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Couch Potato, Librocubicularist

Book vs Film: Me Before You

September 28, 2016 | No comments


 

I’m taking a page from Kate’s book and comparing books and their film counterparts. This time, it’s a popular novel which recently was made into a film.

I read the book Me Before You (originally published 2012) BEFORE seeing the film Me Before You (premiered 2016).

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I’m not sure I can actually pick a favourite* between the FILM and the BOOK, because:

1. Sam Claflin and Emilia Clarke are great as Will and Lou.

2. The characters have more depth (especially the supporting cast) in the book.

3. The soundtrack. So perfect.

4. A lot of the backstory of Lou is not included in the film, and I preferred it that way. However, I missed the family interactions which was only partly included.

5. The accents are just not as good inside my head as when hearing the actors.

 
*But if I absolutely had to choose, the film would probably win.

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Reading Recap | 117

September 26, 2016 | 5 comments


 

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Last two weeks I reread Chesapeake Blue (★★★★), the fourth and last part of the Chesapeake Saga. It remains one of my favourite feel-good romance series.

I also finished Helsinki White by James Thompson (★★★), the third book about inspector Kari Vaara in Finland. This time, he is running a rogue black-ops unit, using crime to fight crime. It was a bit of a disappointment after the two first books (which were brilliant), but I’m hoping the main character will redeem himself in the fourth, and last, book in the series.

I finally read The Woman in Blue (★★★) by Elly Griffiths, the eight book about forensic archaeologist Ruth Galloway. It wasn’t the best from the series.

I also read Star Struck by Val McDermot (★★★), the sixth book about private investigator Kate Brannigan in Manchester, England.

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I read Boar Island by Nevada Barr (★★), the 19th book about National Park ranger Anna Pigeon. This time, the story was set in Acadia National Park in Maine, but unfortunately, the setting was the only thing good about it.

Down the Darkest Road by Tami Hoag (★★) was another disappointment. It’s third in a romantic suspense series set in Oak Knoll, California. The plot was extremely slow going and boring and the characters did nothing to draw me into the story.

I also read Lick by Kylie Scott (★★). It reminded me a bit about Jay Crownovers’ Marked Men series, but was not nearly as good.

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I listened to The Reversal (★★★), The Lincoln Lawyer (★★★★), and The Brass Verdict (★★★) by Michael Connelly, three of the books about lawyer Mickey Haller, set in the same universe as the Harry Bosch series. All three were good reads and I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the series.

 

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This week I’m continuing I den ljuva sommartid by Mari Jungstedt (published in English as The Dead of Summer), the fifth book about superintendant Anders Knutas. It had a bit of a slow start, but I’m enjoying the mystery.

I’m also going to read Flashback by Nevada Barr, the 11th book about Anna Pigeon. I’m hoping this older book will be better than the two most recent ones.

I’m listening to The Fifth Witness by Michael Connelly, the fifth book about lawyer Mickey Haller who has expanded his business into foreclosure defense, but now has to defend one of his clients who is accused of killing the banker she blames for trying to take away her home. So far, it is very good.

 
What are you reading at the moment? For more inspiration and other’s reading plans, visit the it’s Monday, what are you reading linkup.

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Life & Everything

Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts #62

September 15, 2016 | 2 comments


 

1. The last 2 weeks have been funding-proposal-writing-hell. Luckily, I get a break from the office for the next 5 days because we’re doing fieldwork. It’s gonna be lots of fun, but the weather report looks pretty bad (cold and rainy). I’m so packing all my warm clothes.

2. Tomorrow is Read an Ebook Day. What are you gonna read?

3. Next week (September 25 − October 1, 2016) is Banned Books Week. I kind of wished that I lived in Washington DC right now, just so I could participate in their book scavenger hunt.

4. The new season of Blindspot has finally started! I’m pretty excited about this. I’m, however, still waiting for the second season of Outlander to make it to iTunes.

5. One of my dearest friends and her husband are coming to visit in a month. I haven’t seen them for over a year. I cannot wait.

