float_on_alright: i'm known as actually (Default)
As I've done the "Read 50 Books in a Year" goal already (and reached it more than once), I want to do something a little different.

This year I'd like to read the alphabet.

I attempted to do this last year, but then around March I completely forgot that I had the goal and didn't remember again until around mid-October. Therefore, I have decided to try again this year.

I have decided that I am allowed to be a little lenient with "X", "Z", "U" and "Q"  as long as I don't count any novel twice. If I read something the book "The Ex-Games", I may count it towards X or E but not both. I'd say I hope that makes sense, but they're my rules for me so I don't suppose they have to make much sense to anyone else.

I will keep the list updated (I hope) as the year and hopefully my reading progresses. I am not likely to pick the books out much in advance, but suggestions are welcome, especially for tougher letters like x, z, q, u.

I'm not requiring myself to read new books. As long as I do read the book, it's fine if I've already read it. I say this probably because there's a series I'm considering revisiting. 

A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
J
K
L
M
N
O
P
Q
R
S
T
U
V
W
X
Y
Z

Listen!

Feb. 1st, 2011 03:27 pm
float_on_alright: i'm known as actually (warning opinions in this post)

As some of you may know, I just finished listening to Harry Potter. I’m not one to reread many books, no matter how much I love a book, as my curiosity about all the books I haven’t yet read is usually too strong for me to spend a lot of time on books I’ve already read. Therefore, even though Harry Potter is one of the greatest series of all time (I was going to say “imho”, but eff you, its magic), I had not reread any of them.

When I first started listening to books instead of music at work, I started with Deathly Hallows because I’d just seen part one of the movie, which made me realize I’d remembered nothing from the book, and worse that I remembered even less about the second half. I’m not sure exactly how the decision to listen instead of read happened but I’m ever so thankful that it did.

Listening became like watching a movie in my head, and I was having so much fun that even my work morale was heightened. I couldn’t believe how much I’d forgotten and it was very nearly like reading it for the first time, as if I’d only heard a summary of it instead of reading it. That really surprised me. Usually my memory for books is much better and this part was the one I’d read the most recently. This made me think. I’d always said I was going to reread all of them, and I had finally decided to do it. I read many of the books as they were released, meaning that I had several years between parts. This meant details got lost and a great deal of Rowling’s genius was lost to me in the process.

This time around was different. With the end fresh in my mind, it was amazing to see all the puzzle pieces from the beginning. My friend once told me that Rowling started with the end and worked her way backward from there and I am inclined to believe it because few other authors stay as consistent and have hints and clues so thoroughly and continuously integrated throughout the entire series.

The first book was the one I remembered the best, probably because it this was when Harry Potter was seared into my brain and henceforth eternally a part of me. First time around, my friend totally spoiled the second book for me, and because of that, was my least favorite. This time around, it is much higher on my list. Originally, the third book was my second favorite, now I find I would put it much lower on my list. The sixth continues to be my second favorite; I believe it’s the closest Harry gets to a “normal” Hogwarts experience, at least until the final chapters. Book four rose several places on my list. The fifth, though gripping and well written, continues to make me too uncomfortable to enjoy it as thoroughly as I do some of the others.

Finally, the seventh part, which I’ve always said is my favorite and it still is, though I have more misgivings with her end and epilogue than I did the first time. That isn’t necessarily an insult though. She had her ideas about how characters lived after the Battle of Hogwarts and she’s voiced them in interviews that fans have documented well. (Speaking of the Battle of Hogwarts - I think the deaths of certain characters makes Rowling’s writing realistic, powerful, and lingering). Even with her comments, there is a lot left to the reader’s imagination, and I love that.

I also want to mention the reader, Jim Dale, who did a fantastic job. I’ve not listened to many books on tape, but there have been audiobooks I started that I haven’t finished because I didn’t like the voice. Jim Dale is believable and really brings the text to life. He doesn’t just read; he performs.

