Saturday, October 1, 2011

This is the End

I haven't posted in forever. So this is the end.
Sorry. Thanks for reading, but it was a good like, six month run.
I should say more, but I won't because I'm done. This is it. Much love.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

A book that's not even out yet


Okay. Not really. Listed, in order of obsession
1.) Harry Potter! It's over. Unless J.K Rowling writes a new series about a certain Albus Potter. Or, alternatively, she could do one of those prequel things with Dumbledore and Grindewald. And, since it's an entirely different story, it won't suck!
2.) Still Got Legs! Which does not refer to the fact that I am still bipedal(though I am), but to an album about Doctor Who. It has been released, and I have the MP3 (LINK to listen for free!)

Okay. I'm kinda lying and telling the truth and getting distracted all at the same time about that. Because 1.) Borders is in extremely serious financial trouble and if you have about 500,000,000 dollars lying around, would you mind saving them, like, tonight? Because 2.) It's the only really large, good, bookstore in my area and 3.) Shopping for books online is dumb because 4.) I can't randomly pick up a book I'm interested in and decide if I want it because 5.) I can't read and flip through for Quotes. The captialization there is because there are quotes "Luke, I am your father" and then there are Quotes "The course of true love never did run smooth." (Star Wars vs. Shakespeare. you decide on the quality of that comparison.)
The absolute truth is I got a bundle of new books when my family and I took our (hopefully not last) trip to Borders last night I got several books (LINK) (LINK) (LINK but this isn't the one I have. Same price, but mine is all red and gold colored)  (LINK) (LINK) (LINK)
The lying is that I don't have the book I'm going to talk about. It's called The Fault in our Stars (LINK) and it doesn't come out until May!
It's supposed to be about cancer and foreign pop music and other interesting stuff!
Okay, fine this has nothing to do with reviewing or discussing a novel, but honestly people, pre-ordering books is fun! I'm exceedingly excited about this book, I'm extremely glad I have new books, and I can't wait until May!
Also, possible quad-illionares out there, reading this, your mission is to save Borders! It's what a good person would do! Or  hero!  Or a Librarian! Or ANYONE WITH A HEART.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Enter Vampires, Stage Left

Or in which my adorable boyfriend lends me a not so adorable novel filled with fighting and war and history.
Also Vampires.
The real sort with the blood sucking and the killing people. Proper vampires.
It's called "Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter".
And If I could put up with any sort of introduction, I'd give it five full stars. There's a 15 page introduction. I have to take away one of the points on the Star.
Otherwise, it's a wonderful novel. Starts off reading like a biography, and then it turns into something very interesting. I like to call it historical fantasy.
Is that a genre? I think it should be. It has a nice ring to it.
Anyway, Seth(his last name is way too long) has a wonderful ability to mix fantasy and truth, while making the truth seem fictional enough to read.
And Laura is here and being obnoxious. Everyone say Hi to Laura!
I would link over to her blog, but she hasn't posted in forever. Still, much love to the Laura.
I actually don't know what to say about this. My boyfriend has been going on and on about how historically accurate it may or may not have been(I don't care much about accuracy, I'm looking for a good read.(I did mention never to use this as an actual critique, right?)) And I'm like, "Yes, that's lovely."
Okay, important figures who randomly make an appearance:
1.) POE. That one. With the people he loves always dying of TB, no luck in his line of work and really creepy poetry.
2.) Davis. As in President of the Confederation. Or pawn of the vampires. Take your pick.
3.) Martin Luther King; Okay, yeah, fine, it's just a mention, but it's an important one.
4.) John Wilkes Booth: The person who killed Lincoln.
5.) Lincoln. President during the civil war and one of the greatest vampire hunters this nation has ever known.

And honestly, that's all I can say about this book. It was good. I liked it. I had fun reading it. It's a laugh a minute.
No, really. It's good. I'm low on sleep and mildly hysterical. I'll be better next week.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Screw books, let's ask important questions that books help us answer!

