Inspiration From The Distant Past

Inspiration From The Distant Past
Found note in an old book... warms the cockles of my bookish heart...

Monday, April 9, 2012

Books I have been forced to read

Hello there, bookworms!
I have not been present here in what seems like a lifetime, so let me introduce myself. I am Isabella, an almost fifteen-year-old-girl who loves to read. My specialities include girly-fluff novels (books with no substance), timeless classics I struggle to get through (I'm looking at you, Jane Austen) and of course, those wonderful books I am forced to read at school.

I usually have to write an in-class essay after I've read the book, making reading these books a painfully stressful process. Never have I actually read one of these books for a novel study and liked them. Ever. Here are a few of the wonderful gems I have gotten to read over my advanced English years. 

Outfall by Brian Ridden

I can't really remember much of this book. It was all a frantically-trying-to-get-an-A+ blur. Some details I remember, though, like that it was about a teenage surfer boy, he was protesting against something environmentally destructive and he had nightmares about sharks a lot. And the book had sexual references that we had to read aloud in class. Tee hee! 

A Bridge to Wiseman's Cove by James Moloney

We had to analyse this book so much that by the end I never wanted to hear it mentioned ever again. And I know that even if we didn't have to analyse so heavily, I still wouldn't have liked it. It's just so sad. The main character, Carl, is someone you just can't help but feel sorry for. He has a dysfunctional family, no social skills, and loves a girl who doesn't feel the same. I like to feel happy when I read, and this book just didn't do it for me. Of course it has a happy ending, but it just takes so long to get there. Read this if you're not a massive softie like me!

To Kill a Mocking-bird by Harper Lee

Ah yes, the classic tale of racism and justice. I think. I'm just taking a jab in the dark here because I have not actually gotten past the first chapter. I'll admit, it seems a little more interesting than the others, but I just can't bring myself to read it during the holidays. Boo Radley seems really scary. 

Who knows, maybe I'll read this one and actually enjoy it. Probably not. I'll keep you all posted. 

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The French Foreign Legion

Tonight's conversation started with Hubby mentioning that he had met Bob Irwin, the late Crocodile Hunter's father. That led, naturally to his son, and other adventurous men.

We then wandered on to discuss one of our favourite TV shows, Bear Grylls

The family reminisced about an episode where Bear joins in a French Foreign Legion boot camp, and the question came up, 'What is the French Foreign Legion?'

I looked in Wikipedia and learned that is was founded in 1831, is still an important part of the French military, and has fought in almost all French wars.  I was interested to read that a large number of refugees find sanctuary in the ranks.  A few of years of honourable service in the FFL offers citizenship, even though there are no FFL forces based in France except during war.

So we talked of rogues and new identities and soldiers and spies.  

We sat around our table and agreed we'd rather be here than wrestling crocs, eating spiders or serving France in a war zone.  My spaghetti and meatballs weren't wonderful, but they were definitely better than some other options...
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