Journal #1: Chapter 1: That Was Then, This is Now is quickly becoming an intriguing novel. In Chapter one, we only meet a few characters; Bryon; who is the main protagonist, Mark; who is Bryon’s best friend and lives with him and his mother. M&M; who is a friend of theirs, Charlie; who is a bartender, Curly; who is in a gang, and Tim; the leader of the “Shepard Gang. ” Bryon is 16 years old, and plays the biggest role in the novel.
He’s good at pool, loves to fight, has a baby-face, dark hair, and is a pretty big guy.
Mark Is 15 years old and lives with his “brother,” Bryon. He’s a good wrestler, strong, small and compact, has golden eyes and golden hair. Although, Mark’s a criminal. He was caught hot-wiring a car and is currently on probation. I can tell Mark’s going to be an interesting character. M&M is 13 years old. His real name hasn’t been mentioned yet, but people call him M&M because he’s constantly eating M&M’s.
He’s wide-eyed, serious, and awfully nice, has charcoal hair colour, long hair, always wore an old army jacket, and always had a metal peace symbol around his neck on rawhide string.
Not much is said about the book, and what it’s really about, but on extremely important thing is that M&M gets jumped by three guys In the “Shepard Gang,” but Bryon and Mark stepped in and helped get rid of them.
M&M Also gets sensitive and cries when Mark gets the idea to beat up a black guy because he’s different. I believe M&M lives a horrendous life. My prediction for this novel is that Mark is going to do something drastic to screw up his life. I also predict that M&M’s peace necklace is going to play a big role, and will be a symbol.
Journal #2: Chapter 2: Mark’s real mother and father killed each other when they were drunk when Mark was just 9 years old. So Bryon’s mother adopted him. The two have been friends for as long as they can remember. The two went to the hospital to visit their mother. She just had a big operation that costed a lot of money. They hitched a ride with a hippie named Randy. He had long hair and a beard. When they arrived at the hospital, they hardly spent any time with their mother. She told Mark and Bryon to go and visit the patient across the hall as he had no visitors.
Instead they went downstairs to the snack bar, where an old friend from elementry school greeted Bryon. She was working and her name was Cathy. Cathy was 15 years old, had groovy long dark hair with bangs, big gray eyes, long black eyelashes and had a beautiful smile. She was M&M’s older sister, and Bryon wishes to see her again. So Bryon and Mark decided that they better pay that patient a visit. His name was Mike Chambers. Mike was put into the hospital because of his good deed. A black girl was getting picked on and bullied by a few white men, so Mike scared them away and drived the girl home.
Her name was Connie and when they pulled into her street, about a dozen of black guys pulled him out of the car. Connie said “kill the white bastard! ” And they almost did. This isn’t the last time we’ll see Mike Chambers. We might even see Connie at some point. Journal #3: Chapter 3: Chapter three was filled with action-packed drama. Bryon desperately needed a date to the dance, so he asks Cathy to go. Cathy agreed and Charlie the bartender decided to let Bryon borrow his car so Bryon can pick up Cathy.
Bryon asks Mark if he wants to double-date with him and Cathy, but Mark decided to go and get drunk with his buddies Terry, Williamson, and Curtis. When Bryon arrives at Cathy’s house, we find out that M&M’s father consistantly verbally bullies M&M by making fun of his clothes, his hair, and his grades. That Saturday night at the dance we meet Angela Shepard, who is one of Bryon’s ex-girlfriends. Angela is sassy, beautiful, little, dark-skinned, and has curly long hair. When Angela approaches Bryon and says “Hello,” he makes a rude comment, which makes Angela fire back by calling Bryon a few names and departed from the scene.
Towards the end of the night. Bryon finds out that Mark was smashed by a beer bottle just outside the school. Mark was defending his friend Curtis from some dude who happened to be good friends with Angela to hurt him. Angela wasn’t too fond of Curtis. Mark was rushed to the hospital and got ten stiches in his head, but fortunately returned home safe that night. So far, I’ve noticed that M&M was jumped, Mike Chambers was beat up, and Mark got smashed by a beer bottle. I think that Bryon might get hurt soon. Journal #4 Chapter 4: Finally in Chapter four, we figure out who Terry is.
