WWW Wednesday 1/14/2015

WWW_Wednesdays4

 

 

What are you currently reading?

The Iliad by Homer

King Leopold’s Ghost by Adam Hochschild

 

What did you just finish reading?

Sins of the Father by Thelonious Legend

Since You’ve Been Gone by Mary Jennifer Payne

A Little Princess by Frances Hodges Burnett

 

What do you think you’ll read next?

The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

Pearl Harbor by Steven Gillon

A Little Princess

Sometimes, I wonder if the old movies I grew up with are still making their rounds with kids today. I hope so. It is one of the things I do miss out on, not being a parent–getting to read my favorite childhood books and show my old movies over and over.

Shirley Temple was always one of my favorites when I was little. Even though she was way before my time, we watched her constantly in my house. She’s a classic, obviously, but also, she was especially famous in our family because my Nana looked so much like her when she was young. And, of all the Shirley Temple movies we had, the best one to me was, of course, the one about the clever book-addict, Sara.

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I may have watched A Little Princess a million and a half times, but this was my very first time reading the book! Until I picked it up at a Goodwill sale recently, I never realized it was written by the same author as The Secret Garden!

The story was just as magical. Of course my Sara will always be Shirley Temple, although in the book she’s described as much skinner than Temple’s chubby little features. I suppose that makes sense, for someone who is starving. On one hand, the book is sadder–there’s no reuniting with the father at the end–although the ending IS happy, and I thought it was a much more likely, and very sweet ending. Maybe not as Hollywood, but I liked it better.

A Little Princess should be read over and over again, especially at bedtime to your young princesses. It’s a story of hope in a world where there isn’t much hope, and it’s a good lesson in humility and encouragement. The morals in this book are as true today as they were when Frances Hodgson Burnett wrote it in the 1800s, and I think it’s not one we hear very often anymore.

 

This fulfills PopSugar #33:  A book from your childhood.

64 Deaths

Normally, I save short stories to read one at a time, rather than all at once. And had I known 64 Deaths was an anthology of short stories, that’s probably what I would have done. So, I am REALLY glad I did not realize it was a book of short stories until I was a few “chapters” in.

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Christina Escamilla’s anthology is WONDROUS. I’m not going to say it’s necessarily happy. Because with a title like 64 Deaths, you can probably figure out that this is not a joy-filled grouping. And it’s not. I didn’t count the deaths in the story, to see if there were exactly 64–that’s not the number of stories, so I’m not sure what that number is meant to represent. There is a story in the collection that is called 64 Deaths,” so that may be all it is.

The stories are extremely varied:  some are horror, some are suspense. Some are hopeful, some are devastating. There are different kinds of deaths too, some are suicide, some are murder. There are metaphorical deaths, there are supernatural deaths. There are even one or two non-human deaths.

All of the stories are extremely well written, and definitely have a beauty of their own. I will tell you to proceed with caution, as there are a few here that could trigger some people, but, there is a moral at the end that I think everyone should read.

I think fans of Stephen King, Joe Hill, and especially Neil Gaiman are really going to like this anthology. Just make sure that you have a happy book picked out to read next on your list.

 

This fulfills PopSugar #12:  A book of short stories.

Book to Movie And Back Again

For the longest time, I never let myself reread a book. Once I was done with it, I’d trade it in, move down the list, and never look back.

Why would I waste time reading something that I’ve already read? There are so many other books on my list, and that list is constantly growing.

But then…I started branching out from the Nora Roberts’ romance novel pattern, and read Jane Austen for the first time. I had read The Thorn Birds before, but I READ IT AGAIN. *gasp* I got my hands on a copy of The Secret Garden, which was my favorite book growing up. Other wonderful books started jumping out at me that I had to read more than once because once was just not enough.

Now, my shelves are full. I buy books because I want to keep them, not for trade in value. I am constantly staring at them, loving them, making lists of what I want to read next.


The Hubs got me The Hunger Games Trilogy for my birthday, and shortly after we saw the third movie in theaters. If you saw the movie, you know exactly why I was so anxious to reread the books. THAT MOVIE WAS…WHOA.

I just finished Mockingjay last night. And I know I was keeping R awake because I was breathing so hard. Even though I had seen the movies, there’s so much in the books that I didn’t remember reading. They were just so incredibly powerful.

And I find that happens often when I reread books, especially books that have been translated into screen. I always try to read the book first–because the books are so detailed, there are often pieces of the puzzle I’d miss if I didn’t read the book first. And then I watch the movie, and see the story put together in such a strong visual way. I get to see the characters cast (sometimes great, sometimes not, and sometimes…inconsistent…*cough Daario Naharis cough*), I get to see settings like the arenas from the Hunger Games and the Pit from Divergent.

And almost always, after watching the show or movie, I immediately want to reread the book it is based on. When I do, I find a million things I’ve missed or forgotten, or in the case of The Hunger Games, I start to wonder if I even read the books at all!

It’s what I’m wondering about The Divergent Trilogy now too. But I don’t think I’m alone there. These new Insurgent trailers are so weird. The end of the last movie had us all wondering where they were going with it, and obviously the new trailer is just so different from the book. I have no idea where they are going with this series but I’m going to have to reread the books soon, I think.

Where do you stand on rereading books? Any favorites?

The Same Sky

YES YES YES YES YES!

THIS ONE PEOPLE. READ THIS ONE!

Amanda Eyre Ward is releasing her next book on January 20th, and you need to grab it, right away. The Same Sky was absolutely beautiful from beginning to end.

It is a split perspective story, each chapter flips back and forth between Carla–a young girl in Honduras desperately trying to make it to America; and Alice–the wife of a BBQ restaurateur struggling with infertility.

First off…Texas Brisket. Seriously, it’s in every chapter about Alice. I’m going to have to find some this weekend, I think. Man oh man, it’s one of my favorite things about living down here. It’s basically religion. And the Carla chapters talk about beans and tortillas, so, we may have to get some TexMex too. Yum.

In other words, this book will make you hungry.

Food aside, this book is about love and heartbreak and trying to find what makes your life work when you don’t get what you think you want. Can you fight hard enough?

I love books like this–the ones where two people are on completely separate paths, but you know they have to come together in the end, and you have absolutely no idea how it’s going to happen. When it does, you gasp or sigh or cry, or maybe all three. Read this book. It was perfectly lovely.

 

Disclaimer:  I received this ARC for free from NetGalley.

This fulfills PopSugar #41:  A book by an author you’ve never read before