LEIA - Quem somos

O projecto LE.I.A. continua activo e aparece agora renovado: ao associar-se ao projecto LER+ do Plano Nacional de Leitura, ganhou a sigla M.L.M (Melhores Leitores do Mundo). Continua a ser um espaço de partilha de experiências de leitura, mas integra agora na sua estrutura um verdadeiro clube de alunos leitores.

Permanece, no entanto, sempre aberto às sugestões de leitura que nos queiram enviar. Por isso, se acabou de ler um livro e gostou, escreva alguma palavras sobre ele e envie o texto para
leia.esmtg@gmail.com. Nós temos o maior gosto em publicá-lo no blogue.
Sugira. Comente. Participe. O blogue é o seu espaço.

Ana Gonzaga

Rosário Cardoso

quarta-feira, 25 de maio de 2011

TO READ or NOT TO READ, that is the question

BOOK REVIEWS - 12º ano, disciplina de Inglês

As "book reviews" que se seguem, são da autoria dos alunos de Inglês do 12º ano. De facto, ler uma obra integral é um dos objectivos do programa de Inglês deste ano de escolaridade. Mas porque a leitura, se possível, deve ser feita por prazer e não por imposição, optou-se por dar a todos os alunos a possibilidade de escolha de uma obra que fosse ao encontro dos seus interesses, em vez de se impor um livro único para todos.

Espero que o prazer que estes jovens encontraram nestas leituras e que decorre das suas palavras, possa estimular muitos outros a percorrer estas mesmas páginas e, a partir delas, construir novos sentidos.
Estela Vieira

(professora de Inglês, 12º ano)

About a boy by Nick Hornby

I read a book called ‘About a boy’, by Nick Hornby, an English writer. The book shows the relationship between two male characters. They are both very different, but they also have a lot of things in common. They don’t know each other and live very different lives. Marcus is 12 years old but acts like an adult and lives a difficult life because of the kids in his school. He is not accepted due to his way of dressing or his musical taste. His mother fell into depression after her divorce from Marcus’s father. Will is the opposite of Marcus, he acts like a teenager although he is already 36 years old. He listens to Snoop Dog and goes to the nicest clubs. He is a womanizer and doesn’t need to work thanks to his father. They live their own lives until they meet. May these characters help each other despite their different lives?

Everybody can read this book. This was the first English book I read and I had no problems reading it. Reading this book improved my English vocabulary. Shouldn’t you want to read in English, read it in Portuguese! This is an everyday story written with a lot of humour. You may already have seen the film but I recommend you to read the book because it is even nicer.

Anne Geerlings

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

To those who are interested in exploring different aspects of life and to those who like to reflect about various matters I recommend reading a Stieg Larsson’s book “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” the first one from a trilogy. The book doesn’t only tell an interesting story with breath taking moments, which isn’t always easy, but in my opinion the author linked together difficult subjects from our daily lives in a most fascinating way. The author made a story about a mysterious disappearance, which led to a mysterious and appealing investigation and then even related the case to World War II and physical, psychological and sexual violence against women.
This book is perfect for those who realise that life isn’t a fairy tale and struggle to understand aspects of human nature and different ways of adapting to hard circumstances and who ultimately manage to survive.

Viktoria Nestserava

P.S. I Love you by Cecelia Ahern

When our English teacher asked us to read and present a book the previous term, I didn’t know that this work would be so interesting and rewarding. The books I most enjoy reading are usually novels so, when I went to the book store and saw “P.S. I love you” I thought that it should be a nice book to read. I had already heard about this book and seen some extracts of the film, however I can assure you that the book is a far cry better than the film.

“P.S. I love you” tells the story of Holly, a thirty-year-old widower who lost her childhood sweet-heart and husband, Gerry. Like any other couples, they had their fights, but they were usually caused by little things such as: whose time it was to turn off the light before going to bed or who had forgotten to put another milk carton in the fridge. Since Holly was a walking disaster Gerry had the idea of creating The List. According to Gerry, Holly was too distracted and sensitive to ever be able to live without him, so all these things they fought about would have to be documented and organized in a list so that Holly never forgot to do some things and avoided doing others.