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

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Reading Recap | 116

September 12, 2016 | 5 comments


 

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Last week I finally had time to finish Den döende dandyn by Mari Jungstedt (★★★), published in English as Killer’s Art, the fourth book about superintendent Anders Knutas.

I also read Arctic Chill by Arnaldur Indridason (★★★), the seventh book about Inspector Erlendur in Iceland. It was good, but a bit slow.

I also reread Inner Harbor by Nora Roberts, the third part in the Chesapeake Bay saga. It’s about four brothers, and remains one of my favourite go-to families (and one of my favourite settings).

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Last week I listened to The Narrows by Michael Connelly, the 10th book about Harry Bosch (★★★★). I also listened to Dexter’s Final Cut by Jeff Lindsay (★★). I was not very impressed.

I was definitely more impressed with Thief by Mark Sullivan (★★★). It is thriller about a former CIA agent turned thief/modern day Robin Hood. It was a good read, and I’ll definitely look for the other books in the series.

 

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This week I’m continuing I den ljuva sommartid by Mari Jungstedt (published in English as The Dead of Summer), the fifth book about superintendant Anders Knutas.

I’m also reading Helsinki White by James Thompson, the third book about inspector Kari Vaara in Finland. This time, he is running a rogue black-ops unit, using crime to fight crime.

I’m also planning on reading The Woman in Blue by Elly Griffiths, the eight book about forensic archaeologist Ruth Galloway.

I’m listening to The Reversal by Michael Connelly. It’s one of the books that is part of both the series about defense attorney Mickey Haller and the series about Police Detective Harry Bosch. This time, Haller is working as a prosecutor on a high-profile case, and Bosch is helping him with the investigations.

 
What are you reading at the moment? For more inspiration and other’s reading plans, visit the it’s Monday, what are you reading linkup.

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20 Books of Summer – Results (2)

September 7, 2016 | 2 comments


 

In addition to the 8 books from Swedish crime series that I had planned to read for the 20 Books of Summer challenge (hosted by Cathy at 746 Books), I also read an additional 7 books that fit the criteria of Nordic crime.

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Innan frosten by Henning Mankell
Ebook, 336 pages ★★★ (Read June 7-17)

Innan frosten, published in English as Before the Frost, is an accompanying book to the Kurt Wallander series, focusing on his daughter Linda Wallander who, like her father, is a police officer. It was supposed to be the first in a trilogy about Linda, but following the suicide of the actress who portrayed Linda in the movie adaptions of the Wallander books, Mankell abandoned the series. I thought it was a good crime novel, although not quite as good as the original Wallander books.

 
Snow Angels by James Thompson
Ebook, 265 pages ★★★★★ (Read July 3-4)

Snow Angels is the first of 4 books about Police Inspector Kari Vaara in Finland. This is definitely one of my favourite books read this year and I immediately went and bought the rest of the books in the series.

 
The Hanging Girl by Jussi Adler-Olsen
Ebook, 510 pages ★★★ (Read July 9-10)

The 6th book about Danish detective Carl Mørck was a good mystery, but I think I’m liking the later books in the series less than the first ones. I do have a soft spot for unlikable detectives, but somehow Mørck is becoming more annoying than fascinating and the case in this book was not my favourite one from the series so far.

 
Bortom sanningen by Anne Holt
Ebook, 400 pages ★★★ (Read August 10)

Book 7 in the series about Hanne Wilhelmsen, a police officer in Oslo, Norway (published in English as Beyond the Truth) was a random library find. I had actually read one book from the series before (in 2003) and then forgotten about the series. It was interesting, and I think I need to read a few more books by Holt.

 
Lucifer’s Tears by James Thompson
Ebook, 336 pages ★★★★ (Read August 13)

Not quite as amazing as the first book in the series but Inspector Kari Vaara in Finland is definitely becoming one of my absolute favourites. In the second book, Vaara and his wife has moved from northern Finland to Helsinki, and he is starting his career over again in a new department.

 
Skumtimmen by Johan Theorin
Ebook, 352 pages ★★★ (Read August 10-14)

This book, published in English as Echoes from the Dead, is the first out of four books set on the Swedish island Öland. It has complex characters and a mystery that spans many years. I thought it started a bit slow, but some parts where very good. I definitely did not figure out the ending in advance.

