Monday, August 19, 2013

Summer Reading

Over the summer, you were asked to read at least two novels of your choice.

1) Briefly tell me what you read, including the titles and authors.
2) I want to know what you liked about the books, what you learned and, more importantly, what matters to you about the book's content? How does it resonate with you?
Please do not give me a summary; I care more about what you took away from the book.

*Make sure to adhere to proper conventions and proofread your response. If, for some reason, you did not read two novels, tell me about two novels you have read and enjoyed and answer the above.

27 comments:

  1. Over the summer I didn't read two novels, but my two favorite novels are Paper Towns by John Green and A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin.
    I like Paper Towns because it had the idea that buildings and cities and houses and suburbs and everything is going to someday rust and break and crack, so we might as well make something of our SELVES for people to remember us by rather than the paper, 2D and fragile structures that will some day tear. I also gathered that people are like hulls of ships or strings, and that someday we will crack and sink or that our strings will get too tightly wound and we'll snap. It will happen sooner to some people rather than others, but always happens. What I gathered from A Game of Thrones is that no matter how holy the clergyman is or how powerful the kings is, we're all corrupt. Some of us can hide better than others, but we all are.

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  2. This past summer, I read "42" by Brian Helgeland and "World War Z" by Max Brooks. In "42", I liked how dedicated Jackie Robinson was to his favorite game, Baseball. A lot of people didn't like him because he was black, and he was he first black baseball player to ever play in the Major Leagues. The thing I learned from this book is that from all the racists picking on him, he tuned out all of them and continued to play and showed everybody that blacks can play in the Major Leagues.
    In "World War Z" I like the action in the book and all the close encounters with the undead. The important thing about this book is that the main character risks his life for his family. He risks his life because if he didn't, his family would have been kicked off the boat and into the dangerous world. This taught me to be brave and step out of my comfort zone.
    These books were very inspiring, and I highly recommend these books.

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  3. This past summer I read "Shot Gun Lullaby" written by author Steve Ulfelder and also read, and watched the movie for the book World War Z written by Max Brooks I liked reading the book Shot Gun Lullaby because it was a mixture of mystery and a little bit of horror what mattered to me about this book was if I would be interested in the book. I also liked reading and watching the movie World War Z because I love books that have to do with zombies and the way that people had survived the apocalypse. In this book I liked the way the author made me feel like I was almost right there with the main character the whole time. What mattered to me with this book was the same with the Shot Gun Lullaby that I would be interested to read and finish this book. Over all I thought that the books that I read were worth reading and I would recommend these books to anyone wanting to read an action or adventure book.

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  4. Over this past summer, I read "Such A Pretty Girl" by Laura Weiss and then that sequel, "Leftovers". Both books left me speechless and wondering what happens next! The first read of the summer impacted me in such a powerful way, making me realize how bad of situations people are put into although it may not be their fault. I started to understand the true meaning of the phrase, "scarred for life". It was challenging to read these books without crying out of pure empathy. I honestly couldn't even imagine giving up all the main character, Meredith, gave up to protect others from her own dad. As I approached the near end of summer, I read the sequel, "Leftovers" in just four days because I enjoyed it so much. In this book, it helped me to see how life does get better after it falls apart. This was the perfect ending to a phenomenal summer!

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  5. Over the summer I read "Ready Player One", by Ernest Cline, and "The Maze Runner", by James Dashner. I really enjoyed both novels. "Ready player One" is probably my new favorite book because it is all about things that I am interested in. Old video games and 80’s song are what I live for. And although the book is set in the future it hits both of those topics. The novel also shows how our world can turn out if people get too into video games and not focused on their real life. "The Maze Runner" is also a terrific novel because it is a survival book set in the future of when civilization collapses. I like how it demonstrates how kids can survive by themselves and create their own civilization. I highly recommend these two books for anyone.

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  6. Over the summer I read "Just Listen", by Sarah Dessen, and "What Happened to Goodbye", by Sarah Dessen. I liked both books, but I defiantly liked "Just Listen" a lot more. "Just Listen" is one of the best books that I have ever read. It shows how much being honest can really change your life, friends, and your future. I can't even imagine being in the main character's shoes, and going through everything that she had to deal with. It also shows that not being truthful to yourself is one of the worst ways to be dishonest. The second book I read was "What Happened to Goodbye". In this book there is a strong lessen to learn. Being yourself is one of the best people you can be, instead of trying to be someone that your not. It shows that when you have been pretending to be someone you are not for such a long time, it's hard to find yourself again. Both of these books really changed the way I see somethings in life by opening my eyes to different perspectives. I would strongly recommend both of these books!

