This blog is a forum for Mentor High School Honors English 10 students to engage in book discussions based on free reading books.
Sunday, October 31, 2010
The Shack by William P. Young
The Shack, by William P. Young is a moving story about how a man deals with his daughter's terrible death. The main character's name is Mack, and he has three kids. When the book begins, it mentions that Mack has been working alot, he was picking up overtime to make more money. This implies that Mack had not been spending much time with his children. To make up for this lost time, he decides to take his kids on a camping trip to bond. The kids were excited to spends some quality time with their dad. They go on the camping trip and everything is smooth sailing. They meet another family camping on the same site, and quickly become friends. Mack is relaxing and enjoying the beautiful lake where his two kids are paddling in a kayak. He chuckles as they splash each other with the oars. Suddenly, the kayak tips and his children are thrown underwater, and they cannot tip the kayak back over. Mack, remembering some of his lifeguard skills as a teen, dives into the water and swims toward his kids. He manages to untangle his kids from the canoe in time. As he comes ashore, he looks to find his other daughter, Missy, who was last seen coloring on a picnic bench before all of the commotion. Missy was not on the picnic bench where she was last seen. The other family had not seen the little girl disappear. The two families team up, and search the campsite for the little girl. They search the tents, the showers, her favorite spot, everywhere. But they cannot find Missy anywhere. The police are called and a search party is formed. They search for hours and hours but they cannot find Missy. Mack thinks back and shortly after he discovered Missy is gone he saw a man in a green truck speeding past the campsite, and wonders if that has to do anything with his daughter's disappearance. The authorities find a small pin of a ladybug in Missy's coloring book on the picnic bench. They tell Mack that his daughter was most likely abducted by a serial killer nicknamed, the Little Lady Killer. His trademark was that ladybug pin found in her coloring book. Mack brings up the man in the green truck, and they extend their search radius. They find a fresh pair of tire tracks leading to a very remote trail. The party follows the tracks and come across a very old, rundown and beaten shack, with the door loosely hanging off of it's hinges. The police search the house and what was found was Missy's favorite yellow dress, the one she was last wearing, soaked in her blood. She was presumed dead. Mack was devastated, his little girl was gone. He did not know how to deal with the pain, so his body chose a method for him, depression. He called it, the "Great Sadness". He said as soon as he felt an ounce of happiness, he could feel the Great Sadness wrapping around him, like a blanket of despair. Four long years after his daughter's death, he finds a note in his mailbox. A note telling Mack to go back to the shack in which his daughter was killed. A note, signed by God. Mack had a difficult decision to make, go to the Shack and meet up with this "God", or continue to live his life with the "Great Sadness". He decided to take his chances and go see "God". He comes prepared though, he brings a gun just in case it is someone with means to harm Mack. Mack doesn't tell his wife that he is gone, and goes of on his voyage to the place that caused him the greatest depression of his life. He rolls up to the Shack, and nothing is there. He walks inside. What he finds in the Shack, changes his life forever.
1. What do you think Mack found inside the Shack?
Why do you think that?
2. Do you think that the man in the green truck had anything to do with his daughter's disappearance? Why or why not?