Top Ten Tuesday: 24-Hour Life Swap

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join.

Which characters would you switch places with for 24 hours?  The thing with good characters is that they don’t often live enviable lives, or if they do, something goes wrong to make their lives a lot less enviable.  Otherwise the book would be boring.  So while it might be cool to be Katniss for a day, you’d most likely spend that day starving and trying to escape hordes of teenagers and government cronies who want you dead.  Not very relaxing.

I bet we can come up with ten, though:

1) Harry Potter, of course, assuming there was a 24-hour span of time in which he wasn’t fighting for his life.

2) Eowyn, and it had better be the 24 hours in which she’s sneaking off to join the army and kill the Witchking, because otherwise that would be boring.

3) Laura Ingalls Wilder managed to have some pretty cool adventures without ever getting in too much danger, except for when she fell in the creek that one time.  Twenty-four hours would be about as long as I could last in a world without plumbing and a nearby grocery store, though.

4) Kethry is a sexy sorceress with a magical sword who roams the land defending women.  Sometimes she’s low on cash, but the rest of the time she’s kicking butt and slaying demons.

5) Speaking of slaying demons, getting to be Sabriel for 24 hours would be pretty awesome.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Vivid Settings

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join.

This week I’m listing my top ten place books – books that had such a realistic setting that I felt like I was there, no matter when or where that setting was.  Whether or not I’d actually want to be there is a whole ‘nother issue.

1) The Arena, Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins.  Even more so than “The Hunger Games,” “Catching Fire” made me feel like I was struggling through the arena with Katniss.  The arena designed for the Quarter Quell is unique, terrifying, and scarily easy to visualize.

2) Paris, The World at Night and The Foreign Correspondent by Alan Furst. Atmospheric settings are Furst’s specialty, but he writes about Paris with a dark and aching nostalgia that stays with you.

3) New Crobuzon, “Perdido Street Station” by China Mieville.  This grimy mashup of Cairo and Industrial Age-London is built beneath the towering ribs of a giant dead creature.  It’s inhabited by eagle-people, bug-people, cactus-people, people-people, genetically modified people, crime lords, artists, prostitutes, totalitarian soldiers, and scientists.  It’s hot and smelly and sprawling.  How all of this came out of one dude’s head is beyond me.

4) Battle school, “Ender’s Game” by Orson Scott Card.  Assuming you weren’t Ender, and you weren’t responsible for defending Earth from alien invaders, and no one was out to cause you terrible injuries, having organized battles in zero gravity would probably be pretty awesome.

5) Salinas Valley, “East of Eden” by John Steinbeck.  The valley’s varied colors, unpredictable weather, and precarious relationship with water make it a beautiful, timeless, and ever-so-slightly ominous setting.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Should Be Movies

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join.

Scrolling through my Goodreads books, I found that many of the books I’ve read are already movies, but they were bad movies, like “The Other Boleyn Girl” and “Timeline.”  It might actually be easier for me to make a list of ten movies that deserve better film adaptations.

But that’s for another day.

1. “The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society” by Annie Barrows – and it’s happening!  Kenneth Branagh is directing and Kate Winslet will star.

2. “Sabriel” by Garth Nix. Seriously, why isn’t this a movie yet?  Teenage student Sabriel goes to rescue her father and becomes a hunter of escaped dead spirits along the way, accompanied by a snarky cat-demon and armed with a set of magical bells.  The soundtrack possibilities alone are awesome.

3. “Fahrenheit 451” by Ray Bradbury.  I’ve heard rumors for years about a new adaptation that would star Tom Hanks, and I think that should happen, maybe with Mia Wasikowska or Emma Stone as Clarisse.  Viggo Mortensen would also make a great Montag.

4. “Wicked” by Gregory Maguire.  This could make for an awesomely surreal fantasy political thriller.  They’re working on a movie version of the musical – supposedly – but I think the book would make for a good film, too, especially with a very visual director like Tarsem Singh in charge.

5. “The Giver” by Lois Lowry.  This could have some awesome black-and-white-versus-color imagery in the same vein as “Schindler’s List” or “Pleasantville.”  Imagine the scenes where Jonas sees an apple turn red for the first time, or when he realizes his crush has red hair.  And the scenes of memory transference could even do something about our generation’s disillusionment and complacency, when the audience is forced to view a battlefield or the slaughter of an elephant with the same horror as Jonas.

