Tag Archives: Twilight

Book to Film: The Host

Wanda’s Seeker from The Host

I have been eagerly anticipating this film for ages. I loved the book and feel like I’ve been waiting for forever for the sequel(s) to be released. So when this Friday finally got here, I grabbed my best friend and dragged him along to go see it. I was thrilled and bouncing a bit while the previews were going on (I may have squealed slightly when we got to see the trailer for City of Bones).

The movie did not start the way I thought it was going to. we all thought the teaser trailer had absolutely nothing to do with the movie. When it was in the first minute or so of the film I was rather shocked. I actually found a lot of the way they filmed this movie to be unexpected while remaining fairly true to the book. I think the biggest departures from the book for me were the following:

  1. The Seekers – First of all they wear white instead of black, which I guess kind of makes sense but I think that while Wanderer’s seeker was great, the rest of the seekers were too much like the other souls. There should have been more of a difference in my opinion.

    Wanda/Wanderer/Melanie

  2. How Wanderer/Melanie end up in the desert – Yep. Just completely different from the book, although I don’t think it was a bad adjustment. Not good either but definitely not bad. I get why they made the change for the movie. It created another action sequence in a movie that honestly could have seriously lacked action.
  3. The way the souls are removed – Okay, this was kind of bothersome for me. The way that they explain it in the book makes so much more sense. The movie simply just made no sense. How would the soul sense anything about the emotional climate around it when it is supposed to be cut off from its senses without a host? Makes no sense at all. The only thing that make sense is that it can feel physical touch and that there is a way to get to respond instinctively that would allow for removal.
  4. The choice for Wanda post-removal – The actress they chose to play Wanda was interesting because I honestly don’t think that she’ll give her the same emotional quality that Saoirse Ronan did but I’m sure they’ll find some way of explaining that away if it becomes a problem.

Soul Flight

The movie was definitely not bad though. I LOVED the fact that they left the ending alone and stopped where the book does in order to leave it open for a sequel. (If Stephenie Meyer ever gets it written). I wasn’t sure about the choices for actors but after seeing the movie, I think they made wonderful choices. While this story doesn’t quite have the magic of the Twilight series, it has a depth that Twilight is completely missing. Definitely worth checking out while it is still in the theaters.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Favorites from before my blogging days

Top Ten TuesdaysOkay, I’m not only going to try to come up with ones from before my blogging days but ones that I haven’t mentioned or have  barely mentioned before on this blog. So that means no Anne, Doctor Who, Terry Goodkind, Twilight or Ender, among others. I promise.

1. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden – Wonderful book about love in the most unlikely of places. Worth a read if you haven’t picked it up yet. The movie is also wonderful.

2. 1984 by George Orwell – The father of dystopian fiction before the term even existed. My freshman year English teacher gave me a copy of this book for reading the most books that year and I read it many times. It was one of the first times I was exposed to the idea of dystopian fiction and it has become one of my favorites.

3. The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy – A story about a woman falling in love with the man who just happens to be her husband. I’ve only ever read the first book in the series but I loved it.

4. Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton – I loved this book. Wonderful read with all kind of scary business inside. One of the few books that I read after watching the movie. The books are so much better.

5. Matilda by Roald Dahl – One of the favorites of my childhood and she continues to be one of those characters that stay with me even though my childhood is long since past.

6. Roots by Alex Haley – Wonderful book about a family’s history from Africa to the modern day through history. Wonderful book that sparked the most watched mini-series of all time.

7. Redwall by Brian Jacques – I loved this book and the many others that followed. I actually am planning on rereading them again int he near future. They are such a good read. The only animal based books that I ever liked.

8. This Present Darkness by Frank Peretti – This book and the follow up really got me thinking about spiritual warfare in a whole new way. While it id definitely fiction, the idea behind an impression even years later.

9. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy – A book with hundreds of character to keep straight and a very complex storyline. I’ve read it a bunch of times and always seem to catch something new.

10. Wurthering Heights by Emily Bronte – A plot where the main characters only redeeming quality is how much they love each other. Other than that, they really have nothing good about them.

