My overall reading for the class is going well so far. One of the strengths for both books I think is that the writing style is very descriptive and easy to visualize. Also the chapters are very short. I've always had trouble reading assigned books just because I am a slow reader and also get board easily with reading if it does not interest me. but that isn't the case in these books because I do find them interesting and easy to understand. I would probably have to say that A Long Way Gone has been going better to me. I just find the topic of book more interesting. I've heard about the civil wars and child soldiers in Africa before but I haven't heard as much about it. As for The House on Mango Street is more about the projects in the cities and their struggles and way of life. That kind of stuff I see all the time on the news and in the movies.
I think a good working title for chapter 8 would have to be "Ishmael vs. The woods". In this chapter Ishmael is by himself. at the beginning of the chapter As he is walking towards the sea he passes burnt villages and sees dead bodies of men, women, and children. He continues walking and finds himself in a thick forest. He spends the night and then tries to find his way out of the forest the next morning. he realizes that he is lost and is trapped in the forest for more than a month before he finally runs into people. He travels with them and they soon find out that there is a rumor about them attacking villages. Isolate means a person or place to be or remain alone or apart from others and i think this word is perfect for this chapter considering Ishmael spends most of the time alone. A lot goes on in this chapter but one theme that I thought stuck out was Ishmael fighting against himself. When he is in the forest he struggles to keep terrifying and disturbing thoughts from his mind and it affects with him surviving in the wilderness. It also affects his overall well being. A quote that best illustrates this is on page 52 when he says, " I spent most of my time fighting myself mentally in order to avoid thinking about what I had seen or wondering where my life was going, where my family and friends were." Another thing that his loneliness affects is his trust with other people. We see this when he meets the boys and he doesn't feel comfortable right away.