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Couch Potato, Librocubicularist

Book vs Film: Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor / Christmas with Holly

February 25, 2017 | No comments


 

During my recent two-week stint with the flu/cough from hell I probably watched enough Hallmark made for tv movies to fill my need for the rest of the year. One of the films I watched was Christmas With Holly from 2012.

Half-way through the film, I realized that I had seen it before, and that I had read the book it is based on, Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor (also published as Christmas With Holly) by Lisa Kleypas from 2010. Actually, when I read the book in 2015 I was convinced I had either read it before or seen a tv adaption of it, but couldn’t quite place it.

The story is about a man named Mark who becomes the guardian of his niece Holly after his older sister pass away. Holly and Mark move in with Mark’s two brothers, and befriends Maggie, the owner of the new toy shop in town. This book, and the film, is not really a traditional romance. The romantic relationship between Mark and Maggie is not the focus, rather it’s more of a family drama (which I definitely have a soft spot for). Part of the book and film is set during Christmas, but I wouldn’t necessairly classify it as a holiday book/film.

I definitely prefer the FILM over the BOOK because:

1. I prefer romantic movies over romance novels. For a few of my teen-age years, I almost exclusively read romance novels but my reading preferences has definitely changed since then (not saying that I don’t once in a while read and really enjoy and romance novel–the list of preferred authors has just shrunken to a very small, exclusive club). Being a hopeless romantic at hearth, I do still enjoy watching feel-good romantic films.

2. The setting is gorgeous. The story takes place in Seattle and on San Juan Island, Washington, and was filmed in Nova Scotia, Canada.

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Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts #77

February 23, 2017 | One comment


 

1. I’m so behind on my daily reading of Les Miserables. Receiving daily short sections to read via the serial reader app was a great idea, but it is not working if I don’t even open the app… (I will catch up, I just need to read 4 or 5 sections per day for a while.)

2. I just finished listening to Adnan’s Story: The Search for Truth and Justice After Serial by Rabia Chaudry. I was a big fan of the first season of the podcast Serial as well as the first season of the podcast Undisclosed: the State v. Adnan Syed and the book didn’t disappoint.

3. I’m done with teaching for a while now. I won’t lie – I really enjoy teaching but preparing lectures and grading assignments while still doing my full-time research work was a lot to keep up with.

4. I’m looking forward to getting my evenings back again and have more time to read. I just got two books I’m dying to read via a book exchange group: Why Did You Lie? by Yrsa Sigurdardottir and Every Three Hours by Chris Mooney. The latter is the sixth book in a series so I have a few books left to read before that one.

5. Now that I’m not working two intense jobs at the same time, I figured I have time to finally start learning Icelandic, so I signed up for a month long class at the university. I thought that since I’m staying here, I should make an effort to actually learn the language (more than just answering no when the cashier at the grocery store asks if I want a plastic bag).

Visit Christine at Bookishly Boisterous for more bookish (and not so bookish) thoughts.

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“There Are Things I Want You to Know” about Stieg Larsson and Me by Eva Gabrielsson

February 20, 2017 | 2 comments


 

In brief: Eva Gabrielsson’s account of her life together with Stieg Larsson, and the events following his death.

Setting: Sweden

The background: Stieg Larsson and architect and political activist Eva Gabrielsson were together for 32 years. They were not married (and did not have any children together), so when Stieg passed away from a heart attack in November 2004, his estranged father and brother inherited all of his estate, including publishing rights and future royalties.

The good: For me, the highlights of this book are definitely the background information about what lead to Larsson writing the Millennium trilogy, and the inspiration for the themes, plot, and different characters. It’s absolutely worth reading just for those little tidbits.

The not-so-good: Most of the chapters are short and the style shifts back and forth, which for me made the book feel a bit unorganized. Parts of the book (especially the biographical information regarding Stieg’s childhood) is quite dry and feels mostly like a list of facts without much emotional content (a stark contrast to the more emotional chapters). I actually think I was more sympathetic to Gabrielsson’s situation before reading this book. I found her a bit off-putting and had a hard time connecting to her.

Why I read it: The Millennium trilogy is one of my all-time favourite series.

My rating: ★★★

Conclusion: Worth reading if you’re a fan of the Millennium trilogy and want more background on the legal dispute between Gabrielsson and Stieg Larsson’s father and brother.

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Librocubicularist

Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts #76

February 18, 2017 | 6 comments


 

1. This is me in a nutshell.

2. Even if you’re only half as obsessed with books and book statistics (and graphs) as I am, I highly recommend you read this piece (with the awesome title The Gone Girl With The Dragon Tattoo On The Train) by Emily St. John Mandel.

3. I need a shirt like this:

4. I think I would feel very at home in this Spanish village. I’m definitely adding it to my list of places to visit.

5. Weird Scandinavian food? It’s not weird at all. Or maybe just a little bit weird? (To be honest, I only eat 10.5 of these 20 things.)

6. Now I’m really craving black pudding. And Flying Jacob.

Visit Christine at Bookishly Boisterous for more bookish (and not so bookish) thoughts.

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Couch Potato, Librocubicularist

Book vs Film: Safe Haven

February 14, 2017 | 2 comments


 

Since it is Valentine’s Day today (or All Heart’s Day like I prefer to call it), today’s edition of book vs film is all about the romance. Because of a horrendous cough, I spent the weekend watching Hallmark movies, and after having filled my yearly quota of both Valentine and Christmas themed movies, I moved on to Nicholas Sparks*.

