May 17, 2013 | Author: Katherine Collom | Category: Interesting discoveries | No Comments »
Everyone generally has a list of books that they either save to read when they’re older, or that they re-read later on for a different perspective. I wasn’t able to truly appreciate Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, C.S. Lewis’ Space Trilogy, or even Kerouac’s On the Road until at least my late teens. It wasn’t because I hadn’t already read much more complicated books, but more so because my point of view on these particular themes changed as I grew and matured. So I’m very excited to have found a neat list on buzzfeed.com which lists 65 Books You Need to Read in Your 20s.
With an interesting collection which ranges from great classics to contemporary literature, this list is sure to keep you busy for a while! I plan on starting my own 65 Book Challenge and finishing all the books on the list. I’ll be sure to post some good reviews once I finish each one! The first on the list is The Emperor’s Children by Claire Messud which I will be starting today. Whether you are ten or one-hundred, you can feel free to join me in the challenge or even simply leave comments about which of the books on the list you’ve read and what you liked/ didn’t like about them. Now this is what I call a literary adventure!
May 17, 2013 | Author: Katherine Collom | Category: Quotes | No Comments »
You probably wouldn’t consider Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland as your go-to book for good advice, but, believe it or not, Lewis Carroll has a few interesting things to say; even if they do involve a disappearing cat and a girl who radically changes size every other minute. Check out this fun quote and, if you’re a big Alice in Wonderland fan, you may also want to take a look at our quirky and cute Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland art print. Enjoy and have an awesome Favorite Quote Friday!
May 14, 2013 | Author: Katherine Collom | Category: Interesting discoveries | No Comments »
Two weeks ago for Literary Tidbit Tuesday we wrote about the most widely read books written in English. This week we are approaching a similar topic which is to list the top best-selling books of all time. Enjoy!
- The Bible – I think we can all agree this isn’t a shocker. I knew The Bible would pop up somewhere at the top!
- Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes – apparently the wayward adventures of Don Quixote and his stalwartly sidekick Sancho Panza are appealing to a lot of people!
- Xinhua Zidian (Chinese language dictionary) – given how widely spoken Mandarin is, and the high population in China, this seems like a logical choice!
- A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens – this was foreseen as it was number one on our Literary Tidbit Tuesday blog two weeks ago.
- The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien – also on our list a couple weeks past!
- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling – let’s admit it, we all knew Harry Potter just had to show up on this list eventually!
These are some interesting choices, some unexpected and some completely obvious. Which ones shocked you with their place on our list?
May 13, 2013 | Author: Katherine Collom | Category: Review | No Comments »
I was lucky enough to get the chance to see The Great Gatsby film this weekend, which means that today you will be treated to a movie review! Yay! This, of course, also means that this is your official SPOILER ALERT so that if you want to be completely surprised by the movie you should only continue reading at your own risk.
If you’ve been following us through the last week, which was appropriately titled Gatsby Week, you’ll know that I’ve really been anticipating the release of The Great Gatsby movie. I was definitely glad that I went to see it on the big screen and that I paid a little extra to see the 3D version; if there is any way to describe this film, it’s to say that it is definitely grand and glamorous. There’s lots of bling, sparkle, and glint to catch your eye and allow for a pleasant viewing experience. I thought this was great as I’ve always associated the Jazz Age with over-the-top glitz and glamour and this definitely came across in the on-screen version.
Another thing that I truly enjoyed about this silver screen adaptation was the accuracy. Much of the dialogue seems to have come straight from F. Scott Fitzgerald’s famous novel and the characters were very precise according to Fitzgerald’s own descriptions. I particularly liked how Joel Edgerton brought to life the dangerous strength of character Tom Buchanan and Carey Mulligan lent a vain and transparent air to the flighty and conflicted Daisy Buchanan. I wasn’t particularly happy with Leonardo DiCaprio’s depiction of Jay Gatsby – I didn’t feel that overwhelming passion and sense of control that I always associated with Gatsby’s character in the book – but at the same time it’s hard to imagine anyone truly being able to capture this complicated protagonist.
Now to the things I didn’t like about this film. With a staggering length of 143 minutes, the movie may feel a bit draggy to some. I found myself completely lost in the story and didn’t notice the passage of time, but this is mainly because I absolutely love this classic tale, so for others who are perhaps less excited by The Great Gatsby, length may be a problem.
Another aspect of the film that I couldn’t quite appreciate was the interjection of contemporary music into the story at different intervals. Playing a Jay-Z song at a 1920s party just created a conflict for me; it seemed that the director was trying too hard to make the era and the story appeal to the contemporary viewer, but in my opinion this wasn’t necessary. The 1920s were crazy enough and exciting enough without having to infuse unnecessary music from our current age. And music from the Jazz Age is amazing so it’s beyond me why the focus wouldn’t be on works from this same time period.
Overall, watching this movie was enjoyable and completely worth paying the extra buck to see in 3D. It’s both a visually stimulating experience and an emotional ride as you get drawn into the story. If I have to give The Great Gatsby a rating, I’d say it gets three and a half out of five stars. Kudos to the director for making a film that’s accurate to the novel even if the music wasn’t. If you are a fan of Fitzgerald’s book, this is definitely worth seeing. And if you’ve already seen it, we’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions about it as well!