Die Trying

Author: Lee Child

Title: Die Trying

Genre: Crime

Rating: 9/10


This book is the second in a series of many novels following the brave and courageous Jack Reacher, an ex militiary solidier and investigator. This particular novel sees Reacher tangled up in some extremely serious crime involving a Militia group with ideas of declaring independence in a vast forest space in  a remote area of Montana, USA. Reacher as always is determined to stop the bad guys and be victorious.

 Reacher is merely wandering through the streets of Chicago one afternoon in June, when a woman with a crutch and bags of dry cleaning stumbles in front of him. He helps her with her bags and just as they turn around they are both standing  face to face with  two gun men with guns pointed directly at their stomachs. Reacher knows they are not after him, nobody knew he would be in Chicago, he hadn't even known himself until this morning when he decided this would be a nice place to spend a few days in June and hopped off the bus he'd been travelling on all  night. (The thing is, Reacher doesn't have a home, he has no family and is basically a bit of a  nomad.He carries all his savings around in his pockets and moves from town to town staying in cheap motels.) Therefore, he definitely wasn't who these gunmen were after... So what had this woman done?

Reacher and the woman, (who we later find out is called Holly and is an FBI agent), are shoved into the back of a plain black sedan car and driven away, they are then transferred into a big white panel truck and left in the back for hours, which then turn into days while the truck never stops for a moment except to fill up on petrol. On this journey, Reacher and Holly get to know each other a little, neither one of them reveals too much to the other. However, we do find out one of the reasons why Holly may have been kidnapped - because of who her father is and who her Godfather is... This mysteriously makes her an asset to the militia group!

When their long tedious journey in the back of the truck finally comes to an end , Holly is taken by ruhtless and brutal militia men and locked away in a room with no windows and there's only a door handle on the outside, basically it is completely impossible to get out of. The militia men then return to Reacher assuming they'll kill him and that'll be the end of it. They were not prepared for what really happened at all.

 Throughout the book, we see Reacher desperately trying to free Holly from the room with a little help from her FBI friends. Reacher is continually under estimated and mis judged, which I feel may just benefit him in the long run.

An amazing story of mistaken identity and coincidence, in which it is impossible not to love the lead character, Jack Reacher.

All in all, I thought that the book was excellent, with an extremely fast plot and lots of little twists that made it so irresistable. It truly was almost impossible to put down.

I loved it.


Mr Rochester


So far, my thoughts of Mr Rochester are mainly negative. The first words which spring to mind are arrogant, blunt, authorative, misleading and proud. Personally, I would not regard any of those words as complimentary.

Our first encounter with Mr Rochester was somewhat strange as at first we are not aware that he is the mysterious master of Thornfield Hall. He is merely a stranger who falls off his horse in Hay Lane. He is extremely misleading to us the reader and to Jane herself by essentially lying about his identity. He discovers that Jane works in his house and proceeds to ask a series of questions about himself, obviously knowing exactly the answers.

"Whose house is it?"

"Mr Rochester's"

"Do you know Mr Rochester?"

"No, I have never seen him"

"He is not a resident then?"


Can you tell me where he is?"

"I cannot"

He appears to be tricking Jane for some unknown reason.

I also feel that Mr Rochester is particulary arrogant and superior when in Jane's company. He orders her about endlessly and assumes that she is silly and clueless simply because she apparently hasn't experienced as much of the world as he has.

"You have no right to preach to me, you neophyte, that have not passed the porch of life, and are absolutely unaquainted with it's mysteries"

I would consider this statement quite rude and derogatory and would certainly not be happy if I was in Jane's position.

Another example of his superior attitude is when he orders Jane to play piano for him,

"Go then into the library; take a candle with you; leave the door open; sit down to the piano, and play a tune."

Of course , Jane being Jane obeys but soon after she begins to play she ordered to stop and is then told that her skill is average. How flattering!

"Enough" he called out in a few minutes. "You play a little, I see; like any other English school girl; perhaps rather better than some, but not well"

As is obvious here, Mr Rochester has no regard for Jane's feelings. He merely sees her as yet another employee who he may treat however he wishes.

Mr Rochester, is not even friendly to Adele, who he claims to care for. Whenever Adele speaks to him or attempts to communicate with him in any way she is nearly always met with a blunt one word response. The incident which I feel this is displayed most ouvertly is when Jane and Mr Rochester are talking outside while Adele plays with her shuttlecock.

"Adele here ran before him with her shuttlecock. "Away" he cried harshly; keep at a distance or go into Sophie!"

All in all I do not paticulary like Mr Rochester at this point in the novel, as I have said previously he appears to be extremely bossy, harsh and just a little too proud.




