NVCC Annandale Reading and Writing Center

NVCC Annandale Reading and Writing Center

Reading? Writing? Come on over to the Center :) The Reading and Writing Center is located in CG 409, and it is run by the Reading and Writing Center Supervisor.

The goals of the Center are: to provide tutoring (small group and one-on-one); host instructional workshops; and foster reading and writing-related initiatives at the Annandale Campus.

Operating as usual


Good afternoon everyone! This week's is An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson! This is a standalone YA fantasy debut for readers who also enjoy other works like A Court of Thorns and Roses and Throne of Glass. It's also for the ones who enjoy stories about characters embarking on one journey that unfolds completely opposite than how it was supposed to. It's got a fierce heroine and a stoic prince with a complicated relationship to his crown. So come, come! Adventure awaits!


Animal Farm is one of the most prolific pieces of Western critiques on the corruption of the socialist ideals in the Soviet Union. In the form of an animal fable, Orwell’s story retells the emergence and development of Soviet communism. In this story, all animals live together in one farm with no human to oppress or control them. Their leader preaches to them that they must work towards paradise. However, once their leader dies, three young pigs plan to send the farmer away, aspiring to create a society where the animals can be equal, free, and happy. From there, the animals take control of the farm into which they thrive at first until some of them begin to fight for dominance over the farm. It creates a domino effect that allows the farm to fall into chaos.
Many reactions both loved and hated the events in the book as metaphors for events in World War II history, but satire isn’t always everyone’s cup of tea. We still love an author who writes books just to eloquently say that he strongly disliked the way England and the Soviet Union were handling their economy. So very subtle.


Hello again! This week's recommendation is too good to wait one more day for. This is a contemporary that actually takes place here in Virginia! (Totally incentive enough to convince you all to read it, right?) It's a paranormal fantasy that wonderfully fulfills all the checkboxes for that Autumn aesthetic. It's a book of magical mystery, adventure, and those dark academic vibes. It's dreamy, moody, and grounded. Perfect for earl grey in the morning while you sit by a windowsill and watch the morning mist rise.


Good morning and happy ! Today we’re going to tell you about Markus Zusak, the author of the #1 bestseller of The Book Thief. The Book Thief spent the longest on the New York Times Bestseller list at over a decade and is now translated into over forty languages. He’s the kind of author that is open about one of the scariest (or most helpful) things that happen to authors when they spend more than a couple of years writing a book. For him, it was becoming a different person from who he was when he'd began writing in the past. It’s one of the realities that we have to face, for changing who we are as people means that our story could become completely different from how it started. And that’s really scary for any author to need to change the very fiber of what their story used to be for it to become better lest they put it away, never to be finished. Zusak is an example of how taking the time to write each of his books has led him to create works that are just as good as the last. It’s a good example of how it should only be motivating. Don’t give up folks.


We interrupt your current programming to bring you another ! A classic Charles Dickens novel, we've got Oliver Twist, otherwise known as the Parish Boy's Progress. As a narrative that captures the reality of London’s “dark criminal underbelly”, this story is about an orphan named Oliver, who was born in a workhouse and bought into an apprenticeship with an undertaker. Then, upon running away years later, he is met with a party of juvenile thieves comprised of memorable characters that portray the unsavory life of nineteenth-century criminals. Dickens uses Twist’s tale as commentary on the cruelties of child labor and child criminals that provide readers with eye-opening detail and accurate history in the form of fiction. It was a real eye-opener for readers back then. But then again, Dickens was really throwing some shade at society and sometimes that’s how it needs to be. 🤷‍♀️


Hello friends and welcome to another edition of . Today's quote is from the author, screenwriter, and film director: Steven Chbosky.

You may not have known that Chbosky:
-directed his own film for Perks of Being a Wallflower AND wrote the screenplays for the amazing Rent and the 2017 adaptation of Beauty and the Beast, just to name a few
-is going to direct the new Prince Charming movie
-has actually only written two books, which surprised us too


Hello again! Now that it is September, it is only right to begin offering book recs to help you get into the autumn spirit! This week's recommendation is the graphic novel fresh off the press (as it's only been out in the world for five days) that delivers cute, hilarious, and realistic romances as only Rainbow Rowell can. This is a cozy read that you could most likely get all the way through during your morning coffee, afternoon tea, or what have you. Maybe with a side of apple cider donuts or some smores. You'll thank us later.


