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Nick Smith

on 20 August 2015

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Transcript of ASHFALL

The time period is modern day, 21st century in Cedar Falls, Iowa. At the end of the book it is still the 21st century, but the location changes to Warren, Illinois. The main event affecting the plot is the Yellowstone Super volcanic Eruption.
The Protagonist(s) are Darla Edmunds and Alex Halprin. Being the main protagonist, Alex is very determined and strong, willing to do anything or kill anyone to survive. I think Darla is a protagonist as well because she ends up saving Alex many times, with her helpful and reassuring traits. They both become very mature during their fight to live, fighting off many antagonists throughout the book.
The main antagonist in the book was the weather. The weather was harsh, and blinding, and repeatedly held Alex back, causing him to run into other antagonists like Target. Target was intrusive, demanding, and very harsh. It was very difficult for Alex to get to where he wanted to go without finding a way to go faster (using skis).
Man vs Man: As Alex continues to try to find his family and food, he meets Target at a campfire, and the situation escalates into a Man vs Man conflict. "He swung it overhand, chopping at my neck.I threw my right arm up to block and caught him on the wrist."
Man vs. Himself: On page 97 Alex expresses anger towards himself for not braking into a house for food, worried what he might have found. "Perhaps I should have broken into that house-there might have been water there. A few hours later, I was cussing at myself as an idiot for not breaking into that house."

Man vs. Nature: Both Alex and Darla express their hard time progressing through the ash, always slowing them down and making it hard to breath. On page 53, Alex leaves Joe and Darren's house, "Running through the ashfall wasn't easy. Water and ash scoured my face. With every step, my feet sank into the gooey mess."
Man vs. Society: Alex becomes very infuriated when he realizes that even though wheat and supplies were not far way from the FEMA camp, the captain refused to get it. Page 378, "People are starving! I gestured with my clenched fists." "People are starving all over." replied the Captain
Ashfall: By Mike Mullin
Copyright Date: 2010
Post Apocalyptic Fiction
Nick Smith
9th Grade Honors L.A. P6
Simile: Page 51 "A dark stain marred the door, like someone had hurled a blood filled water balloon at it." This is a simile because it includes "like' for the comparison.
Metaphor: Page 359, "Or we could improvise a zillion mortars and pestles." Darla refers to that as a solution, but know that would be impossible
Irony: Page 3, "It was disappointing to be left without some kind of warning, admonition against wild parties and booze." Alex is disappointed that the complete opposite happened when his family left, not telling him to avoid wild parties.
Personification: Page 8, "Long tendrils of flame licked into the attic above my sister's collapsed room." Alex describes the flames wit human traits, with providing imagery as well.

This was one of the better books I have ever read, and some nights I honestly had a hard time putting it down. Mike Mullin did a great job with rising actions and suspense throughout the whole book, making you wonder every time you turn the page what the characters will do next. I really liked the section when Alex and Darla are in the FEMA camp, it gave me the feeling of being trapped from reaching Alex's goal and making me want to make Alex's decisions at that point. But it is a somewhat happy-ending story that leaves you hanging. I'll be starting Ashen Winter soon.
CLIMAX: Alex and Darla break out of the FEMA camp in a bulldozer, flattening the wire fences and letting hundreds of inmates escape, causing immediate response by the guards and being chased by three humvees.
EXPOSITION: Alex's parents leave to go visit his uncle in Warren, an hour drive, leaving Alex at home alone playing video games and relaxing after a school day.
RESOLUTION: After situating in Warren with Alex's family, Alex and Darla prepare to go back out and find his parents. They are left with endless supplies of pork and a sense of hope that Alex describes on the last page.
FALLING ACTION: Alex and Darla get to Warren after days of travel. They finally find Alex's uncle and settle there, but soon find out that Alex's parents are gone.
RISING ACTION (4): Target finds where Alex was staying, raping and killing Darla's mother, then torching the house, leaving them with no place to stay. They eventually decide to try to get to Warren, stopping at some places for supplies and food.
RISING ACTION (3): Alex makes his way with little food, eventually running into Target who tries to kill him. Alex flees, leaving both him and Target wounded, and finds Darla's barn with little life left.
RISING ACTION (2): Joe and Darren's house gets invaded, leaving Darren no choice but to kill the remaining invaders, prompting Alex to flee and try to find his family.
RISING ACTION (1): Alex's house gets hit with debris from the volcanic eruption, lighting it on fire and forcing Alex to have to stay with Joe and Darren.
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