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  7. Over the past summer I read "Justified Means", by Chautona Havig and "Blood Land", by R.S. Guthrie. Both of these books had me on the edge of my seat wondering what would happen next. In "justified Means" there was a lot of points during the book were you realized not to judge things at first glance and not to make assumptions. This is what I liked about the book "justified Means", although there was a lot of fighting and mystery I took away the little things from the book that were in the back ground of the fighting. The thing i liked most about the book "blood Land" was that I could relate and connect my life to this book. I could relate my actions and feelings to this book that i couldn't to the other book. This book also had action and mystery to it which made it interesting but also intriguing at the same time. So if you like mystery and fighting I highly recommend these books.

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  8. Over the Summer I read "The Book Thief" and "The Hunger Games" by Marcus Zusak and Suzanne Collins. What I liked the most about "The Book Thief" is how the children in the book are so grateful to have just one new book to read. The willingness to steal from the mayor's own library just to read in a time of extreme corruption in Germany shows how much kids appreciated just getting to learn how to read back in the day. I learned from this book that kids nowadays are not so grateful and that the human race is pretty spoiled in today's time. What really stuck with me was how much two little kids cared about each other so much and how it shows that in times of great struggle, a companion is one of the most important things. Now, what I liked about "The Hunger Games" most was probably all of the action! Although I think that was the coolest part, what I really learned from the book was the human's natural instinct to return a favor to someone that has helped you before. By Katniss protecting her hometown classmate that was only truly her enemy in the arena for saving her life when she was once a starving young girl shows that some people care more about their morals than life itself. I thought that was the most powerful part of the book, although all of the battles and such were more exciting.

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  9. Over the Summer the two books that I read were "I Beat the Odds" by Don Yaeger and "The Chronicles of Narnia The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis. What I most enjoyed about I Beat the Odds is that it was a book that i actually could get into and actually want to read what would happen next. Also I loved that it was about Football because that is one of my passions. The book was not just about football though, it was about how Micheal Oher became successful through a family who took him in and gave him the type of love and care that he needed to give hope back into his life. This book taught me a lot. One of the most important lessons I took from this book was to never give up and fight through the hardships that life throws at you.
    My favorite thing about "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" is that there was a lot of excitement through out the book which really made you want to not put the book down and keep on reading. My favorite part was the last battle scene when the White Witch and Aslan's army with the Four Kids and whoever won would be the rulers of Narnia. The thing that I took away from this book is that no matter how young you are you can still make a big impact.

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  10. Over the summer the books I read were "Pretty Little Liars" by Sara Shepard and "Perks of Being a Wallflower" by Stephen Chbosky. The thing I enjoyed most about Pretty Little Liars was the thrill of the setting and characters. I found intrigued and not being able to put the book down because of the different mysteries and surprises happening throughout the story. Even though I watch the tv show, the book was different. Some of the characters were pictured differently in my head through the description and the plot was more detailed, making me feel like I was actually there. As I was reading Perks of Being a Wallflower I really enjoyed how relatable it was. I'm not one for reading, but I absolutely loved this book and read it in three days. The overall layout of the book was letters he was writing to a 'friend' and I thought that was really interesting. The plot had ups and downs that kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the book. I also saw the movie and even though a lot of things were similar, I loved the book a lot more. It was such an inspiration to see what he was going through and how he overcome it and dealt with his everyday life. It really made me think of how a lot of people are going through the same thing entering high school, and trying to find themselves in the world. Both of these books were amazing and I couldn't put them down. They both impacted my life and made me think differently about my everyday actions and routines. I would highly recommend either of these books to anyone of all ages.

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  11. Over the summer I read "Flipped" by Wendelin Van Draanen and "Beat the Band" by Don Calame. I have to say "Flipped" is now one of my favorite books. In the novel "Flipped" I liked how the author would which the point of view between the two main characters throughout each chapter. I also like how the author added certain details to the book to make everything more tied together. I learned multiple different things while reading "Flipped." I learned to stand up for something you think is right. For example, Byrce one of the characters stood up to his own dad because he said some offensive things about Julie's family, the other main character, even when he knew he could've gotten in trouble if he talked back to his dad. In the book, "Flipped" the way that both main characters tried their hardest to fight the feelings they had for each other really mattered to me because it was what the entire book was centered around. I also liked the second book I read, "Beat the Band" by Don Calame. I liked this book because it was very different from all the other books I've ever read. "Beat the Band" surprisingly had a lot of humor throughout the novel which is why I continued to read it. What I learned from "Beat the Band" is all that matters is if you had fun, there's no need to stress too much over winning everything you try. For example, the three main characters goal was to win "Battle of the Bands" but in the end they weren't prepared enough to win and they didn't even care that they didn't because they had so much fun performing together. What mattered to me about the content of "Beat the Band" was that in the beginning of the book all three main characters had the idea that all that mattered is if they won the competition, then at the end of the book all that mattered was that they had fun.