For a long time Holly and her closest friends thought that this List was just a private joke, however, when Gerry died, Holly soon found out that he was serious and had left her a List with envelopes that would gently guide her into her new life without him, each signed “P.S. I love you” and containing a very important message.

This is a book that shows the importance of friendship and love and reminds us to always say I love you to the ones that we truly care about because some day it will all be over and we won’t get a second chance. It also shows the power of family and the difficulties a person goes through when one of our dearest ones passes away.

I really liked this book because it is a very funny though sad story that makes us cry in some passages and laugh really heartily in others. It is very easy to read and well-written. If someone asked me, I would say that I truly recommend this book, especially to a female audience that like heart-warming novels since this book is about a love that never dies.

"Their plan had been very simple: to stay together for the rest of their lives."

— Cecelia Ahern (PS, I Love You)

Inês Metello

Tell Me Why Mummy by David Thomas

This review is about the book ‘Tell Me Why Mummy’, a dramatic autobiography written by David Thomas.

The story tells the tragic life of David, who is born in a family consumed by chaos, addiction, abuse and trauma. The reader gets the opportunity to follow David’s life – from his first years to young adulthood.

First of all, let’s talk about the outlook of the book. It is covered in beige and light blue tones – soft and delicate colours that create an ironic contrast to its content. The story inside is heavily dramatic and dark, yet the outside is light and subtle. A good example of why we should not ‘judge a book by its cover’.

Regarding imagery, it features a blue-eyed young child dominating the cover. The sad look on the expressive little boy’s face can be easily interpreted as a cry for help, connoting the heartbreaking storyline. This image is more allusive to the content, giving the possible readers a more realistic feel of the book, despite the misleading colours aforementioned.

I believe the contrast on the cover (dramatic imagery accompanied by fragile colours) becomes an absolute eye-candy, grabbing the attention of the future reader. It becomes interesting and complex at first sight, leading the potential reader to give it a try.

Now that the outer features have been discussed, we shall move on to the inner elements of David Thomas’s book.

It has been mentioned above that the book is a candid autobiography about Thomas’s disturbing past; a detailed picture of a hectic life filled with traumatic experiences.

The combination of the intimate theme and the fact that it is written in the first person transforms the book into an one-on-one private conversation; the author engages the reader with its personal and approachable language and down-to-earth attitude.

In other words, the autobiography isn’t a polished, well-structured and epic tale, written with eloquent vocabulary.

It is simple, familiar and natural, like if you were David Thomas’s psychologist and you were both sitting down, in a therapy session.

The main themes of the book are sexual abuse, love and forgiveness. The author grows up in a family where his mother sexually abuses him, and his stepfather beats him up. And even though he stumbled upon the consequences of those years of suffering, he still managed to overcome all of that, and become a successful, worldwide known motivational speaker and record-breaker. As Thomas states in the book, all of his success is due to the fact he was able to forgive his parents, and move forward.

The thesis of the story is how everyone can actually overcome any obstacle, and how life teaches us lessons that we must go through in order to evolve and grow as human beings, instead of feeling sorry for ourselves and living stuck in painful memories.

David Thomas could be the poster child for the thesis. He was able to emerge from his dark and rotten upbringing to a bright and successful life, keeping all the excruciating recollections of the past, but always looking forward.

All in all, I believe this book is an uplifting piece of art. It could easily inspire anyone who needed motivation. And even though it is not an easy-reading book (the description of the sexual abuse by his mother is very visual, which could put some readers off), it would definitely inspire and motivate the reader, no matter what.

I think David Thomas didn’t write the book just to tell his tragic life story – he did it so that he could help everyone in the same position, who needs to clean out the closet and move on.

I strongly recommend this book, because it can encourage anyone to look for a brighter future and better tomorrow. If he did it, so can everyone.

Gonçalo Rochate, n.5, 12ºG

The Talented Mister Ripley by Patricia Highsmith

A brilliant criminal suspense thriller written by Patricia Highsmith, The Talented Mr. Ripley was one of the most addicting books I’ve ever read. The way it’s written, in par with an excellent plot, are sure to keep any reader interested, regardless of whether one is used to reading books in this genre or not. In my case, I’ve never read a criminal thriller before and I’m glad I read this particular book first, so I can confidently say I am now a fan of the genre. I really recommend this book, as it is, undoubtedly, a must-read for any fan of good suspense looking for an addicting masterpiece.

