Jenny Kostner and The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde : The Picture of Dorian Gray


Chapter 1:
London: Lord Henry Wotten was at home in his living room and he was smoking. In his living room, there was a big portrait of a young men and Basil Hallward, a great artist, stood in front of it. They talked about the portrait and Lord Henry wanted to convince Basil to send it to the Art Gallery, but the artist didn’t want to. They also talked about a man, whose name was Dorian Gray. Basil met Dorian Gray at a party two months before and he had an emotion, that told him that he and Dorian Gray were destined to meet. So he introduced himself to Dorian.
Basil told Lord Henry about Dorian Gray and, that this being was his inspiration and that he liked him very much.
Lord Henry went to this aunt, Agatha, who talked to him about Mr. Gray. He was a young and good.-looking man, who helped her once. But Hallward didn’t want anyway to introduce the Lord to Dorian, but after a long discussion they went to Dorian’s office.

Chapter 2:
Hallward and Lord Henry went into Mr. Gray’s office. They talked about many things. After half an hour then they went outside in the garden for a walk. They spoke about Basil’s painting and they tried again to convince him to bring it to the Art Gallery, but Basil became angry. Dorian begged Basil to give him this painting, because he thought that it had something magic in it. Instead of aging himself, the picture would age for him.

Chapter 3:
Lord Henry went to visit his uncle George. His uncle thought that his nephew wanted some money, but Lord Henry didn’t. He asked his uncle about Dorian Gray. He knew that his grandfather was Lord Kelo and his mother a Devereux. His uncle told him that Mrs. Devereux was a very nice girl. She married, but after two months the poor chap died. After a year she also died and left a son. He talked long about Mrs. Devereux. Lord Henry went to Aunt Agatha’s for lunch. On the way he thought about Dorian Gray and he decided to be to him, without knowing it, the way Dorian was to the painter of the wonderful portrait. When he arrived, he saw Mr. Gray at the and of the table and next to him sat the Duchess of Harley. Then the duchess asked the Lord how to become young again and he told her to repeat the mistakes she did when she was young; nobody believed it.

Chapter 4:
Dorian decided to tell his friend Basil and Lord Henry about the girl he fell in love with. Her name was Sibyl Vane and she was an actress. The Lord tried to explain Dorian that it wasn’t a good idea to fall in love with an actress, because they were fake and boring people, but the young man didn’t listen to Henry’s words.
Sibyl was a very nice and intelligent young girl. She was only seventeen years old. Her next role was the Julia in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Julia. Of course Dorian went to see her and after the show he introduced himself to that wonderful lady. For Dorian this girl was sacred and he didn’t care about what the others said.

Chapter 5:
The seventeen-year-old girl fell immediately in love with the young and rich, twenty years old guy. When she came home, she told her brother and her mother about Dorian, but she didn’t know his name, so she called him Prince Charming. Her brother was very jealous and told his sister to be prepared if she was disappointed in the end, because it wasn’t true love. These were James’ words before he packed his things and went to Australia. When he already was out of the house, he gave a kiss to his mother and told her to take care about Sibly and that he would kill “Prince Charming” if he disappointed his sister. Few week after they first met, Sibyl and Dorian engaged to be married.

Chapter 6:
Basil wasn’t happy at all of the engagement of Dorian and Sibyl. He was afraid of, that this relationship between Dorian and an unknown actress, would ruin the young man. But Basil could understand Dorian’s emotions, quite contrary to Lord Henry, who kept on commenting on the relationship. At the same time Basil realized that he had lost a good friend, who was Dorian.

Chapter 7:
Dorian, Basil and Lord Henry went to another show of Dorian’s big love Sibyl, but this time he wasn’t that happy and amazed like the first time he saw her acting. Sibyl was very strange and Dorian noticed this immediately. Usually she acted only the feelings, but this time her emotions were real thanks to her Prince Charming. But Dorian had to disappoint the lucky girl : she wasn’t anymore the girl whom Dorian wished she were, so Dorian left the young lady.
At home Dorian looked at his portrait and there was a little difference on it. Now, there was a barbarous expression on his face. He saw it on the mouth. There he noticed, that his wish had become true. The mistakes he did flew on the portrait and changed and destroyed it slowly.

Chapter 8:
Some weeks after he had left Sibyl, he became conscious about what he did. In a letter he prayed Sibyl to forgive him, but she never answered the letter. Lord Henry told Dorian some day later that Sibyl had poisoned herself some day before he wrote the letter to her. Dorian showed no reaction to the bad notice, which was strange. From there on the young man decided to get a better person and to enjoy the time left him. Through his fooling the portrait continued to alter, but Dorian didn’t care about it.

Chapter 9:
Suddenly from one day to the other Dorian changed his lifestyle, but Basil continued to see his good side. Basil thought about the old times and decided to bring his picture to the Art Gallery. He realized that art was much more than shapes and colors. He asked his friend to bring him his picture, but Dorian couldn’t, because the picture was almost completely destroyed. The two men became friends again, but Basil didn’t see the picture.