 
Into Oblivion by Arnaldur Indridason
Ebook, 352 pages ★★★ (Read August 16-24)

I usually devour books set in Iceland. This prequel to the series about Inspector Erlendur in Reykjavik was good but took forever to get through.

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20 Books of Summer – Results

September 6, 2016 | No comments


 

This summer I participated in the 20 Books of Summer challenge (hosted by Cathy at 746 Books). I had great plans of using the challenge as an excuse to catch up on some of the Scandinavian (especially Swedish) crime series I’ve been reading. In spite of somehow reading over 100 books since June 1, I only managed to read 8 books by authors from my original list.

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Skuggans spel by Lars Rambe
Paperback, 382 pages ★★★ (Read June 7-10)

In the second book about journalist Fredrik Gransjö, a dangerous criminal escapes from the local prison at the same time as the town prepares for a big jazz festival. It was a good mystery, but not nearly as good as the first book in the series.

 
Sandmannen by Lars Kepler
Ebook, 476 pages ★★★★ (Read July 9)

Lars Kepler (or writer couple Alexander Ahndoril and Alexandra Coelho Ahndoril) is one of my absolute favourites. The fourth book about Inspector Joona Linna (published in English as The Sandman) did not disappoint.

 
Vårlik by Mons Kallentoft
Ebook, 431 pages ★★★ (Read July 8-18)

The 4th book about detective inspector Malin Fors in Linköping, Sweden (published in English as Spring Remains) was a bit of a slow read. Malin Fors is probably one of the most complicated Swedish detectives and I cannot quite decide if I love or hate her.

 
Stum sitter guden by Anna Jansson
Ebook, 261 pages ★★★ (Read July 8)

The first book (not yet published in English) about police detective Maria Wern in the town of Visby, on Gotland island, Sweden was a quick read. I’ve been reading the series out of order, and I think I might enjoy it even more if I read the books chronologically.

 
Silverkronan by Anna Jansson
Ebook, 216 pages ★★★ (Read June 17-18)

The 4th book (not yet published in English) about police detective Maria Wern in the town of Visby, on Gotland island, Sweden. I really like the main character, but think I might actually prefer the TV show adaptation. The books are good, but not great.

 
Alla de stillsamma döda by Anna Jansson
Ebook, 264 pages ★★★ (Read August 14-15)

The 2nd book (not yet published in English) about police detective Maria Wern in the town of Visby, on Gotland island, Sweden. This book started slow, but at the end I really liked it (not enough to bump it up to 4 stars, but almost).

 
Bittrare än döden by Camilla Grebe and Åsa Träff
Ebook, 394 pages ★★★ (Read August 15-16)

The 2nd book about psychologist Siri Bergman (published in English as More Bitter Than Death) was not quite as good as the first book. Siri Bergman is definitely another character that I cannot quite make up my mind about (kind of like with Elly Griffith’s Ruth Galloway – I like her but find her frustrating).

 
Drömmar ur snö by Anna Jansson
Ebook, 287 pages ★★★ (Read August 30)

The 5th book (also not yet published in English) about police detective Maria Wern in the town of Visby, on Gotland island, Sweden. This was another ok, but not great, mystery. I think I’m reading this series more for the setting (which I love) and the main character (who I still really like) than for the actual plot.

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Reading Recap | 115

September 5, 2016 | 3 comments


 

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Last week was crazy busy, and I barely had time to read anything. I finished Drömmar ur snö (“Dreams from Snow”) by Anna Jansson (★★★), the fifth book about detective Maria Wern on Gotland.

I also listened to I Hear the Sirens in the Street by Adrian McKinley (★★★), the second book about Detective Sean Duffy, set in Belfast in 1982. I was a bit hesitant about continuing the series after reading the first book, but I quite enjoyed it.

 

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This week I’m hopefully going to finally finish Den döende dandyn and I den ljuva sommartid by Mari Jungstedt (published in English as Killer’s Art and The Dead of Summer), the fourth and fifth books about superintendant Anders Knutas.