Nuno Antunes

Angela's ashes by Frank McCourt

(1)"When I look back on my childhood I wonder how I survived at all. It was, of course, a miserable childhood: the happy childhood is hardly worth your while. Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood, and worse yet is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood."

This is the story of a boy, Frank McCourt, his family and life in Ireland. When things may seem a little sad, this story is a reminder that they can always get worse. The opening sentence of the book(1) captures your attention, makes you wonder why the character feels that way and, while you read the story, you realize it. You are led into a first person narrative, through the author's childhood and adolescence. This book takes you on a wild ride back and forth from the streets of New York to the slums of Limerick, Ireland. The narrative is bold, fun, smart and sometimes heartbreaking. McCourt describes his family brilliantly allowing us a glimpse of his past and what made them what they were - his alcoholic father, his broken mother and his brothers. When it comes to the last page, you feel wonderfully intimate of this family. The way McCourt uses words to describe his thoughts and feelings is unbelievable. The images are vivid, almost like a movie, you can almost hear the author telling you about their difficulties with a bitter smile on his face. This book encompasses everything from a hospital admission, the death of siblings still in his early years until the need to steal to survive. This is a motivating novel that makes you realize that, however bad things get, unless you're dead, you can make them better. I highly recommend this book. As far as I recall, this is one of the best books I’ve ever read.

Adrina Cunha

Matilda by Roald Dahl

Matilda is an original and humorous story. Probably the most well- known book written by Roald Dahl for children. It was one of the best books I read during my childhood. It is a story about a fantastic and bright young girl, Matilda, who had a passion for books and reading. To create a genius like Matilda, the author was fascinated about Wolfang Amadeus Mozart, who was already composing music by the age of five. This was one of the things that made him realize that adults often underestimate children. Matilda´s parents, Mr. And Mrs. Wormood, think she´s just a nuisance. Matilda thinks, rightly, that all they are interested in is watching television and making money by cheating people. They can be considered as a caricature of dishonest but stupid people. She decides to punish them. Using her intelligence, she creates a lot of funny situations, with a bit of irony, in order to be more respected by her parents. She soon discovers that she has supernatural powers which prove to be useful both at home, and at school, to help her friends to confront then the terrible headmistress, Mrs. Trunchbull. This character, the villain of the story, has a very strong personality, as well as constant bad mood, and a controversial career, for being Matilda´s school headmistress and hating children at the same time. This story teaches some values and lessons about friendship and betrayals.

The author has a very particular writing style, describing every character and situation in a very personal way, like every character was a friend of his, making us get familiar with them.

The book won the Children´s Book Groups Award in 1988. I recommend it for those who enjoy outstanding stories, written with some criticism, humour and irony, with unique characters.

Mathilde Major 12º G nº 15

Salem Falls by Jodi Picoult

Salem Falls, a novel which gives you food for thought.

What makes two young girls ruin a life?

What made them lie about having been raped?

This novel tells the story of Jack St. Bride, a 31-year-old history teacher and soccer coach, who’s wrongly accused of raping two teenage girls. He must bear the shame of facing two trials, one sentence, the registration as a sex offender and the prejudiced eyes of those who want him lynched. But one person believes in Jack, even when his own mother abandoned him. Her name is Addie.

I loved reading this novel, it attracts the reader’s attention and you can feel every emotion in the book. You get angry with it all, because you know Jack is innocent and desperate as Addie tries to help him. It is thanks to her that Katherine, the first girl who accused Jack, comes forward and tells the truth.

I recommend this novel to everyone. From those who like witches and reading everything related to them (the word Salem in the title has you reaching for this book on the library shelf and the blurb quickly tells you you’re not wrong about the contents). The witchcraft here deals with Wicca, but Picoult never takes a stand on the religion, leaving this up to the readers, describing only some Wiccan traditions and rituals, and some of the effects of the spells cast by some characters.

This is the right novel to those who like to while away time with an interesting contemporary novel that raises the issues of love and trust, parental relationships, the teenage psyche, dishonesty and prejudice.

Sofia F. 12ºG