There are so many others I could mention on this list. If you are a blogger what would you list?

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The last Twilight film….

Anyone else who thought this scene was hilarious?

Okay, so anyone who had read this blog for any length of time knows that I have a very large soft spot for the Twilight series. I know that many people out there can’t stand this series for one reason or another. For me, I think what caught my attention was the fact that it was such a refreshing change at the time from everything I was reading. I had never read much teen or young adult fiction when I was a kid. I went straight from kid books to heavy hitters like War and Peace (which I read for the first time at the age of twelve). While I love serious literature, sometimes you just need something light and fluffy. A good read that you can just enjoy without having to work your brain to death over it. (Don’t get me wrong, I love that stuff too, I just need a balanced diet). I found that most adult material written that way was either so filled with ‘adult material’ or so boring and formula that it wasn’t really worth my time.

Jake and Nessie

When I discovered YA fiction through Twilight, it was like I was reading something tailor-made for me at the time. No sex, fun stories and simple reads. As a teacher by the time I got home, I wasn’t really up to reading something difficult. I really found myself gravitating towards this genre simply because it allowed me an escape that I had time for. Nothing since the Harry Potter series had really captured my imagination without being overly serious.

The end of the Twilight series movies meant that I would no longer get anything new from this first trip into YA fiction. I was so excited to go see the movie. So much so that we bought tickets for the marathon. My best friend and my husband spent the whole day with me watching all of the movies in order. It was nice to get a refresher on the series and it was a great build up to that final movie.

For me, the love of these movies is seeing everything I’ve read play out in front of me. I’m not a big fan of the actors for the most part and I have a great imagination. I also love comparing the original books to the movie. Everything was going great for the most part until the big confrontation with the Volturi. (If you haven’t seen it yet, stop reading here… spoilers ahead). I was bummed that they didn’t do more with Bella and Jenks. I found the whole encounter one that really highlighted how much Bella had changed from that timid girl in the first book. I was all ready from this big conversation that turned into basically nothing except A very frustrated Aro. I was shocked when I saw Carlisle’s head in Aro’s hand. Then I couldn’t believe when more people were picked off one by one. I was literally halfway out of my seat ready to walk in anger from the theater. Then the big reveal happened and I was clapping with the rest of the audience. Yep, the film maker got everyone in the audience in one of the most well done ‘got ya!’ moments I’ve ever seen. By the end credits, besides the major flaw in Alice seeing Nessie and Jacob’s future I was completely satisfied and felt like it was complete.

Now I’m looking for a new book or series to capture me in a similar way and am eagerly awaiting the arrival of The Host in theaters.

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A year in review and what is ahead…

Well, last night I stayed up to watch the ball drop and pushed out my last review for 2012. I was relieved because I have been pushing myself to read like crazy for a year long book reading challenge and had been pumping out reviews like a crazy person in order to win. Now that it’s over I can breathe a deep sigh of relief and look back at what I accomplished this year with a serious sense of satisfaction.

In 2012 I read a total of 151 new books for a total of 56,998 pages. I started the year with the goal to read 50 books and tripled that by the end of the year. This count only includes new books and does not include the reread of the Twilight series that I couldn’t help doing after seeing the last movie in the series and the crazy twist that came with it. I also reread The Sword of Truth series.

Of the year, the 10 best books I read were:

1. The Handmaid’s TaleMargaret Atwood

2. Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier

3. The Reading Promise- Alice Ozma

4. The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry – Rachel Joyce

5. The Book ThiefMarkus Zusak

6. Legend – Marie Lu

7. Eve – Anna Carey

8. The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstern

9. Quiet – Susan Cain

10. Divergent – Veronica Roth

The worst reads of the year:

1. Advent – James Treadwell

2. Caught in CrystalPatricia C. Wrede

3. Sweet Valley Confidential – Francine Pascal

4. Talisman of El – Alecia Stone

5. Zombie – J.R. Angelella

In 2013, I have set an initial goal of 100 books. I will be finishing my master’s degree and I think that I’m not going to have the time to spend on it. This year I plan to spend more time writing as well whenever I have a chance. As far as my blog goes, I plan to do more posts that are not book reviews. With the reading page challenge that I was a part of I did more reviewing than I had planned on and this year I would like to get back to writing more posts that aren’t traditional reviews.  The reviews aren’t going anywhere but I plan on doing more series and reviving some that I haven’t had time to spend time on.

