Tag Archives: narrator

The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald

gatsby

I really enjoyed reading The Great Gatsby, something I was worried wouldn’t happen when I started. I know it’s a famous classic, but that does not mean it is an accessible read, especially to a non-native speaker like me. But I got used to the style quite quickly! The most surprising thing to me was how much I related to the narrator, I really liked him and trusted his point of view.

When it comes to The Great Gatsby a lot has already been written and symbols have been dissected. The library copy I read included a very long introduction which analyses the book. I had started reading it, but decided to stop because I want to read a book and not be stuck in pre-conceived notions about what is important, but rather let things jump out at me and afterwards see if they were the same things.

I had expected there to be a lot more references to the green dock light, because I had seen a vlogbrothers video in which John Green talks about the Great Gatsby and mentions it a lot. But when I was actually reading the book, I got much more attached to Gatsbys car. That is why I drew it on the bookmark, and made it be the only thing that has colour to contrast it with Gatsbys house, which does not actually feel like a house but is just a backdrop.

Gatsby

I had a lot of trouble with this bookmark, I’m not a car-person, so drawing one was not easy for me. I had come up with several sketches that I didn’t like, car- or house-wise. But in the end I found a couple of reference photos of 20’s cars online that gave me an idea of what should go where as far as the car was concerned. I hope you like the result.

The scan of the bookmark looks different than the other bookmarks, because I can’t get my scanner to work on my new computer, so I scanned it at work. The bookmark is winsor & newton ink with a bit of watercolour.

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The Book Thief – Markus Zusak

Warning: This book leads to heavy emotions. The Book Thief is such an amazing read. It’s pretty unconventional, the narrator is Death, and he doesn’t really uphold a spoiler-policy. He flat out tells you that one character is going to die during this story, quite a while before it actually happens. Death is a surprisingly sympathetic narrator. He has a job and it weighs on him. The Book Thief takes place during WWII, so he has a lot of souls to collect. He watches colours to distract himself from the suffering. (At one point I was reading a particular heavy section of Death talking about collecting a lot of souls, and my music shuffled to the Graffiti6 song Colours. I’ll never hear that song again without thinking about the narrator of this book.)
But the references to Deaths work are only there to give a greater context to the very human story he tells. The Book Thief is about Liesl. A young girl growing up in Germany during the war.

The Book Thief - Markus Zusak Liesl and her friends and family become incredibly real during the book. It is so well written that you can’t help but feel these people are humans who just try to live their lives. Even though in some cases you know what’s coming (even if you don’t know how it’ll happen) you can’t help getting attached to them. Or at least I couldn’t.

Even when I know everything already because I’ve read it before, I still go through all the emotions alongside Liesl. The happiness and the sorrow. As a book-lover seeing the meaning books and the words in them take on in her life is really satisfying. This is a girl who gets it. Even before she can read, she gets the importance of books.

I’m not entirely happy with my bookmark on this one. But I guess a part of that is because I love this book so much. No matter how good my work is, it will never do justice to The Book Thief in my eyes. When I try to get away from that, I feel better about the bookmark I made.

I’m reluctant to tell more about the happenings in the book. You should just go read it. Do it. NOW.

The Book Thief - Markus Zusak

This copy of the book hasn’t been in the library for very long, but it’s been read a lot. I think people will read it until it falls apart (it’s already a bit damaged) and the library will have to get a new copy. I’m glad it’s such a popular book. It deserves to be read by everybody in the whole world.
At two points in the book someone left a piece of paper, just a page ripped out of a day planner and a receipt from the library. I left them in where I found them, it felt a bit like running into the other readers. I hope the next reader will like the addition of the bookmark I made.

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