. Trust me, kid. It’s a trick. The Americans manipulate workers.  They come to Bangladesh to build cheap factories. They just want money.” The men sneered at me.

“Well ok. I guess it’s fake.” I said, but it was a lie.  I knew some Western workers helped other children in Bangladesh through education.  This looked legitimate.

I rushed home and told Kanzah the news. Kanzah danced around the room with a mammoth smile on her pale face.

“Sign up! Sign up!” Kanzah screamed out loud.

The problem was that I had no idea how.  Who was the manager of the foundation? How would I find them? I could not even write a letter to fill out any paperwork. This seemed hopeless.

Grace the ‘Magician’?

 

I skidded across the marble floor screaming in my parent’s ears

“Magic show! Magic show! Magic show!”

I was on a cruise in the middle of nowhere between Korea and Japan.. My family and I are going on a trip to Korea and Japan on a cruise! Today my mom and dad and I are going to go watch a magic show. You’re probably wondering why my brother isn’t coming with us to watch the magic show. He’s too busy playing basketball outside on the cruise.

My mom quickly hushed me to be quiet. How can I be quiet? We’re going to watch a real magic show that isn’t only street magic! Finally! For all these years I have only watched street magic. I’m sick of it! But I’m going to watch a real LIFE magic show! I couldn’t miss it or be late!

“Mom! Dad! Hurry up! We’re going to be late!” I shouted at them while jumping around in circles.

We finally made it to the theatre with my snail parents.

“I told you we weren’t going to be late!” My mom said while we treaded inside the theatre.

“But we’re almost late!” I said trying not to show that she was right.

There are only a few people here; in fact, I think we are the only one here! I quickly sat down in the soft and smooth chair. 5 minutes later a mammoth of people came storming in and sitting in their seats. They were talking so loud that I thought North America could hear them.

Once they finally settled down in the seats, the show began.

The magician was called John Taylor. He had a kind of a Swiss accent and was really funny. He was a typical magician with a lot of confidence. Everything was great but suddenly…

“I need a volunteer!”

I quickly scooted my butt off the chair like Usain Bolt so the magician won’t be able to see me. Thankfully he didn’t choose me, but he chose a Chinese boy who was foreign to English.

After the boy was walking off the stage, the magician gave him a signed DVD. I was starting to get jealous and upset about that. I want that signed DVD. I want a signed DVD.

After we departed from the theater. I mentioned to my parents,

“I want a signed DVD from the magician. What should I do?”

“There is another magic show in the afternoon? It’s the same as we just watched. You could go to the afternoon show and volunteer?” my parents replied.

“Never mind. Can I just buy a DVD?” I suddenly regretted my question.

I hated volunteering for things on stage in front of thousands of people. Not even one person. I would start shaking in the middle and nothing would come out of my mouth.

“No! If you want to get a signed DVD you must earn it and you must take a risk.” My mom said sternly.

“Fine. I’ll do it.” I said with a frantic expression.

The magic show started.

“Volunteer! Thousands of people! Volunteer! Thousands of people!” Those words stayed in my mind for the whole show, except for when it was time to volunteer. I was nervous. Really nervous. What if they laugh at me?

“I need a volunteer!” The magician screamed out loud again.

Those words are starting to annoy me now. Now I hated those words. The magician started to pick people from the other side.

“What if he doesn’t choose me?” I thought.

I raised my hand a little. He was searching for little kids like me, but nobody wanted to. I raised my hand a little higher. He spotted me in a flash. Maybe he has super eyes that can spot things in a flash or I raised my hand too high. Either way, I still got spotted. I regretted it for a second but my parents told me to go. They were all smiley smiley to me. So I had no time to regret it and found myself strolling up the stairs to the stage. I wish I sat in the balcony, and then he won’t be able to choose me. I wish. I finally made it up to the stage. I could just see all 2000 pairs of beady little eyes staring at me. It was like I was watching a horror movie! I think I was shaking. I could smell the salty sea and can almost taste it from on the stage. Half and half.

He asked me “What is your name?”

I forced myself to say my name, even though it was shaky and very quiet. “Grace.”

“Where are you from Grace?” He asked me again without shaking like me.

I forced myself to speak with a shaky voice again “Vancouver.”

Then he started the magic. He was funny and made me laugh a lot. I wasn’t really nervous anymore. I liked his attitude and he wasn’t rough on me. I shuffled a deck of cards even though I was horrible at it. Then he told me to pick a card, show it to the audience and memorise it. Without letting him see the cards. What if I forget the card that I chose? Thankfully I didn’t forget the card I chose. Then I shuffled it again. He took the cards. Then a bright silver long thing was suddenly in his hand. It was a real sword. Then I heard a ratter of card while it was thrown in the air and

“Zssss!”

The sword stuck through the card I chose. Wow! He showed the card to me if he got it correct. It was 100% correct! My expression was like I had just won the lottery or something when he showed me the card. If someone took a video of my expression and started to laugh at it, I wouldn’t blame them. Then he gave me a signed DVD. A roar of applause suddenly started like it was played on an audio recording with the loudest sound. I was so excited! Wish come true!

“And I present you… Grace!” The magician shouted in my ear while his hands pointed at me respectively.

It was like I was a real magician! But was I? When I went back to my seat my parents kept patting my leg and saying “well done” and “I told you, you could it!” but then I found other people staring at me and whispering to the person beside them and then continue watching show. It went round and round.. It was like a cycle. Stare at me—-Whisper to neighbour—-Continue to watch the show.

 

After the show, people crowded around me like I was the most famous magician ever. I felt the popular. People started asking me questions like they were interviewing me. The funniest question that they asked me was if I was from Mongolia. I made a face and said,

“I’m not from Mongolia! I’m Canadian. Mongolia and Canada are not close at all!”

Maybe volunteering in front of thousands of people isn’t so bad. You just got to take a risk at one point. No matter what goes wrong, you got to take a risk. By the way, everybody makes mistakes too. Not only you.

 

 

Water Crisis?

Our world has a horrific water crisis. Around 1 billion people have contaminated water or are suffering with diarrhea and dehydration.

Firstly, while we can drink clean and healthy water without getting sick, some people surprisingly do get sick and has only a few years of living. While we are healthy, diseases are constantly happening and people are dying. According to charitywater.org the video “impact of the global crisis,” states, “Babies are affected most by the terms. About every nineteen seconds a mother loses a baby. Some families know their water is contaminated with germs… Diarrhea, dehydration, and even death.” This illuminates that we should build a well that has clean water. This also clarifies that people are affected by dirty water and we have a water crisis.

Secondly, while we have brilliant education, billions of girls have no education. In the article, “For the world’s poor, drinking water can kill” a woman who’s stuck in this situation told Newsela that “I have hopes and dreams for the future, Petronella… hope that my children will grow up and be educated…” This highlights that girls are busy collecting contaminated water and do not have time to be educated. This also shows we have a water crisis.

Lastly, while we have plenty of crops and food, other places in this world shockingly don’t have enough water to drink, shower and more. While in the news article “Drought hits UK as officials prepare for worst,” theday.co.uk observes, “water shortage destroyed millions of acres of cropland…” This claims that people are not having enough water to water crops.

We have a serious water crisis in our world. Billions of people don’t have clean water or they don’t have enough water, but if we all donate a little money to foundations that help these people, for example, “Just Add Water “ and “Ryan’s Well”, we could make a difference. These foundations would use the money that we donated to build a well, a clinic or even a school for boys and girls in that situation.