Good morning! Happy astrological fall, everyone! We hope that you took the extra long weekend to prepare yourself because we've got another coming your way. Today we bring you David Levithan, an American children's book editor and award-winning author who looks to have had a hand in more books than we can count on our fingers. The focus of his writing, however, is mostly in the young adult category. His most notable works feature strong male gay characters such as Boy Meets Boy and Naomi and Ely's No Kiss List. Three of his novels have been made into films while another has been adapted into a fantasy drama just last year.
And fun fact: Boy Meets Boy started out as a Valentine's Day gift for friends that eventually developed into a full-blown novel that steps outside of the conventional gay teen tropes. I don't know about you, but this track record sounds pretty remarkable. We hope it sparks some inspiration to go pick up one of his books.


Hello and welcome back to Thursday! So today's is Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes. This was published in two parts, becoming one of the most influential pieces of literature in the Spanish Golden Age (and one of the most widely read classics in Western literature.) Previously a parody of the chivalric romances that were popular at the time, the story follows an aging knight who brings along a down-to-earth squire in search for adventure. The first part chronicles his deeds in the name of a fair maiden he meets early in his journey, while the second part tells of Don Quixote's continued quest to break a curse cast upon his fair maiden. However, by the end of his journey, disillusioned by false doings against him, he renounces chivalry as a foolish falsehood. An unfortunate end of a riveting story of courage and honor, but hopefully it'll inspire to you bring (medieval) chivalry back into fashion.


Good morning and welcome to yet another ! Today, we're gonna get down with a novelist of two super popular books in the YA lit genre: Nicola Yoon! Something that makes her writing so enjoyable, especially for The Sun is Also A Star, is that the struggles the characters go through are relatable in a world where the deportation of families and the desire to rebel in the name of love despite a life-threatening disease are real. Her work has been on the New York Times Best Seller List, and both of her novels have been adapted into major motion pictures. If you're looking for emotional roller-coaster rides, take a trip down this alley.


is back! Today's quote is from the unstoppable philosopher and author Ayn Rand.

You may not have known that Rand:
- developed a philosophical system she coined "Objectivism"
- supported rational and ethical egoism and rejected altruism
- had a play published on broadway


Hello again! We wanted to drop by one more time to get our Weekly Reads back off the ground as well! This week's recommendation is The Secret History by Donna Tartt! As one of her superior works, Tartt's eloquent, mysterious prose brings this work to life. Think Dead Poets Society, but much darker and no "Oh captain! My captain!" (But here's one fun fact: they're both set in Vermont!)
Might make you want to sprawl out along a chaise lounge and sigh dramatically while quoting Greek tragedies over dirty martinis and toast to living forever. Sounds like fun.


Good morning and welcome to the second week of the fall semester! The RWC is open again and we bring you another to brighten your morning! Today we present to you Jason Reynolds, a Maryland native having written stunner young adult contemporary fiction and poetic pieces like Long Way Down, All American Boys, For Everyone, the Track Series, and The Boy in the Black Suit. He has more than a handful of awards under his belt for his writing, which focuses on the authentic voices of minority characters as he sees it in today’s society. Relatable to authors like Tomi Adeyemi and Angie Thomas, Reynolds’ work definitely isn’t something to miss out on!


Good morning and welcome to another edition of ! Today we're going to talk about the New York Times bestselling author, Adam Silvera! Silvera writes young adult fiction, more well known for They Both Die at the End, What If It's Us, and More Happy Than Not. He has been nominated for the title of Goodreads Choice Awards Best Young Adult Fiction for providing stories that remind us about the importance of life and death, of the tenderness of love, race, and sexuality (think Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe-esque) in a realistic world we can see ourselves in. Feel free to give this author a shot if you're into thinking and feeling, and don't forget to check out his next novel, Infinity Son, coming 2020!


