frelling_tralk: (Hannibal trial by sourburst)
I'm really intrigued by American Gods, it looks absolutely fantastic in the trailer, and I was already thinking of checking it out anyway because Bryan Fuller is adapting it. (I'm a little bit surprised that it isn't going to be out until 2017 though, I always thought that they start working on it towards the end of 2015 after Hannibal finished, so I was expecting it out this year tbh)

Has anyone read the book, if so how did you find it, and do you think that it would it be worth catching up on before the tv show airs?
frelling_tralk: (PLL Aria season 6 by running wild)
Elizabeth Is Missing is a book that I absolutely loved, it's all about the protagonists slow slide into dementia, and through the book you follow her getting muddled over the present with her friend Elizabeth going missing, and the past where her sister Sukey suddenly disappeared shortly after the Second World War had ended. The reviews on goodreads seemed a bit mixed, and I feel like how much you enjoyed it depends on whether you viewed it as a mystery or not? There were quite a few complaints from readers expecting more of a mystery, but I enjoyed (if that's the right word!) the book more as a very moving look at how Maude's mind was slowly deteriorating. The mystery was really only there as a device to frame Maude's confusion between her present and past IMO, rather than being the point of the book, but apparently some people got annoyed because there was a lot of hype over it being a thriller/comparisons to Gone Girl

spoilers )

And then The Dead House was a bit of a disappointment for me after the premise drew me in, but I seem to be the lone weirdo that wasn't absolutely blown away by it :( It's YA and focused on 'the Johnson Incident' and what led up to it, we follow the diary of Kaitlyn who shares a body with Carly, and the question is raised of whether she suffers from disassociate identity disorder, or whether there's a paranormal explanation for everything. The premise seemed like an intriguing one, but I found that I just could not get that into it, one of my main issues was that I felt like the way it was written ended up keeping me at a distance from the characters (it's all told through descriptions of video footage, transcripts of therapy sessions, interviews, and the diary entries). I'd argue that the supporting characters were really underdeveloped as well, I found most of their voices in the group scenes pretty generic, it was really only Kaitlyn and Nadia that stood out most of the time. Well and Ari I guess

As for the ending, spoilers )

I would have liked to have found more reader discussion on it actually, it would be interesting to hear what people's theories were, but unfortunately I couldn't find much, just the usual spoiler-free reviews mostly. Also the title made it a challenging book to google, I kept getting results for similarly titled popular movies instead!

And finally The Light Of The Fireflies was a book that I had very mixed feelings on. It was certainly well-written and engrossing when it came to the first half of the book, it's told through the eyes of a ten year old boy who has spend his entire life living with his family in a basement for reasons that he doesn't yet understand, and it leaves you very curious to find out what exactly happened to this family. But I had MANY issues with what seemed to be the final moral spoilers )
frelling_tralk: (X-Files Scully new series)
Beside Myself immediately caught my attention because of the creepy premise of two young twins swapping identities as a prank when they were six years old, then one twin refusing to switch back and no one believing that there's anything wrong. Spoilers )

I read Brooke Shield's biography, There Was A Little Girl, it was moderately interesting, mostly for reading between the lines actually. She talks a lot about stuff like how the Calvin Klein ad's she did had nothing remotely suggestive about them, and defends her mother as not exploiting her when she was underage etc, even though that doesn't really fit with the movies and pictures that her mother allowed when she was just a young girl. It was interesting reading about their relationship though, and hearing about her experiences on the film sets

I also read and absolutely loved A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara, even though it completely devastated me at the same time. It's four college friends growing up together in New York, and it's all about how one of them is struggling to reconcile his abusive childhood with who he is today. I can absolutely see why it's been criticised for being a misery slog, but I just found the writing really beautiful and couldn't stop thinking about Jude afterward and how heartbreaking it all was, I guess any book that makes a real emotional impression on me is going to go down as a favourite, and well this one made me cry A LOT

And finally Girl In The Dark was a memoir from Anna Lyndsey. She feels a terrible burning sensation in her skin whenever she's exposed to light, and so she's trying to adapt to living with as little light as possible, often in a completely blacked-out room for days at a time. I must admit that I did find myself starting to skim a bit towards the end. It would have made for a really interesting magazine article, but as a book I found it quite padded-out and tedious, there were lots of long flowery descriptions which just weren't my sort of thing. There wasn't as much explanation of her condition as I was expecting either actually (she does talk about hardly seeing any specialists because they weren't very understanding of her condition preventing her from leaving the house in daylight), so the book was really mostly about her experimenting with just how much light she could stand to be exposed too, along with descriptions of word games and audiobooks that she tries to keep herself entertained while she's lying in the dark. At one point it did seem like she was improving, but then it never really went anywhere and the book just sort of ended?

I did try reading The Lesser Dead as well, it sounded like a promising vampire novel and had great reviews, but I found the main character so obnoxious that in the end I had to drop it when I was about 20% into the book :P
frelling_tralk: (Dollhouse B&W by rocklogic)
Which TV shows did you start watching in 2015?

I really need to get into more new shows, I don't think that I did pick up any new shows this year other than Daredevil! I'm currently watching The Vampire Diaries, The Good Wife, The Big Bang Theory, Pretty Little Liars, Doctor Who (all pretty old now), and the only newish shows that I'm following are iZombie, Daredevil, and From Dusk Till Dawn. Otherwise most of my tv time goes to re-watching my DVDs of older shows

Oh and I am currently watching early seasons of How I Met Your Mother on Netflix! I watched season 1 a while ago and always meant to catch up with some more, then I subscribed to Netflix for Jessica Jones and found that HIMYM was on there as well, so I've just caught up with seasons 2 and 3.

Which TV shows did you mean to get into but didn't in 2015? Why?

I hate to say this because my flist has been so enthusiastic about this show and I really wanted to join in the squee, but...Jessica Jones :( It's not that I didn't like it at all, it was nice seeing so many different female characters on-screen for a start, but I just found that the episodes were really feeling like a misery slog after a bit. I was the most invested after the first episode actually, I really liked how that whole Noir vibe with the voice-overs reminded me a bit of Veronica Mars, and then the ending with Hope certainly left an impression, but as it went on I found myself struggling to get invested. I read this interesting article which I think that sums up a lot of what I was struggling with? 13 episodes of trying and failing to catch Kilgrave just doesn't appeal to me as much as shows that have individual episode cases, as well as the serialised element. The pacing was really dragging for me when it was all so serialised, I couldn't get through an episode without it starting to feel like a chore :( And David Tennant still doesn't do a lot for me

And I talked more about The 100 at the time, but I'm still not sure whether I will watch any more of that show or not

Which TV shows do you intend on checking out in 2016?

Amazon's "Man in the High Castle" is on my watch list at the moment, and The Originals, Luther, and Prison Break are all on my maybe list if I can find the time

Read more... )
frelling_tralk: (GG Blair reading by nadasartwork)
Everyone seems quite scandalised at the moment by the 11 year old dressed as Christian Grey story. Putting aside whether it is or is not appropriate to dress your kid as a character from an erotic?/pornographic? (I haven't read it lol) novel, IMO it's really missing the spirit of the event to dress up as a character from a book that his mother admits that he hasn't even read! World Book Day is supposed to be an event celebrating the reading of books, I thought the idea behind kids dressing up as their favourite literary characters was meant to be from books that they've enjoyed, not their parents favourites? His mother is arguing that Christian Grey is "a character that has been put out there on the television and all aspects of media", but it's not World Television Day is it?

I read another article where the boy said that he was the one who decided to dress up as Christian Grey because he didn't want to dress as a cartoon (the relevance to World Book Day escapes me?!) It's sounding more and more like the school should really be focusing on getting the children reading actual books...
frelling_tralk: (THG On fire by sininferno)
Just added some new friends from the recent friending meme, I'm looking forward to getting to know you all better :)

And some films I've watched recently:

I really liked Red Dragon! It did take me a little while to get used to Edward Norton's Will Graham though, at first I didn't feel like he has that much presence in the role, but after a bit he started to grow on me. I actually found the 'tooth fairy' and the investigation into him the most interesting part of the film by far, Anthony Hopkin's Hannibal Lector just didn't make much of an impression on me this time around, nor was I particularly gripped by his interaction with Will Graham in the same way that I was with Hannibal and Clarice in the first two films. I guess that the film's Hannibal is just starting to feel a bit overplayed to me by now quite honestly, those scenes mostly just felt like they were redoing the same old shtick from the first films, the films Will and Hannibal definitely didn't have the same chemistry as Will and Hannibal do on the tv version *g*

It will be interesting to see how the tv series handles the Red Dragon plot, Hannibal appears in it so rarely that surely Mads is only going to get one or two scenes per episode for that plot? I guess that separating the season into two parts makes more sense in that case though, as then they can have a much heavier screen presence of Hannibal in the first half of season 3 while they explore his past, before letting Will take centre stage during Hannibal's imprisonment in the second half? Anyway I'm even more excited now to see how the tv series is going to handle the Red Dragon plot! I have to confess that I still haven't read the book, so I wasn't particularly clued-in to that part of the story, but now I am and it should be awesome to see the tv show's take on the "Tooth Fairy"!

