So I asked, ‘what are you?’ I remember they said, ‘A function of time and place.’ – Page 81 of N.J. Campbell’s Found Audio As a reader with a never-ending to-be-read pile, sometimes life can feel like a joyous but … Continue reading
When two of your biggest interests are literature and cinema, it’s a mental tug-of-war battle trying to decide which of these interests to give in to. For this reason, I decided to cull together a list of films that either involve/relate to books, or for some reason strike me as “bookish.” This way, you sort of get a two-for-one deal of books and movies, even if you only did one of those things!
1: Dead Poets Society (1989, Dir. Peter Weir)
I watched this film the summer before I took a course about poetry, solely for the reason of getting myself interested in the subject. In fact, it is John Keating (Robin Williams)’s job in the film to make his all-boys preparatory school class like poetry enough to take his course seriously. Besides being a film heavily invested in literary & poetic history, it’s a touching look at the impact a teacher can have on their students.
Related book recommendations: The Wasteland by T.S Eliot, any anthology of Modern Poetry. (Norton makes a great one.)
2. Stranger than Fiction (2006, Dir. Marc Forster)
This one has “fiction” in the title, so you can guess it involves books. Unfortunately for Harold Crick (Will Ferrell), it does. You see, Karen Eiffel (Emma Thompson) is a bestselling author working on a novel about a character she devises named Harold Crick. The thing is, she has a major case of writers block, and she can’t figure out how to kill Harold. Harold, on the other hand, is a real person just trying to navigate his life. And so the comedy and drama ensue. I’m not a huge Will Ferrell fan, but this movie was a pleasant surprise.
3. Love in the Afternoon (1972, Dir. Éric Rohmer)
Any of Rohmer’s Six Moral Tales could be on this list, but I’ve chosen the final tale here, for its explicit references to books and literature. If you’re unfamiliar with the Moral Tales, Rohmer first wrote them all as short stories, and then adapted them into films many years later.
Love in the Afternoon begins with Frédéric (Bernard Verley) & his marriage with Hélène. However, as the movie cover shows you, Chloe (Zouzou) shows up. This is the basic set-up to all the moral tales, actually; a man is in one relationship or likes one person, and is then tempted by another. You see a lot of reading in the film, and Rohmer subtly places in references to art as well.
As this was originally a blog for teens, I suppose I am obligated to let you know that this film is probably rated “R” for nudity/sexual content.
A second Rohmer recommendation would be the short film The Bakery Girl of Monceau. It’s the first film in the Moral Tale series and has no nudity/sexual content.
Related book recommendations: Eric Rohmer’s Six Moral Tales, which are available as short stories/novellas.
I’ll be doing a Part Two at some point in the future, but until then, what bookish films would you recommend? Let me know in the comments below!
In this first week of the year, I managed to complete a fair amount of reading. I am currently about 3/4’s of the way through The Hobbit by J. R. R Tolkien, and read the majority of that amount over the … Continue reading
It somehow occurred to me that a) I had not posted to this blog in over a year *gulp* and that b) 2016 is over in the next two days. At first, I thought 2016 was a fairly disturbing year. … Continue reading
Never did I think I’d find myself rooting for a thief. Thanks, Tabatha.
Disclaimer: I was given a galley of this comic thanks to Diamond Book Distributors (who also own Image Comics!) on Netgalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own, as always.
Publisher: TPub, Diamond Book Distributors
Publication date: November 3rd, 2015
Type of Book: Comic/ Graphic Novel
Official Book Description
Luke works as a mailman in Los Angeles and moonlights as a thief – the empty houses on his postal route are rich, easy pickings for him and his friends. Everything goes as planned until one house turns out to not quite be so empty. The situation spirals out of control, leaving the happy-go-lucky thieves battling for their lives. And all because of Tabatha.
Before Tabatha, my comic reading endeavors had been pretty much limited to reading superhero comic trades from my local library, with a few exceptions, like Saga and Kinski. Tabatha was a nice change that still delivered all the action I’d expect from reading a comic book, with an eerie twist. I loved how it started out almost normal; we follow your average mail delivery guy, and then as you read, the story unfolds and the action builds up. Suddenly, this isn’t just a guy delivering mail and robbing rich houses with his friends. Luke picks the WRONG house. And then you meet Tabatha.
The tale has your fair shares of creepiness and humor. There were times where I laughed at moments on every single page, and times where I had to recollect for a moment before moving on. (I will never become a mail delivery person. Not happening.) But besides the awesome story itself, the artwork is drawn beautifully. I cannot stress that enough. The the panels are drawn with such attention to color and vibrancy that you’ll find it hard to look away.
I can’t believe I’m that person who’s about to talk about a holiday that isn’t for another three months BUT seeing as this comic releases November 3rd, you’ll want to round up your leftover Halloween candy and pick up this creepy and entertaining start to the comic series when it hits the public! (Not literally, of course. I don’t think comics are allowed to do that nowadays. Although, I’d totally watch that happen.)
I’m giving Tabatha 3.75 stars, for being entertaining and beautifully drawn. If you can take creepiness, you’ll enjoy it. If you’re someone like me, it’s definitely entertaining, but I think I’ll stick to my usual Ms. Marvel for now.
We all love our book into movie adaptations. We love finding out movies were originally based on books, and even better, that our favorite books are being made into movies. This fall, we have another one of these cases; The … Continue reading
Release date: October 6, 2015
Disclaimer: The Disney Book Group over at Disney-Hyperion kindly provided me with a digital galley/digital ARC of this book on Netgalley. I was not obligated to review it, but I would love to share my thoughts with you anyway! (And thank you, to them, because I have been yearning to read this book since I first heard it existed!)