Break out your markers, coloring pencils, and crayons, because it's Coloring Book Day! Yes, really! I swear we didn't make up a holiday to justify spending a whole day coloring. National Coloring Book Day is a day dedicated to relaxing, relieving stress and of course doing some good old-fashioned coloring. Have fun!😁🖌🖍✏️


It's Friday, and you know what that means! It's time for another fabulous ! The story today is "Forever Overhead" by David Foster Wallace. The plot centers around the birthday of a young boy. It's an important birthday, marking the beginning of his teenage years. He decides to celebrate by going to the pool. As almost a right-of-passage, he decides to go off of the high diving board. Once he gets up there however, he begins feeling overwhelmed. Both the pressure of aging and the water below him freezes him to the spot with fear. Now look at him, he's got anxiety.


August is Romance Awareness Month! It was created by Eileen Buchheim to encourage couples to improve their relationships all year long, not letting it stop at Valentine's Day. Whether you're in a relationship or not, we can all celebrate this month in different ways. Maybe you want to do something special for your partner, or maybe you want to curl up with a romance book and pretend you have someone special to do stuff for. Either way we support you! Here are some fun ways to celebrate romance, no matter your relationship status❤️:



Today is a Thursday worthy of a throwback! So today's is The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde. Ever been so attractive that the very thought of aging leads you to sell your soul so a portrait will age in your place? Well then you definitely have something in common with the wonderfully devilish Dorian Gray. However, the portrait does not only take on the age of Dorian, but also his worldly sins. But Dorian doesn't care! He moves through the world breaking hearts and taking names. He just has to be very careful that he doesn't look too close at the portrait. Because seeing his true self just may be more than he can take.


Welcome to another ! l hope you're ready for a lady whose books are so cool their on the banned books list.😎 Rainbow Rowell is a YA and adult contemporary novelist who has received critical acclaim for her works that push the boundaries of modern relationships. Rowell is known for her imaginative yet realistic characters and well-developed plot-lines. If you are interested in reading books about people who screw things up and fall in love (real words from her website), then this is the author for you!


July 30th is celebrated as National Paperback Book Day because it's the anniversary of the day the first Penguin paperbacks were published!

Paperbacks were revolutionary because they allowed people a more portable way to carry books. Entire worlds that could fit in your pocket! Technology is cool and all, but sometimes nothing beats a real, paper book. Celebrate the holiday by picking up an old paperback favorite.🥳


is here at last! *cue chorus of applause and sighs of relief* Today's quote is from the father of the assembly line and mass production.

You may not have known that Henry Ford:
- Was not actually the inventor of the automobile
- Has 161 patents to his name
- Brought the time to produce a Model T down to 24 seconds


It's raining men! Hallelujah it's ! Today belongs to the internationally bestselling author, Jay Kristoff! Kristoff's specialty is sci-fi and fantasy, giving the world gifts aplenty with bangers like The Nevernight Chronicle, The Lotus Wars, Lifel1k3, Aurora Rising, and The Illuminae Files that he co-authored with Amie Kaufman. He has received six Aurealis Awards, an ABIA, and is published in over thirty-five countries. His writing is either encompassed in corruption and violence or space operas that will blow you out of the sky.
If you're into this diverse mix of adult and YA lit, consider picking up one of his books. But be prepared. He isn't a fan of happy endings. 💀


Time for another ! This one's a literary classic. "A Good Man is Hard to Find" by Flannery O'Connor covers the story of a family vacation that takes a turn for the worst. When a southern family is taking a road trip to Florida, with the news of an escaped convict looming over the head of the grandmother, a car accident puts their plans on hold. While stranded on the side of a road, a stranger appears that will introduce a dialogue on whether or not "good men" even exist.


