Book Reviews by Author

The Journal of Jesse Smoke: a Cherokee Boy

by Joseph Bruchac (J BRUCHAC, J.)
  • Two stars
    Look elsewhere for a good read — unless you're desperate.
    I was shocked to learn about this part of my country's history. We can ruin and even take away people's lives by wanting more than what is best for us and by not communicating or sharing. This book was very depressing.
    James R. 13
  • One star
    Go plant a tree in mourning for the ones that were wasted to make this book!
    I knew that the long journey ahead wouldn’t be easy. Titled on the first page, “Entry Number #1.” As soon as I read those words, a little piece of me died! While trudging through each passage, I was starting to lose hope in what’s good in this world. All of a sudden I thought to myself, everything that I just read has gone in one ear and out the other. My concentration is withering away. At that moment, many others either have, will, or are going to be bored to death by this “novel.” As I push myself onward, my mind flashes back to that Monday. I know that most Mondays are usually quite gloomy and depressing, but I wasn’t at all prepared for this. The official unveiling of “The Journal Of Jesse Smoke.” For a quick and very unnoticable second the room was dead silent. Then rolled in the uncontrollable sobs and meaningless questions of, “how many pages?” and, “when’s this due?” At that point, that particular Monday will now mostly likely be known as “a day of utter grief.” While trying to convert my attention back to the assigned reading, empty thoughts, facts, ideas, and sarcastic remarks form. I can guarantee you that my self confidence is pulling me down to the point that I'm so close to giving up. It really feels like I'm trying to climb a gigantic moun... WAIT! I just realized that i’m getting side tracked again. By now I've finally reached page... #3. About a year ago I was stuck in the exact same situation. CRISPIN! The book was based on the Medieval and Renaissance period. That was the first spirit crushing story that had headed my way. One I wish that I could forget but never will. You’d think that by each book the pain would ease and the process wouldn’t be as horrid. Well you're wrong. It gets worse and worse with each word spoken. Oh the agony! I feel like a tragically slow and painful death that has been based on a famous Shakespeare play or the star of a never-ending horror film. Not knowing if I’ll break through this especially since I'm emotionally breaking down at this very moment. A running dialogue that consists of a very long motivational speech that nowhere near applies to the current situation latches onto my train of thought. You could say that I was a little “side-tracked.” You’d think that I’d learn a life lesson filled with good values and thoughtful knowledge for next time, right? Well if that’s really what you were thinking, then you are poorly mistaken. With each and every agonizing word that was muttered from my lips, I was finally feeling close to the end. The process of finishing started with the huge knot in my stomach that was caused by utter pain and boredom subsiding. And ending with the last page being turned.
    Grace P. 14