31 March 2013

March Movies

Moon: B was shocked I had not seen this one so he had me watch it with him.  I liked it, a 6

Wreck It Ralph:  wonderful!  I thought this was a great movie and definitely compliments some of my other new favorites like Ready Player One.  a 7

Hamlet: the David Tennant/Patrick Stewart version. Long but really good.  7

Rock of Ages:  we saw it on HBO, which gave it only 1 star (out of 4).  It's better and more fun than that, though the stomping got to me by the end.  a 4.

Charlotte's Web: the version with Dakota Fanning.  The pig's voice was a bit annoying but it's a cute movie. Much crying occurred; book is still better.  5.

30 March 2013

Flavia 5

I actually finished Speaking From Among the Bones by Alan Bradley a month ago but it completely slipped my mind to post it.  I've said it before but this is really the hardest, most intense semester I've had in grad school.  

Flavia does love bodies and so of course she's right on hand when the tomb of her town's patron saint, St. Tancred, is being opened.  She pokes her head into the crypt to discover the body of the town's organist, who is most definitely not a saint.  Puzzling this murder out, as well as her sister's secret and her father's strange behavior, are challenges that Flavia lives up to wonderfully.

I really loved this book. There's a wonderful creepy part where Flavia falls into a sinkhole of a grave to discover a passage which is really good.  Even though Flavia is practically a genius, Bradley writes her so well that you never forget she's a kid, not even a teenager yet.  While she sees and schemes and understands so much, the motivations and desires of adults are still somewhat baffling to her.  Unlike the previous books, this one had a cliffhanger ending and I can't wait to read the next!  a 6.   

I've read that Sam Mendes is going to turn these books into TV movies and I do hope he doesn't try to update them to current day.  The books feel tied to such a specific time and place that I can't see them set anywhere (and anywhen) else. 

26 March 2013

A stack of audiobooks

An audiobook wrap-up post!

I've still been listening to audiobooks but they've mostly been rereads. 

Fellowship of the Ring: yeah, yeah, i've read and listened to this multiple times.  still love it. 7

The Hobbit: so great, i actually listened to it twice in a row.  7.

As You Like It:  picked it up because they talked about it on the Shakespeare Uncovered show.  I'd not seen it or (as far as I know) read it before and I thought it was great fun.  a 6. 

Interworld by Neil Gaiman and Michael Reaves: I hate to admit it but I didn't particularly like this one.  I can't really say why except that the guy who read it was American and i seem to prefer British accents on audiobooks.  I guess it was rather predictable plot/character-wise.  The 2nd level villains were awesome though. A 4. 

24 March 2013

Once Upon a Time 7

I didn't even realize it was time for this challenge/quest!  I was trying to get through my feed reader (i shall miss you Google Reader!) and saw that Carl had posted the launch post

School is still crazy; I'm working on 2 assignments due after spring break (this week) and my "reading record", which is a Wordpress blog i'm messing about with. I'll post the link once i get some content up there.  I wish i could have used this blog for that but it would be too complicated. Anyway, I mention school because I'll only be committing to "The Journey" for this challenge: i know i can manage one book in this category before June!  I may manage 4 and I will probably get through a movie or two or perhaps some short stories but I don't want to commit to any.  I have class through the end of April, B's cousin's wedding in Vermont to go to in the beginning of May (a week's vacation for us, yippee!) then class starts again on June 3 (young adult lit).  So I just can't guarantee I'll get more fantasyish stuff read.

Another school diversion: I'm taking Children's Lit this semester and we had 1 class on traditional literature/fairy tales and one on fantasy (and sci-fi and horror).  Here's a couple of interesting readings for those classes, if you can find them:
  • "Turtles All the Way Down" By Jane Yolen
  • "Some Presumptuous Generalizations about Fantasy" by Perry Nodelman
  • "Let There Be Dragons" by Terry Pratchett--Really fabulous

I'm also working on a non-fiction book The Uses of Enchantment: The Meaning and Importance of Fairy Tales by Bruno Bettelheim which i found through class but don't know that it would really count for this challenge. 

Happy spring! 

12 March 2013

A ton of Picture books

I am taking a Children's literature class this semester and our first paper was to be about a picture book.  In class we read:
Black and White by David Macauley
Tuesday by David Weisner
Miss Nelson is Missing by Harry G Allard and James Marshall
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, which I've read many, many times as it was a favorite of my little brother. 
Owl Moon by Jane Yolen 
Rapunzel by Paul O. Zelinsky

then on my own I read:

Not a Box! by Antoinette Portis
First the Egg by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
Jumanji by Chris Van Allsburg
Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
Creepy Carrots!  words by Aaron Reynolds, pictures by Peter Brown
Wolves by Emily Grrrabbit [Gravett} 
My Father's Shop by Satomi Ichikawa
Silly Billy by Anthony Browne
Happy Birthday, Jamela! by Niki Daly
Home Now written by Leslie Beake and illustrated by Karin Littlewood
My Two Grandads written by Floella Benjamin and illustrated by Margaret Chamberlain
and 
Just in Case by Yuyi Morales, which was the one I wrote my paper about. 

not counting the ones that i picked up and paged through.   

Whew!  Can I be done with picture books for a bit?