Good morning everyone! For today's let's give some love to a personal favorite, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. This was probably a common read for everyone in high school, yet hopefully for those who have not read it can come to appreciate Scout's coming-of-age story. First published in 1960, To Kill a Mockingbird was inspired by a real-life trial case of two unjustly convicted African Americans, allowing the story to tastefully tread through themes of racism and prejudice in Alabama during the Great Depression. It is a an eye-opening tale about the the consequences of these aforementioned themes, and how good and evil can live alongside each other in a single place or individual that expands Scout's moral compass more than she could have imagined. As a critically acclaimed criticism on society, this is something not to be missed!


It's a beautiful day for a don't you think? Today's lady is the lovely Alice Hoffman, novelist extraordinaire. Her books center mainly around magic, realism, and non-standard romances. You may know her best from the film adaptation of her novel Practical Magic. If you enjoyed Hoffman's brand of ironic humor, unique characters, and magic-driven plots, then you definitely want to give her books a read!

Photos from NVCC Annandale Reading and Writing Center's post 07/23/2019

Morning everyone! Since we missed yesterday's post, today is double trouble - both and !

This week's man of the hour is none other than the American poet, novelist and children's writer Benjamin Alire Sáenz. Specializing in fiction, this author has won multiple awards for his young adult novels. His works explore the complexities of human nature, family, friendship, loss, and love. If you're interested in discovering the secrets of our universe, pick up one of his books, get comfortable, and prepare to be amazed!

Lastly, our quote for today is provided by this fearless New York writer.

You may not have known that Ayesha Siddiqi:
- Originally worked for Buzzfeed
- Is Editor-in-Chief of The New Inquiry
- Acts as a strong advocate for race, gender, and social minorities


Happy everyone! The story for you today is titled "The Scarlet Ibis" by James Hurst. For those of you who don't know, an Ibis is a kind of bird and acts as the main metaphorical device in the story. In the plot, the speaker is recalling the birth of his younger brother, Doodle, and how he was born very sick. This fact greatly disappointed the speaker, and decides to smother the infant Doodle in his sleep. However, when he sees his brother smile he changes his mind. From then on, the narrator acts as a teacher to his younger brother. Though, it seems that the toxic expectation and embarrassment for Doodle, may result in an event that few could predict.


Hello friends! This let's take a dive back into our childhood with a well known classic, Peter Pan (alternatively titled The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up) by J.M. Barrie. Now, you may be familiar with the Disney movie, but the novel is far more emotionally complex. Originally written as a play, Peter Pan explores themes of childhood innocence and escapism. It is an intriguing narrative about the natural and necessary action of growing up, and an introduction to a boy who refuses to do so. With fairies, mermaids, pirates, Native Americans, and lost boys, this story is one that is enchanting as it is eye-opening.


And we’re back with yet another ! Our lady of the day is none other than Chinese-American novelist Amy Tan. Amy Tan has written numerous novels exploring family, motherhood, and the stories of Chinese-Americans. Tan’s work has won awards for nearly 20 years, including the National Book Award in 1989, and the Golden Plate Award from the Academy of Achievement in 1996. Her bold and even controversial work has sparked discussion, debate, and change in both the way we view literature and the way view ourselves.


Goooood morning! It's a good day for some thinking wouldn't you say? The source of our quote this fine is an author who changed the way we look at wardrobes forever.

You may not have known that C.S. Lewis:
- And J.R.R. Tolkien once went to a party dressed as polar bears
- Destroyed the first version of The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe
- Was not always Christian


Good morning! Let's celebrate another ! Today we're going to give some love to one of our own, Zachary Barnes! He spins words into magic and can make you feel like you're standing right in the midst of battle with his luscious prose (the post-finish book hangover was real.) He's probably also one of those authors who would kill off one main and two sides in each book and feel no remorse ( ). But more importantly, he's a man of many talents who brings great knowledge and inspiration to all of us here at the center every day. So now come and spread the love. See what you've been missing out on. And then maybe, hopefully, you could just one day see Avengarde as an audiobook courtesy of the team. Because that would be totally rad. Best experience you'll ever have.