Or is that too long a title?
Okay, screw books is because I didn't read one for you this week. I've started rereading Nation, by Terry Pratchett and also Pygmalion(the play) by George Bernard Shaw.
I'll pick one to talk about when I've finished them both.
But when you get down to it, you have to ask why do I(or you) read books. Or watch TV? Or listen to music? It's not only for entertainment: okay, I'll give you the Romance Novels, Reality TV, and Soaps are only for entertainment.
But still.
That excludes maybe three of the million and one sectors of fiction and nonfiction out there. And since we still have 999,999 other sectors of fiction and nonfiction that we read and watch and listen to for more than entertainment, we need to understand why.
Which is really the real big question we keep trying to answer through those. Why? Why are we here? Why do people die? Why do we care? Why doesn't life make sense?
And sometimes we walk away with answers. But a why question often boils down to the answer 'because', so we have to go to to other sources. And when they eventually turn to 'because' answer we search elsewhere. Because, somewhere, sometime, and somehow there has to be a reason behind everything that happens.
Because searching inside ourselves for the right answer is hard, but sometime we have to put down the books and the remote and the MP3 players and iPods and CDs so that we can look inside ourselves for the because behind our why.
And we each have a different one; a different why or a different because. I'm not going to ask the "Why are we here?" or answer it with the same "Because" as you or the next person would. It's not that simple. But media can give us little hints along the way to point an arrow down a road to look for that.
And sometimes 'Why?' is too big a question to ask first. 'How?' is simpler--how are we here? But also varying in answers, because we really don't agree on one single idea. 'Who?' is simple and impossible at the same time..."Who am I? I'm me." But that gets complicated when we add on the question that follows that "Who is me?" 'When?' is argued over too..."When did humans start to exist?"
Then there's "What?", which starts out simple enough...
"What is that?"
"It's a rock."
"What's it made of?"
"What are those?"
"Really tiny particles."
"What's that made of?"
"What are those?"
"A fundemental particle of matter."
"What is that made out of?"
"... Shut up and stop asking questions."
And turns into another form of 'because'.
Because we don't have all the answers, even though we want to. As a race, we humans seem to believe that answers are right, somehow. They make things nice and orderly.
Even if they really wouldn't. But I feel that asking those questions is what makes us humans. It'll be a scary day should we ever really find out for certain the answer to any of those question. We'll walk among gods and deem ourselves all powerful.* We will think ourselves invincible and when we do that, we are no longer humans. We are doomed. Because without the important questions, we won't search for right or wrong, and we will only deal with wish and want. We will no longer dream.
And without our dreams, who are we?

*So as not to offend people, that's just a saying.

Got off a rant there, but I hope it was interesting. At any rate.
When we read a book, we want to answer a question. But writers want to find the answer to a question too. Or tell us there answer. Or maybe just show us a question we haven't thought to ask yet.
And that's important. Because answering questions is what we do, every single day of our life. It maybe the hard questions, "Why am I here?" or the easy questions ,"How do you get egg off a spatula?"* but we do attempt to answer them.
Ask questions. Answer questions. In general, think. Thinking makes us better than we are right now. Question the world around you, and let it question you back.

*Let it soak in soapy water for a bit, then use the scrubby side of the sponge to get off most of it, and then for the bits that don't come off, use a dull butter knife to scrape it off carefully.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Saving Princesses is Hard Work!

736 pages of work, in fact. I found four stories I feel would be easily disney'd up.
1.) Princess Mouseskin(It's better than it sounds)
2.) The True Bride (a not-princess in the theme of Cinderella)
3.) The Twelve Brothers (Interesting tale, easy to disney-itize)
4.) The Glass Coffin (Where Snow White's coffin was stolen from, but it's so different)

An over all review of all of the tales of the Brother's Grimm tales turns up the cute/annoying things. One is that half of the stories ended with a little rhyme or poem that had no relation to the story in general! Ex. on page 418 of my book, after the story "The Iron Stove" which is about how a princess gets saved by a stove, which has a handsome prince locked inside it, and doesn't follow his exact instructions, so she loses him. To regain him, she has to go be a kitchen maid and sell the new bride beautiful dresses that she has so she can sleep in his room and retell him what happened.
ANYWAY it ends with the little poem-y thing "There once was a mouse, but he's gone/ and now my tale is done."
Which is just distracting in general, to me. I don't see the purpose for it. I guess if might have centuries of difference, but there is no help there.
Also, they wrote up a few religious stories and  one anti-Semitic story about an old time popular(and totally stupid and useless) stereotype perpetuated at the time about the Jewish being theives. It's called "The Jew and the Thornbush" and totally worth skipping. The religious ones aren't that bad, just a bit dull at times.
So, I'll be honest, reading all these stories was worth it. Some of them were cute, some of them were interesting, and some of them were funny simply because of the time period difference. So take it as you will. I loved having fun reading it, and it was a silly task, but sometimes that helps you focus the most.

