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Word Count: 1,068
Generally it is believed that in order for an author to write a successful text they need to effectively engage their audience and maintain their interest throughout by incorporating aspects they know will prove appealing and entertaining However the more experienced reader should have developed a different understanding of reasons for why a text may be successful Texts can be written in order to be received on a deeper level by placing the reader in a position they may not be accustomed to and one where they are confronted with issues that are challenging Robert Cormier is a highly skilful and successful writer and one of the reasons for his success is his ability to write unusual and unique novels He does not write to fulfil a readers expectations by proving satisfyingly predictable Instead he constructs his texts in order to unsettle the reader and positions them to question their views and attitudes Cormiers novel After the First Death is seemingly just a typical thriller involving a bus of young children and their driver Kate who are taken hostage by a group of terrorists the main two referred to as Artkin and Miro Mark an anti-terrorism general uses his own son Ben to launch a counter-attack against the terrorists This plot creates an interesting story line however Cormier wrote After the First Death to work on a much deeper level The readers views of western society are challenged by the text and the extent to which they are altered indicates the success of the novel Growing up in a western society we as citizens are influenced heavily by the media and are positioned to view terrorists in an entirely negative light They are portrayed as merciless cold-blooded killers of innocent civilian life and before reading After the First Death I had absolutely no understanding of them nor hint of compassion Cormier positions the reader to try and gain an understanding of terrorists through
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