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Hooked on YA Fiction

Of course there’s Harry Potter, and Twilight, and The Hunger Games but for this post I’m referring to realistic fiction. And for this genre, there are two authors I fancy most: John Green and David Levithan.

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For me it started with Green since his works are in a rage these days. I kicked off with Looking for Alaska then next the more popular The Fault in Our Stars. One thing that really striked me is the wit. And boy does he have it. And because these are young adult (YA) novels, their themes are very relatable because admit it, we all have been there or for some, going through it and each time you turn a chapter or page, you take with you something to ponder on. Particularly with these two, the stories include that of love and tragedy. But the thing is, they’re not only about that. They’re also about coming-of-age and the struggles that come along with it, and yes, about friendship. And no novel better signifies that than Will Grayson, Will Grayson. Enter David Levithan, I can’t emphasize enough how this pairing is a match made in heaven. They should really collaborate again. Easily the most insightful (and gay) read I’ve ever had. And I learned that with Levithan, hilarity ensues. So I had to venture on his individual works and you know I had to go first for Boy Meets Boy. Again, I was blown away with its biting reality and inspiring openness. All these characters (to name a few): Tony, Paul, Noah and for WGWG: Will Grayson, The Other Will Grayson, Tiny, for LFA: Pudge, Alaska, The Colonel, for TFIOS: Hazel, Augustus Waters, Isaac, they’re all etched in my mind (and heart). They’re not just characters because they can be representations of people in real life; in our lives. Now I’m about to start with Naomi and Ely’s No Kiss List, one of several novels co-authored by Levithan and Rachel Cohn (read: Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist). How bout you, any YA literature I ought to be reading? 🙂
Speaking of, special mention for The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky. I adore that book! (and Charlie).

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The Host Teaser!

Woooot! Check out the teaser of another film adaptation from a book I loved! Stephenie Meyer’s The Host really sealed her for me as one of my fave authors. I can’t believe they’re really bringing it to life. The heroine, Wanda/Melanie, will be played by The Lovely Bones actress Saoirse Ronan which I think will be perfect! Problem is, we’d have to wait exactly a year to see it but I’m eager for more promos as the filming progresses.

In search of my Personal Legend

And when I say “in search of” I really mean “I don’t know what is”. Reading ‘The Alchemist’ enlightened me but didn’t necessarily bring me out the dark. This novel gave me answers but more importantly it left me with questions too. Now this “treasure” that I’m supposed to follow, Paulo Coelho said, should come to you early on life. But what if it doesn’t? Or maybe you didn’t realize that that was destiny giving you a heads up. “Maktub” as said in the book – it is written but not everyone possesses an Urim and Thummim to help them along the way. Or do they? How does one read omens, more so, interpret them? I want to believe that “When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” But what if you want the wrong things? It’s all so inspiring and seems simple but of course like anything in life, it’s not. I may be deemed cynical for this but I do believe there is such a thing as a purpose in life, a personal legend. The problem is, I’m already turning 25 this year and yet I know I’m nowhere near figuring out what mine is let alone actually fulfilling it. Did I really miss the signs? Or was I just not looking hard enough? I’m as clueless as ever. Maybe the omens got tired already. Moving on, what I’m taking away from all of this is the four obstacles Coelho talked about. I agree with all of them and learning them now makes you feel prepared for battle, if you know what I mean. Here are the four:

As a child, we are told that everything we want to do is impossible. Some people call it being rational and it affects our mindset. This is true especially as we grow older and reality sets in. The innocence is lost and we discover that life is not fair.

We are afraid to hurt the ones we love by pursuing our personal legend. I understood when Coelho said that “If what one finds is made of pure matter, it will never spoil. And one can always come back. If what you have found was only a moment of life, like the explosion of a star, you would find nothing on your return.” It’s like your true love will be there to support you not hinder you.

The fear of failure, in my humble opinion, is the hardest obstacle. Because we gave up everything to follow our dream we can’t fathom the idea of losing. And this fear is the greatest; it’s do or die. The difficulties and trials will always be there so we must persevere.

Lastly, there is the fear of realizing the dream. Ironic but true. Some people, after working so hard, do falter once they discover that the goal is close at hand whether because they feel unworthy or that somehow that the dream would not be what they thought it would be. Sometimes just because others weren’t able to fulfill theirs, we feel undeserving as well.