Terry is 16 years old, short, round, and he’s a real nut. Chapter four is interesting because we start to see the real sides of some people. While Mark spends days in bed, Bryon spends his time sticking to his side. He reads to him, because Mark can’t read very well, and they have a lot of brother bonding talk. They talk about their past, present, and wonder about the future. This may be the last time we see something like this. When Mark returns back to school he gets caught hot-wiring the principals car. Like always, he somehow got out of this sticky situation, but Bryon’s starting to get frusteratd with Mark’s terrible behaviour.
When Mark attempts to explain himself, Bryon tells him to “shut up,” which can change everything! This novel is going to change, and I predict that Mark and Bryon are going to drift apart. Journal #5: Chapter 5: This is the beginning of a new life for Bryon. Life for him was changing as we know it. In need of some money, Bryon decided to play pool against Dirty Dave for money. The boys met Dirty Dave that night at the bar. This guy was in his mid twenties, and looked like a hustler. Charlie always told them how dangerous that bar can be. Bryon won a total of $25 from this guy.
It was unbelieveable! After the bar closed though, Mark and Bryon were pulled into an alley, and threatened by Dave and one of his buddies. They pulled a gun of Bryon and Mark and demanded their money back, but Charlie stepped in with a shotgun. The kids got away from Dave and his buddy, but they shot Charlie right about the eye. Bryon is scared scarred for life. Bryon had began spending a lot of time with Cathy. Over the last two weeks, he’s been spending more time with Cathy than Mark, which was unusual. Bryon has Charlie’s car, and he took Cathy out for cokes quite often.
Since this traject incident, Bryon was changing, and Mark wasn’t. Journal #6: Chapter 6: Still shocked and devastated, Bryon continues to spend most of his time with Cathy. Cathy suspects that M&M has started smoking marajuana, and we learn that Bryon has tried it before. She’s worried about M&M because her father gives him a hard time at home. Bryon, Mark, Cathy and M&M all go to the ribbon. It’s a two-mile stretch of just driving. There were restaurants, a shopping center, movie theatre and much more! Yet, they were complaining that there was nothing to do.
Mark got into a scrap with an 18 year old because he yelled a few things to Mark from the truck in the left lane. Mark just hopped out of the car, punched the guy in the face, and ran off into the car. They took off, but the truck had to go left because it was on the left lane. So they were safe. Cathy and Mark don’t quite get along. They constantly argue because of Mark’s poor behaviour, and his bad additude. Byron begins to feel uncomfortable because the two people he cares about most are always fighting. After driving up and down the ribbon, M&M demands Bryon to stop the car at the hotdog stands.
When the vehicle stopped, M&M ran off to a few of his friends. Since they were In the middle of the road, they had to drive off, and when they returned to look for him, he vanished! Journal #7: Chapter 7: The search for M&M continues, but no luck. Cathy and Bryon searched up and down the ribbon in hopes to find him. Bryon got a job at a local supermarket. He was sacking groceries and didn’t quite enjoy it, except for the fact that he was raking in the money. Mark was also somehow making money, but no one knew where it came from except Mark.
Bryon and Mark went goofing around one night around the ribbon. Bryon constantly kept looking out for M&M, while Mark was scouting out girls. They pulled into a parking lot where Angela and a bunch of her girl friend’s were at. They were drunk and Angela was all over Bryon. She was hugging him, telling him how much she misses him and telling him about how screwed up her life is. Obviously, the boys weren’t buying into anything she said, and didn’t really care, so when she passed out in their car, Mark pulled out a pair of scissors. He cut her hair off and left her on the sidewalk to sleep.
Angela left some booze in the car, so Byron decided to finish it. Apparently, Rum makes him emotional, causing him to cry. He began expressing his emotions to Mark and wondering “what if? ” about everything. Telling him his feelings for Cathy and how scared he is of everything that’s happening to them. Mark tells Bryon that he knows where M&M is hiding at. This moment changed everything. I’ve never seen Mark and Bryon so close to each other in a long time. But I doubt it’ll last very long. After all, the two are changing. Journal #8: Chapter 8: Great news: Mark knows where M&M is at.