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  12. The two books I had read over summer break were 'The Book Thief' by Markus Zusak, and 'Sarah's Key' by Tatiana De Rosnay. They were both set in the period of the Holocaust AKA World War II; The Book Thief was told from Deaths perspective about a girl who he always seemed to bump into while he was collecting souls of the dead, he runs into her many times and soon he's following her in her town she lives in with her adopted family, and he learns a lot about this little girl, named Liesel. Sarah's Key is about a girl who lives in France and the French police come to get her and her family (brother, mother, and father) and he brother wouldn't leave, so she decided to keep him in the secret cupboard until they come back, but they didn't. This story goes back and forth between past and present until the present catches up with the past. I liked these books because the Holocaust has always interested me, I know it is sad and the most horrible thing (or one of the many) that has happened in history. Hearing what people had gone through, people had learned about, just interests me a lot. It's like hearing a story from the person himself and how they felt and what their story was. I learned that the life most of us have these days could be worse; we could be taken away from our family by men we don't even know, not know what's going to happen to us the next day (even though we already live that way), and that we should be grateful for what we have and not take advantage of that. What mattered to me about the books content was that it told a story no one else could because it was THAT authors story and experience, the authors took me to a whole different world with what was written in the books. These two novels resonate to me by telling a story from a perspective that I am able to learn from, this book gave me a different perspective on life and how things could be.

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  13. Over the summer I read “The Help” by Kathryn Stockett and “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak. “The Help” left me thinking how could we have been so judgmental back then? When I was reading the book I realized these people went through so much yet they still had faith that things would get better. They taught me to stand up for what we believe in and that we shouldn't be afraid. They would have been punished severely if they have been found telling the truth. “The Book Thief” is one of my all time favorite books. When I read it I was just blown away that reading was a privilege and nowadays people take it for granted. I thought it was really cool that she used her words for good by reading to people during the air raids. She was very brave to stand up for the Jews even though she was punished. I learned that in even bad situations there can still be good in it. People can still be good at heart. I also learned to always be thankful for what you have and never take it for granted.

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  14. 1) Two of the novels I read were The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien and The Mysterious Benedict Society By Trenton Lee Stewart.

    One thing that I liked about The Mysterious Benedict Society was how much the character in the book worked together to figure out how Mr. Curtain was trying to take over the world. This shows that if you work together than you can make a huge difference. Something I liked about The Hobbit was how the dwarves worked as a team to overcome the challenges that they ran into on their way to the Lonely Mountain.

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  15. Over the summer I read the "The Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins and "Rage Within" by Jeyn Roberts. I really enjoyed "The Hunger Games" but not "Rage Within". To start I enjoyed "The Hunger Games" because of the competition of the game to be the last man or women standing. It really says two is better than one and if you set your mind to something you can accomplish it. The book reminded me of basketball because if you push through difficulties and use your teammates, you can accomplish greatness. Now "Rage Within" is a different story. It was really slow moving and boring. A moral of the story was again if you team up and try you will do well in whatever you're doing. For example in the book the survivors teamed up to survive the apocalypse (which was global warming). Also after I was about halfway done I realized it was book number two of the series. So it probably would of been better if I read the first book.

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  16. Over the summer I read "Prom and Prejudice" by Elizabeth Eulberg and "That Summer" by Sarah Dessen. Neither one of the books were very good, but the books were similar. I really enjoyed how relatable the characters were in each. It is important that the the reader can relate because if not reading no longer fun. They were also similar because the two books they shared the common life lesson: do not take anything or anyone for granted. This matters to me because often I don't realize how fortunate I am. Being able to go to a school like Arapahoe with the technology that we have is a privilege. I feel that this a topic that not only me, but many, many people can relate to. I did not like how the characters took everything about there lives and made it sound like the most awful thing, when really both were opportune. This made me reflect on my own life.

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  17. Over the summer, I read "The Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins and I read "Thirteen Reasons Why" by Jay Asher. I loved both of these books a lot! "The Hunger Games" was a very action filled book! I really enjoy those type of books! On the hand, "Thirteen Reasons Why" is a sort of depressing and sad book. I also really love those books. I actually learned a lot of things from "The Hunger Games" I learned that you should never give up when you are up against your enemies. In "Thirteen Reasons Why" I learned that you should always be there for someone even if you don't like them. Both of these books relate to me because they both made me think how lucky I am. In "The Hunger Games" the characters rarely got to eat unless they won. In "Thirteen Reasons Why" a girl committed suicide due to her being depressed. This book made me feel how lucky I am live the life I live.