Two statements from the story also stuck with me: “Everything that happens once can never happen again. But everything that happens twice will surely happen a third time.”

And, “The secret of life is to fall seven times and to get up eight times.”

With heavy heart I give you my last Harry Potter review

And to my dismay I can’t grasp why this is also my first. I searched my blog’s archive and I was surprised to find out that I have not written a single review about any of the movies or books. All my HP related entries were mainly promotions for the movies. In this case I will pour out everything into this one post. As some of you may have, I came to know Harry Potter through the first film, Sorcerer’s Stone in 2001. I was in high school back then and I can still remember how the fascination for this cute, wide-eyed, bespectacled, wizard boy with a lightning scar on his forehead exploded; I’m telling you most of my classmates’ notebooks were covered with cut-out pictures of him and even had posters on their bedroom walls. That time I wasn’t particularly interested, eventually I got more curious when Chamber of Secrets premiered but still I regarded it as children stuff. I knew then there were books from which they were based upon but it wasn’t until Prisoner of Azakaban in 2004 (one of the best both in movie and novel aspects) where I really started following and got the urge to read the novels. But being a late-bloomer when it comes to reading (in everything more like it) and by that I mean it wasn’t until 2008 where I picked up my first novel (Twilight) and since then regularly visited bookshops and carried with me a book almost everywhere I go. Going back, this was when Sirius Black came into the picture and the theme got evidently dark. I especially enjoyed the “time-turner” portion of the story. I wished then that Hogwarts was real and somehow a Hagrid-like character would barge in one day at our house to tell me that I was a wizard and that I didn’t belong in the muggle world (hehe). Then Goblet of Fire came and I was a huge fan already. I was eagerly anticipating its release and if I remember it right I even watched on the first screening. I loved the idea that there were other magic schools and the Tri-wizard tournament was the highlight of that year. 2007 brought along Order of the Phoenix and I was obsessed; I knew all the characters, memorized the spells/magical objects, cheered on Quidditch – to think I still haven’t read the books. This was when the rebellion went in full swing and things started heating up. Suddenly it wasn’t so much about school since You-Know-Who was back.

And then it was time, I finally got the novels. It’s a bit weird since I bought first the last 4 books. The reason was I couldn’t find a hardbound copy of the first one – yes it had to be in hard cover and besides I don’t think my pocket can handle buying all at once 😀 . So I decided since I wanted to finish up to the last book before the last of the movie installments come out. That was when I realized how the books are so much more intricate and amazing and magical – yes that’s the word, magical. It truly is. You might say, “Well that’s because they’re wizards moron”. But it’s not so much because they have wands and can conjure spells or that they use owls to send out mails and fly on brooms but more of how the world was created and thought of; how it all came together and laid out. I am astonished on how the idea of this boy came to Rowling while riding a train to London. By the time Half-blood Prince was in cinemas I gobbled up the entire set including the first 3. Dumbledore died in this chapter of the series and his past was uncovered. Indeed, a chaotic time in the wizarding world. It was my first time to watch with the story in mind so normally I had moments where I said, “hey, that’s not how it happened” or “that wasn’t in the book”. Overall it was still a good interpretation. Generally, the books are usually superior but over the years the Harry Potter movies were some of the best adaptations from a literary work. The tweaks in the story here and there are necessary to properly translate it into a visual piece, smooth out the narration and of course, fit it into roughly more than 2 hours of screening time.

The epic finale was divided into two parts and it is a warranted decision for the producers because there is no way it could fit into one; so much would’ve been compromised. Although the Deathly Hallows novel was introduced in 2007, you still have something to look forward to that’s why I couldn’t believe it was truly the end when both installments came out. Reading it, I cried as the conclusion drew closer and page by page all questions are answered. I started sobbing practically when Harry, upon seeing Snape’s memories through the pensieve, discovered he needed to die to destroy Voldemort. I was stunned, I couldn’t accept it. I even loathed how Dumbledore and Snape were portrayed differently afterwards like the roles switched. Albus was not altogether innocent and Severus was, in a way, a brave hero. But I’ve learned to accept it, that’s how emotionally attached I am. The darkest moment was the battle at Hogwarts especially when some of our beloved characters died. The film was just as engrossing. I’m in full praise to David Yates because I can only imagine how difficult it must’ve been to stay true to the novel and please the fans. I can say that it was a masterpiece both visually and in storytelling. In the end, the good prevailed. It always does. I think the epilogue was also like cherry on top of ice cream. I appreciated that Rowling didn’t leave the story of our threesome open-ended. If I can just say though, there’s still a part in me that wishes that it should’ve been Hermione and Harry together but I love Ron so it’s fine. Lastly, I want to thank J.K. Rowling because although Harry Potter was not exactly a part of my childhood it sure brought out the kid in me again and it felt good. It was a wonderful sort of journey going through all the books and movies throughout the years. Let me end this post with the last words in the novel that I thought was just beautiful: “The scar had not pained Harry for nineteen years. All was well.” (sniff sniff) 🙂