At any rate, I highly recommend listening to the books, even if you’ve already read them, even if you don’t like listening to books. I didn’t think I’d have the patience to listen, and maybe I wouldn’t with a book I haven’t already read. It was a whole new experience to listen to the series and I was blown away how much I loved listening to this series.

Listen!

Feb. 1st, 2011 03:27 pm
float_on_alright: i'm known as actually (warning opinions in this post)

As some of you may know, I just finished listening to Harry Potter. I’m not one to reread many books, no matter how much I love a book, as my curiosity about all the books I haven’t yet read is usually too strong for me to spend a lot of time on books I’ve already read. Therefore, even though Harry Potter is one of the greatest series of all time (I was going to say “imho”, but eff you, its magic), I had not reread any of them.

When I first started listening to books instead of music at work, I started with Deathly Hallows because I’d just seen part one of the movie, which made me realize I’d remembered nothing from the book, and worse that I remembered even less about the second half. I’m not sure exactly how the decision to listen instead of read happened but I’m ever so thankful that it did.

Listening became like watching a movie in my head, and I was having so much fun that even my work morale was heightened. I couldn’t believe how much I’d forgotten and it was very nearly like reading it for the first time, as if I’d only heard a summary of it instead of reading it. That really surprised me. Usually my memory for books is much better and this part was the one I’d read the most recently. This made me think. I’d always said I was going to reread all of them, and I had finally decided to do it. I read many of the books as they were released, meaning that I had several years between parts. This meant details got lost and a great deal of Rowling’s genius was lost to me in the process.

This time around was different. With the end fresh in my mind, it was amazing to see all the puzzle pieces from the beginning. My friend once told me that Rowling started with the end and worked her way backward from there and I am inclined to believe it because few other authors stay as consistent and have hints and clues so thoroughly and continuously integrated throughout the entire series.

The first book was the one I remembered the best, probably because it this was when Harry Potter was seared into my brain and henceforth eternally a part of me. First time around, my friend totally spoiled the second book for me, and because of that, was my least favorite. This time around, it is much higher on my list. Originally, the third book was my second favorite, now I find I would put it much lower on my list. The sixth continues to be my second favorite; I believe it’s the closest Harry gets to a “normal” Hogwarts experience, at least until the final chapters. Book four rose several places on my list. The fifth, though gripping and well written, continues to make me too uncomfortable to enjoy it as thoroughly as I do some of the others.

Finally, the seventh part, which I’ve always said is my favorite and it still is, though I have more misgivings with her end and epilogue than I did the first time. That isn’t necessarily an insult though. She had her ideas about how characters lived after the Battle of Hogwarts and she’s voiced them in interviews that fans have documented well. (Speaking of the Battle of Hogwarts - I think the deaths of certain characters makes Rowling’s writing realistic, powerful, and lingering). Even with her comments, there is a lot left to the reader’s imagination, and I love that.

I also want to mention the reader, Jim Dale, who did a fantastic job. I’ve not listened to many books on tape, but there have been audiobooks I started that I haven’t finished because I didn’t like the voice. Jim Dale is believable and really brings the text to life. He doesn’t just read; he performs.

At any rate, I highly recommend listening to the books, even if you’ve already read them, even if you don’t like listening to books. I didn’t think I’d have the patience to listen, and maybe I wouldn’t with a book I haven’t already read. It was a whole new experience to listen to the series and I was blown away how much I loved listening to this series.

float_on_alright: i'm known as actually (self medicating)