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  18. Over the summer i read a few books but there were two I really enjoyed. One of them was "The Giver" by Lois Lowy. I really enjoyed the way this book was written and the story line. This book was written around sameness and how everything is same in the future. And by everything being the same I mean everything. Scientist even found a way to keep the eye from seeing color and they flattened the earth so there are no hills or mountains. Before reading this book I never realized that if everything was the same then we wouldn't have any choices in life. The book just made me realize how lucky we are to have to much choice in the world; from the small things, like what to wear that day, to he big things like what to be when we grow up and where to live. Another book that I read over the summer was "Hunted" in the ''House of Night'' series. I didn't enjoy reading this book as much. I love the story line of this series, very action filled and about vampires, but it wasn't written well. Almost childish. There really isn't lesson in these books that they're trying to get across but if i learned anything it's that you should always have your friends back because you never know when you'll need them to have yours.

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  19. Over the summer I read To Kill A Mocking Bird bye harper lee and More than winning the story of Tom Osborn. To kill a Mocking bird is a good book cause the characters are really out spoken in there own way like addicus is very wise and humble and scout is sneaky and fun. its also a good book cause it covers a tuff time in America when people where very racist and addicus must do the right thing even tho he gets a lot of hate for it. but the winning story was great cause it was about tom Osborn the best football coach Nebraska has ever seen. it mostly talked about him as a kid being very athletic and the people who shaped his life and made him such a good coach. over all both books where very good and im glad I read them.

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  20. Over the summer I read two books. The first one I read was called "Brian's Winter" by Gary Paulsen, which was the third book in the series "Hatchet". The second book I read was called "True Legend" by Mike Lupica. What I really liked about "Brian's Winter" is how true the story actually could be. Gary Paulsen wrote that book as if he actually experienced getting lost in the wilderness and had to stay alive. I could also really picture what he was writing in my head. One thing I learned from this book was to never give up or quit. Something that I really like about "True Legend" was how Mike Lupica did a good job on explaining the book and keeping you hooked to the book to the point where you don't want to put the book down. He explains the importance of school and how to stay true to yourself and others. I have read many sports books and "True Legend wasn't the typical sports book you see everyday. It was different and that's what I really liked. In both of these books I learned to never think you are bigger than life, and that if you keep a positive attitude good things will happen.

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  21. Over the summer I read The River By: Gary Paulsen. I loved this book, because it was the sequel to Hatchet. Hatchet was one of my favorite books that i ever read, because of all the adventure and action. I wished the book was a lot longer, because i liked it so much. Thats why i started to read The RIver. It was more like the second of half of Hatchet, but with a different twist to it. It really took me off guard when Derek was struck by lightning, and they had no supplies to call for help, because the radio that Brian let them hold onto just in case was fried. The only thing Brian had left was a map of the land around them, and he knew he had to get Derek help. During this part of the book i couldn't put it down, i was so into it and i wanted to know what happened next. Through out all the ins and outs of brians adventure it kept the book very interesting. I plan on reading more of the Gary Paulsen books, because i love adventure and wildlife

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  23. Over summer break I read Memoir of a Milk Carton Kid By: Tanya Kach.
    This was one of my favorite books because it was inspiration. The things that Tanya had to go through and what she had to overcome were unimaginable. I loved how she was able to over come her fears and share her horrible experiences. It was a book that touched my heart and that I will remember for a very long time.