I’m also planning on reading Arctic Chill by Arnaldur Indridason, the seventh book about Inspector Erlendur in Iceland.

I’m currently listening to The Narrows by Michael Connelly, the 10th book about Harry Bosch.

 
What are you reading at the moment? For more inspiration and other’s reading plans, visit the it’s Monday, what are you reading linkup.

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6 Degrees of Separation: Flowers in the Attic

September 3, 2016 | 3 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.

This month, the starting book is Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews. I have no shame in admitting that I was obsessed with the series about the Dollanganger family when I was a teenager. I have lost count how many times I’ve read the book about four siblings who are looked in an attic by their evil grandmother and selfish mother. If I were to read it again now, I’m not so sure I would be equally entranced by it.

As a teenager, I was also obsessed with Francine Pascal’s Sweet Valley High series (starting with the book Double Love) about twins Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield.

Another book about twins that I read multiple times as a teenager is I Miss You, I Miss You by Peter Pohl and Kinna Gieth. It’s one of those books that you definitely should not judge by its cover (which is hideous). It made me cry rivers every time I read it. I don’t think I could ever get over something happening to my sister (who is the coolest person ever, in spite of never being a huge fan of Flowers in the Attic or Sweet Valley High).

It doesn’t take much for a book to make me shed a few tears (remember this list), but the last one that really made me cry rivers is definitely The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. In the book, one of the characters quotes Shakespeare: “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars but in ourselves”. I have not yet read Julius Ceasar, from which the quote comes. I love Shakespeare, but find the plays so difficult to read. I much prefer seeing them on the stage.

Another novel whose title is related to a quote from Julius Ceasar is There is a Tide by Agatha Christie (“There is a tide in the affairs of men. Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune”). The UK edition was titled Taken at the Flood. I’m a big fan of Agatha Christie, but prefer her books about Mrs Marple over those about Hercule Poirot, and There is a Tide is one of her books that I have still to read.

The first book in the Harry Potter series by JK Rowling is another example where the title is different in the US and UK. It was published as Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone in the UK and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone in the US. I have read it multiple times, and will probably never get bored with it.

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This time, my chain took me from at the first book in a series I was obsessed with as a teenager, to a the first book in a series that I’m still obsessed with.

Why don’t you join us and make your own chain? Starting with Flowers in the Attic, 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 #61

September 1, 2016 | 2 comments


 

1. This week has been a bit chaotic and stressful (to say the least). I was away in Eastern Iceland teaching a field course until Saturday evening, had to move out of the place I was subletting Sunday, was supposed to teach another field course starting Monday but luckily I could split the teaching with a friend so that I got the first half of the week off to write a funding proposal that is due today. I finally moved in to my new apartment late last night, a after sleeping on my friends’ couch for 3 nights. Now I’m teaching the field course for the rest of the week and the entire weekend.

2. Finding this was the highlight of my week.

3. I just found out that earlier this summer, Cilla and Rolf Börjlind published a fourth novel, called Sov du lilla videung, that continues their trilogy about Rönning and Stilton. I cannot wait to read it.

4. It might have happened once or twice that this is almost verbetum the answer I gave when someone asked me to explain my job…

rocks

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

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Couch Potato, Librocubicularist

Book vs Screen: Chesapeake Shores

August 30, 2016 | 2 comments


 

I’m taking a page from Kate’s book and comparing books and their screen counterparts. This time, it’s a romance novel and the TV show based on it.

I read the book The Inn at Eagle Point (first in the Chesapeake Shores series) by Sherryl Woods (originally published 2009) AFTER seeing the pilot of the tv show Chesapeake Shores (premiered 2016).

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TV SHOW over book, because:

1. The book felt very slow going, and the story did not really captivate me.

2. I didn’t quite connect to the characters as much in the book as in the TV show.

3. TV show has a great cast. Among others, Treat Williams and Jesse Metcalfe are perfectly cast as Mick O’Brien and Trace Riley. (And I have a soft spot for big cast/family shows.)

4. The scenery is gorgeous and it really comes across on screen.

5. After finishing the book, I didn’t feel the need to keep reading the rest of the series, but after seeing the pilot episode, I definitely want to continue watching the show.

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