Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Book Reports

A book I read which is completely and totally unrelated to The Den of Shadows, or vampires in general is Catching Fire.

Catching Fire: If you want a good book to read, this would be one of them. I absolutely loved this book! Ah! but the way it ended has me dying for the next book to hurry up and come out! The book picks up where The Hunger Games ended. Katniss, the main character, has to face a problem of a rising rebellion within the districts(which she may have only added fire to), an evil president that hates her, and a decision between two guys whom she likes (personally I'm a Peeta person). The plot is amazing and so are the characters, this book is such a good read. Can't believe I'm going to say this but, I think this series is even better that the Twilight Saga. Shocked, yes I know, but that should indicate just how amazing The Hunger Games and Catching Fire are. So take a hint go grab these books and read them!

Ok guys so as you should know I'm a huge vampire novel fan. Ever since I read the Twilight Saga I have enjoyed this genre of books, so it should come as no surprise that I read this (these) book/s.

(Counts as 4 books)

In the Den of Shadows: this book has four books within it: In the Forests of the Night, Demon in My View, Shattered Mirror, and Midnight Predator.

In the Forests of the Night: This book really interested me just from the blurb on the back of the book describing it, and it didn't disappoint. I was really interested in the main character of this story, Risika. She had more layers than I expected a three hundred year old vampire to have. The book switches from modern times back to when Risika was still human and then newly turned. It was very interesting how the story unfolded a centuries old mystery. The book is written in a modern style so it's easy to follow along. The vampires within this book are very different from the other vampires in books that I have read. The vampire's power or skill depends upon which vampire turns them. I have to admit though that I am not too pleased with how this one ended, it leaves things a bit open-ended with Risika's brother.

Demon In My View: I wasn't sure I was going to enjoy this book because this book doesn't have the same main character as the first. But, surprisingly I did enjoy this one almost as much as the first one. In this book, the main character Jessica is a human, or so you think until later on in the book, which technically she still is, just not completely. Something I found interesting is that the antagonist from In the Forests of the Night is also in this book, but as one of the main protagonists. Something else I liked about this book is learning how Jessica knows all about vampires, not just the basics about them, but every single detail of their history, it was very interesting. I also liked that this one ended with romance, while the first book ended with the conclusion of a confrontation. This one like all the others in the series are written in a modern style.

Shattered Mirror: This book also brought back a character from the previous book, Demon In My View, unfortunately it was a character that didn't interest me much, and one that I didn't like a whole lot. This story plot was also very good. It is about a girl (who happens to be a very powerful, vampire-hunting witch) who goes after her family's most hated vampire. Along the way she runs into two not-so-powerful vampires (not powerful only because of how they choose to live) and begins to fall in love with one of them. The problem? Well her mother being the the leader of all the clans of the vampire-hunting witches makes things difficult for her to have a vampire boyfriend, not to mention that that certain vampire also knows the vampire that she is hunting very well. So, yes I enjoyed this book. And I have to admit, I love scenes when the clueless vampires realize just who exactly the main character is and what she is capable of.

Midnight Predator: I think this would have to be my second favorite book in this series, just because of the plot line. This book is about Turquoise, who is a mercenary hired to take out one of the cruelest vampires in history, within a fabled vampire land known as Midnight. Luckily she has been within Midnight before, not so lucky, she was a human slave and will have to enter as one once again. There are a few good twists within this book that I really enjoyed. I especially like the character called Jaguar, he is the main vampire running Midnight, only he is surprising nice and caring, really much so toward Turquoise. One of my favorite parts would have to be the confrontation between Turquoise's old master and Jaguar over who truly has possession over her. I was a bit disappointed with the ending, I would have really enjoyed a better relationship between Turquoise and Jaguar, but over all this was a good read.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Health Care

The government should not run our health care. It should be left to private companies, and sure some sort of coverage by the government, but not completely. Yes, health insurance companies have some serious problems with their plans, but will a government-run health care plan really solve all our problems? The answer, no it won't.