I think I'll start with movies that claim to be based on a book, but you wouldn’t have known if they didn’t have the same title and a few characters with the same name. Blood and Chocolate is the best example of this of which I’m aware. There are parts of the first five minutes if the movie that match the first five pages of the book. A girl, who is actually a werewolf, accidently leads hunters to her family’s house. This leads to the death of some of her family and pack members. Now older, she (Vivian) just wants a "normal" life. She meets a boy named Aiden, they start to fall in love but she can’t tell him her secret and their relationship is causing turmoil amongst the pack. Honestly, if they had changed the title and a couple characters names they would not have had to buy the rights to the book. Vivian’s age, the plot, and the villains are barely similar while the setting and resolution unrecognizable to readers of the book. It was as if they read the first few pages and said, "Right, we can see where this is going, let’s write a script and make a movie"; t
he problem, of course, is that Blood and Chocolate (the book) does not go where you expect it to go, which is part of what makes it one of my all time favorite novels, especially amongst Young Adult reads.

float_on_alright: i'm known as actually (self medicating)


I think I'll start with movies that claim to be based on a book, but you wouldn’t have known if they didn’t have the same title and a few characters with the same name. Blood and Chocolate is the best example of this of which I’m aware. There are parts of the first five minutes if the movie that match the first five pages of the book. A girl, who is actually a werewolf, accidently leads hunters to her family’s house. This leads to the death of some of her family and pack members. Now older, she (Vivian) just wants a "normal" life. She meets a boy named Aiden, they start to fall in love but she can’t tell him her secret and their relationship is causing turmoil amongst the pack. Honestly, if they had changed the title and a couple characters names they would not have had to buy the rights to the book. Vivian’s age, the plot, and the villains are barely similar while the setting and resolution unrecognizable to readers of the book. It was as if they read the first few pages and said, "Right, we can see where this is going, let’s write a script and make a movie"; t
he problem, of course, is that Blood and Chocolate (the book) does not go where you expect it to go, which is part of what makes it one of my all time favorite novels, especially amongst Young Adult reads.

float_on_alright: i'm known as actually (High Functioning Sociopath Sherlock)
 
Some movies based on books may not be as great as the books on which they are based but they still make good movies that are enjoyable and manage to capture at least some essence of the book (Scott Pilgrim). Some movies based on books are disappointing because they miss the point and/or destroy the plot arch so that the plot in the book sequels would no longer make sense (Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief) or just suck in general (choke *Twilight* coughÂ… eh- hem, sorry).

There are a few movie/book pairs that I like equally for assorted reasons (Gone with the Wind for example because I think they are both masterpieces in their own right). Then some movies that claim to be based on a book you wouldn’t have known if they hadn’t kept the same title and a few characters with the same name (Blood and Chocolate). But, though few, there are movies I liked better than the books on which they’re based (God protect me and forgive the sacrilege).

Truthfully, I spend far more time in front of a television/movie screen than is healthy for one person to spend, but I love looking for (sort of) modern day (or not so modern day) archetypes and retellings in television and film. I’m sure that this is related to my love of “twists on a tale” and “characters reinvented”. At any rate, I intend to take a few posts to examine just a few book/movie pairs that strike me for whatever reason I feel like at that particular moment.
float_on_alright: i'm known as actually (High Functioning Sociopath Sherlock)
 
Some movies based on books may not be as great as the books on which they are based but they still make good movies that are enjoyable and manage to capture at least some essence of the book (Scott Pilgrim). Some movies based on books are disappointing because they miss the point and/or destroy the plot arch so that the plot in the book sequels would no longer make sense (Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief) or just suck in general (choke *Twilight* coughÂ… eh- hem, sorry).

There are a few movie/book pairs that I like equally for assorted reasons (Gone with the Wind for example because I think they are both masterpieces in their own right). Then some movies that claim to be based on a book you wouldn’t have known if they hadn’t kept the same title and a few characters with the same name (Blood and Chocolate). But, though few, there are movies I liked better than the books on which they’re based (God protect me and forgive the sacrilege).

Truthfully, I spend far more time in front of a television/movie screen than is healthy for one person to spend, but I love looking for (sort of) modern day (or not so modern day) archetypes and retellings in television and film. I’m sure that this is related to my love of “twists on a tale” and “characters reinvented”. At any rate, I intend to take a few posts to examine just a few book/movie pairs that strike me for whatever reason I feel like at that particular moment.

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