Chapter 10:
Dorian never told Basil about the defacement of the picture and bemoaned it. Now he realized that Basil’s love to him was able to rescue him. He hid the half destroyed picture in a secret attic. After that Lord Henry gave him a book: it spoke about a young man in Paris, who lived his same life, as it was destined to Dorian.

Chapter 11:
For the next eighteen years Dorian Gray lived the same life, which lived the man in the book Lord Henry gave to him. For all those years he kept his beauty, but the portrait became more and more hideous. He felt full of fear. His soul was destroyed. He tried not to think about this bad situation: he did many other things and fascinated other people. He became an ideal, but at once his miserable situation made him weak.

Chapter 12;
The day before Dorian Gray’s thirty-eightth birthday Basil talked to him, asking him to try to be a good person and to not let him be influenced by Lord Henry. Basil talked to Dorian because he thought that behind Dorian’s beautiful face, there couldn’t be a bad spirit. As a sign of forgiveness between them Dorian decided to show his friend the addled picture in the secret attic.

Chapter 13, 14, 15:
Basil was shocked when he saw the picture. It was horrible. He looked at Dorian with a very angry face, but Dorian was even angrier than the painter: Dorian accused his friend that he was the responsible for those bad moments Dorian had to live, because it wasn’t he who destroyed the picture, but the picture destroyed him. Between them a fight began, Dorian hated Basil so much for this painting, that he killed him with few stabs of a knife. Dorian flew and left the dead body in the attic.
In the morning he looked for Alan Campbell, and old friend. He blackmailed Alan to hide the stiff and to tell nobody what had happened the night before. Campbell wanted some money of course, but Dorian knew a big secret of Alan, which had been the end for if Dorian had told someone. So he brought the stiff near the forest and dissolved Basil’s body at night. He hid the ashes under a thorn bush. The only things left from Basil, was his coat and his bag, which Dorian kept in his office.
In the evening there was a big dinner at Lady Narborough’s with many guests. Among them also Dorian and Lord Henry were be found. Of course Lord Henry didn’t know, that his friend the painter was murdered. Nonetheless Dorian was anxious and he didn’t eat much. Lord Henry watched him all the time, and Dorian knew that. He became very nervous and was the first guest to go. First he went home, but then he went to his office to get Basil’s coat and bag. He brought the things home and burned them in the oven. His house was the only one, where the chimney smoked.

Chapter 16, 17:
Dorian Gray had no contact anymore with Lord Henry, and he had no other friends. Sibyl was dead and he murdered Basil. He lived alone and to make his life a little bit more comfortable, he sometimes went to a secret Opium bar. One day while Dorian was smoking the drug, he was recognized by James Vane, Sybil’s brother. He had heard about the death of his sister and had come back from Australia, because he promised he would kill the man, Dorian Gray, who harmed his sister so much, that she didn’t want lo live anymore. Fortunately when James Vane saw Dorian’s young face, he couldn’t believe that this was the man with whom his sister fell in love twenty years before. Of course he didn’t know that his picture had aged instead of him, so he let Dorian go.

Chapter 18:
But in the next days James Vane discovered the truth about Dorian Gray. Vane found out where Dorian’s office was. He looked for him there, but he didn’t find him. On the desk in the office, there was a letter with Dorian’s address written on it.
Suddenly Dorian heard a noise; he looked out of the window and there he saw James Vane’s dark and scary face. He saw the hate on his face. Dorian closed all the curtains in his apartment and locked the door, but anyway he heard the noise and fainted.
Dorian couldn’t sleep anymore, he was anxious and he rued the murder on Basil Hallward. Few days after the evening, when Vane came to his house, a hunter shot accidentally a man, whom Dorian Gray recognized as James Vane, whom he had last seen in the evening a few day before. After the death of James, Dorian felt safe; he did not have to hide anymore.

Chapter 19:
Dorian decided to live a normal life and to follow good people; he wanted to live a more comfortable life. He told Lord Henry and he also accused him for his bad situation: everything in his life went wrong, because Henry gave him this book. Dorian was never destined to such a bad life. It was Henry who chose this future for him with that book. But the Lord didn’t want to discuss and asked Dorian for forgiveness. He also promised that he never gave the book to anyone else and that was what he did.

Chapter 20:
Dorian complained about his dead soul, but nonetheless he tried to start a new life. He awoke to the thought that his first intention and his dream of eternal youth had ruined his life. He lost many things and now he was poor and powerless. The proof was the ruined, almost completely destroyed picture, which he kept in his secret attic. He decided to ruin the painting and to cancel his past. With the same knife he killed Basil, he stung in the picture. Dorian felt a horrible pain; he had killed himself. Suddenly his face became dark, old and full of wrinkles, but the man on the picture was young and an idol of beauty.
The author: Oscar Wilde
Oscar Wilde was born in 1854 in Dublin, in the capital city of Ireland. He was the son of William Wilde and Lady Jane Francesca Wilde. He had a very good education. He was thought by his mother, who was a brilliant teacher. As a child he was frequently invited with his mother to socialize with her friends, since he was educated by his mother, so he didn’t know other children of his age.
In 1871 Oscar Wilde went to Trinity College. In 1874, he transferred to Oxford and studied there, where he also experimented with homosexuality. In 1884, Wilde married Constance Lloyd, and the two moved to London. Throughout the 1890s, he wrote and published one of his masterpieces, the novel “The Picture of Dorian Gray”.
In 1897, while he was in prison, he wrote “De Profundis”. After his release, he moved to France under a false name. The author died in 1900 in Paris a hotel room.
The picture of Dorian Gray is very well known in the whole world. I chose it because I often heard about it, but I had no idea how it was. Oscar Wilde wrote it in English, and masterpieces should be read in the original language.
The story is complex and not simple to understand, but very interesting, especially the end. I never thought that the book, would finish in that way. Generally a good author surprises the reader with the ending, and Oscar Wilde did it in this novel. The picture of Dorian Gray is a very special book, that can involve the reader in the story or not. It depends on our imagination. Thanks to mine, I can say that it was very interesting and I enjoyed it much.

(c) Jenny Kostner


Alice De Rossi and Divergent by Veronica Roth



Veronica Roth was born on 19th August 1988 in New York City but she grew up in Barrington, Illinois. She was the youngest of three children from Barbara Ross, a painter. She was of German and Polish descent. Her mother’s family migrated from Poland and her grandparents survived the concentration camp. When she was five years old her parents divorced. Roth graduated from Barrington High School. After attending a year at the Carleton College, she transferred to the Northwestern University to join its creative writing program. In 2011 she married the photographer Nelson Fitch. Her first novel “Divergent” was published in 2011, Roth wrote it during the winter break of her senior year at Northwestern University, and it was the recipient of the Goodreads Favorite Book of that year. In 2012 “Divergent” won the Best Young Adult Fantasy & Science Fiction prize and Roth became the Best Goodreads Author; in the same year the second book of the trilogy, “Insurgent”, was released. Then in 2013 she finished writing “Allegiant” the last book of the trilogy. One year later six short stories from Tobias Eaton’s point of view were bound together under the title “Four: A Divergent Story Collection”. Roth’s family and her brother and sister are now living in Chicago.



Fear doesn’t shut you down. It wakes you up.Four


In a post-apocalyptic Chicago, survivors were divided into five factions based on their dispositions: Abnegation, for the selfless; Amity, for the peaceful; Candor, for the honest; Dauntless, for the brave; and Erudite, for the intellectual. Each year, all sixteen-year-olds took an aptitude test that would assign the faction for which they were best suited. After receiving the results, they could decide whether to remain with their family’s faction or transfer to a new faction. Those who did not complete initiation into their new faction became “Factionless” and were forced to live in poverty and become homeless.

The two Abnegation sixteen-year-old siblings, Beatrice and Caleb Prior, had to take their aptitude test.


The test began after lunch. Beatrice’s test administrator was a young Dauntless called Tori. She tugged wires toward her, attaching them to Beatrice and to the machine behind her. Then Tori passed to Beatrice a vial of clear liquid. Beatrice drank it, she closed her eyes and the test began. When she opened her eyes, she was in a simulation. In front of her there were two baskets on a table. One was filled with a hunk of cheese, in the other there was a knife. She heard a voice: “Choose”. “Why?” asked Beatrice then the baskets disappeared. Suddenly, an aggressive dog entered the room, she laid down to look smaller. The dog stopped growling and licked her face, it seemed like a different animal from the one that faced her a few seconds ago. Beatrice blinked, and when she opened her eyes, a child stood across the room. As she ran toward the dog, it turned around ready to pounce. Beatrice just jumped: she hurled her body on top of the dog, wrapping her arms around its neck. Her head hit the ground, the dog was gone and so was the little girl. Beatrice turned in a slow circle and opened a door. Now she was on a bus, and all seats were taken. Sitting near her there was a man with a newspaper, she couldn’t see his face. “Do you know this guy?” he asked tapping the picture on the front page of the newspaper. The headline read: “Brutal Murderer Finally Apprehended!”. Beatrice looked at the picture, she felt like she knew him, but she didn’t remember how. “Well? Do you?” repeated the man angrier. “Nope. No idea who he is.” answered Beatrice. “You’re lying,” he said “You’re lying!” “I am not.” “If you know him, you could save me. You could save me!” “Well,” repeated Beatrice setting her jaw “ I don’t.”


Beatrice woke up and saw Tori. “That was perplexing.” Perplexing? Beatrice was upset. If she was not cut out for any faction she would live in the street with the factionless. “Beatrice, your results were inconclusive. Typically, each stage of the simulation eliminates one or more of the factions, but in your case only two have been out. Amity and Candor, because you didn’t choose the cheese and you continued with your insistence upon dishonesty. Then we have a problem. On the one hand you threw yourself on the dog rather than let it attack the little girl, which is an Abnegation-oriented response… but on the other, when the man told you that the truth would save him, you still refused to tell it. Not an Abnegation-oriented response. Not running from the dog suggests Dauntless, but so does taking the knife, which you didn’t do. Your intelligent response to the dog indicates strong alignment with the Erudite, but I have no idea what to make of your indecision in stage one.” Now Beatrice is confused. “So you have no idea what my aptitude is?” “My conclusion is that you display equal aptitude for Abnegation, Dauntless and Erudite. People who get this kind of result are called Divergent.” Tori walked around the side of a chair and leaned back closer to Beatrice. “Under no circumstances should you ever share that information with anyone. These is very important. Divergence is extremely dangerous.” Beatrice didn’t understand, but she still nodded. She went home trying not to think about the Choosing Ceremony of the next day.


Back home Caleb asked Beatrice the reason why she went away from the test but she didn’t answer him. At dinner their father talked about his workday: Jeanine Matthews, the Erudite’s sole representative, selected thanks to her IQ score, had drafted a report that attacked Marcus’ character. Marcus was Beatrice’s father’s coworker, they were both political leaders. The report said that Marcus’ violence and cruelty toward his son, Tobias, was the reason his son chose Dauntless instead of Abnegation. But for the Abnegation society these were all false pretenses because the Erudite thought that it was not the Abnegation’s right to manage the society.


The Choosing Ceremony began. It consisted in choosing everyone’s future faction, by dropping a blood-drop in a bowl containing a substance that represented a faction: gray stones for Abnegation, water for Erudite, earth for Amity, lit coals for Dauntless, and glass for Candor. Now it was Caleb’s turn. He accepted the knife that Marcus gave him, he dragged it across his palm, held his hand over the Erudite bowl and his blood dripped into the water, turning it into a deeper shade of red. Beatrice was shocked. Her selfless brother, born for Abnegation, Erudite? Then Beatrice heard her name, she was uncertain between Abnegation and Dauntless, stones and fire were both on her left. She held the knife in her hand and touched the palm with the blade. Then she shifted her hand forward and her blood sizzled on the coals. She was selfish, she was brave, she was going to join the Dauntless.


When the ceremony was over the Dauntless exited first. The crow of Dauntless led Beatrice to the stairs, then everyone started running. Beatrice followed them down the street and around the corner, then she heard a train horn. The train glided toward them on the rails with all doors opened waiting for the Dauntless to pile in, and they did, until only the initiates were left. A Candor girl helped Beatrice jump on the train, her name was Christina. After arriving at the Dauntless headquarters, they started jumping off the train and landed on a roof. Max, one of the five faction’s leader, explained that to belong to the Dauntless the initiates had to jump off a ledge to enter the compound. Beatrice volunteered as the first jumper. She walked up to the edge and looked down. Then she jumped, and after a long fall she hit a net. She saw a few hands stretching out to her, she grabbed the first one and a young man helped her. His eyes were dark blue. He asked: “What’s your name? Think about it. You don’t get to pick again.” “Tris” answered Beatrice firmly. Lauren, a dark-haired girl with three silver rings said: “Make the announcement, Four.” The boy, Four, shouted: “First jumper, Tris! Welcome to Dauntless.”


When all the initiates stood on solid ground again, Lauren and Four divided them into two groups: the Dauntless-born initiates with Lauren and the faction transfered with Four. Most of the initiates were from the Dauntless, so only nine people remained. Tris was the only Abnegation transfer, and among them there were no Amity transfer. The rest were from Erudite and Candor. After dinner Eric, a second leader faction that seemed wicked, explained the rules for training that he would oversee. The training would take place from eight o’clock to six every day, with a break for lunch. In the first stage of initiation, they kept transfers and Dauntless-born initiates separated. At the end of the initiation, a ranking would be put together with the one of the Dauntless-born. The ranking would determine the order in which they would select their future job, if the initiates weren’t in the top ten they would have to live as factionless. At the end of the day, Eric showed the dormitory to the transfers initiates. They would live together for two weeks.


The first-day-training began. The initiation was divided into three stages: the first stage was primarily physical, the second emotional and the third mental. The physical stage taught how to shoot a gun and how to fight. Tris never used a gun so it was very difficult for her. At lunch Tris and Christina ate with Will, an ex-Erudite, and Al, an ex-Candor. After the afternoon training-session Tris, Christina, Will and Al went to the tattoo place. There Tris saw Tori, who tattooed three flying birds on Tris’ collarbone.

CHAPTER 9-10-11

Since the transfer initiates were in odd number, Tris didn’t fight today. The fight rules established that each fight ended when one of the two combatants was unable to continue, because for Eric, a brave man never surrendered. After one day, Tris had to fight against Peter, the cruelest guy of the nine initiates. Unfortunately Tris lost the fight and she fainted. The next day all the group of initiates went to the fence, a chain-link barrier with barbed wired strung along the top that surrounded all the city, because some Dauntless after the initiation became fence guards.


