Help, I need suggestions!

Good Morning, Good Morning!

Ok, so I know its not morning anymore! Stop being so fussy.

I need help! Book suggestions, I am out of reading material!

Health kick is happening at the moment: obnoxious oat, banana, cinnamon and honey smoothie also featured along with my sad bookless Ipad!

Advertisements

“The problem with some people is that when they aren’t drunk, they’re sober.” -William Butler Yeats

There is only one drink that I get excited about when I see it. It’s a cider. it’s called Old Rosie. And it is the best cider in the world.

Or at least I think so.

It’s dry, sharp and strong. It’s not a sweet cider that you get out of a bottle. No , no this drink my friends is a lady and needs to be treated with respect. You get a pint at your own peril. And with this you drink it slowly, savoring the taste.

I bet you are all wondering why I am speaking about this cider. Well, my attitude to drinking Old Rosie is very much the same to reading classics.

I love the classics. Don’t get me wrong. But they are tough and I probably read one a year. This is because the classics (and let me just clarify, when I speak about classics I mean Dickens or Bronte or Austen. I don’t mean medieval. Nah, frack that) come from a different era. Visuals were gained via in depth descriptions, and although it can be interesting to read about the intricate design of a dress or a room or a clock, it can become tiresome. Too much of this and your brain becomes addled and confused, much like if you drink too much Old Rosie.

And just like with Old Rosie, they never normally end well. This is fine. We all like a bit of drama. Every now and then you need something that makes you weep in a way that makes your friends believe something earth shatteringly terrible has happened.  But not all the time. It’s nice to end a night out dancing on some tables not sobbing in a corner about something that your sober brain can’t even remember. Sometimes you need a nice romance that doesn’t involve ten different people and exceedingly high expectations (I’m talking to you Tess!)

So all in all, classics are like a strong cider. If you read too much you’ll end up not remembering how you got home and to embarrassing photos the next morning.

Sian is lola

‘So I held onto the one thing I know to be true. Family always comes first.’

New year New you?

No, it hasn’t happened for me yet either.

I always think when I start a new year it will be like a light clicking and I will have huge amounts of determination just appear. Out of nowhere. But it doesn’t happen like that.

It takes time.

Lead up slowly to what you want.

That’s how I feel about reading too. I think I’m going to read all of the challenging and interesting books that I have on my list. But it just doesn’t happen like that.

I’ve been reading a really easy and trashy series. And its been amazing. It is the ‘The Royal’ Series by Nichole Chase. It is complete trash. Complete. But it is so much fun. It is the dream. Samantha, newly found out Duchess of a small country in Europe is fun and likable. I have read all three in the series and I have to say that the first one with Samantha as the voice is the best by a long way. The other two in the series are perfect for a bit of light reading.

It’s wonderful, easy boy meets girl, boy and girl fall in love everything is perfect.

Actually, it isn’t that easy. it is really emotional as well. However the character with the saddest storyline has probably the least contact time with the reader so it’s not too distressing when it comes to the climax of the book. Despite this when I read it I cry. I cry like a baby.

An emotional, silly baby.

Where was I?

Oh yeah, the lack of contact time the reader has with this character means that you do feel quite emotionally disconnected from the situation. But I mean this is not the kind of book where as the reader you are expecting an incredibly deep and insightful read.

Family is a strong ark in the story, however it was very rarely mentioned. It is much more of a romance and the focus being on the family love presented through a couple. All of the stories end up with the main character coupling off. This is fine because it is what you expect from this kind of  story, however it does strike me as odd what with the constant references to love between parents and children.

Don’t get me wrong. I love it. I am still re-reading it.

It’s easy and engaging and once I start it I can’t put it down. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves a good old romance.

Now maybe its time to pick up a new book, eat and carrot and go for a run.

New Year Same Me

‘I want to tell you about my friend Terry Pratchett, and it’s not easy.’

There will be two blogs about this book. One about the forward by Neil Gaiman.

Yes I know, more Terry Pratchett loving. But you know. He is my world.

I will tell you a truth about this forward. I cried. I cried like a little baby. It was wonderful and sad and I was an emotional woman as I read it.

This may sound dramatic but I could feel the pain in Neil Gaiman and the ‘imminent loss’ of his friend.

