Saturday, January 20, 2018
In this blog post I will be reviewing the novel "One Thousand Hills". One Thousand Hills is a novel based on a true story. It explores the story of a Tutsi family living in Rwanda during the 90s. During this period of time there was a mass genocide to exterminate every Tutsi in Rwanda. The story is told from the perspective of a Tutsi boy named Pascal. Pascal lives with his parents and sister Nadine and older brother Jean Baptiste. In the novel events are very slow with slight hints of whats to happen in the future ( the genocide ) and it just puts you in the shoes of Pascal. Pascal lives life normally doing things and boy would do like playing soccer and hanging out with his friends. Pascal would always listen to the radio where he would here things about exterminating cockroaches and cleansing Rwanda but he never really understood any of it. These were all hints towards the genocide. the first 180 pages or so were just about Pascals life and everyday events for him such as going to church and school but in the last 50 pages or so everything changes. The story changes from a slow, calm read to a very intense page flipping story in just less than 5 pages which I really enjoyed reading. Pascal was one of very few Tutsi kids in his friend group and he thought nothing of it. At one point Pascals "friend" Henri was talking about killing cockroaches and they were about to get what they deserve. Pascal didn't understand any of this until him and his sister Nadine were hiding in there water tank from Hutu people trying to find and kill them. The book can go under many genres including: Historical fiction, Mystery, Global Issues and Social Problems. The novel is a very good read depending on what your looking for in a book. If your looking for more of a slow read with a big plot twist then this is the book for you. I would highly recommend this book to all of you too read as I enjoyed reading it very much. If your looking for more novels on Global Issues which I have read and enjoyed as well be sure to read: "13 hours" and "This Changes Everything". Thanks for reading and I really hope you enjoyed this book review!
Monday, January 15, 2018
In this final blog post of the novel One Thousand Hills I am supposed to make a room for a character and put it evidence and talk about it. I am making a room for the main character Pascal. Some things that will be in his room are a machete. A machete can represent the bloodshed of the genocide. A machete can be a symbol of the genocide, A symbol of all of Pascals lost ones. It can be a memory of the dark days. Another thing can be a cross, Pascal and his family were christians and they would always attend church and be in the church. A cross can symbolize their religious beliefs and there connection together as a family. In Pascals room there are broken windows, This can represent the effects of the genocide, people houses being lost, it can also represent broken families and lost relatives. Before the genocide Pascals family was very fortunate, Pascals Family is one of the only families in his village with access to tap water. Instead of them having to walk to the water pump every single day they have it in there house. This can represent privilege and there family wellness. Around half way through the novel Pascal made a very bad dissection, he stole Hershey's out of desperation for his sisters birthday. Hersheys can be a symbol of foolishness or bad decisions. The last item is Coca Cola, Coca Cola is only drank during celebrations or special occasions. Coca Cola can show happiness and life among there family. Coca cola can represent Pascals happiness with his family in the past and there happiness in the future. This is the end of this blog post, thanks for reading and be sure to tune in for the last blog post about my personal opinion of the book.
Wednesday, January 10, 2018
The bullets were flying over my head. The sound was deafening. The only time I can remember being so scared was when I was trapped out in the cold harsh winters of Canada as a boy.
Focus! You have a job to do Soldier, I chide myself. These people need help and by Allah, Im going to give it to them. Opening the door of my small S.U.V. I dashed out to the ditch. I could hardly see, as the dust rose to meet my face. It was hot, and sticky. My clothes were stuck on me like glue.
A bullet hit a car windshield in front of me. I dropped into the ground, sliding into the ditch. Playing army as a boy sure helped now. The first thing that hit me was the smell. I’ll never forget it. It was pungent, and smelt like death and rot. It was like smell of a fridge, left unchecked for too long.
I wasn’t prepared for this, known of us where. We came into a country with little experience, and crappy supplies, and where expected to help save these people. We did what we could, but we weren’t the right men for the job. I was lost in thought in the ditch when a small cry startled me.
A boy, not a day past 8 was lying in front of me. He was a Rwandan and was caked in dirt and waste. It was clear he had been hiding in this hole for a while. I would too, the gunfire was terryinfing.
“ Don't worry kid, i'll get you out.” I had to save this kid. He needed water
He just nods. He doesn’t understand me.
I grabbed the boy. Immediately he tries to tug away. He doesn’t know that I'm trying to help. I have to get him to trust me
I pull out my canteen and rations. I’ve only got a days left, and at camp we don’t have much more. Grow up, I say to myself. This boy has been here for hours, maybe even days without anything to eat or drink. He needs it right now more than you ever will.
I give him the last of my food with sigh. He eats it, as fast as he coult. He hasn’t eaten anything for a while I think. He looks at me, this little kid, and I could see something that I haven’t seen since getting here, hope.
