Dystopia Week Wednesday

Matched by Ally Condie In the Society all your life choices are made for you: what job you do, the place you live, what belongings you may have and who you marry. If the authorities can control these aspects of your life then the rest of the country can be controlled as well. The story opens with the night of Cassia’s matching ceremony. She, with all other 17-year-old girls, is patiently waiting her turn to see her match displayed on the giant screen in the banquet room. But when her name is called…continue reading →

Dystopia Week Tuesday

Divergent by Veronica Roth Here’s the setting: Chicago sometime in the future. As in The Hunger Games, society has evolved  into a new arrangement of the population. At 16 years old you choose the faction of society you feel best suits your character—the brave, the peaceful, the honest, etc. Each part has a different role to play. Although her family belongs to Abnegation (the selfless) Tris chooses to join Dauntless (the brave), those responsible for protecting their fellow citizens but who Tris’s father calls “hellions.” Tris, like Katniss in The Hunger Games, shows…continue reading →

Dystopia Week

With finals starting this week you may feel like you are living in your own personal dystopia. Keeping that in mind, this week and throughout exam week I will be posting a book blurb on some of the dystopian fiction owned by the John Tyler libraries. I like the definition the Purdue English department gives for dystopia (of course I like it—they are the same people who brings us the incomparable Purdue OWL!): “An imagined universe (usually the future of our own world) in which a worst-case scenario is explored; the opposite of…continue reading →

Graphic Novels as Lofty Literature?

    Interest in comics and graphic novels continues to grow on campuses both small and large. The Dangerous Book Pushers at the John Tyler libraries have been encouraging you to check out our collection of graphic novels for the past few years. (Not just for kids: comics @ the library) Last summer the English Department offered Introduction to the Graphic Novel (ENG 195). Now the Ivy League is getting into the act. Columbia University is expanding its support for research in comics and graphic novels according to the Butler Library Blog. The…continue reading →

(Non) Fiction Friday: Fairy Tales from the BrothersGrimm

A little over 200 years ago (December, 1812) brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm first published their collection of folk and fairy tales titled Children’s and Household Tales.  The Grimms continued to update their compilation over the next fifty years and amazingly the stories are as popular in the 21st century as they were in the 19th.  Think of the television shows Grimm and Once Upon a Time and the recent movie adaptations of Snow White. According to National Geographic the fairytales have been translated into over 160 languages! Philip Pullman, author of the…continue reading →