Letters About Literature 2017 Level 1 Winner: Celina Prieur

hi my name is Selena Pryor and I'm from Dallas Texas this is the letter that I wrote to author Mark Haddon dear mr. Mark Haddon your book the Curious Incident of the dog in the night-time has changed me in a way that is hard to explain in a letter I am only 12 so you may be doubtful that I even understood the story although something tells me I did understand it because it had such an impact on how I think about the world libraries and bookstores are usually where I find my book but one night I decided to venture into my mom's room I cannot tell you how grateful I am that I did because otherwise I wouldn't have picked up the little pale pink book with an upside down dog on the cover in a very long title the first thing I noticed when I opened the story that would eventually change my perspective on life was the style of your writing it hit me like a wave crashing onto the shore when I plucked the novel off the chalky white shelf I was expecting a quick read but it was truly different from anything I had read thus far I couldn't put my finger on it but it was powerful enough to keep me turning the pages the first night I was in tears my parents found me in my room my hands shaking in my eyes red and puffy but I was still reading this is because I realized that this book was more than entertainment it was a lesson the message that I grasp was that it is important to be considerate in every situation and that lesson is still with me today three months later at first I felt pity for Christopher he could not understand feelings and I don't know what I would do if I didn't experience excitement happiness fear love and hatred every day but didn't I looked at it in a different way his condition was accursed and again Christopher always spoke the truth he lived like logically and he didn't let his emotions distract him from his thoughts then the gears of a dusty machine in the back of my head clicked into place and I tried to imagine a life where everyone was truthful and no one left their feelings cloud their mind I love math so I already thought logically but I am always sugarcoating what I say to other people I mean I wouldn't want to hurt anyone's feelings but if we were all like Chris inspect what was really on our minds I think we would have a more efficient way of living then there is a downside of that theory and we had no emotions we wouldn't have excitement happiness fear love and hatred in my opinion the absence of those emotions would be a large price to pay for any amount of efficiency these beliefs are only part of the lesson that your book has taught me there are two sides to everything no matter how hard you try to make something good or bad there will always be the reverse side to an action and I think that is some extremely valuable valuable advice the other message your book has taught me is how important it is to be empathetic before I read this book I was nice but I never thought what it would be like to live in a situation where no one listened to what I was saying throughout the book people were ignorant to christopher's ideas even though he was a bright person who was trapped in a dark situation today instead of wondering why someone is acting different I wonder what is going on and if they need help I'm eager to assist anyone even strangers now Hart now I know how hard it is to be special I have a cousin named James who has a condition similar to Christopher's I have never really understood what made him operate differently reading this book has helped me better understand him and that is very important to me I want to let you know how grateful I am that I can now make this connection with James and try to make him feel more comfortable around me they these are only a few lessons that I took away from the Curious Incident of the dog in the night-time I know there are more so many that I couldn't even identify them all the best I can do is tell you that I felt enlightened after reading your book and now I have a better understanding of life thank you sincerely Selina prayer

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