Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Coming of age

                                 Coming Of Age Reading Response

          I am reading the book “The Girl Who Fell From The Sky”, by Heidi W. Durrow. In the book the main character is a girl named Rachel. She is living now living with her grandmother and her Aunt Loretta in a new town. From her past, to her present and to her future Rachel goes through many changes in her life. The three main changes that I noticed is the fact that she is living in a new town and shes trying to fit in, she is enrolled into a new school and she is living with her grandmother. Rachel starts of by being the smart, shy, well-behaved, and well mannered child. But throughout the book That changes little by little. She adopts to the new life, changes the way she dresses, the way she talks and her attraction to boys.

Rachel is feeling like “The New-Girl” and misses her Mor (which is a danish word for mother), her brother Robbie and her Pop (her Dad). Some things that her Aunt Loretta does reminds her of her Mor, and deep down she is still that danish girl from Portland, Oregon. I think this because Rachel is the new girl and everything and everyone is new to her. Yes, they may change the way she looks on the outside, and try to change the way she acts, but she will always be the same danish girl she always has been. For example, on page 2 Rachel says, “ When Mor was little she used to have two braids in her hair too.” But her aunt decides to do something different with her hair. To Rachel she knows it doesn’t matter if she didn’t agree, shes just a “Doll”. On page 3 Rachel says,“I see a girl in the mirror when shes done, and she is not me.”

       Coming to a new town, means a new Middle school for Rachel. I noticed in the beginning she wants to work hard and focus, even though shes being teased and bullied by the other kids. She usually just deals with it and holds back her tears. For example,in the beginning of the book there's a girl named Tamika Washington who goes to Rachel’s middle school bullied Rachel, she pulled her braids, teases her about the way she looks, and threatens to beat her up. Rachel is frightened by Tamika a tries to stay out of her way. But by the middle of the book her attitude changes. Yes, she still keeps up with her good grades, but she attracted more to boys and can't really tolerate the teasing. Tamika now goes to the same high school as Rachel, but things have changed. On page 170 Tamika says, “She a ho. Think she all cute. She fast like those white girls. She slept with half the basketball team. She touch my man I’ll slap her.” A Part of Rachel that wants to stop being sad, and to stop being hurt and not cry. Turns around so quick like she doesn’t even know herself and says, “FUCK OFF,” and punches Tamika so hard she stumbles back and her nose begins to bleed.

          At first Rachel doesn’t know much about her grandmother. For example on page 2 she says “ Grandma is still a stranger to me. I know only know a few things about Grandma. She's a gardener. She has soft hands, and she smells like lavender.” As she gets to know her grandmother more she does as she is told. She shows her grandmother and her friends respect and manners. She goes to church with her grandmother every Sunday. And she keeps her grades up and behaves herself. She and her grandmother never talk about Rachel's Mor or Her Pop, But they are always on Rachel's mind. But the older Rachel gets the more she actually notices about her Grandmother and the more she dislikes her. Like how shes almost always drinking and she becomes less close to her grandmother as she used to be. For example she stops going to church as often as she usually does. On page 150-151 Rachel and her grandmother get into and argument about Rachel’s Mother. Rachel does something shes never done before, she yells at her and says,” You're a damn lie- that newspaper story proves it. My mom didn’t do a damn thing!”

          In conclusion, Rachel goes through many changes in her life. And this is a great example of coming of age. Because just like Rachel, teens today are starting to grow up and learn more about themselves. They change either because of a situation or the people around them. Just like Rachel we may grow up having one set of personalities but a few years later they change, because we change. By the end of the book Rachel gains wisdom. “Wisdom doesn’t necessarily come with age. Sometimes age just shows up all by itself.”-Tom Wilson. Rachel is a good role model to most kids going through what shes going through. And its more that what meets the eye. I want the reader to think that growing up isn’t a bad thing, but its a way to experience more in life. To understand yourself better than when you where younger. To experience new knowledge and lessons of life.


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