Final Book Report: Literary Critique

1668 words - 7 pages

My Side of the Mountain is a remarkable novel written by Jean Craighead George (1991). It addresses issues such as nature, independence and adventure. In the book, Sam Gribley, a boy from New York, runs away from home to live in the woods. Throughout this essay, I am going to talk about the things and the character traits that a person such as Sam needs in order to accomplish his or her goals. In the book, Sam’s goals were to reach indepence and to survive using the resources in the woods. For example, when Miss Turner, a close friend of Sam, tried to change Sam’s mind about living in the woods, Sam said to her, “That’s just what I want. I am going to trap animals and eat nuts and bulbs and berries and make myself a house.” (George, 1991, p. 22). Another example is that Sam expressed that he wanted to dress a piece of clothes made by him using the hide of a deer (George, 1991, p. 60). At the end of the book, Sam accomplished his goals, he thought, “I was self-sufficient, I could travel the world over, never needing a penny, never asking anything of anyone.” (George, 1991, p. 173). From my point of view, all human beings have goals. The only difference is the nature of those goals. Goals can be represented in terms of money, love, health, etc. I also think that goals are a necessity for us. They impulse our lives and give it a sense of direction. It is very important knowing your objectives in life because you can focus all your energy on reaching those objectives. In this way, the path towards reaching your goals will be easier to travel as you will see the goal itself and not the pain you have to stand in order to reach it.
In the story of the book, Sam reached his goals because he has five specific traits of personality. Those traits are common elements among those who have accomplished their objectives in life. First, many people who are successful now, have lived in horrible conditions. However, they profit the things they had near them. Sam is not an exception, in order to survive, he used his creativity and resourcefulness. The author said that when Sam decided to make a bed, he cut off some boughs for a mattress. Then he leaned some dead limbs against the boulder and covered them with hemlock limbs. This made a kind of tent (George, 1991, p. 14). Second, Sam ,as many successful people do, always looked on the bright side of situations. That is, he was very positive. He said, “Fortunately, the sun has a wonderfully glorious habit of rising every morning. When the birds awoke, I knew, I would never again see anything so splendid as the round red sun coming up over the earth.” (George, 1991, p. 18). Third, living in the woods, Sam learned to be thankful for everything he had in his present and past life. Sometimes, he regretted the fact that he had not appreciated his family when he lived with them (George, 1991, p. 8). In my opinion, thankfulness gives you impulse to reach your goals. Thankfulness helps you enjoy the good situations you...

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