The Lost Symbol: Dan Brown is a master thriller

I don’t know where to begin. The Lost Symbol is by far the most exhilarating thing I’ve read. I don’t necessarily agree to everything it implies but it adds to its whole appeal; it’s still fiction in the end. This book is just packed with adrenaline and filled with information in every chapter and I mean every, you can’t throw anything at all. Sometimes my mouth just drops and I stop and process what I’m reading (no exaggeration). I remember by the time I was on chapter 6, I can barely cope with all the facts thrown at me. I now marvel with the history of Washington and of history in general. It spiced up what I formerly consider as an uninteresting subject. The idea that our ancestors have already uncovered what man’s true potential is and was eventually forgotten which we today are still yet to discover, is mind-boggling. Lightning-paced and never boring, it grips you till the end.

This is my first Dan Brown novel; I used to think he was overrated but when I caught the Angels & Demons movie I was impressed. This is his 3rd novel (the other being The Da Vinci Code) that involves his famous character Robert Langdon and is also based with the concept of Freemasonry. The story follows Peter Solomon, a powerful Mason and Langdon’s mentor, and this Masonic Pyramid that apparently points to a secret location that holds The Ancient Mysteries which will reveal man’s god-like qualities. Aiming to possess the ‘power’ it holds, the antagonist named Mal’akh devoted his life in acquiring this ancient secret. He demands Langdon to decipher the code in exchange for Solomon’s life. His true identity was kept until the end and it will catch you off-guard. The situation gets complicated as it becomes an issue of national security thus the CIA gets involved. The chase was one thrilling and riveting ride as one by one clues are discovered and the characters got closer and closer towards the ‘truth’.

I give The Lost Symbol a two thumbs up. A recommended read.

The Lost Hero: Another Adventure Novel About Greek Myths But Better

Having read the Percy Jackson & The Olympians (and enjoyed it), I wasn’t sure if I wanted another mythology-inspired book. But as it turns out, author Rick Riordan’s new series The Heroes of Olympus is an even more exciting take on the affairs of the Gods that keeps affecting the modern world. On its first instalment – The Lost Hero introduces 3 new heroes: Jason, Leo and Piper (reminds me of the TV show Charmed). At the beginning, Jason wakes up sitting beside Piper and Leo in a school bus for delinquent kids with no idea who he is or why he’s even there. Piper was there for apparently stealing BMWs just to get his (famous) dad’s attention. Leo, well he always gets into trouble so he ran away but he has a hidden talent. The story picks up 3 months from the invasion of Kronos in Manhattan as featured in ‘The Last Olympian’ and so features some of our favourite characters from before: Annabeth, Thalia, Rachel, Percy on the other hand is  missing. Soon enough, our 3 new demigods end up on Camp Halfblood, claimed by their God parent and were sent to take on a quest for a prophecy that is far greater than that of Percy’s ‘Great Prophecy’ – yes I do think so. Olympus was closed, the Gods fell silent and Hera was trapped by some kind of power. Jason’s identity is a crucial part of the plan and will explain a lot about the new prediction. For those who haven’t read it, here’s a clue: it has everything to do with the Roman aspect of the Gods. If my guess is right, Percy and Annabeth will be part of these ‘7 heroes’ as prophesized (fingers crossed).

The book is longer but plotted better. The humour is still there so that’s a good thing. It’s also more engaging since the story gets narrated by each of the 3 characters 2 chapters at a time. The 2nd volume, The Son of Neptune, has been announced to be released sometime in Fall 2011. I can’t wait since this will be the most epic of quest the heroes of Olympus will ever take on. I’m hoping the title is in reference to Percy since Neptune is the Roman form of Poseidon, unless He has some other kid (again!).