(This is a short one btw)

And the reason I am even writing this is that I didn’t want it to get lost when I eventually write about the book at large. The reason I am writing this is to talk about what Gaiman said about being greedy. I am grieving for the loss of the Disc before it has even gone. What Gaiman said reminded me that I need to be grateful for what I have, in the sense of Pratchett and other things.

Neil tries to give us a peak as to what Terry Pratchett is really like. Starts anecdotes from a different point of view. This actually makes the stories then told in the body of the book even more enlightening, It makes you think that you remember them from a long time ago, as if it were your own distant memory.

Neil does give this insight into what Pratchett is like and it is wonderful to know more about my favorite author. It is uplifting and heartbreaking and I will always remember to write when I am angry and lost.

So Terry and Neil. I will be forever grateful for what you have both written. I love both of you. Thank you.

Happy reading everyone 🙂

‘For there is no friend like a sister…To fetch one if one goes astray, To lift one if one totters down, To strengthen whilst one stands.’

Fasten your seat belts, its what everyone wants.

Poetry!

I know poetry isn’t everyone’s cup of tea per say but I love it and so I’m going to write about it.

I’ve gotten into some cool slam poetry on YouTube, getting myself all fired up about rights and injustice again so thought I would do a review on one of the first poems that made me feel like this.

Oh yes. It’s Goblin Market by Christina Rossetti.

This is a poem which is notorious for its look into violence of men against women and of how women love and protect each other. On one level this love is sisterly and innocent…

However…

It wouldn’t be literature if there wasn’t a HUGE overtone of lesbian lovings.

But I skip ahead. It is a classic Eve situation. Temptation by a non human being, in this case the Goblins. What is interesting is the fact that the Goblins are gendered very specifically as men, being described as ‘goblin men’ and ‘sly brother’.

They are not attractive and with this ugliness is portrayed a definite threatening tone. The are described as ‘cat-like and rat-like’ and as ‘leering’ creatures. These negative descriptions clearly portray a sense of distrust around these goblin men.

As we see through firstly the eyes of Laura, the only trustworthy character in the poem is Lizzie. This is seen when ‘full of wise upbraidings’ she tells her of the horrible fate of another girl in the village. This trustworthy figure is the one who ultimately saves her.

But where is the lesbianness. Well let me show.

‘Golden head by golden head,…

They lay down in their curtained bed…

Moon and stars gazed in at them…

Cheek to cheek and breast to breast,

Locked together in one nest.’

Now obviously the language is incredibly suggestive. But not only does this create a rather sexual image, it also enforces the idea that being safe means being with women. It implies that a nest, a safe haven is with ones sister. When I say this language is incredibly suggestive it must be remembered that this poem was written in 1862 and so images of sex would have been very few and far between.

As well as the idea of security being emphasized in this cocoon of womanhood, the affiliation of violence with men is also shown. As I said before the goblins are hideous. This mixed with the idea of Laura sucking ‘until her lips were sore’ and the goblin men who ‘held her hands and squeezed/ their fruits against her face’ emphasizes the link of violence with men.This section of the poem, where Laura goes to the goblins to try and help Lizzie, is probably the most famous for the depiction of rape. The next stanza goes onto describe how the goblins ‘Mauled and mocked her… coaxed and fought her’ how they ‘Tore her gown and soiled her stocking’. This is all very visceral imagery of rape and of how Laura is ‘white and golden’ and not tempted. She is the ideal. She is what all women should be when presented with the temptation that men offer.

What I take from this poem is that it is your sisters, your fellow women who you should trust and love. And when you stray from that some form of female identity must be tested.

So yeah. Go read and tell me what you think 🙂

Happy reading! x

“Eleanor was right. She never looked nice. She looked like art, and art wasn’t supposed to look nice; it was supposed to make you feel something.”

Hey!

It’s been a long time since I’ve done this soooooo….

*Takes deep breath*

I read this book (Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell) a few weeks ago now. I was on my way to a training course in Manchester and I must say, I read it on that train journey. It was a long journey and I had a very annoying family sitting near me so it wasn’t hard to get distracted from the need to read and block out all of the background noise.