Ok, I know I’m a little early in the game to review this. But the book is available for preorder now for all you lovely readers, and I wanted to offset some of the advance negative comments I’ve read about this book. I actually squealed with delight when I heard I was being given a chance to review this novel for myself!
Lo-Melkhiin killed three hundred girls before he came to her village, looking for a wife. When she sees the dust cloud on the horizon, she knows he has arrived. She knows he will want the loveliest girl: her sister. She vows she will not let her be next.
And so she is taken in her sister’s place, and she believes death will soon follow. Lo-Melkhiin’s court is a dangerous palace filled with pretty things: intricate statues with wretched eyes, exquisite threads to weave the most beautiful garments. She sees everything as if for the last time. But the first sun rises and sets, and she is not dead. Night after night, Lo-Melkhiin comes to her and listens to the stories she tells, and day after day she is awoken by the sunrise. Exploring the palace, she begins to unlock years of fear that have tormented and silenced a kingdom. Lo-Melkhiin was not always a cruel ruler. Something went wrong.
Far away, in their village, her sister is mourning. Through her pain, she calls upon the desert winds, conjuring a subtle unseen magic, and something besides death stirs the air.
Back at the palace, the words she speaks to Lo-Melkhiin every night are given a strange life of their own. Little things, at first: a dress from home, a vision of her sister. With each tale she spins, her power grows. Soon she dreams of bigger, more terrible magic: power enough to save a king, if she can put an end to the rule of a monster.
I have not read the original collection of stories, One Thousand and One Nights that I believe this novel is a new retelling of. I also have not read The Wrath and the Dawn, which is also a retelling of the aforementioned story. So, this review is based solely on what I thought of the book, not on how it compares to the original story or any other retellings.
First of all, I read this book in one sitting, in the car during a long drive. It didn’t take me long at all to read because it is so engrossing. Immediately you are sucked into this world, swept up into the darkness surrounding Lo-Melkhiin’s kingdom. The words that make up the story are woven together beautifully.
E.K Johnston has done storytelling at its finest.
I loved how the story started out one way, and then ran with it. There were elements of magic in it, a lot of courage and bravery, dramatic moments, good vs. evil, etc. This made it really entertaining to read.
Another unique element to the story was the perspectives. I won’t tell you who the other perspective is, besides our main character, but that added such an interesting element to the story. Some multiple POV stories are a little annoying, going back and forth like that, but this one only switched at the right times, and enriched the setting and situation even more.
One thing I’ve seen a lot of reviewers complain about is the lack of a name for our main character. Or, pretty much anyone else. We hear about “my father’s father’s father” and “my sister’s mother” but never “My great-grandfather Stanley.” Ok, his name probably wouldn’t be Stanley. But you get my point.
But while this vague naming is a little monotonous to read, I feel that there was a point to this. One reviewer said she stopped 75% of the way through the book to try and figure out if she’d missed something, but I think all these people are missing something. This girl is nameless. Yes, she probably has a name, but within Lo-Melkhiin’s world, she’s just another girl. He married and killed hundreds before her. They were just property. Possessions. Toys. She’s just another wife, really. If she had a name, that’d give her power and status. So no, the author didn’t just “forget” to put in a name.
I also read that some people thought they were misled to believe this book would have some whirlwind romance. But upon my reading of the blurb, I didn’t sense any of that. I didn’t think there was supposed to be one;
Just because it’s a YA novel, doesn’t mean the girl needs to be swept off her feet by prince charming.
And yes, there is a lack of dialogue. But again, this book is told like a story. It’s told like you’re sitting in the desert being told a story. You don’t need dialogue! Or names! Or a romantic sex scene! Seriously people? A Thousand Nights is gorgeously written as it is.
Of course, that’s just me. Everyone is going to read and see things differently, so just because I didn’t read the blurb and think it hinted at a romantic story, doesn’t mean someone else won’t see it that way.
Instead of a frilly romance, you get a story about strong resilient and determined women. Most of the characters are women. Our heroine is a woman. How many books can you say this about? How many books put so much emphasis on females and their wit.
What made me love this novel even more was that in the Acknowledgements, I noticed the author says she spent time in Jordan. (Four years and six summers, actually) I’m sure this influence the author in writing the book, and it shows. The setting really comes alive, and it makes me happy to see it is probably based on research. Plus, our master storyteller here is an archaeologist. How cool is that?
This book was different from the books I normally read in a few ways. But, I felt is was quite well done. Sure, I think I would’ve liked the main character to have a little more depth to her character, but then again, this book is storytelling. If you were being told a story that’s been passed down for generations, you probably aren’t hearing it the same way the original people heard it, because some details would be lost or just unimportant to the true matter at heart. Don’t read this book expecting to swoon; read this book because you want some excellent, vibrant storytelling based on a true classic.
For these reasons, I’m giving A Thousand Nights 4 stars.
Oh yeah, and the cover is gorgeous. You know I can’t review a book without at least mentioning the cover.
I wasn’t told to tell you where you can buy the book but I did notice if you preorder it on Amazon right now, the hardcover is only $9.08. Less than 10 bucks for a hardback, and Amazon isn’t even ThriftBooks or any of those book discount sites. And hey, you could read it with The Wrath and the Dawn and find out which retelling you liked better! I can’t wait for October so I can hear all of your thoughts on the book!