“Bud, let's go.” He still looks hesitant. “On Goofy, i'll get you home safe.” I declare, feeling like a war hero. He looks at me once more before climbing to his feet.
We sneak behind the ditch until a hill pops up. We begin the climb, on a stomakes like snakes. We can’t let them see us. I'm in front, and Im lager. The target will be painted on my back so I have to be careful.
For hours we walk, and crouch like that, picking our way through the rough ground. The five k walk now takes a whole day, because we have to take special paths so we won't be seen and they can’t trak us. Day passes into night, and the boy is barely awake. He needs medical attention. I give him the remainder of the water, and put him on my shoulders like a pack of flour. This hurts, and my body burns. I have never been so exhausted. My eye is swollen shut because of the sand, and my legs burn with hot fire.
I begin sweating and blacking out. Unintentionally, like what happened in a fight at middle school. I march on, focused on putting on foot in front of the other, in a trance. I'm about to collapse, and I fear both of us will lose our lives today. Just then the sun peeks over the edge of the sky. It’s sunrise. I look into, accepting my life, ready to pass on, when I remember the boy on my back.
I keep going for him, even when I feel myself slipping into a comma. Finally I reach camp. I just fall. I'm so tired. My friends spot me just as I hit the dust, leaving a husk of a man behind.
When I wake up they tell me I’ve been out for 2 days. I ask to see the boy, and they lead me to a tent and cot next door. He’s awake. I give him a huge, grateful I was able to pull through this. Even in a country torn apart from war, and evil, there is still good. You just have to know where to find it.
They found his mom. I stand tearful behind him as he rushed to here. I'm in new combat fatigues, and the only thing remaining of my adventure is my scars a memories. I stand silently as they walk away, waving when the little boy turns back to give me a wave.
What happened here is terrible, I think. People shouldn’t have to die because of their race, or culture, or religion, disabilities, or lisps or beliefs or anything. We should just accept people for who they are.
Tuesday, January 9, 2018
In this blog post I will be discussing the third 20 percent of the novel One thousand hills and I will also talk about the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Many of the rights we have as Canadians are not present in Rwanda during the genocide such as the right to be secure ( legal rights ) and the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice ( legal rights ). At this point of the book signs of genocide are starting to be clear and the genocide is starting. Tutsis are in a spot no one would want to be in. They are being racially profiled and exterminated just because of there ethnic group. In the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms it states " Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability". This is clearly not present in the Novel, Racism has always been an issue. Almost every society has or has had an issue with racism. I believe everyone is equal no matter what. In the novel there are many clear evidences of racism and other horrible things. At borders and other places Rwandans were required to show id that showed there ethnic group and if they were tutsis they were killed on the spot. Im glad that I live in a country with little racism and I am glad the most of the world has minimal racism too.
In this blog post I will be talking about something that surprised me in the second 20 percent of the novel One Thousand Hills. Something that surprised me is the discrete racism towards the Tutsi people. One day when Pascal was listening to the radio he heard the speaker say Rwanda is suffering from a cockroach plague. When he was talking about cockroaches he really meant Tutsi people. In the previous blog post I made an inference saying that the genocide is caused because on conflict between the 2 groups. Now I infer that it is because of racism towards the Tutsis. The radio speaker talks about exterminating cockroaches and he said they need more effort to exterminate than other pests. Pascals father orders Pascal to stop listening to the radio. Signs of a genocide are very clear and its almost as the radio was a warning of whats to happen in the near future. This is the end of the blog post, be sure to stick around and read number 3.
Thursday, December 14, 2017
In this blog post I will be talking about the first 20 percent of my novel One Thousand Hills. The story is set in the country of Rwanda as the main focus of this book is on the Rwandan Genocide. The book takes place in 1994 in a small village in Rwanda. It tells the stories of some children experiencing genocide. Right now in the book the genocide has not started and the people in this village aren't expecting anything out of the ordinary. Some questions I have so far is why will the genocide even occur and how will it affect these kids. In the book most of the characters are christian, an inference I can make is that this is because of previous assimilation. There are 2 groups of people in the book: Hutus and Tutsis, in the book one of the kids Pascal asks his father what Tutsis are considered as someone told him they are less than human. Another inference I can make is that the genocide is caused by conflict between Hutus and Tutsis. So far in the novel there is already evidence of racism towards Tutsis which is why I make this inference. This is the end of this blog post and the first 20 percent of the novel. Be sure to read the next blog post coming soon on the next 20 percent.
Wednesday, December 6, 2017
This is the first blog post for my novel study on books focusing on global issues. The book I choose is called One Thousand Hills. I chose this book because it seems like a great book focusing on a issue that destroyed a country for a period of time. It seems like a fast paced and action packed book but also it will make the reader feel empathy for the characters. Ms.Veteikis our librarian recommended this book to me and that made me want to read it. I am expecting a action packed and empathetic read from this book.
Reading and blog post schedule: