Friday, March 11, 2011

Discussion #6 for Sketches

Welcome fellow bloggers and a warm welcome to my Digital Literature Circle buddies: Andrianna, Arianna, Haneen, Hannah, Karran, and Melissa! Sadly this is our last discussion, so let's make it as awesome as all the others! We have finally completed Sketches by Eric Walters and I think it was fantastic! It was disturbing at some points (like at the end of chapter seventeen when they found a rotting corpse without eyes), but I think it made it more interesting. I was dying to know what Dana's stepfather did to her and I finally found out. What did you guys think he did to Dana? It was a happy ending, but I have to admit, the ending was a blur. It all happened too fast. I liked the ending, but it felt like the author was in a hurry to finish the book. He should have made it longer. Remember when Brent said that he didn't believe in fairy tales because the endings were too happy to be true (if you don't it's on page 239)? Well, at the end of Sketches they all lived happily ever after and I hope he believes in happy endings now. I found it interesting when he said that. Why do you think he said that? 

   Here's the last discussion question...
   If you could change anything about the ending of the book what would you change? Imagine if you were supposed to make a sequel to Sketches, what kind of things would you do to all the main characters? Would they eventually split up and stop seeing each other? Or would they be best friends forever? Remember that this is the last discussion post, so put any questions or comments about the book that come to mind. Hope to hear from you guys soon! I'll be waiting.


  1. GREAT question to end our book with Sara! I wish so badly that there was a sequel, it was such a great book! I agree, it did end rather abruptly and in a hurry. we never heard anything about Dana being in foster care or going back home and leaving Brent and Ashley until she talked to them at the art show. That being said, I do think that the book transitioned really well with a strong beginning, middle and end.
    If I wrote the book I would make Dana stay with Brent and Ashley. Seriously, they're family, they shouldn't split up. I also don't think Dana's step-dad should have been arrested. Not because I like him (I think he's horrible) but it would have made the story line a little more interesting rather than cliche. I would have him away from Dana's mother and sister though.
    If I were to make a sequel one thing I would definitely do is give Brent his happy ending. I found that line so sad, yet so moving. Maybe he could end up with Gizmo! I'm not sure if Gizmo is gay or not but they sure spend a lot of time together (even if it's just making scooters). They would make a really cute couple since Gizmo is suppose to be all weird and awkward and Brent is strong and protective.
    In the sequel I would have Dana giving back to Sketches and still in touch with Brent and Ashley. Perhaps Dana could have a friend that she could introduce to Ashley and then Ashley could have a boyfriend. Okay, I'll admit it, I'm a sucker for romance books.
    One thing that I though of that would make a cool twist would be if Dana found something interesting out about her biological father. Maybe the women he is married to is Ashley's mother! Wouldn't that be interesting?
    I think Brent should have a reconnection with his parents. I don't mean that he should go live with them or anything, it wouldn't even have to be a happy reconnection but just so they could know that he is alive and well. It says in the book that they don't care about him or anything but I think deep down, they still do.
    Dana could go on to being like Becca, a successful artist who helps street kids. The sequel could revolve around another street kid that Dana could connect with at Sketches. Ashley could sell her pots, or go into gardening and have her own business. Can't you just picture that?
    It would be good if they went back to school and finished their education too.

  2. Awesome response Hannah! I'm going to post my answer soon.

  3. The ending was okay, but it could have been better and more detailed. I just expected something more surprising, like the rest of the novel. It left us with a lot of questions. How did Brent and Ashley save up the money to rent the apartment? Did Brent and Gizmo create the scooter industry like they planned? Did Dana's stepfather start abusing her little sister? How did Nicki arrest Dana's stepfather? The last chapter of Sketches was a bit confusing. It goes from Nicki thinking of a plan on how to rescue Dana's little sister from the evil wrath of their stepfather, to Dana being at the art exhibit. I was sort of confused at the beginning of the last chapter because of the way he ended the previous chapter. I understood what was happening after reading a few sentences, but some people who are younger would get really confused, which is why I would add the answers to all of the questions I listed to the end of the book.

    If I was going to make a sequel to Sketches by Eric Walters I would make it all about Dana reuniting with her mom and little sister. I would also write about how Dana gives back to Sketches and how she helps Brent, Ashley, maybe Gizmo and a bunch of other street kids that visit Sketches. I sort of have an outline of what will happen at the beginning, middle and end. First Dana gets to leave her foster parents and head home, where she reunites with her mom and sister. Dana and her little sister would talk for hours and hours (because we found out that Dana and her sister are very close). That's when readers will find out what Dana's sister and her mom did while Dana was living on the streets and how they felt. I would also write about how Dana's little sister started to get abused and how she started to think about running away too, like Dana. The climax of my book would be about how Dana (with the help of her little sister) gives back to Sketches and how she helps other street kids. The end of my book would be how Dana helps so much that she is able to create something like Tent Town. People would not be able to get rid of that town because unlike Tent Town, it would be legal to have all those people living there since Dana bought the place, therefore people living on the streets would have a safe place to live. In the last paragraph I would write a quote from Brent saying something about how he's starting to believe in happy endings. In my hypothetical novel the three amigos (Brent, Ashley and Dana) would keep in touch with each other for as long as they live, there might be some disputes in their relationship, but they would always figure things out.

    What do you guys think? Did you guys like the ending? Like I said, I'll be waiting for your responses.

