Saturday, February 28, 2009


TITLE: Hopper Grass
AUTHOR: Chris Carlton Brown

I was a victim of circumstance.
Bowser is forced to do time at The Hill. No matter what the circumstance was, he was the victim. The past is the past, we move on. But this time, the past will become the present.
Story Time, and Hill Time, which consists of constant, use-less work, is the daily process. Plowing the fields that feel as if there is no end, by hand in the heat of the day is the lesson the boys are taught. You measure Hill Time in progress.

A long life ahead of Bowser starts off with a bad beginning with a black boy nicknamed Nose. Becoming the worst enemies at Belmont, they must face off in secret wars. Fights erupt between the two groups. Bowsers (the whites), and Nose's (the blacks). Blood is the only thing shared between the groups. But when going down a hall, Bowser is beckoned by Nose to come visit with him in a small room.
Bowser follows. Expecting the worst, things turn out for the best. A new friendship blooms, fury dispersed, and hope bursts. Keeping their new friendship a secret, not one person knows of it. Except Mr. Woodrow. A black man that helps out at the facility.
But when a white boy is killed while on duty pulling a stump out of the ground, Nose looks as if he is guilty of murder. Even though Bowser wasn't there to witness the crime scene unfold, he knows he needs to defend Nose, no matter what secrets unravel, mysteries emerge, or even if it means risking his life to go deeper. Teachers are guilty, and the truth is hidden. But what will it take for someone to believe him. No matter how ugly the secret can be?
"O Lord my God, in thee do I take refuge;
save me from all my pursuers, and deliver me,
lost like a lion they rend me, dragging me away,
with none to rescue."

The title took me off guard while I was in the process of reading this book. Not knowing what a simple little bug had to do with such a story, it came to me at the very end. It resembled the past, and a friendship that cannot be broken.
But I had a problem with the way the book was written. I felt as if I couldn't connect with the plot, or its characters at all. It felt as if this whole story happened in a day, even though the book said weeks. It just went by so fast, my mind was in one time frame. The detail was fine, nothing bad about that. But the ending really caught my attention. It wasn't what I was expecting. AT ALL. Some things were confusing though. I think the author rambled on about some things, but went right on through more important stuff that should of been talked about more. None of the characters came clean to me, and I was a bit disappointed.
Somehow though, there was something I really enjoyed. The Message. The whole meaning to the book. Simple, yet deep, it took time to get into. I really can't describe what I learned from this book, I think everyone will learn something different in their own way by reading this.
Honestly, mixed emotions are flooding my mind, so I cant really tell you if I liked it, or disliked it. Not sure if it's just me, but it went by fast.