He told Bryon he’d take him to go and see him, but also tells him M&M most likely won’t come home. Bryon doesn’t tell Cathy that he and Mark are going to see M&M. On the way to this mysterious location, the boys fight about how Mark’s a bad influence. They arrived at a hippie house. When they walked in they were greeted by some weird girl who had paint all over her. When they went upstairs to look for him in the room, he wasn’t in there. Just about half a dozen of teenage hippies were talking about a book, and smoking marajuana. M&M’s nickname was “Baby Freak,” in that house.
When they left, Mark and Bryon got into another fight about Bryon being judgemental. Tim and Curly from the Shepard Gang appeared for the first time since the first chapter. They were in jail, but they did their time and their out. Tim is Angela’s brother, and he confronted Bryon about the situation that happened the other night when she was drunk. Mark wasn’t there, so instead of lying, Byron took full responsibility, and accepted his consequences, even though it was Mark who did it. Bryon was beat up, and passed out. When he finally gained consciousness Mark was at his aid.
Bryon told him what had happened, and a furious Mark wanted revenge. This time, things were different; Bryon didn’t want revenge, he’s tired of going back and fourth with everything. Bryon is completely changing, and Mark’s not. Bryon is almost a completely different person since he started dating Cathy. Journal #9: Chapter 9: Mark drove Bryon to the hospital the next day to get fifteen stitches in his head. It was disgusting! Mark was extremely upset because of the fact that Bryon won’t let him get back at the Shepards, and because Bryon didn’t hate them for doing what they did.
The two couldn’t understand each other. Mark didn’t understand why Bryon didn’t like fighting anymore. Bryon didn’t understand why Mark loved fights. Cathy came to visit Bryon at his house. They told each other their true feelings, and that they love each other, then Bryon revealed M&M’s location to her. It took about three or four days for Bryon to recover. He went to the cemetary to mourn Charlie. Bryon took Cathy to the hippie house. They approached a guy named Red. Red was a big, heavy guy with fire-coloured hair, a beard and a mustache. He told them that M&M had just tried acid.
M&M was upstairs laying in bed. Bryon hardly reconized him, his hair was down to his shoulders, he was a lot thinner, he was dirty, and looked suspicious. M&M told them he screamed and screamed but no one helped him, but he was talking about the spiders that were eating him. He was high. He looked sick, so Cathy and Bryon took him to the hospital to meet his father. Journal #10: The theme of, “That was then, this is now,” is loyalty vs doing what’s right. Bryon really wants to be loyal to Mark, but struggles because he doesn’t like his criminal acts. Another theme is change. Bryon changes hroughout the book, he becomes more responsible, and makes smarter choices. He also realizes reality, and what it can really do, while Mark struggles with growing up, and just lives for the thrill of the moment, which leads him into prison. The setting of the story is in Tulsa Oklahoma, in the 1960’s. They lived in a rough neighborhood. Some of the main characters are: Bryon Douglas, Mark, Cathy Carlson, M&M Carlson, Mrs. Douglas and Charlie. Some of the minor characters are: Ponyboy Curtis, Angela Shepard, Tim Shepard, Curly Shepard, Mike Chambers, Terry Jones, Mr. Jim Carlson, Mrs. Carlson, and Dirty Dave.
Report the Ending: The ending was absolutely shocking! Bryon walked into his room and layed down on his bed. He searched the room for cigarettes, only to find out that Mark had pills underneath his bed. In that particular moment, Bryon was stressed out and frusterated about everything and everyone. Everything had just added up and Bryon was a ticking time-bomb. He called the cops. About a minute later, Mark waled in and was caught. He heard the sirens down the street, but instead of running away, he sat down in the chair beside Bryon and said, “why are you doing this to me, buddy? Bryon, just tell me. When the police arrived, they slapped handcuffs on Mark. He was sentenced to five years in the State Reformatory. About six months later, Bryon was finally eligible to visit Mark. He wasn’t pleased with the results though. Bryon tried to straighten Mark up. Mark responded with, “I needed to make sure I hated you,” and “when I get outa here, you ain’t never going to see me again. ” Mark was eventually sent to the State Prison. The outcome was spectacular! Everything kind of just happened. I’m satisfied with the book overall, it was fantastic! I just want to know M&M’s real name though.