Jane Eyre - Chapter 1 -10


Based on what you have read so far, would you like to live in the world that Jane Eyre inhabits?  Support your answer with close reference to the text.

No, I would not like to live in Jane Eyre's world. In fact I think I would despise it. Personally, there is nothing I loathe more than unfairness so I would obviously not enjoy Jane's life at all. Consider all the times in which Jane has been treated unjustly. First, there was the incident when John Reed throws a book at Jane's head and she is the one who the punishment is inflicted on. Even as Jane shouts and screams about the unfairness, she is bluntly ignored.

"Four hands were immediately laid upon me and I was borne upstairs. I resisted all the way"

Then, the humiliation for Jane when Mr Brocklehurst comes to visit and Mrs Reed talks of Jane as if she is a complete brat and a liar which is in fact only true for Mrs Reed herself. Jane is aware of this and this why she is so angry and upset after Mr Brocklehurst's visit.

"keep a strict eye on her, and, above all, to guard against her worst fault, a tendency to deceit."

Things don't even improve much when she finally escapes The Reeds and sets for a life at Lowood school. On one of her first days she is ordered by Mr Brocklehurst himself to stand on a stool in front of the entire school for supposedly being a liar!

"Let her stand half an hour longer on that stool and let no one speak to her the during remainder of the day."

I really don't think there is any comparison between my world and Jane's. The conditions in which she lives are described vividly and quite frankly they do not sound at all appealing. In fact they sound atrocious. She describes the bedrooms as freezing at night - so cold that the pipes freeze up and then there is no water in the morning.

"this morning we were obliged to dispense with the ceremony of washing: the water pitchers was frozen."

 She also tells us of how girls must share a single bed and eat horrible food in tiny amounts- if they get food at all!

"another meal, consisting of a small mug of coffee, and half  a slice of brown bread"

Personally I couldn't last an hour on that amount of food, never  mind an entire day! Therefore, no, I would never like to live in world even remotely similiar to Jane's.


Jane Eyre - Chapter 1 -10


What is your first impression of Jane Eyre, the character?  Support your points with close reference to the text.

The conclusion which I have come to after reading chapters one to ten is that Jane Eyre is quite an unfortunate little girl. She has had the misfortune of being orphaned and then having to live with an Aunt who clearly resents having to take care of her. Although Jane is fed and washed and provided with shelter I would never consider her adequately cared for. Her Aunt denies her affection or love which is essential for a young child, if they are to be in any way happy!

"she really must me exclude me from all privileges intended only for contented, happy little children"

While Jane lives with The Reeds she is utterly powerless. She is not respected or liked at all and so she is very unhappy. However, I feel that because of this experience , Jane is a stronger and more self assured girl than most ten year olds!

I get the impression that Jane is a stubborn ,headstrong girl who likes to have her opinion heard, I think that this side has come out in her due to the many years of unfairness and injustice that she has suffered and she is in a way crying out to treated as an equal.

I also feel that she is eager to learn and impress- this becomes evident once she joins Lowood School. For example, when she Helen Burns  advises her to take her punishment in school no matter how unfair it is, she takes this advice.  So when Jane is ordered to stand on a chair in front of the entire school she does so without uttering a word and therefore impresses other pupils for being so strong.

"Yet it be your duty to bear it, if you could not avoid it: it is weak and silly to say you cannot bear what is your fate to be required to bear."

This advice pays off for Jane in the end as she gains respect from her teachers and fellow pupils which is exactly what Jane had always wanted.

All in all, I feel that Jane Eyre is a stubborn and strong little girl who is desperate to be respected and treated equally to her peers.


"The Script Writer"

On Wednesday the 18th of March we went to the Solstice Arts Centre to see a play called "The Script Writer". We had heard about this particular performer from last year's TY class and so we thought it would be good to see what it was like.

Before we went I had no idea what to expect from this play, however, although I say I didn't know what I was expecting - it certainly wasn't this! I personally felt as if the play was more like stand up comedy, it was a one man show and I don't think that at any stage throughout the performance a minute past without me laughing! (I had pains in my stomach afterwards!)

The performance focused on activities of teenagers and basically was just a man on a stage telling us how our lives look to an outsider -we obviously lead very amusing lives! Even though the play was funny I did learn something about drama as well. He explained to us how TV programs such as "Friends" are asssembled perfectly so as to target every possible viewer and get them to relate with a character. He also demonstrated perfectly how advertising works and in general taught us a little about the world of drama and media unbeknown to us at the time!

All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed this performance and would  definitely go to see this performer again without hesatation! 



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