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Links Lundi

The most beautiful six words I’ve ever read: Mumford & Sons acoustic bookshop sessions. (ETA: now with the actual video. Whoops.)

Wait, no, these are the most beautiful six seven words: David Tennant in an Alan Furst adaptation!

Prep for bikini season by relishing your dessert, emulating a movie star, getting to the root of why you want to lose weight, and lots more.  (My favorite lesson, applicable for all sorts of occasions: pick a part of your body you love, then do something nice for it.  I would treat my lips to new lipstick!)

Female Friends Spend Raucous Night Validating The Living Shit Out Of Each Other: “We just kept telling her how f***ing talented and beautiful she was until eventually the restaurant had to ask us to leave.”

How to be more dignified, which actually goes hand-in-hand with how to not be a jerk.

A Five-Step Guide To Effective Philanthropy, which is a really intimidating title for an article that’s just going to make it really, really easy to donate to a good cause.

In between Gary Ross dropping out of “Catching Fire” and Lionsgate making an offer to a new director, The Mary Sue came up with a list of 15 possible female directors before the studio picked another dude.  Ross did an awesome job on “The Hunger Games” while not being a woman, but…was the guy who directed “Water for Elephants” (okay, and “I Am Legend”) really the best they could find?  I was pulling for Kathryn Bigelow.

We’ve kind of sort of probably decided to maybe try to get a house next year.  Part of me is going YES FINALLY and another part of me is going WHAT NO WE ARE NOT OLD ENOUGH OR RICH ENOUGH OR RESPONSIBLE ENOUGH AND ALSO WEEDS.  In spite of my turmoil, I am also the tiniest bit excited about things like decorating.  Chelsie’s awesome guest-room redo with its DIY styling definitely inspires me.

Last week’s FBFF was a discussion of “thinspo,” but I didn’t write anything about it because I couldn’t make my brain do anything more thorough than “thinspo is bad,” so instead, read what everyone else wrote.

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Deceived

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week we will post a new Top Ten list that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join.

Today’s theme is deceptive books: those covers or titles that don’t fit the books, a book that was totally different than its summary, those books you thought were going to be fluff that turned out to be more serious, things like that.

1. “Perdido Street Station” by China Mieville.  Admittedly it’s hard to be deceived by this book because it’s hard to whittle its complex story down into a useful description.  Suffice to say this book turned out to be way more complicated than I expected.

2. “Snow Flower and the Secret Fan” by Lisa See.  I gave this one away after I read it because it was so much bleaker than I had expected.  The “agony of footbinding” mentioned in the description is just the tip of the iceberg.

3. “Midnight’s Children” by Salman Rushdie.  I couldn’t even finish this one because the story never caught up to what was described on the back, and it was a boring story.

4. “Love in the Time of Cholera” by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.  Same problem as “Midnight’s Children” – I made it as far as figuring out when the characters described on the back might actually appear in the story, but by that point I had lost interest.

5. “The World At Night” by Alan Furst.  I had read a few Furst books, but I still wasn’t quite prepared for how grim this story was, and how very French the protagonist was, and how “wait, what?” the ending was.  And many Furst books end with “wait, what?”

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Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Covers

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week we will post a new Top Ten list  that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join.

This week’s theme is our favorite book covers!  I wrote a post about book covers a few months ago, but it was short and I’ve fallen in love with a few more covers since then.

1. “The Serialist” by David Gordon.  It’s about murder and writing – simple premise, awesomely simple cover.

2. Anything by Alan Furst.  Furst’s books are exactly what the covers show: dark, atmospheric tales about little people caught up in dangerous events.

 

3. “Matched” and “Crossed” by Ally Condie.  These covers caught my eye ages ago, thanks to how “Hunger Games” instilled in me a fresh interest in YA.  I finally put them on my library hold list, along with “Divergent,” because apparently I am fourteen again.  (Although so far I am not impressed with “Matched,” possibly because I am not actually fourteen.)  Anyway, I love the bubble metaphor, the futuristic font, and the clean color scheme.

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