What I found amazing and wonderful about this book wasn’t the writing. The writing is pretty adequate. It wasn’t the plot. A pretty standard Benedick and Beatrice situation going on. It wasn’t even the characters. The characters are fab. As you read you want them to do well, you want them to achieve and do well. I think the thing that made this book completely fascinating was the contrast of situation and how two people can see things as so different.

Ok this isn’t new.

But the fact that the reader is in both Eleanor and Park’s head allows for the reader to understand just how different these two characters are.

It’s a bit fluffy. A bit hipster. They like all the music they should. They like comics. Its all a bit contrite.

But I did honestly love this book. The ending was exciting and confusing, just as it is for Eleanor. It’s scary and horrible but I just couldn’t stop reading.

If you like reading about people and love and teenagers and can get past a bit of hipster this is the book for you 🙂

‘I was only a kid when I left Earth, and I had no idea what the universe had in store for me.’

OMGGUARDIANSOFTHEGALAXYCANTBREATHESOMANYFEELS

*hyperventilates*

So… good… can’t…. review… need to breathe………

 

Ok right, I think this is better now. Wow, I really wasn’t expecting much of this film. I hadn’t heard too much about it, the boy suggested seeing it and then  I just kept on seeing trailers for it.

I had no idea what was in store for me with this film but WOW! I LOVED IT!

I have a few theories as to why I love this so much.

1. It doesn’t take itself too seriously- this is always a plus for me with Sci-fi and why I don’t like some of the other marvel films so much. I love the jokes and the references that are very meta.

2. The music- SO AWESOME one of the greatest soundtracks in a film for a while. The tape was always magically playing the right mood music 😉 love it so much. I felt the movie through the music, it is so awesome 🙂

3. It’s Star Trek, not the films, old Star Trek and this makes it awesome- It reminds me of star trek, with all the casual species and the enemies and the blue and pink and omnomnomnom I love it. It plays perfectly into my personal version of what Sci-fi is meant to be.

I loved Groot and Rocket. I thought they were amazing and laughed so much and was sad and thought that Groot was amazing and beautiful and may or may not have cried and rejoiced and felt all of the feelings. I thought the timing of the film was great and didn’t really see the end of the film coming. I enjoy the Marvel franchise but sometimes think it can be a bit repetitive so was really happy when I saw this film. I think it is a perfect way to move away slightly from what has become Marvel.

I would recommend this film to everyone. I haven’t laughed this much in a cinema for a long time 🙂

Happy Watching everyone

‘And with Vikings on the backs of dragons, the world just got a whole lot bigger.’

I loved the first How to Train your Dragon. It played into my love for fantasy, cute cartoons and dragons. I think there is one thing well all need to agree on.

Dragons are cool.

The first one really is a kids film, and though the second one is too, it can definitely seen to be darker and more grown up. This is seen through the actual death of a character (at which I cried) and the question put forward about following and leadership. It also tackles the questions of reunion and friendship perfectly too.

In these films I want nothing more than Hiccup and Toothless to be together and go on adventures and win. I felt genuinely attached to both of them, and they do carry this film. The voice of Hiccup is perfect, showing his difference to the rest of the Vikings perfectly. And Toothless? Well I love him. He makes me laugh and smile and coo. I love how droopy and mischievous he is. I don’t think they could have made a better dragon. Loyal, strong, dangerous and just like a stoopid puppy.

Another one of my favourite character moments is when Ruffnut exclaims ‘Take me now’ just before being captured by a handsome dragon trapper. This moment, so perfectly executed, had me laughing the whole rest of the film. Easily one of the funniest moments in the film. The character in general is quite funny and the situation between her and the two other dragon riders is very funny. I  think it  is especially funny because it is relatable. Very much an adult or late teen part of the film, a perfect example of  how this film caters to most age groups.

The boy and I saw this film relatively late in the afternoon and were probably the only adults there without children. The moments that the kids (and I much to the boys embarrassment) were the cute little ickle baby dragons. I love them so much. I want one. They are funny and adorable and sooooo cute. The animators did so well with them and they have a special place in my heart, and when time and place technology exists I will travel to Berk and have a little baby dragon.

I would recommend this film to everyone 🙂 so funny cute and emotional!

Happy watching everyone!