The following day after winning a fight Tris was exhausted. When she arrived in the dormitory Eric

entered roaring. There was also Four. Dauntless-born initiates and faction transfers would play capture the flag, a Dauntless tradition. Four made the first team: Tris, his first choice; Christina; Will; Drew, another ex-Erudite; and two other Dauntless-born, Uriah and Marlene; all the team’s members were fast, with narrow shoulder and small frames; instead of the members of Eric’s team, which were broad and strong. For the game they went to the pier where there was an abandoned amusement park. To find a better observation point, Tris climbed up the Ferris wheel, followed by Four. In this moment, Tris understood that she felt something for Four but she couldn’t say what. While they were climbing a bar creaked beneath Tris, but Four caught her just in time before falling down. From the top of the Ferris wheel they could see the other team’s flag. After developing an attack plan, Tris recovered the flag.

CHAPTER 13-14-15-16

When the first part of the training ended, Tris beat another girl and she became really good in throwing knifes. Today was the Visiting Day, her mother went to visit her. Her mother knew that Tris was a Divergent, because many children who were raised in Abnegation received inconclusive result. That day the classification of the first part of the initiation was published: first place Edward, second Peter, third Will, fourth Christina, fifth Molly, sixth Tris, seventh Drew and the two eliminates were Al and Myra. During the night Tris heard someone screaming, it was Edward with a knife in his eye. Tris was sure that Peter and Drew had attacked him. Because of the happening of the night before, the ones that had to leave were Edward and Myra.


Tris went for a walk to forget the guy that got stabbed in the eye. While she was walking she met Uriah, who together with his brother Zeke, Marlene, her sister Shauna, and Lynn a friend of theirs, brought Tris to the zip-line that crossed the town to make something Dauntless. The day after the second stage of initiation began. The Dauntless-born and transfer initiates would be put together from now on. Tris awaited her turn in a dark hallway with all the other initiates. The test consisted in a simulation of her fears and it finished when she calmed down. Her hallucination showed to Tris a flock of crows that pecked and scratched her. She breathed and stopped the simulation. Tris spent only three minutes, she got out three times faster than the other so Four suspected that Tris was a Divergent.


After the simulation she went back to meet Will and Christina, and they stayed out all night. They also met Four, who, while he was drunk, said to Tris that he liked her. The day after Four didn’t remember anything of the past night, and Tris had to do another simulation. This time she was in a glass box, that in a few seconds was filled with water. She tought that the simulation was all in her head and it disappeared. Now Four was sure that Tris was a Divergent.


Tris went with Uriah, Zeke, Marlene, Shauna and Lynn to the training room, because Uriah would shoot to Marlene’s muffin with a plastic pellets gun. Four stopped them and said to Tris that she belonged to the Dauntless and that he wouldn’t say anything to Eric. When Tris returned to the dorm she heard Eric and Jeanine Matthews, the Erudite’s representative, talking about killing Divergent rebels. Suddenly someone grabbed her, covered her mouth and eyes. There were three guys: Peter, Drew and Al. Tris was terrified. They brought her to the chasm and tried to kill her. Four heard Tris screaming and saved her before she fainted. She woke up in Four’s apartment and she stayed there for the night.

CHAPTER 23-24-25-26

Tris told Christina and Will what had happened the night before, they were horrified. The third stage of the training consisted in controlling the emotions and the body in a series of virtual fears, the number of fear someone had in his landscape varied according on how many he had. The next day they found Al dead in the chasm. That night Tris entered Four’s fear landscapes. His first fear was the height they had to jump off a skyscraper, the second was confinement, the third was killing an innocent and the firth one was his father, Marcus Eaton, who hit Four since he was little. The simulation ended, Four’s real name was Tobias Eaton and his nickname sprung from his number of fears. Then Tobias kissed Tris.

CHAPTER 27-28-29-30

Tris went to visit Caleb. Jeanine Matthews saw her and had a talk with her. Jeanine wanted Tris at her side in the fight against the Divergent. Tris accepted in order to deter Jeanine’s suspect. The next day was the Dauntless’ initiation day, the ceremony consisted in facing her fears in the fear landscape. It showed her seven fears: the fear of losing control with the crow, in the box of water and in the ocean, Peter that set fire to her, men that were there to kill her, the fear to sleep with Tobias and the fear to kill her family.

CHAPTER 31-32-33-34

After the simulation, Eric injected an orange serum to all the initiates. The last classification was published: first place Tris, second Uriah, third Lynn, fourth Marlene, fifth Peter, sixth Will and finally seventh Christina. The night after the ceremony, the serum induced a simulation and all the Dauntless became sleep-walking soldiers under orders to attack the Abnegation compound. The serum didn’t work on Tris and Tobias because they were both Divergent. Tris and Tobias tried to break away from the pack and escape as they arrived at the Abnegation compound, but Tris was shot and wounded. Tobias refused to leave her behind and they were captured and brought to Jeanine. She injected Four with an experimental serum that overrode his Divergent ability to control what he could see and hear. Jeanine directed Tobias back to the Dauntless control room to oversee the attack and sentenced Tris to death.

CHAPTER 35-36-37

Tris woke up sealed inside a real-life glass tank that filled up with water, but her mother broke the tank and rescued her. Her mother revealed that she was also Divergent before she was killed helping Tris to escape. Tris got away but was forced to kill Will, who attacked her under the influence of the simulation. She found her father and Marcus in a safe house. They went to the Dauntless compound to find the source of the simulation and fought their way through to Dauntless headquarters. Tris’ father sacrificed himself to clear the way for her to reach the control room.


Tirs had to confront the mind-controlled Tobias, who attacked her. Tris realized she could’t kill him, and surrendered. This caused Tobias to break through the special sight-and-sound-only simulation. Freed, Tobias helped Tris to shut down the Erudite simulation and to set free the Dauntless from their mind control. They rejoined Caleb, Marcus and Peter, who helped Tris to find the control room in exchange for his safety. The group boarded a train to the Amity sector to find the rest of the Abnegation survivors.

I believe in ordinary acts of bravery, in the courage that drives one person to stand up for another.Tris



A movie was shot after the Divergent’s trilogy. I enjoyed the film very much so I started to read the whole series. Veronica Roth was able to create a special continuity in all the books and I was sucked in and kept reading the books. They were very interesting and diversified, in fact the first two books were written from Tris’ perspective but the last one was written from her and Four’s point of view. I would suggest this book to all fantasy lovers because it’s an original story and it was a real page-turner.

 (c) Alice De Rossi


Robin Williams remembered by Mirna Vezzali

Robin McLaurin Williams was born at St. Luke’s Hospital in Chicago on July 21, 1951.

He had two half-brothers: Robert Todd Williams and McLaurin Smith.

When Williams was a kid, he described himself as a quiet and shy child but his friends said that he was very funny.

After high-school Robin Williams enrolled at Claremont Men’s College in Claremont, to study political science but later he dropped out to pursue acting. He then studied theatre for three years at Marin College in California. Williams’ talent became evident when he was cast in Oliver as Fagin.

In 1973 Williams achieved a scholarship for Juilliard School in New York City. He was one of the 20 students accepted and one of the two students to be accepted by John Houseman in the Advanced Program.

But later he left school because the school’s classical style didn’t suit him.

After his family moved to Marin Country he began his career with comedy shows in the mid 70s. He took part in the Laugh In show.

Robin Williams began, because of stress, to use drugs and alcohol, he used also cocaine and he started drinking in 2003. In 2006 he went to a rehabilitation centre in Newberg.

Before his death his wife Susan admitted that he was sober but he had an early stage of Parkinson disease.

He had a role in Good Morning Vietnam which led Williams to, a nomination for the Best Actor. He was in a lot of films for example: Hook or Good Will Hunting, he also starred as voice actor in Alladin, FernGully: The last Rainforest, Robots and Happy Feet.

He married Susan Schneider in 2011 and their residence was in Sea Cliff, San Francisco.

He died on the morning of August 11, 2014 at his home in Paradise Cay. The first report stated that he had hung himself with a belt. The news of Williams’ death spread quickly throughout the world, his wife said:” I lost my husband and my best friend, while the world lost one of its most beloved artists and beautiful human beings”.


“He was one of a kind. He arrived in our lives as alien but he ended up touching every element of the human spirit”

– Barack Obama

© Mirna Vezzali

My Travel Blog with Caterina Pansoni

After Cristina Senoner’s trip to Amsterdam, and Belen De Bacco’s visit to Spain, with Caterina Pansoni we continue our little Travel Blog, we are in the far north of Europe, from Berlin, up to Copenhagen and finally in Norway…

© Anny Ballardini


Berlin- Copenhagen – Oslo


In 2010 with my family we decided to travel to the north Europe to spend our summer holidays.

We decided to travel by car. As we left Livigno, our first destination was Berlin. We stayed in Berlin for three days and we had the opportunity to visit the entire city. Berlin is the capital of the Germany. I saw the Berlin Wall and the remains of the WW2. There were several parks and buildings that are now considered world heritage sites. Berlin is a city rich in museums that offer visitors every kind of information.

Our second stay was in Copenhagen, Denmark. In Copenhagen we looked for the Danish siren, but we couldn’t see it as it was in China for a very important exhibition.  During our stay in Copenhagen we also visited a particular university where students study literature, philosophy, law, science and theology. It is the oldest university of Denmark and it promotes numerous researches. After we visited the Carlsberg brewery, a big structure, one of the most important in the world. A man told us about the story of the founder. We also saw the town council.

After our stay in Denmark we went to Norway. And for me it was the best part of our trip. We stayed in Oslo and in Bergen for one week. In Oslo the temperature was cold even if it was July. There we saw where the people received the Novel price for peace, at the town council.

The center of city is very clean and tidy.

Another interesting fact is that Munch lived in Oslo, and you can visit the house where he lived and died.

Another important city in Norway we visited is Bergen. There the sea enters into the mountains and you can see the cruise ships very near to the rocks. When I saw this natural spectacle I was surprised because if you don’t know that it is the sea you can think that it is a simple mountain lake.

In Bergen, quite almost all the houses are painted in many bright colors, mainly the fishermen’s houses. I love so much the north of Europe because I saw a lot of new things and I’ve learned a lot of history.