I read Safe Haven, and then I immediately watched the film in order to do a detailed comparison**. Full disclosure, I had read the book (originally published 2010) twice before seeing the film when it premiered in 2013.

I definitely prefer the FILM over the BOOK because:

1. It’s all about the beautiful scenery.

2. And Josh Duhamel.

3. Plus the soundtrack is nice.

4. And to be honest, I prefer the way the plot is presented in the film.

 
*In my opinion, one of the most sappy romance writers ever, but whose books I for some reason always read.
**It’s my official explanation and I’m sticking to it.

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Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts #75

February 11, 2017 | One comment


 

1. I’ve gotten the cold and cough from hell. It’s been a struggle to just move between my bed and my couch for the last few days. My plans for the weekend consists of consuming lots of orange juice, hot tea with honey, rose hip soup, and cough medicine, while watching the hallmark channel.

2. I’m looking forward to the new film adaption of Mary Poppins.

3. No matter what anyone says, Mr Darcy will always look like Colin Firth to me.

4. Swedish professor and public speaker Hans Rosing sadly passed away earlier this week. If you haven’t already seen his TED talks, I suggest you start with this list.

5. Cheesecake stuffed banana bread? Yes, please!

Visit Christine at Bookishly Boisterous for more bookish (and not so bookish) thoughts.

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6 Degrees of Separation: Fates and Furies

February 4, 2017 | 5 comments


 

6 Degrees of Separation is a book meme hosted by Kate at Books are My Favorite and Best. The goal is to construct a chain with 6 other books, using any criteria you want, and see where you end up.

The starting book this month is Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff. I haven’t read it and was really struggling to decide on a theme for the first link.

Another book that was hard for me to pick a link theme from was John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany, the starting book in the April 2016 chain. John Irving is one of Kate’s favourite authors, and it took me forever to find a link I felt was good enough.

Good Enough is Paula Yoo’s debut novel. It is about the girl Patti whose parents expect her to be absolute perfect and to get into an Ivy League school. Patti plays the violin and meets a cute trumpet-playing boy who shares her love for music.

A shared love for music is also an important part in Gayle Forman’s If I Stay about the girl Mia who plays the cello, and Adam who is in a rock band. Both the book, and the film based on it, made me cry.

Another case where both the book and the film based on it made me shed some tears is Before I Die by Jenny Downham, about the girl Tessa who is dying in leukemia and who sets out to complete her before-I-die to-do-list with some help from the neighbour boy Adam.

In Nicholas Sparks’ A Walk to Remember, the main character Jamie Sullivan is also dying in leukemia. The story is narrated by Landon Carter, a boy whose life was greatly affected by his relationship with Jamie. The title of the book can be interpreted to refer to both their brief walk through life together, and their walk down the aisle.

The book Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married by Marian Keyes starts with the main character being told by a tarot card reader that she will be getting married within a year. I have read a few of Keyes’ books and although some of them have had their funny moments, this one is not on my tbr list.

This time, my chain took me from Fates and Furies, via books from different genres but linked by love and music, and life and death, to Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married.

Why don’t you join us and make your own chain? Starting with Fates and Furies, where will you end up? Visit Books Are My Favourite and Best to read the rules and see who else made a chain this month.

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Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts #74

February 2, 2017 | 7 comments


 

1. I’m teaching a course this semester, and now I really feel like I need all of these.

2. This is me all the time:

3. Me and a friend are going to see La La Land tonight. I cannot wait.

4. I’m attempting to read Les Miserables this year with the help of the serial reader app but I have already fallen a week behind.

5. This Danish commercial is wonderful, and this videoclip is exactly why Ellen is one of my favourites.

Visit Christine at Bookishly Boisterous for more bookish (and not so bookish) thoughts.

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The Present Participle List | January 2017

January 31, 2017 | 6 comments


 

DRINKING hot chocolate
WALKING carefully across the black ice
WATCHING Shadowhunters
READING Nordic crime
PREPARING lectures and practicals
GRADING lab reports at all hours
WRITING reports, reports, and so many reports
MARCHING for everyone’s equal rights
LISTENING to Joshua Radin’s new album
WEARING all the knitted sweatshirts
LOVING waterfalls in winter
EATING sweet potato with cardamom
ENJOYING hot pools
LEARNING patience
PLANNING easter and summer vacation
ORGANIZING my life
COVETING new winter boots
FEELING motivated but stressed
CELEBRATING getting a new research fellowship
NURSING an inflamed achilles tendon
MISSING daylight
PLAYING gardenscapes and wordfeud

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Couch Potato, Librocubicularist

Book vs Screen: The Mortal Instruments / Shadowhunters

January 28, 2017 | 4 comments


 

My sister got me hooked on the tv show Shadowhunters, based on The Mortal Instruments books by Cassandra Clare.

I actually read City of Bones, the first book in the series (originally published in 2007) before watching the first season of the tv show Shadowhunters: The Mortal Instruments (premiered 2015).

TV SHOW over book, because:

1. The book was ok, but definitely not my favourite genre. It had some great parts, but a lot of it it was slow going and hard to follow. I have no intentions of reading the other five books in the series.

2. The tv show, on the other hand, is addictive. For me, the plot and characters works perfectly on screen.

3. The soundtrack is great.

4. The show has plenty of pretty boys to look at. And several kick-ass female characters.

5. The main characters are a few years older in the tv show (which definitely made the story better).

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