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A Winter’s Respite Readathon — Wrap-Up Post

Today’s Progress:

  • Books Read Today: 2
  • Total Books Read: 8
  • Pages Read Today: 512
  • Total Pages Read:  2003
  • Time Read Today: 1 hours 20 minutes
  • Total Time Read: 13 hours 26 minutes
  • Comments: Saturday was a bust, but I rallied back for a good finish.

My goals:

  • Read 5 books √
  • Review all books read √
  • Finish The Great Gatsby and A Midsummer Night’s Dream readalongs √
  • Get back on Twitter to tweet my progress (@TFrances)
  • Read at least 2 library books (and return them, but not check any new out) √

TBR Pile:

  • HP Film Wizardry
  • The Great Gatsby
  • A Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • The Magician King
  • Autumn: Purification
  • Autumn: Disintegration
  • Sunshine
  • Lost in Austen
  • Miss Peregrine’s School for Peculiar Children
  • Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters
  • A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Manga version
  • A Lady Never Tells
  • A Gentleman Always Remembers
  • An Affair without End

 
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Posted by on January 29, 2012 in Readathon

 

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Harry Potter Film Wizardry by Brian Sibley

Title: Harry Potter Film Wizardry

Author: Brian Sibley

Publisher: Harper Design 2010

Genre: Media; Movies

Pages: 160

Rating:  5  / 5 stars

Reading Challenges: Dewey – 790s; Read Your Name – S

How I Got It: Library Loan

Immerse yourself in the world of the spectacular “Harry Potter” film series, and learn why Yule Ball ice sculptures never melt, where Galleons, Sickles and Knuts are really “minted”, how to get a Hippogriff to work with actors, about the inspiration behind Hogwarts castle, and why Dementors move the way they do. Written and designed in collaboration with the cast and crew that brought J.K Rowling’s celebrated novels to the silver screen, “Harry Potter: Film Wizardry” delivers an enchanting interactive experience, transporting readers to the wizarding world by sharing filmmaking secrets, unpublished photography and artwork, and exclusive stories from the stars.
Harry Potter is one of those book series that I absolutely adore.  I really enjoyed learning more about the behind-the-scenes of the movies.  This was a truly enjoyable read.  I recommend this to all fans of the books and movies.
  
 
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Posted by on January 29, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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Lost in Austen by Emma Campbell Webster

Title: Lost in Austen

Author: Emma Campbell Webster

Publisher: Riverhead Trade 2007

Genre: Historical Fiction; Choose Your Own Adventure

Pages: 352

Rating:   5 / 5 stars

Reading Challenges: Historical Fiction; My Years – 2007; Mount TBR

How I Got It: I own it!

Bringing together Jane Austen’s most beloved characters and storylines-a clever, playful, interactive, and highly entertaining approach to the wildly popular novels in which you, the reader, decide the outcome.  Name: Elizabeth Bennet.  Mission: To marry both prudently and for love.  How? It’s entirely up to the reader.  The journey begins in Pride and Prejudice but quickly takes off on a whimsical Austen adventure of the reader’s own creation.  A series of choices leads the reader into the plots and romances of Austen’s other works. It’s all up to the reader.A labyrinth of love and lies, scandals and scoundrels, misfortunes and marriages, Lost in Austen will delight and challenge any Austen lover.
So much fun!  I love this concept: choose-your-own-adventure.  This one, of course, based on Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice to be exact.  Webster easily weaves P&P with Austen’s other works to create a new story line.  If you know P&P well, it’s not that hard to choose the right paths.  However, I loved the inclusion of some Austen-era knowledge questions.  Thankfully, I knew enough history to get those question correct.  I’m proud to say that I choose the right paths and ended up married to Mr. Darcy at the end.  Lots of fun!

 
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Posted by on January 29, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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A Winter’s Respite Readathon Day #5

Today’s Progress:

  • Books Read Today: .6
  • Total Books Read: 6
  • Pages Read Today: 495
  • Total Pages Read: 1491
  • Time Read Today: 1 hours 41 minutes
  • Total Time Read: 12 hours 6 minutes
  • Comments: Finished a readalong, watched a movie, read a visual companion, and finished a zombie book… Very productive day for my lists!