About a page typed, and for all those Shakespeare fans, very King Lear-ish. A page seems to be the max attention span for the Disney executives, so I figure this one might be the easiest to sell them on. It's about a Princess who gets disowned by her father because she says she loves him as much as she loves salt(and before you go all 'That much, eh?' sarcastic eye roll on me, put down your salted popcorn, your salted chips, and your salted french fries. Don't try to hid the salt on your pretzels, either. We love salt. A lot.) So he kicks her out, she goes to work as a maid in the next castle as a boy. They figure out who she is, family gets reunited and it ends Disney Happy.

Because I'm sick of how la-dee-dah they make the princesses these days, who don't fight for their guys. I mean, no offense Cinderella, Ariel and Rapunzel, but could you please say something other than "Let me hid from the one I love" or "Oh no! There is nothing I can do. He no longer loves me." That's stupid. Especially if you don't have any proof. The non-princess in this first gets her prince, but he didn't follow her instructions to not let anyone kiss him on one of his cheeks so he forgot all about her. She finds out where he is and goes to work as a maid. She had three gorgeous dresses designed to woe him back and she discovers that he's engaged to someone else. Well, her heart is broken, but she goes through with her plan and wins him back. Doesn't rely on faith or luck or her animal friends to save the day. She just swoops in, which is good. And new.

Another girl to the rescue! But I liked this one because it's about a princess who saves her brothers and her marriage and there's and evil mother-in-law! It's a totally different tale than everything else. It's not about her falling in love, it's about her saving her family. Familial love, that's new. And not for parents, but the bond between siblings. Which is a strong bond.
Story summary. Right. A Queen has twelve sons, but when she's pregnant with her thirteen child, the king says, "If it's a girl we'll just kill off our sons, kay?" So, when the princess is born, a flag is launched and the brothers run off into the woods for safety. The princess, who has heard about her brothers for her entire life decides to go find them.
Everything goes fine once she does until she decides to pick twelve flowers and discovers that she just turned them into ravens and to turn them back she has to keep silent for seven years. So, life goes on and she gets married to a king.
The seven years was almost up when the mother-in-law starts casting doubts about her and the king falls for her lies. So they decide to set  her on fire. She was set on the pyre and just as it was lit on fire, the seven years ended, the ravens came back, turned into her brothers and saved her.

Should be easy enough for them to do, considering that they already have the blue prints for a glass coffin. Well, it starts off with a poor tailor (Disney's had thieves and princes, now they can have someone with a real profession) who needs somewhere to sleep for a night. In the morning he gets whisked off by a stag who takes him to a castle. Where he sees a mini castle and a still breathing princess in a glass coffin. He takes the top off and she wakes up and tells him that she was the daughter of a duke. She was stuck the way she was because a wizard had stayed over at her house, and then gone all Edward Cullen creeper on her. (Not in those words, of course). He'd sent magical music to her, broke into her room and then decided she would say yes to marrying him. So he turned her brother into the stag, locked her in the coffin and made her castle into the miniature he had seen when he come.
So, really, it is probably easy to Disney-itize. They can thank me later.

(with credit)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Saving Princesses Takes a Lot of Work

It does! My book of the Grimm Fairytales is about three and a half inches thick of onion paper! So, even if this is really late to tell you that, I'm going to be even later. I finished the book, but it was 730 pages. A lot to process.
Now, ask yourself this..."Why did it take her five weeks to finish reading a 500+page novel and this one was done in three?
Ponder on that.
Maybe it's because I had a mission.
Maybe it's because it was separate little tales I could pick up, read for ten minutes and not get drawn into a plot line.
Or maybe it's because The Moonstone was awful.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter/Day After the Series Six Premier!

But no spoilers. I promised.
Happy Easter though! I'm having a good one, hope you all out there are too! (I got the TSO Night Castle Album, and a Queen album!)
Even if you don't celebrate Easter, I hope you're having a good Sunday: It's almost sunny out over here, and since there really aren't any books that I'd read for this holiday, (Okay there's this one, but I don't own it. Maybe one day) I'll just give you all a random non-book Sunday.
"It is my goal to save Disney. And by save Disney, I mean Disney Princesses. And to do that, I have read The Complete Fairy Tales Of The Brothers Grimm."
See you next week!