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Bright & Dark by John Neufeld
John Neufeld is the author of “Lisa Bright
& Dark”. He lives and works in New York City these days. He was educated
at Yale. His style of writing are usually touching stories.

Finding information about John Neufeld
is quite difficult since the Internet nor the book has provided any help

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Lisa Shilling is the main character of
this book. She is just sixteen as she slowly loses her mind. Lisa is quite
an example of teenager with problems which is why she’d be classified as
a very real character. Her dangerous state of mind reflects the realism
that this does happen.

Her moods are forever changing. Lisa’s
motivation as a teenager is to live her live normally.

This is hard to do since she is in need
of help. Many can relate to Lisa and her illness because it is among teenagers
today. Her mother and father snub her off completely overlooking her serious
unstableness. Luckily, she has friends that care enough to help her. The
main conflict of this book is the struggle to convince Lisa’s parents that
she is ill and needs serious help. Her parents did not pay attention in
the beginning when Lisa started to act a little different. This is rather
understandable. Lisa was in school and pricked herself with a needle that
drew blood. Many told Lisa’s stubborn parents that she needed a psychiatrist.

They simply refused to accept the fact that their daughter was in need
of anything. When Lisa even screamed out that she needed help, they simply
wouldn’t understand. She even walked right through a glass window. Her
parents didn’t understand until it was almost too late. The conflict was
finally resolved after they got her the help she was in need of. This is
an example of man verse himself since the conflict deals with Lisa fighting
her illness. This book type is about a social problem. This means that
a dilemma occurred in the social area. In this case it involved Lisa Shilling
and her struggle with society and her illness.

One example of this social problem would
be the fact that society such as Lisa’s classmates were uneducated about
her problem so they didn’t understand her. Another example would be how
Lisa’s parents were too busy with their life to notice their daughter’s
plea for help. Yet another example would be how the teachers and guidance
tried to look around the problem.

Today, the same social problems are still
faced. The book’s them dealt with mental illness and treating it. It was
about Lisa and her problems. This book showed that the perplexing problem
could be treated right just as long as she got the right help. Her friends
were the main people to help her overcome it all. It can be seen that this
situation was very difficult then and now. The moral of this story is based
on the illness of a girl and society’s impact on her. It goes to show that
she was helped and hurt at the same time.

This passage caught my eye. It’s a moment
of shock and surprise caused by Lisa’s illness. This is a sudden outburst
no one was prepared for. They handled it well under those circumstances.

Lisa had shoved Elizabeth toward the dying
fire, and had jumped on her in one movement. She began hitting Elizabeth’s
face, then changed her attack and began punching Elizabeth everywhere she
could – her sides, her stomach, kicking at her legs, grabbing her by he
hair. It was terrifying.

This is the list of ten vocabulary words
that I didn’t know as I read “Lisa Bright & Dark”.

Most of them deal with Lisa’s illness is
some way.

1. schizophrenia : a psychotic disorder
characterized by loss of contact with the environment, by noticeable deterioration
in the level of functioning in everyday life, and by disintegration of
personality expressed as disorder of feeling, thought (as in hallucinations
and delusions), and conduct-called also dementia praecox.

2. confidante : CONFIDANT especially :
one who is a woman.

3. conscience : the sense or consciousness
of the moral goodness or blame worthiness of one’s own conduct, intentions,
or character together with a feeling of obligation to do right or be good.

4. immobility : the incapability of being

5. Mountie : a member of the Royal Canadian
Mounted Police.

6. quarry : a diamond-shaped pane of glass,
stone, or tile.

7. aquiline : curving like an eagle’s

8. analyst : a person who analyzes or
who is skilled in analysis.

9. docilely : easily led or managed :

10. barbiturate : any of various derivatives
of barbituric acid used esp. as sedatives, hypnotics, and antispasmodics.

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