The cost of this health care plan is already looking to be in the trillions. Can we, as Americans, really afford this total? Especially when we are spending large sums of money overseas in the different wars we are in. And our national debt is already, according to zfacts, about 8 trillion dollars. And the cost of this health care plan will be paid for in rises in taxes and cuts to other programs. According to Mike Huckabee, 'Government doesn't have to compete; it doesn't have to be successful; it doesn't have to make a profit or be efficient, and it doesn't even have to work very well. And, if it doesn't work, it won't necessarily change or go out of business -- but you'll still be paying for it.'

Another problem is that more people would go to see a doctor for more things that they would normally not, because it would be free. Doctors would end up spending more time with people that did not have serious needs, then people that actually do have needs that require medical attention. And because more people will go to see doctors then there will be longer waits to actually see the doctor. The waiting lines would increase drastically and the people needing attention would be forced to wait for a long period of time. Click here for more information.

So is government-run health care really the best idea for America right now?

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pranking the Police

It seems that pranking the police has become a favorite pastime in America, one that can result in serious trouble. Misusing 911 and playing hoaxes on police is dangerous and should not be done. The results are very costly and wasted time that could be used to help someone that is actually in need.

Recently, the "Balloon Boy" hoax occurred in Denver, Colorado. Supposedly Mr. Heene's six-year-old son was trapped in a spaceship like balloon. Police and rescuers spent over two hours in pursuit of the balloon. And when it finally landed it was learned that the boy was never in the balloon but in the family's garage attic. Still everyone thought this story was truthful until on an interview the little boy said to his dad "You said we did this for a show." And so it was discovered it was all a hoax. And what might the cost be to this publicity stunt? According to examiner the cost includes a black hawk in the air for three hours at the cost of $4,600 an hour and a smaller Kiowa helicopter in the air for one hour costing $700 an hour. So the total just for the helicopters... $14,500. Not to mention the 2 hours of time taken up that police could be helping someone with an actual emergency.

Prank calls to 911 are also on the rise according to rd a Californian study found that as many as 45% of the emgerceny calls placed from cell phones in the state were frivolous or prank. But it's not just prank calls, it is also calls made for minor, stupid even, reasons. For example, in Florida, a man called 911 because Burger King did not have lemonade. A woman in Flordia called 911 three times to complain that McDonalds had ran out of McNuggets. While this may seem like small instances calls like this do happen quite often and can cause a delay of information of an actual emergency.

But compared to meaningless calls, prank calls are much worse and much more serious. Take for example the Bates' story click here for more information. The Bates were in bed at 10 p.m when they were awakened by police sirens. When Mr. Bates went downstairs to lock the doors, he was ordered by a mass of police, assault rifles drawn, out of the house. Both Mr. and Mrs. Bates were cuffed while the police searched the house. But what the police had thought to be a grisly murder scene turned out to be a prank by a teenage boy 1,200 miles away. Swatting calls, called so because usaually SWAT teams respond to them, place an immense strain on responding departments. The Orange County Sheriff's Department deployed about 30 people to the Bateses' home, including a SWAT team, a helicopter and K-9 units. It cost the department $14,700. Another example would be of a teenage hacker in Massachusets who plead guilty to a five-month swatting spree including a bomb threat and report of an armed gunman that caused two schools to be evacuated.

Some people may say that they are harmless pranks, but are they really harmless? While police are responding to a false case, someone else who is in real need could be suffering the consaquences of that little prank. The money used up by the pranksers could have been used towards saving someones life.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Sentence 12

His sentence: He is my demon, my lover, my enchanter.
from Thirst No. 1 by Christopher Pike

This sentence is a parallel structure that uses asyndeton to detail the relationship between Sita and Yaksha.

My sentence: The unknown painting showed the hills, the forest, the mountains.

Sentence 11

His sentence: Brave words, foolish words.
from Thirst No. 1 by Christopher Pike

This sentence uses a balanced rhetoric fragment to emphasis that no matter what Ray says, she can still make him leave.

My sentence: Dark hearts, pure hearts.

Sentence 10

His sentence: The bun nodded.
from The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak

The sentence uses metonymy to describe Liesel's mother.

My sentence: The redneck drove.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sentence 9

His sentence: The crowd: mayhem.
from The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

This sentence uses juxtaposition to describe the crowd of Max's imaginary boxing match.

My sentence: The laughter: echoes of dying curses.