Archie’s Kevin Keller headlines his own comics!

Riverdale High first welcomed openly gay student, Kevin Keller, back in September 2010 in the Veronica issue #202. Apparently, his first appearance was so popular that the issue was sold out. Now he’s making a comeback in issue #205 plus he’ll be featured in his very own 4-part miniseries on June! 🙂 Which will talk about his life before arriving in the Archie universe and meeting the gang.  I think I may get the issues when they go out here. Having read some of the comics in the past, though I have to admit I’m not an avid follower, it’s nice to know that the people behind the beloved comics are open-minded and not straight-laced. Remember, the Archie comics have been around for about 70 years so this is a big deal and hearing this news really made me smile. 🙂

Mockingjay Marks the Last of the Games

I’m awestruck at the turn of events as the story of The Hunger Games trilogy came to a close. Lost for words; not due to lack of it but of over pouring. Wow, I can’t imagine how it must’ve felt to live in a world like theirs. It is a terrifying feeling reading towards the end as one by one, things go wrong, characters die then something surprises you and throws you off-balance. Read on if you want to find out.

Part I, The Ashes, centres on the aftermath of the Quarter Quell and the stirring of the revolution. I was a bit shaken when I finished Catching Fire, everything was open-ended. And as the story materialized about how it was planned all along, how District 13 was just not a mere remnant of the Dark Days, how Katniss will be the face of the rebellion (whether she likes it or not). Things seem hopeful – difficult but determined. I was scared mostly for Peeta who was left in the Capitol and suddenly was asking for a ceasefire. It was obvious things were wrong if not worse. But by the time Part II, The Assault, came and his rescue successful, I thought the situation will be steady to say the least. But we all know what happened, Peeta’s not himself anymore which is a downplay. But more importantly, in this final battle both sides lose.

In the chaos that followed, it all resulted to one thing: more lives lost. Prim, Finnick, Boggs, the list goes on and on. Every one of those deaths was abrupt but it certainly leaves a blow. Whether it’s more fuel to continue the force or a question of conscience, I sympathize with Katniss for every decision she had to make. But I guess the biggest shock of all is Katniss releasing her bow on Coin rather than on Snow. But wrong as it may seem, I’m with her. Coin was not much different to Snow, after all it’s her ‘hunger games’ that’s everyone is playing this time around and Katniss is just a piece in it. I don’t think she even decided up until she was aiming for the rose on Snow’s heart. What I don’t get is why she said yes to the Hunger Games involving the children of Capitol as suggested by Coin just because of some twisted sense of principle to preserve more lives. I know she said because of Prim but is it? But since Coin is dead, I’m glad it didn’t push through.

And after all the confusion, we get to the heart of the story. Gale or Peeta? Gale managed to get a job in District 2, while Peeta alongside Katniss and Haymitch went back home to District 12. Team Peeta won if you want me to be straightforward. Of course I’m happy but I don’t think it’s even about winning. I agree to what Katniss said that she doesn’t need more fire like Gale, she needs the dandelion in the spring and only Peeta can give that. I’m in love with those last lines when Peeta asked: “You love me. Real or not real?” And Katniss said: “Real.” They had kids by the way.

Hats off to Suzanne Collins for the gripping finale and for the trilogy that captured many, including me.

Who exactly is The Last Olympian?

Fresh from finishing book 5 of the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series by Rick Riordan, I realized that I haven’t figured out why the book is entitled The Last Olympian. My guess is that it pertains to the Goddess of the Hearth, Hestia, because she dubbed herself that but what I don’t get is why it became the title of the book. I mean, it’s not the central plot of the story so I’m second guessing myself that I must’ve missed something important that explains why or that it’s actually referring to another character. Anyone who has an idea: help out a fellow camper! After all, Riordan did say all his readers deserve a place at Camp Half-Blood (hehe).

Don’t get me wrong, other than that I enjoyed everything. The invasion of the Titans and their army brought a lot of action. Even the whole joining forces of the Gods: major, minor and yes including Hades and his undead army was a great twist. Of course that extends to their sons and daughters; the demigods plus the satyrs, Hunters, Cyclopes, centaurs, even famous statues in Manhattan which turned out to be Daedelus’ creations. The unfolding of the prophecy was exciting so as the revealing of the spy and how they defeated Luke a.k.a. Kronos. The little triangle between Annabeth, Percy and Rachel was funny (sigh). It’s lame that I got sad after I finished reading. I’m like that with my books especially when it’s a series ‘cause you sort of spend more time with it and when you finally get to the last book suddenly there’s nothing next for you to anticipate. But who knows? Maybe there’ll be a continuation since the new Oracle just declared another great prophecy but I hope it still revolves around Percy and the gang, don’t you think so?

Bring In The Waterworks

With eyes sore and nose running I finished another Nicholas Sparks’ novel, The Last Song. It’s getting to be a habit, I know. This, after I’ve read The Notebook 2 weeks ago, is the 4th one I’ve read from his works. No reason behind, they just happened to be sitting quietly on the bookshelf that I barely noticed before. I’d like to think I’m a hopeless romantic without the hopeless. From another point of view, these stories seem more like a tragedy. But more than anything, they draw emotions or as they say, tug at the heart strings.

It took me a week or so to complete TLS, interrupted of course, while only a single afternoon for TN. While the movie portrayal of Rachel McAdams & Ryan Gosling helped me to envision, Miley Cyrus distracted me a little at first but soon enough she’s etched already in my mind as Ronnie. I’ve made a mental note to catch the film both because of Liam Hemsworth and that I’m curious how it turns out since the movie version of Dear John had a different ending.

It’s amazing to me that Sparks can narrate the story of a father’s love and romantic love and still speak to you the same way. Ya these books are often about heartbreaks but love and pain go hand and hand. These stories are mostly sad but after reading you feel warm and hopeful not empty. For both novels, the letters in the story get me every time. I’m just a crying mess. For TLS, I loved that it started with a prologue containing parts of the conclusion & although there was the Will & Ronnie storyline, I think its with her dad that the plot really shines. Tackling teen angst, first love and growing up, it caters more on the young readers. It resembles pieces of A Walk To Remember, so for fans of that you’ll admire this one. TN talks about that great love & how fate can play in the lives of people. Short but memorable, I understand the universal appeal of that love lost and found only to be tested once more. And that whatever age, love is not impossible. I’m beginning to sound so insightful not really from experience but from all the reading. I won’t be able to stand gobbling up another Sparks creation so I’ll go for a light book next. I’ll give my eyes a break!

The Girl On Fire

“Katniss Everdeen survived the Hunger Games. Now the Capitol wants revenge.”

I have just finished reading Catching Fire! I started it early this year, put it off for a while and wasn’t able to resume until now. Crazy year I guess and it helped that I wasn’t reading the e-book through a laptop, it messes up my eyes. So I decided to start from the beginning again. Spoiler alert!

I really like the fact that the books are such an easy read. They’re short, fast-paced and full of suspense with just a hint of romance. You can practically finish a book in one sitting. Judging by how the story went, Suzanne Collins probably envisioned Katniss’ story to be a series since the plot turned to be well thought of. With the Quarter Quell and the mockingjay pin which became more than just a token but a symbol of hope, it was somehow believable that her heroine ended up in the Games again. I know, I was struck too. Collins sure love surprises, there’s more of them here. From the existence of District 13 to Peeta’s baby announcement. Even the turnout of events in the clock-like arena and President Snow’s unmistakable arrival. You know, the books are actually brutal, sick and twisted in many ways. But the way it was told so lightly, I think, makes it work.

Of course the personal aspect of the story is what gives it the ‘unputdownable’ factor. I’ll say it right off the bat that I’m Team Peeta no matter what! Whatever’s coming in Mockingjay, the final book, I don’t think will change my mind. His unrequited love, always good intentions and for me, the spark that I don’t feel with Gale. Whom I see nothing more than a brother. But with the kiss and the confession, I’m a bit angry with Katniss for choosing him instead. Its like Bella, Jacob and Edward all over again!

I somehow knew the Games will not go according to the Capitol’s plan and that the revolution will soon take place. The conclusion was great, gearing you up for what’s ahead. You can only expect the fire to spread out and become stronger once it catches on. I like seeing the old characters back especially Cinna and in a way, Haymitch. The new cast mainly comprised of the district victors were also interesting. Finnick, now him I like to see in the big screen 😉 Hope everything translates well when its turned into a movie. I give it 2 thumbs up!