It's time for another and boy oh boy is this one cool! Imagine a world where everybody is equal...by law. No one can be stronger, no one can be smarter, no one can be more beautiful. In fact, any exceptional qualities are cancelled out by government-mandated handicaps. One teenager in particular named Harrison Bergeron is so ridiculously acceptable that the he's under suspicion of plotting to overthrow the government. Harrison is taken away from his parents and arrested. When he escapes from jail, he sets off a series of events that will make you question whether or not total equality is everything is cracked up to be.


At the end of the day is another ! This week we're delving into the French historical novel by Victor Hugo, Les Miserables. The title can be translated to "The Miserable Ones", and with good reason. Les Miserables covers the topics of moral codes, law and grace, justice, love, politics, Parisian architecture and WOW I'm starting to see why this book is 1,400 pages long. But this shouldn't deter you. In fact, you should take this book as a challenge. It is considered one of the greatest novels of the 19th century for a reason, after all. Let yourself fall into the depths of the world painted by Victor Hugo, and be very thankful that you are not one of his characters.


Good morning, everyone!
Welcome everyone, to another awesome ! Today we're highlighting an amazing Pakistani-American author who is breaking boundaries in the young adult fantasy genre. Sabaa Tahir is a New York Times Bestselling author of the Ember in the Ashes series. Published in 2015, her three books have become one of the most revered books in the bookish community. Her series narrates of the journey of Laia and reluctant soldier Elias as they set out to take down the tyrannical government of the Empire. Her story has inspired readers of minority groups to let their stories shine and never let their voices go unheard. She advocates for immigrants, refugees, and other marginalized groups so that they may have a better hope for the future. Pick this one up if you're looking for an impacting read that compels us all to find our power. And don't forget to hit up her Instagram to catch her put talking vegetables on display and entertain her followers with her meddling beaver and Marley the hand puppet owl in her stories! It won't disappoint.


Hello, there! You're just in time for ! Today's quote is from a Welsh poet, orator and priest. To put into perspective when he was born, all pictures of them are paintings. But that doesn't stop this quote from being simultaneously timeless AND timely.

You may not have known that George Herbert:
- Was a member of parliament
- Was born into a family who loved the arts
- Only wrote faith-based poetry


Whatta man, whatta man, whatta man, whatta mighty good ! Today is all about Alan Moore, the magician, anarchist, conspiracy theorist you never knew you needed in your life. Known as one of the best graphic novel/comic book writer in the English language, Moore has had several movies produced based on his stories. Including: Watchmen, V for Vendetta, Batman: The Killing Joke, and others. Moore specializes in science-fiction, superhero, and horror genres, with each story more compelling than the last. If you like haunting stories with equally haunting pictures, look no further!


Happy Friday! Or more important, happy ! Our story today is called "The Semplica Girl Diaries" by George Saunders. The story is a unique, dystopian tale that provides an interesting depiction of a toxic class system. It follows an unnamed narrator/diarist, who has won the lottery. With his newly acquired wealth, he decides to flaunt it. In this futuristic society, the best way to do that is to buy and display Semplica Girls (women from impoverished countries who sign a contract to live as lawn ornaments). Though happy with his new purchase, the narrator's daughter is only mortified. A terrifying commentary on wealth, society, and personal definitions of success, this story is one you'll be thinking about long after you finish reading it.


Good morning! It's yet again, and today we are going to tap into our inner child with The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. This book follows a pilot who crashes in the desert and meets a little boy who misses his rose on his little planet very far away. We follow him, the little prince, as he retells his journey through the universe, encountering the sadness of the adult mindset and other extraordinary things. And through this narrative, the little prince comes to teach the pilot the importance of appreciating the little things, of looking up at the stars at night and watching beautiful sunsets.


Welcome everyone, to another wonderful ! Today we're highlighting another up-and-coming poet who is revolutionizing the artistic form. Warsan Shire is a British writer, poet, editor, and teacher. In 2013, she was awarded the inaugural Brunel University African Poetry Prize! Her poems focus on telling the stories of those whose voices are ignored. Through her poetry, immigrants, refugees, and other marginalized groups are given a voice. If you are looking for powerful poetry that highlights the world's injustices in a beautiful way, you should definitely give her work a try.

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