© Caterina Pansoni


Emily Insam and Breaking Dawn (part 1)

I must say that I have been a little surprised by the effect Stephanie Meyer’s books have had on my students in the past years, books I do not think I will ever have the pleasure to read. Nor movies I will happily watch. After the big wave of the Titanic that practically pierced the heart of my students, now the dark black triumphs. The idea of the macabre is the main thread around which romantic stories are developed – as easy as that. Who else is Edward Cullen if not a “vampire”? And the unbelievably beautiful “Bella Swan” if not the potential victim of an obscure sect that needs blood to survive. On the well defined path of Dracula by Bram Stocker, who had the main idea in 1897, repeated ad nauseam, it seems that the gothic novel, horror fiction, and finally the vampire literature has found a new broad audience, seen the numerous books sold by the young author who also fantasizes on how she wrote the story, “sent to her in a dream” – or some sort of…

Anyhow, Emily’s writing is excellent, her English mother and German father have made of her a perfectly bilingual student, if not trilingual, seen that she attends an Italian school. Congratulations, and let’s hope that her next reading will be of a different genre!

(c) Anny Ballardini


Twilight – Breaking Dawn (part 1)


Bella Swan, an average teenager is in love with a vampire, Edward Cullen. There is only one problem, Jacob Black, her best friend and a wolf, loves her, too. He tries to convince Bella to end the relationship as he thinks she will be in so much danger, but she knows that Edward will always protect and save her. Their love story continues and Edward decides to marry 18-year-old Bella.

Bella is driving around in her new Mercedes Guardian, an engagement present from Edward, but she feels uncomfortable because everyone in town is staring at her. She cannot wait to marry Edward but one thing is missing, Jacob. He went missing after the announcement of their engagement.
The big day has arrived. Alice and Rosalie, Edward’s sisters, are getting her ready. Her father, Charlie, leads her down the aisle and she cannot wait to say, “I do” to her future husband. Everybody congratulates the couple and there is a surprise waiting for Bella. Jacob turns up and they dance together. He teases Bella that she is not going on a “real” honeymoon. When he finds out that she is planning to sleep with Edward, he loses his temper and Edward and Seth have to restrain him. Jacob runs into the woods and Seth follows him.
The wedding ends with Bella and Edward leaving Forks, but Bella does not know where they will go on their honeymoon, as Edward wanted to surprise her. They fly to Rio de Janeiro, spending a night there and then they take a boat to go to an island.
Edward and Bella spend their honeymoon on Esme Isle, an uninhabited island off the coast off Brazil. The island was a gift from Carlisle to Esme, Edward’s parents. Their first attempt at lovemaking leaves Bella with bruises and Edward with a guilty conscience, but she keeps pressing him, so they try again. Days later, Bella realizes that she is pregnant and that her baby bump is growing at an unnatural rate. While she feels protective of whatever is growing inside her, Edward wants to get rid of “the thing.” Bella secretly calls Rosalie for help. They return home to Forks immediately.

Jacob has returned to Forks, too, and he finds out that Bella and Edward have also returned from their honeymoon, but she is sick. He believes that it is because she has become a vampire. He presses Sam, the werewolf alpha, and the werewolves to attack the Cullens. Sam resists, so Jacob goes to attack the Cullens on his own, with a special aim for Edward.
When Jacob sees Bella, he can tell that she is in great pain and is shocked when he finds out that she is pregnant. Edward has a plan; he wants to save Bella but he needs Jacob’s help. The baby is killing her, but she will not let him abort it, and Rosalie acts as her bodyguard. Edward proposes an idea to Jacob that he gives Bella what she wants in the form of a baby from Jacob. Jacob protests, but is intrigued by the idea, so he agrees to offer “his services” to Bella. Edward promises that if Bella dies, Jacob is free to kill him.

Bella’s condition is getting worse and the baby’s accelerated growth causes Bella’s bones to break, but Edward discovers that he can hear the baby’s thoughts and that it loves Bella. Bella decides to name the baby Renesmee, if it is a girl. Edward is now taken with the baby too, and Jacob feels betrayed. He still believes the baby is a monster, slowly killing Bella.
Bella gives birth, but the baby breaks more of her bones and she loses massive amounts of blood. In order to save Bella’s life, Edward changes her into a vampire. Jacob wants to kill the baby, but upon seeing the little girl’s face, he falls in love with her.

Nobody knows if Bella will wake up even though Edward bit her. Everybody is keeping their fingers crossed. Jacob and the rest of the Cullens are waiting in the living room for news. Edward is sitting next to Bella’s body. He is in tears and he just wishes he could have saved her. In that moment, Bella opens her eyes. She looks beautiful. Her skin is pale, her eyes are red and she is so strong, a perfect vampire. Edward is over the moon, they are so happy to be together and they cannot wait to see their newborn baby and to begin a new chapter of their vampire life together.

                   Stephenie Meyer    


Stephenie Meyer is a young American adult fiction writer and film producer, best known for her vampire romance series ‘Twilight’. The Twilight novels have gained worldwide recognition and sold over 100 million copies, with translations into 37 different languages. Meyer was the bestselling author in 2008 and 2009 in America, having sold over 29 million books in 2008, and 26.5 million books in 2009. Twilight was the best-selling book of 2008 in US bookstores.
Meyer says that the idea for Twilight came to her in a dream on June 2, 2003. The dream was about a human girl and a vampire who was in love with her but thirsted for her blood. Based on this dream, Meyer wrote the draft of what became Chapter 13 of the book. In a matter of three months she had transformed her dream into a complete novel, though she says that she never thought of publishing Twilight. Her sister read the novel and she persuaded Meyer to send it to literary agencies.