Let the Games begin!

..The Hunger Games that is. I love it when I experiment on a book and it turns out really good. I don’t exactly have a lot on my plate right now but I do read The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner online when I get the chance. I decided to pick up a copy and when I checked the back for the premise, I guess it intruiged me. Set in the future in the ruins of North America, an annual fight to death on national TV is held, hence the title. The story revolves around Katniss and her inclusion in the games, how she survives it or not, is the thrill of it all.

It has a well-paced plot I must say and a very easy read, exciting even. It’s also nice that there’s a bit of romance going on especially towards the end. It leaves you hanging though so you have no choice but to get the 2nd book, Catching Fire. Mockingjay, the final installment has just been made available at local bookstores. I’m very eager to gobble up its entirety soon. And I’ll be happy to give an update by then. Anyways, it is much recommended. 🙂

Mythologies and how I completely overlooked it as a kid…

See, I never known anything about the stories of the gods back in the old times. And I never really took interest on them not until recently I picked up a book called The Lightning Thief. Ya, the movie came out but I didn’t actually see it before reading the novel. Let me tell you, it suck by the way (back to my train of thought). My officemates were reading it as well and I needed something to pass by travel time to work. So I bought one and good thing my practical side nudged in – I got the paperback version. Light to carry around and light on the pocket, hehe.

I’m always curious with works of fiction even if it’s categorically a teenage book. Let’s just say, I satisfied my inner geek and flipped through its pages one by one and now I’m already on the 4th book: The Battle of the Labyrinth. The books are short and entertaining plus it was kind of a ‘Did You Know?’ type of thing for me as well. I didn’t know who the god of wine was or if there is. I didn’t know the gods had a father who tried to eat them all up. I didn’t know anything, well I know Hercules but that’s it. As I moved on to The Sea of Monsters and The Titan’s Curse (my favorite, so far), I realized there was so much to discover. Sometimes, my mind would wander off and I’d imagine myself as a demigod. I told you I’m a certified geek. I like the fact that Rick Riordan was able to write a storyline base on these ancient myths and give it a modern appeal. It worked and I think its great for kids to read his books so they can learn and at the same time enjoy. The dialogues are funny and the characters are lovable, especially every time when a god is introduced or some kind of ancient creature or object. I definitely don’t get bored on my way to work anymore. Oftentimes, I even want the ride to take longer.

Now my only problem is, there seem to be no paperback issue of The Last Olympian, the final book, and the hard cover is slightly above my budget. But I hope to get a copy soon.

The Love Bug

(I’m in the mood to write so hold your horses.)

It’s the love month so maybe that’s why I gotten the bug and writing about it now, how timely! Actually this is Nicholas Sparks‘ fault – will get to that later on. It’s just that with nothing to do last weekend I felt the urge to go out and do something. Then I realized, I haven’t watched a movie for weeks so I got some popcorn and treated myself to some “me time”, and by that I meant the wholesome kind of course. 🙂 With a couple of nice films out last weekend it took me a while to decide. It sucked because I forgot to read reviews; it would’ve been easier. Here are my options:

I wanted to watch The Princess and The Frog; I know it’s meant for kids and the house must be packed with frenzied ones and their parents so I can tell it will be chaotic inside. That’s a big no-no for me, there’s nothing more irritating than a noisy audience so I crossed this one out (but I’m secretly still wanting to – its Disney plus they stuck to what they do best and its classic hand drawn animation).

Next, there’s that SJP flick Did You Hear About the Morgans? but then I thought the only reason I’ll be watching this is because of her and for this one, sadly it wasn’t enough – sorry! I still love her though, so I put it on the bottom of my list just in case.

Then I have Spaghetti Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, which boasts in 3D animation and have been showing for some time now. Last time I remembered watching a movie in 3D was when I watched the The Half-Blood Prince and it’s for the first 15 freaking minutes only! I would’ve gone for Avatar in 3D ‘cause I really wanted the experience but figured I’ll be predicting the whole thing. Probably next time.

So all I’m left with is Dear John, and honestly I ultimately chose this one because the title has my name on it, haha 😀 Of course the fact it’s based from a Nicholas Sparks‘ novel helped and you can’t go wrong with a romantic film. So with that settled, I bought a ticket and readied my eyes for some tear-jerking (if there’s such a word).