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  24. Over the summer, I read two extraordinary books. The Pact by Jodi Picoult, and Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom. The Pact, was a complicated love story of two teens who spent their entire lives together. When the girl, Emily found out she was pregnant she decided that her time would be over because this was not the lifestyle she wanted. She conspired with her boyfriend to come up with a suicide plan. They were so in love, that Chris realized Emily was no longer happy and did the awful, yet necessary deed of killing her. For the next year, Chris is accused of murder and sits through a long, brutal trial to explain his story. I liked this book because there were so many little details of this story that really made you think about your life, and what you would do for someone to make them happy. I liked this book because it showed such a strong connection between two best friends. I learned that when you love someone so much, you realize when they are no longer happy, and want to do whatever it takes to help them. This book made an impact on my life because it taught me that even when there is a bump in the road, your friends and family will do whatever it takes to make you happy. Emily's parents had no idea she was pregnant or suicidal, so I also took away from this book that I need to be 100% open with my parents and family. I believe Emily could have worked through this problem and there was another solution than suicide. I also realized how great my family is, and if I am ever in a sticky situation, my family will always be there to help me get through it. The verdict was that Chis was not guilty, and he went back to living a sad life without the girl of his dreams. This taught me to be rational in every decision I make and think mind over matter or mind over love at all times.
    The second book I read, Tuesdays with Morrie, was a sad yet eye opening tale about an old man named Morrie, who struggles through a disease called amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). I liked this book because it gave me a new perspective on my life. I learned to look at every day as a gift, and cherish the little things like being able to walk, or go outside and enjoy the fresh air. I have two family members with physical disabilities that restrict them from doing everyday basics like Morrie. This let me see them as new people and realize how positive they are even though they have an awful disease, they don't let it ruin their lives. A new respect for my grandpa and aunt has grown inside of me, and I realized how important it is to appreciate my amazing life. This book matters to me, because it showed me to appreciate everything I can do, that I take for granted on a daily basis. This old man taught me to have a good attitude even when my life isn't going perfectly. Many people in the world definitely have it extremely worse than I do. Morrie died in good spirits, and didn't let ALS ruin his life. Everyday, I have a greater appreciation for all that I am able to do and everything I have. Thank you Mitch Albom for this amazing eyeopening book that let me realize the importance of a happy life.

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  25. Over the summer I read a total of four books. The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins and a World War II novel called Unbroken, written by Laura Hillenbrand. The Hunger Games trilogy consisted of The Hunger Games, book one, Catching Fire, book two, and Mocking jay, book three. Both of these books were about survival and the main characters will to live on, and they both resonated with me in very different ways.

    Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins;

    The Hunger Games trilogy takes place in a place that reminds me of a very poor country with a careless government. Tributes are selected, and forced to play in a game in which they kill each other. While reading all three books, I thought about what it would be like to live in a place like this, and the toll it would take on anyone who actually won the games. I enjoyed reading about the Katniss's feeling through all three books, as she slowly went through a state of fear and worry, to a state of depression over the games and her relationship with Peeta and Gale, to the climax of the entire story where she makes the choice to kill Director Coin instead of President Snow. The book resonates me due to the Authors decision to make Peeta turn into a semi - insane person then to slowly but surely get better.

    Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand;

    Unbroken, a World War II story about the Olympic runner Louie Zamperini who gets stranded in the middle of the pacific ocean and eventually ends up in a Japanese PoW camp after drifting for over Fourty days with little food and water. While in this PoW camp he meets a camp guard who immeditaly becomes obsessed with making his life as miserable possible. During this book I enjoyed reading about the struggles of Louie and his emotions when he was finally reunited with his family near the end of the book. What resonated with me was how terrible living conditions can truly become, and how easy most Americans have life when compared with this true story.

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  26. I did not read over the summer but im currently reading Marxism Unmasked, by Ludwig von Mises and Economic Calculation in the Socialist Common Wealth, which is also by Ludwig von Mises. From what I have read so far in Marxism Unmasked which in depth explains ideals and laws of Marxism. He also explains how a country in which is too free, will lead to marxism. This statement really struck me, and from what i understand( ive studied marxism) is very true and is sadly inplaced in America and other Democratic states(most European countries). And from that I realized that we are in a marxist government. In the second book I am reading, "Economic calculation in the Socialist Common Wealth"by Ludwig von Mises, Ludwig is giving devastating critique against Socialist economy. Im not at a point in which i can get the full point of the creation of the book, but he gives great points about a decade long debate.

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  27. The first book I read over the summer was a book called “High Heat” by Carl Deuker. It was about a boy named Shane that was a star closing pitcher for his baseball team. But when his dad is accused of insurance fraud his entire world turns upside down. He can’t live in the same house or the same public school because he has no money left, and so he must move to a small house and go to a public school. This book really touched me as a kid because I couldn't even imagine having my dad go to jail and at the same time go from the upper class to the lower class in a matter of hours. This book also made me a little frightened because it seems as if I had almost had the same life as Shane and if he could have his life change like that, why couldn’t I.
    The second book I read over the summer was a book called “The Lemonade war” by Jacqueline Davies. The book was about a boy named Evan who is peoplesmart, he is very good at talking to people. Evan’s sister, Jessie on the other hand, was math smart, so when these two siblings get into a lemonade stand brawl there is no telling what will happen next. I can relate to this because that is the same way with my sister and I, I’m math smart and she is people smart. we also have many competitions. Although most of the time my sister cheats until she wins, we still love to have them. My favorite part of this book was at the end when the two siblings resolved their problems and realized that the whole lemonade stand idea was just a stupid idea in the first place.

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