What really bothers me most, is I want to know what happens. Does Bryon meet up with Mark at some point in their future? Do they work things out? Does Mark straighten up his act? I’ll never know. People don’t change, they just become more of who they really are. Summary for the Back of the Novel For as long as they can remember, Bryon and Mark have been best friends, they were juvenile delinquents. After losing people, and gaining new people, reality kicks in. Things are changing! Bryon is growing up, changing his ways and becoming more responsible. Mark just lives the same way he always has.
The two are growing apart, until Bryon makes an astonishing discovery about Mark. One that will change both their lives forever Character Development The main protagonist on “That was then, this is now,” Bryon has changed greatly throughout the novel. He comes from being a criminal, to a matured adult. At the beginning of the book, Bryon was self-centered. He only cared about himself and Mark, he didn’t care about anyone else around him, or what he did to them. Bryon always got into fights without a care in the world, and he always hurt innocent girls, by telling them he loves them without meaning.
He was a player, but love struck him. Cathy changed him into a caring man. Who hates fighting, and hates criminals. Bryon becomes responsible. When The Shepards confront him about cutting Angela’s hair off, he says “It was a rotten thing to do and I’m sorry. ” This shows how responsible Bryon is. At one time, Bryon liked to hustle people, drink alcohol, get girls, and smoke cigarettes. He’s a pretty bad person. Although, Bryon grew up. At the end of the novel, Bryon states that he’s been getting straight A’s, studied constantly and doesn’t care about anyone or anything anymore. Bryon learned a thing or two from everyone.
Mark, Cathy, M&M, his mother, Charlie, Mike, Tim, Curly, and even Angela. He’s a mixture of all of their personalities. Life will never be the same for Bryon without Mark. He’ll always be left wondering. “What if? ” Quotes 1. Pg. 41, Mike: “I still don’t hate negroes, least of all Connie. I mean, I can almost see why she did it. ” * Mike was beat up by black people, all because of Connie. She got them to beat him up. The thing is; Mike doesn’t hate her, or any of the people who did it. Why? 2. Pg. 46, Mark: “Too bad she can look so good and be so rotten. ” * This is sort of funny, because it’s kind of true.
Some girls who look good, can be so rotten. 3. Pg. 58, Bryon: “Buddy boy, you are dead. You had just better make up your mind to that. When I get through with you, you are going to be dead. ” * Bryon says this to the guy who clubbed Mark with a beer bottle. It shows how much he loves Mark, and what he’d do for him. 4. Pg. 68, Mark: “Do you ever get the feeling that the whole thing is changin’? Like somethin’ is coming to an end because somethin’ else is beginning? * This is important because this is where Mark and Bryon began to feel the change in their relationship. 5. Pg. 00, Bryon: “I wonder if when I get to be twenty, I would think about how stupid I was at sixteen. ” * I like this quote because it’s true. When you look back at your past, you kind of wonder why you did certain things, and how stupid your mistakes seem. 6. Pg. 106, Mark: “Nothing bad happens to you when you’re a kid. ” * True. Even when you commit crimes, the authorities always let you off with a warning. 7. Pg. 117, Mark: “You can’t walk through your whole life saying, ‘what if? ’” * I like this one because it’s realistic. Why do we wonder that? 8. Pg. 127, Bryon: “Yeah that’s the truth, and I’m sorry it happened. * This is a sign of Bryon growing up. Instead of lying like usual, he decided to tell the straight up truth. 9. Pg. 135, Bryon: “Thanks for letting me use your car Charlie. Thanks for saving my life. ” * This is what Bryon says to Charlie’s grave. He’s expressing his appreciation for him, even though he’s dead. 10. Pg. 158, Mark: “Like a friend once said to me, ‘That was then, and this is now. ’” * This is interesting because that “friend” that said that to Mark was Bryon. It reveals Mark’s hate for Bryon, but also reveals that deep down, Mark will never forget Bryon.