  4. Amazing question Sara! It was indeed a happy ending. In my opinion, Brent said that for these reasons I guess. First, maybe his life with his family didn't end as happy since being gay was against his religion. Second, hope is one of the most important things in life. I think Brent maybe is one of the people who have no hope in life or joy. He probably has no hope in his heart after what he has encountered in life. Third, maybe since he's gay, he thinks no one else would get with him.
    It's good to be around your true family. However, I think Dana's family are Brent and Ashley! They should never split up. They all love and look after one another. True friends are unexpected and they can be found in the toughest times of your life. But what I think the main reason for their help for Dana is empathy and sympathy. And that’s because of the same or maybe the worse things they have encountered. It’s great to go out there and find a helping hand who can become a family. A family that you can’t live without and they seem part of your soul. So my conclusion is that they should never separate. Plus, I am not sure if Dana’s mom is ok with that but maybe we should write a sequel about Dana, Brent and Ashley go live at Dana’s house and they can get a job to help with the budget. It would be cool if they attend school and make these conferences and awareness about all types of bullying and how not to be part of the crime and how to deal with it. Also, to remember that there’s always someone out there who really cares about you...

  5. Great answer Haneen! I also think they should talk about how dangerous living on the streets can be and how people don't run away because they're rebels and just don't like to follow the rules that their parents make, but it is because, sadly, running away is better than staying at their house. They could also talk about donating to the poor and making fundraisers. Dana could make paintings, drawings, or signs about helping the homeless and how people can get involved.

  6. Wow that's terrific! I like that Idea! And maybe they could start their own business of an art place for homeless youth like Sketches. We should send all these idea's to Eric Walters. He could get inspired and write a sequel?

  7. Sara, I agree with you, but at the same time,
    I disagree with you. I thought the ending that Eric Walters came up with was pretty good. I think Eric Walters went from when Nicki and Dana found a way to talk to her mom to when they're at the art exhibit, because he wants us to think and predict our answers to all those questions that left us wondering what happened. At the same time though, I kind of want to know the answers to those questions and to find out what actually happened. You picked a good question!

  8. I agree with you Haneen, we should have Eric Walters look at this discussion, and see the different ideas that we have came up with. Maybe he will be inspired, and write a sequel for Sketches. That would be so awesome! I'll respond to Sara's question as soon as I possibly can!

  9. Sara, this was a great question to end off our Ottawa-Oshawa Digital Literature Circle Discussions for Sketches by Eric Walters. If I were the author, I don't think I would change the ending that I have already come up with, because at the end of Sketches, the readers kept wondering what had happened, and I would use the sequel to answer all of those questions. You know how when it's close to the end of Sketches, and it went from Dana talking to Nicki to the art show? I think if I would write the sequel, I would have the book start with a trip back in time to when Dana met her mother and told her what happened between her and her stepfather, and then lead to the stepfather being arrested and then the next scene will be the scene that will happen right now with Dana, her mother and her sister living together happily, and I think they would move to downtown Toronto, so Dana could become an alumni like Becca and help give back at Sketches. Also, Dana, Ashley and Brent should still keep in touch with each other, because they have been like family while coping with life on the streets of Downtown Toronto. We should read more about the lives of Brent and Ashley and what they have went through since running away and getting the apartment. Maybe Brent would come out of the closet and he would start a relationship with someone he's known for a while, like Gizmo. They should have a scene where Dana's family would have to go to court to reveal the verdict if the stepfather's guilty or innocent. Also, one scene should have the stepfather getting bailed out of jail for abuse after he's pleaded guilty and maybe he will attempt to find the family since they would move to Downtown Toronto. We should also learn more about Dana's family. For example, we should learn more about Dana's sister, her relationship wit her stepfather, as well as if the relationship between her and Dana is still strong. We should learn about Dana's mother's relationships between both her ex-husbands. How they met, what they did, etc. Maybe Dana's mother would see her first ex-husband, and they would talk about what happened since the divorce, and maybe have an affair, and I wonder if Dana and her sister have met their half-siblings and their stepmother, and if they have an okay relationship with each other. Maybe we'll read about them, and also I wonder if Dana, her sister and her father have a good relationship since he hasn't seen them for years. I could go on and on about what should be in the sequel of Sketches, but if all my ideas are included in this novel along with others, the book would be as big as a dictionary. Anyway, those are my ideas that I have for the sequel.

    Thank you Eric Walters for creating such a fabulous book. I hope they make a Sketches movie, and I hope you write a sequel and include all of our ideas. Also, I would like to thank Andrianna, Karran, Arianna, Haneen, Sara and Hannah for being invovled with these discussions with me. You all did an awesome job! I think this is my last comment that I will be posting in the Ottawa-Oshawa Digital Literature Circle Discussions for Sketches by Eric Walters. I had a blast, thanks. So long!

  10. I agree with Melissa. The ending was good for the book, if Eric Walters was going to write a sequel. I guess he's not writing one because he first published the book a while back. Great idea Melissa, about answering the questions that the reader might have about the first book in the second book. I don't feel like reading my answer right now, but I don't think I wrote that in my answer. Thank you everyone for taking part in these fantabulous discussions! I will soon write a summary, so stay tuned!

  11. We shall stay tuned. Perhaps if he's not writing a sequel he could just answer reader's qeustions on a website or blog. Or maybe if they're printing new copies of "Sketches" they could put his answers at the back. They did that in another book I read.

  12. I hope Eric Walters reads our discussions, and if he does then I hopehe answersa all our questions.

  13. Dear Eric Walters,
    I hope you're reading all of our discussions. We sure do have a lot of questions. To make it easier for you to organize your thoughts, I'll be specific. I don't know waht questions everyone else has, but here are my questions, maybe someone else in this group has the same questions as me. How did Brent and Ashley save up the money to rent the apartment? Did Brent and Gizmo create the scooter industry like they planned? Did Dana's stepfather start abusing her little sister? How did Nicki arrest Dana's stepfather?
    I don't want to bombard you with anymore questions. I would really appreciate it if you actually answer all my questions! Please do answer them!
    Sara Khan (:

  14. What is the main point of the book ?