I wasn’t surprised when I found myself crying halfway through. It’s kinda funny ‘cause I didn’t want people to see so I couldn’t get myself to wipe them or else I’ll get busted, though no one in there knows me, I hope. I admit, I’m a little or maybe, too emotional. I knew it was going to be sad at some point and it stuck with me as I got out of the theater. It’s that time of year and I do have those times when I got so hung up with the movie I end up researching and thinking about it at home. Channing Tatum works as a young rebel who was changed upon joining the army and falling in love for the first time. Amanda Seyfried, beautiful as always, made us all fall in love with Savannah.

Nicholas Sparks was born to tell stories like these and the first thing that came up in my mind was, “I have to read the book.” So I went to a bookstore found a copy but then hesitated. Here’s the thing, The Notebook is one of my favorite movies of all time but when I read it, I don’t know, I just didn’t feel the same way and barely even finished it – granting how short it was. So I went home, decided not to buy one to just download an eBook. But I couldn’t find one in the net, well at least one that’s free. 😛 Apparently, every other Sparks novel is out there except for this one. So there I was disappointed, turned the TV on and there in my screen was Nights in Rodanthe showing at HBO. I’m like, “what the heck!” So to keep myself from obsessing, I rummaged through my books and got my copy of A Walk to Remember and read it. See, the movie was just plain okay for me so I never bothered to pick up the book. And then something happened, I was enjoying it and surprisingly enough I found myself smiling and getting all giddy. One by one, I devoured the pages like someone who didn’t eat for weeks and cried yet again by the end. I finished it in one seating! I haven’t done that before so that’s something. Landon Carter and Jamie Sullivan just got added to my list of literary heroes. One of the best love stories I’ve known. I’m rethinking my decision not to finish The Notebook. But for now, I’m happy reading Dear John and enjoying every minute of it (don’t ask how I got one). I’m now a fan of Mr. Sparks – better late than never. I should get started with the rest of his novels too, I’m way falling behind.

Whether the reason for all of these is it being February once again, I don’t know. I’m just happy. Have a wonderful valentines’ day everyone! 🙂 

The Host

I’ve been meaning to post about this one but I just didn’t have the time to compose a review for awhile.

host

Wizards Vs. Vampires Aliens. What do you think?

The Host made me a certified follower of Stephenie Meyer. At first I couldn’t imagine her outside of the Twilight realm, which is why I think I hesitated to buy this book plus the fact its categorized as ‘science fiction’ or basically alien stuff, yeah I’m not really into those. But as I read reviews and got recommendation from a friend (thanks Chloe!) I finally decided to pick it up from a local bookstore and started reading it. And I was immediately intrigued, I couldn’t stop reading. I realized I really like how she writes and tells the story, she relates to you and that’s what makes it enjoyable to read. Once again, I grew attached to the characters and as unlikely the setting is, it was completely believable. I’m amazed by her imagination and creative juices. She gives you a totally different world that will make you want to climb into it and experience first hand. Right now, I’m wishing there was a sequel – I’m missing it (them) already: Wanda and Mel, Ian, Jamie, Doc, Uncle Jeb and Jared. I also appreciate how Stephenie can make really romantic plots no matter how unconventional the circumstances are. I’m glad I read this one and hopefully she won’t stop and keep writing more. Congrats to her for the success of her first adult novel. Well recommended! 🙂

One more thing, I’m really happy with this piece of news I got off Stephenie’s official website:

September 23, 2009

Hey guys, great news! The Host is on its way to the big screen:

Variety.com: “Twilight’s Meyer…”

I’m so excited to be working with Nick Wechsler, and Steve and Paula Mae Schwartz to bring The Host to a visual format. They’ve all been a dream to work with, so lovely and collaborative, and I feel like we’re in a really good place to make a great movie together. And then to have Andrew Niccol writing and directing? Truly awesome. If you’ve never seen Gattaca, go watch it now. One of my favorite movies of all time. It’s such a great example of character driven science fiction, which is ideal for The Host, no? I’m having an absolute blast imagining different dream casts, which I would post if people didn’t take my silly blogs so seriously these days. I’m looking forward to seeing the cast lists you come up with in the fansite forums, and if any of them match mine.

So, very exciting. Yay Host!

XO

Steph

I can’t wait as well… 🙂

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