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Book Review: City of Lost Souls

Book: City of Lost Souls

Author: Cassandra Clare

Recommend: Worth reading if you’re a fan of the series. I swear this author just loved to torture her two main characters.

The latest book in the Mortal Instruments, a YA series,I’ve been wanting to get my hands on this one since it came out. A friend loaned it to me and as soon as I got through a couple of books that were pressing on my pile, I dived in. I had been waiting over a year to find out what happened to the male lead and how they were going to save him and so I couldn’t wait to get started.

Jace is being controlled by Clary’s brother. She does everything she can to try to find him. When they can’t, will she do the unthinkable and join her brother just to be with him again or will she fight, knowing it could be the end of the person she loves?

This was a great read. I still think that the last two books just don’t have the power of the first three. They are still a great read, but something is missing. I love how prolific this author is though. With two series going simultaneously, it seems we get a new book in each every year. I really can’t imagine waiting two years for this one!

Also, for more conservative readers, this author does include characters that are homosexual and are seen in a positive light. The author also chooses to allow her teen characters to be sexually active. While these scenes are not like reading an adult romance novel, they are rather suggestive. While this might not pose a problem for adult readers, some parents may not find this material appropriate for their teens.

This week the first images from the upcoming movie based on the first book of the series were made available. While I don’t know if this series will reach the level of Twilight, The Hunger Games or Harry Potter, I think it will draw a very large fan base. I personally can’t wait to see it!

This is the 5th book in the Mortal Instrument series, which starts with City of Bones. You can read my reviews of the previous books in the Mortal Instruments series here.

Final Rating:

Get it new!

Buy it new 🙂

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Book Review: Jenna Black’s Faeriewalker trilogy

I had read the first two books quite a while ago and never talked about them on my blog. I’m not sure why I didn’t review them, but for some reason, they just never wrote one. When I was able to pick up a copy of the last book in the trilogy and realized that I hadn’t covered the first two, I decided to mention all three in one post.

In the first book, Glimmerglass, teenage Dana is taking care of her alcoholic mother while trying to simply get through high school until she can’t take it anymore and runs away to find the father she has never really known. However when she arrives she is forced into a world of heavy politics, all centered around her gifts as a faeriewalker where no one is quite what they seem.

In the second book, Shadowspell, Dana is hidden away in a safe house to keep her from the many people who want to kill her, including both of the Fae queens. However, the appearance of the feared hunter, who is after her just like the rest, might cost more than she is willing to give.

https://i0.wp.com/www.jennablack.com/images/cover_sirensong.jpgThe final book, Sirensong, sends Dana into Faerie to appear before Tatania as her honored guest. A journey that should be simple. When a bomb explodes, all fingers point to Dana and she is forced to run for her life, how will she ever be safe again when the hunter is the one chasing her?

I think what I liked most about these books was that they were refreshingly original. Not a single vampire, werewolf, or angel made an appearance in the plot. In addition her fae world was actually believable and well thought out. The Elking (the hunter) really made the second and third books. This unpredictable character made the book intriguing because the reader doesn’t really know what he is going to decide. I also loved that the author included real life conflict with the fantasy.

I would say that her weak point were some of the teen characters. They felt a bit flat and were too predictable. However it wasn’t enough to say that they aren’t worth reading.

While this isn’t the next Twilight or Hunger Games, it is definitely a fun series.

Final Rating:

Get it used…

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Books that shouldn’t hit the big screen

Okay, I like a great movie based on a book just as much as the next girl. I can’t tell you how much I love the current trend of turning much-loved YA books into film series. I currently can’t wait for Cassandra Clare‘s series to make it to film, starting with The City of Bones. I’m also eagerly awaiting November and the final Twilight movie. Not to mention Catching Fire!

