Monthly Archives: September 2013
The Hunger Games
Usually adaptations of books don’t live up to expectations, but, for an adaptation, this movie was pretty good. If you haven’t read the book, it was probably excellent. The cinematography was good quality, though my eyes hurt when they chose to rush a few scenes (for aesthetic purposes). I liked the tone of the movie. It rang true to the book and the mood of the movie itself. It was fast paced and very interesting. It definitely drew you in and the actors did a great job.
Having read the book, I feel some of the scenes could have lasted longer. I was also not happy with the fact that they changed the origin of her pin. But, I suppose there was a reason for that. The effects were great and they did a great job of putting us into the world Suzanne Collins created.
I can say, as someone who has also read the book, that I am happy with the movie over all. It’s worth a watch.
Since the second Hunger Games movie is coming out, I figured it would be a good time to review The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins.
Here is the summary on the back:
“Winning means fame and fortune. Losing means certain death. The Hunger Games have begun…
In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister’s place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before – and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.”
I have to say, I was reluctant to read it at first. I usually am reluctant to read hyped up books. But, once I started reading I got hooked. It’s a face paced, action packed book, but it also describes scenes intriguingly well. I also have to admit, the present tense in first person took me a bit to get used to, but that’s really a personal preference and it faded to the background once I got into the story.
Katniss, though gruff at times, is a lovable character. I love her because she is a strong independent character, but I’ve always loved the strong heroine types. I find, though, that even her more subtle attributes and her flaws make her lovable. I quickly became involved in a lot of the characters, actually. I’m also not one for love triangles usually, It seems most books have them, though. But, I wouldn’t really call this a love triangle, or at least it didn’t get that far in my opinion.
This book, as well as the series, can get quite intense. I hadn’t read a book like it before. Not only is Katniss dealing with teenage things and family problems, but she is dealing with a brutal game to the death. It is amazing to follow her journey and read what decisions she makes.
On top of this brutal game she’s in and the brutal society that created it, there are undertones of so many different types of love. The love she has for her sister, for example, is one of the most profound connections in the book. It is beautiful.
There’s really something for everyone. There’s a little romance, a little drama, a lot of action, and a lot of depth. In my opinion it’s worth a read.
John has always felt more at home in the fantasy realms of his games where he can be Alexander, his avatar. When an opportunity to dive even deeper into one of his games presents itself, he can’t wait to try it. A new virtual reality gaming software allows the player to transport his or her consciousness into the game server. But, John gets more than he bargains for when a glitch traps the players in the game indefinitely. Is this truly what he wants?
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Even in her dying moments, Alex couldn’t help being witty. The EMT trying to help her was withdrawn and distracted, until he saw her tenacity in the face of death. Captivated by her, he had to save her in the only way he knew how. He changed her into a vampire. What would happen after that, she didn’t know and neither did he. She didn’t know who she was, who this man who saved her was, or how to deal with the darker side of immortality.
Here’s the summary on the back:
“The cold. Grace has spent years watching the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf – her wolf – watches back. He feels deeply familiar to her, but she doesn’t know why.
The heat. Sam has lived two lives. As a wolf, he keeps the silent company of the girl he loves. And then, for a short time each year, he is human, never daring to talk to Grace… until now.
The shiver. For Grace and Sam, love has always been kept at a distance. But once it’s spoken, it cannot be denied. Sam must fight to stay human – and Grace must fight to keep him – even if it means taking on the scars of the past, the fragility of the present, and the impossibility of the future.”
Shiver, by Maggie Stiefvater, is the first book in a trilogy. The book follows the main characters, switching perspectives between Sam and Grace. It is written in a unique voice, one that seems to be juvenile in its innocence and yet very deep. The characters are loveable, even in their flaws. The pace is great. There is a pleasant flow and the pace keeps you moving.
This book makes it’s own definition of werewolves, twisting the traditional lore. The werewolves in this story become real wolves and only change back during the warmer months of the year (spring and summer). Grace has always been different and now she finds out just how different she is. The love between Grace and Sam is so true and so strong, there is no denying their connection. The story depicts the life within a wolf pack as well as the struggles of a teen dealing with parental problems. Sam and Grace must rely on each other to get through their problems.
Over all I would say it is worth a read. I enjoyed it.
A friend recently brought up an interesting discussion. He was reading a book for history class and informed me and another friend of some of Benjamin Franklin’s hidden personality traits. He then proceeded to tell us that, if he was a member of the Avengers, Ben would be Tony Stark. We all agreed. Franklin and Stark are both the rich, play boy types gallivanting around town doing whatever they please. They both enjoy new technology, a bit of arrogance, and the luxuries of life, but when there’s something to fight for, they will.
The discussion evolved into who the Avengers would be if they were the founding fathers or members of the continental congress. I am not exactly a history buff, but this definitely intrigued me. We all agreed that Captain America would be George Washington, Betty Ross would be the Black Widow (with a power of throwing sewing needles), and then came to the agreement that John Hancock would be Nick Fury (I was a little fuzzy on this one).
I wish I could say these ideas were all my own, but I only contributed. I eventually want to expand on this idea and make a picture of the Avengers as the forefathers, though.
Do any of you agree? Who do you think the other members would be?
Here is the summary on the back of the book:
“Enter the dark, magical world of The House of Night, a world very much like our own, except here vampyres have always existed. Sixteen-year-old Zoey Redbird has just been Marked as a fledgling vampyre and joins the House of Night, a school where she will train to become an adult vampyre. That is, if she makes it through the Change – and not all of those who are Marked do. It sucks to begin a new life, especially away from her friends, and on top of that, Zoey is no average fledgling. She has been chosen as special by the vampyre Goddess Nyx. Zoey discovers she has amazing powers, but along with her powers come bloodlust and an unfortunate ability to Imprint her human ex boy-friend. To add to he stress, she is not the only fledgling at the House of Night with special powers: When she discovers the leader of the Dark Daughters, the school’s most elite group, is misusing her Godess-given gifts, Zoey must look deep with in herself for the courage to embrace her destiny – with a little help from her new vampyre friends.”
Marked, by P.C. Cast and Kristin cast, is the first book in the House of night series. The two authors are mother and daughter. It is remarkable how they maintain the same voice throughout the book. I like the tone of the book. It keeps you reading. There’s some teen drama, but there are some underlying complexities that make this book a very interesting read. The plot is cleverly woven and the characters are engaging.
In this book, the conventional role of vampires is changed up a bit. The vampires (called vampyres in this book) are chosen by the their Goddess, but it is theorized scientifically that there is also something in their genes that triggers the Change. The Goddess is based off of the Greek personification of Night. When the time is right Trackers find the new fledgling, say a few words, and Mark them with a crescent moon on their forehead. After this, they have to be around adult vampyres while they are going through the Change and they also have to learn about what they are becoming, so they move to the House of Night. They start a whole new life. The life there is very interesting. Most of the myths about vampires still exist in the story, though they are linked to a Goddess and a religion, no longer damned and dead. Some of the traditional vampire lore stays the same, though, such as needing to drink blood and not being able to go out in light. There is also a bit of Native American culture woven into it. I enjoyed this aspect.
My over all opinion is that this book is worth a read. I loved it.