My comment

I only started watching and reading Twilight this year and I love it so much that I have seen the films at least 6 times. It is a beautiful love story that never ends. Edward would sacrifice his life for Bella no matter what. They love each other so much that nothing can stop them, which I believe makes the story so special.

The language of the book is not too difficult but I sometimes had to look a few words up in the dictionary. I read the book in a week because I just enjoyed reading it that I found it difficult to put it down.

(c) Emily Insam


Book Review by Maria Chin

The Horse Whisperer


Last month, I had the opportunity to read an amazing book that definitely became one of my favorite. The title is: ” The Horse Whisperer ” written by Nicholas Evans.

Nicholas Evans is an English novelist. The Horse Whisperer became one of his best works ever.

Everything begins in New York City. It’s morning. Grace, daughter of Annie, a magazine editor, and Robert, a lawyer, decides to go on a morning walk with her best friend Judith on their horses: Pilligrim and Guliver. As they walk on a snowy road, in the forest, they decide to take a shortcut along the slope. In an effort to climb up the slope, because of the snow and ice, both horses fall. Grace manages to stay on Pilligrim, but Judith and Gulliver fall and die. Because of the many injures that Grace and Pilligrim got, both are traumatized. Grace loses her best friend and has her right leg amputated, Pilligrim loses his confidence in people and becomes totally unmanageable and crazy.

After the accident, the situation in Grace’s family becomes very difficult. Grace is no longer the same girl and, Annie and Robert continue to fight with each other because of their different ways and opinions in dealing with the situation. In the meantime, Annie must make a difficult decision, to put down or not, Pilligrim. Not considering what the vet suggested to do with him, Annie thinks that it’s not right and decides to keep him alive. She immediately starts to look for someone who could help her to deal with Pilligrim’s problems.

She discovers that there is a man who lives in Montana, called Tom Booker, called by many people: ” The Horse Whisperer”. Full of courage and determination, Annie decides to bring Pilligrim and Grace, who is not convinced about the idea, to Montana. Annie takes over a long and difficult journey, and finally arrives in Montana. Where, Tom takes a look at the horse and agrees to work with him, asking only for their collaboration while he is working with the horse.

During their stay, Grace starts to change and her relationship with Annie becomes better, while Annie falls in love with Tom. They start a hidden romance. After a lot of work, Tom decides that Pilligrim is ready to be ridden by Grace. He asks Grace to believe in him and saddle up, but Grace refuses because, she is still afraid of Pilligrim. At this point, Tom uses a forceful method and puts the horse down on the ground so that Grace can sit on him. At the second attempt Grace saddles up and finally rides him. Before Grace’s and Annie’s leave, a goodbye party is organized. At the party Grace discovers about Tom’s and her mother’s romance. Disappointed and angry, Grace takes Pilligrim and runs away. She and Pilligrim run into a wild mustang that starts to attack them. Tom, that chased her, sees Pilligrim trying to protect her. To save them, Tom sacrifices his life, by trying to stop the mustang.

After the accident, Annie, Grace in Pilligrim return back home. Annie tries to build a new relationship ship with her husband Robert and discovers that she is pregnant, her child is Tom’s child.

I really enjoyed reading this book. I think that this book is one of the best I’ve ever read. When you read it you are into the story, you understand everyone’s feelings and everything is described in an excellent way.

The story is very interesting, it doesn’t just focuse on a ” horsey ” story, but it tells about people’s feelings, problems and desires. Before reading this book, I watched the film, which I would say is also excellent. There are a lot emotional scenes that make you think. It’s quite similar to the book, but the ending is a little bit different. In the film, Grace doesn’t discover about the relationship of her mother and

Tom, and Annie decides to sacrifice her love for the sake of her daughter’s happiness.


© Maria Chin


My Dream School

A national competition titled “My Dream School” found many schools interested in gaining the one prize that foresaw 10thousand Euros to be spent in school material. We did not win, but I would like to dedicate a post of our school blog to my excellent students who collaborated and overworked to make this possible. I was supposed to select only five for each class, and as a procedure I administered a questionnaire. The five students were selected not only on the basis of their English competence but also on their capacity to use other tools, like blogs, digital media, and on the originality of their answers. Moreover, all the students helped the five selected, and we dedicated one of our classes to the importance of teamwork and the discussion of each term related to the topic, from a handout I had supplied. The filled-in questionnaires have been also used for our School Review Project. Interesting to notice that our students of the two first classes and of the second class, after all the research carried out, stated that our School _is_ their Dream School. This is probably the best outcome of our one-month intensive work!

Here are the works of my Second Class:

Prezi Presentation:

video uploaded on YouTube:

Blog with the essays of the five chosen students:

(c) Anny Ballardini