Even when a book doesn’t follow the book exactly, many movies based on books are enjoyable. Some eclipse the popularity of the book (Gone with the Wind or The Silence of the Lambs are good examples).

However, just because a book is wonderful, doesn’t mean that it always belongs on-screen. For one reason or another, these books should never make it to film:

  1. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway – If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you know that there is no love lost between me and anything related to fish. This book however is mostly a guy sitting in a boat by himself thinking and trying to catch a fish. Might be interesting reading to many (not me but many others) but it makes for some of the most boring stuff ever put onto a reel of film.
  2. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams – I’ve seen the movie. It was entertaining. Then I read the book and realized how bad the movie is in comparison. While Hitchhiker isn’t among my favorites, the book has far too much to ever make sense in film!
  3. The Help by Kathryn Stockett – While my review of this book isn’t up yet (it’s coming soon), I was writing the review and realized that I really didn’t want to see the movie. This book is a whole lot of people sitting around talking and the action sequences wouldn’t make much sense. I have a feeling that a lot of the depth would be missing as well. I just don’t see that one going well.
  4. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas – I love this book. It is an amazing read. I accidentally read the abridged version first and was appalled when I found out how much I was missing! There is simply no way to condense this story for film without losing too much of the story!
  5. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy – Again, far too long to condense down without losing too much of the story. Plus so much of the emotion in this piece would be too hard to translate into film.
  6. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy – 300 characters. Do I need to say any more?
  7. Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card – Okay. I love this book. I am going to go see the movie. My problem is that there is NO WAY they are going to find kids that are smart enough and young enough to play these parts convincingly. Plus the chance that it is going to be very cheesy is extremely high.
  8. The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce – I know you haven’t heard about this one on my blog yet. I have two reviews scheduled for this one because it is just that good! This one is all about a guy taking a very LONG walk. Definitely not something that I think will translate to film well. Internal dialogue books rarely do.

What books do you think should NEVER be turned into films?

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The Twilight Guide

Book: The Twilight Saga: The Official Illustrated Guide

Author: Stephenie Meyer

Recommend: If you love Twilight

Okay, I just picked this up this afternoon, spent a few hours reading it cover to cover after finding Alice’s story and reading it first.  As a Twilight nut, it was a great read. It was amazing to see all the little details that I hadn’t quite put together or that we just didn’t know. This book goes through the Twilight universe and acts as a shortened version of the Twilight Lexicon, while including things that even the Lexicon wasn’t aware of.

The only fault I could find with this was that there was a bit more repetition than I would have liked and less detail than I wanted. Of course, I’m not sure I would have been satisfied with anything less than novellas on each of the characters. There was also one slight physical issue I had with the book- the letters run if even the slightest bit of moisture touches them. I was drinking a soda and a bit of condensation from the outside of the can got on my finger. I wiped it off and then proceeded to touch the book causing a couple of letters to smear.

While I don’t know that I would read through this cover to cover again, I can definitely see myself using it quite a bit as a reference to all things Twilight.

Final Rating:

Get it new!

Buy it new 🙂

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Stephenie Meyer novella

new Meyer yay!!

Book: The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner

Author: Stephenie Meyer

Recommend: Yes, reading the Twilight series through Eclipse is necessary to fully understand it.

I have to admit, I am a huge Stephenie Meyer fan. She has created compelling characters that her readers can really relate to. In her new book, you see through the eyes of a newborn vampire who is destined to die in the aftermath of a confrontation with the Cullens at the hands of the Volturi. Bree is confused and overwhelmed by a lack of control as a newborn vampire but she tries so hard to figure things out. Every book that she writes just gets better. Her ability to make you care about a character is amazing. I hope that someday she finishes Midnight Sun (please oh please?)

The only complaint I have is that the book is just too short! I wanted more and by the end, I wanted her fate to be different.

I can’t wait for more new Stephenie Meyer! Definitely a must-read author in my opinion.

This book has definitely made me excited for the upcoming movie. I can’t wait!

 

Final Rating:

Need more than one copy!!

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