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damarisfelix15 has commented on (1) product.

Catalyst by Laurie Halse Anderson

damarisfelix15, December 5, 2011

Catalyst by Laurie Halse Anderson is an inspiring novel about a rivalry transforming into friendship. The novel was written in first person, and it included a person vs. self conflict when Kate, the narrator, struggled to believe that she was not accepted into her dream school, MIT. Kate Malone is a senior straight-A science and math geek and daughter of the local reverend.
Everybody knows Kate as the good girl, but sometimes she wishes she was a bad Kate. MIT was the only college Kate applied to, assured that she would be accepted. Before Kate received the letter from MIT, her neighbor’s house burned down, and her enemy, Teri Litch, moved into her house and took over her room. Teri and her brother, Mikey, took control of the house as if it was theirs.
Kate believed she would soon be out of the house, supposing that she would be accepted to MIT. To Kate’s disappointment, MIT had rejected her application. When Kate received the response letter from MIT and found out she had been rejected, she thought of herself as a failure who would not accomplish anything in life. Kate’s life twisted out of control. She learned to be around Teri and her brother, but she constantly asked her father when the Litch’s house would be built. Kate was tired of taking Teri wherever she wanted and decided to help her construct the new house with the intention of having Teri move out faster.
One night while family members, construction workers, and neighbors sat outside the nearly constructed house, Mikey disappeared into the house. Teri ran inside the house and found Mikey’s handprints on the wall next to a light switch. Everybody was devastated and Mikey’s electrocution brought Teri and Kate closer in their friendship.
I enjoyed Catalyst because it dealt with unpredictable situations such as Kate’s depression and denial over MIT which were unexpected and brought the book in anticipated suspense, beginning with Kate’s decision towards her life. Catalyst is a valuable book for others to read because the characters resolve their indifferences in a unique way. Overall, Catalyst is an appropriate book for high school students.
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