My goals:

  • Read 5 books
  • Review all books read
  • Finish The Great Gatsby and A Midsummer Night’s Dream readalongs
  • Get back on Twitter to tweet my progress (@TFrances)
  • Read at least 2 library books (and return them, but not check any new out)

TBR Pile:

  • HP Film Wizardry (library book)
  • The Great Gatsby
  • A Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • The Magician King
  • Autumn: Purification
  • Autumn: Disintegration
  • Sunshine
  • Lost in Austen
  • Miss Peregrine’s School for Peculiar Children
  • Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters
  • A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Manga version
  • A Lady Never Tells
  • A Gentleman Always Remembers
  • An Affair without End

 
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Posted by on January 27, 2012 in Readathon

 

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A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Shakespeare

Title: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Author: William Shakespeare

Genre: Classic Plays

Pages: 128

Rating: 5 / 5 stars

Reading Challenges: Shakespeare; Book2Movie

Play

I think this is my favorite of Shakespeare’s play.  I’ve always loved the comedy of errors… especially Puck.  He’s always my favorite character.  So many of Shakespeare’s line and words have become commonplace in English.  We hardly recognize that it’s Shakespeare.  Reading the play again reminded me of all those wonderful words.  And even though I felt a little weird, I had to read the play out loud to get the true feeling.  Love it!  Side note: I saw this performed in Stratford, Canada back on high school trip.  It was beautifully simple, focusing on the words and characters.

Movie Adaptation 2003

 I love this adaptation.  Overall my favorite character is Bottom.  Kevin Kline is just perfect, especially his introduction of hiding from his wife.  Helena is especially annoying, but such is her character.  The others all play great supporting roles.  My only problem is the creepy longing looks of Oberon.  A bit much maybe, but overall lots of fun.

 
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Posted by on January 27, 2012 in Book Reviews, Movies

 

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A Midsummer Night’s Dream: Manga Edition

Title: Manga Shakespeare: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Illustrator: Kate Brown

Publisher: Amulet Books 2008

Genre: Graphic Novel; Shakespeare

Pages: 207

Rating:  4 / 5 stars

Reading Challenges: Graphic Novels; Support Your Local Library

The latest in the breakout series Manga Shakespeare, introducing teens to a new kind of Bard.

In one of Shakespeare’s funniest, most enduring stories, meddling fairies create unexpected love triangles among a group of teenagers. Hermia is in love with Lysander. Demetrius is in love with Hermia. Helena is in love with Demetrius. Add to the mix Puck, a fairy with a powerful love potion, and chaos is sure to follow. Now everyone’s in love with Helena, Hermia is hopping mad, and the fairy queen Titania is in love with a man with a donkey’s head! Using the style and visual language of manga, Kate Brown transforms Shakespeare’s world into something new and vibrant. It’s the perfect introduction to Shakespeare’s work for reluctant readers and manga fans alike.

I picked up this version of Shakespeare’s play while browsing the Young Adult Graphic Novel shelf at the library.  I have some mixed feelings about this one…. 

The Good

Kate Brown does a great job illustrating the characters and actions throughout the play.  Each character is introduced in the first few pages.  The costumes never change, keeping the character easily recognizable.  The original text is included, not “updating” the language.  Thankfully Brown understood that “updating” is just not necessary.  We can all read the original text just fine.

The Bad?

Do we need this?  I am all for drawing new readers to Shakespeare.  But sometimes I wonder about these adaptations and graphic novelizations.  Do we really need to jazz it up one of the greatest authors of all time?  I think not.  For my slight hesitations, I am dropping my rating down to 4 stars.

 

 
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Posted by on January 27, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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Autumn: Disintegration by David Moody

Title: Autumn: Disintegration (#4)

Author: David Moody

Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin 2011

Genre: Zombie

Pages: 342

Rating:  5 / 5 stars

Reading Challenges: Zombie; Read Your Name – A; Support Your Local Library

How I Got It: Library loan

Forty days have passed since the world died. Billions of corpses walk the Earth. Everything is disintegrating. . . .

A group of eleven men and women have survived against the odds. On an almost daily basis, they attack the dead with brutal ferocity, tearing through them with utter contempt.

Somewhere nearby, out of sight and out of earshot, is another group that has adopted a completely different survival strategy. Where the others have used brutality and strength, these people have demonstrated subtlety, planning, and tactics.

A series of horrific events force the two groups together. Backed into a corner and surrounded by hundreds of thousands of corpses, they all know that their final battle with the dead is about to begin.

I was on the edge of my seat for this entire book…  I just couldn’t wait to find out what happens to the survivors.  After Purification, I was unsure of where Moody was going to take the story.  The way the book ended, it didn’t leave much room for continuation on the same frantic level as previously.  Thankfully Moody found a great way to continue the main storyline by introducing some new groups.  I didn’t love these characters as much as the first ones, but they were interesting.  I sped through the book, reading straight through lunch times to finish the story.  And now I hear there’s a rumored 5th book out there somewhere.  I must find and devour!

Autumn:

  1. Autumn
  2. The City
  3. Purification
  4. The Human Condition
  5. Disintegration
  6. Aftermath
  
 
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Posted by on January 27, 2012 in Book Reviews

 

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