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes )

Gone Girl (book and film) )

Under The Skin (book and film) )

And I'm currently reading Never Let Me Go which I'm enjoying so far, I'm planning to try and see the film for that next
frelling_tralk: (Buffy season 7 by)
Anyone else read We Were Liars, and if so what did you think of the ending?

Spoilers )
frelling_tralk: (Buffybot by letsy-x)
I've signed up for a Goodreads challenge of reading 50 books this year, which will mean around four books a month. So far this month I've read:

'Volume one - Hell' of the former Lord (or is he still a Lord, I'm not sure?) Jeffrey Archer's prison diaries. He goes into EVERY detail of his days there and, while it was interesting finding out more about the prison system, I don't think I'll pick up the final two volumes tbh. I was mostly interested in finding out how his first intro to prison went anyway. It wasn't exactly as I expected as there was no mention of prison rape or the new prisoners coming in for abuse like you always hear about (other than two 'young tearaways' bothering him in the exercise yard before the 'lifers' stepped in to watch his back), maybe I've taken the show Oz too seriously as far as its accuracy on prison life! He actually mentions that the other prisoners hardly ever even used ~vulgar language~ when they were talking to him, even while using the f word every other sentence among themselves.

Read more... )

Next up I read Defending Jacob by William Landay. That was about how an American family coped with their 14 year old son being accused of killing a classmate, looking at how the parents were relating to their son, whether they should believe in his innocence or guilt, and what is their responsibly as parents if he is guilty. Maybe because I'm not a parent myself, but some of the father's actions I found very frustrating and hard to relate too (I kept waiting for him to confront his son with the evidence that he was coming across, but instead he would immediately destroy the evidence, while at the same time telling himself that his son was most certainly innocent!). Still the author did do a reaaonably good job of helping you understand why the parents would react in that way. It was very well-paced and I ended up reading the whole book in two days, although I'm not sure if I liked the ending or not.Read more... )

Next was Perfect by Rachel Joyce which I found quite unsettling to read. It was about an English household in the 1970's that seemed perfect on the outside, but it's told through the eyes of the 11 year old son as we watch his mother's mental health slowly deteriorate. At the same time there's the story of Jim from the present-day who is struggling with life outside after spending his life in the mental health system. To be honest I didn't enjoy the present-day sections with Jim as much, I was often just impatient to get back to the story in the 1970's and catch up on what was going to happen next there, but it does all tie together beautifully in the end.

I must say though that I found the character of Beverley so deeply unpleasant that I wanted to read between my fingers in the second half! I kept dreading where it was all heading, Diana was being manipulated so horribly that you almost want to scream at certain points. And side note, but I'm wishing now that I could find some kind of book club online for discussions. I looked at the book reviews on Goodreads, but meh it's not really the same because it's mostly just reviewing the book for other readers and being careful not to mention any of the big spoilers. And that's precisely what I'd be interested in reading other peoples thoughts on...

And finally I'm about halfway through re-reading Men Of The Otherworld by Kelley Armstrong just because the recent tv series inspired me to give it another read. And that's obviously mostly about Clayton's background of becoming a werewolf as a child and being taken in by Jeremy. I might re-read Tales Of The Otherworld as well afterwards for the background of Clay's first meeting with Elena, I have a soft spot for both of those books *g*
frelling_tralk: (SPN Eyepatch by bel-perdente)
So I don't know if anyone on my flist has even heard of these books, but I was a big fan of the Kelley Armstrong book Bitten and there's going to be a Canadian tv version of it. 13 episodes and airing on Space

And I'm sorry, but I just can't get past the casting. Laura Vandervoort is actually a very good actress, but she's just not Elena to me. I always pictured Elena as being more tomboyish, no make-up, hair tied back in a ponytail. The books always made a big deal about how casually she dressed and styled herself. Then you look at the pictures of Laura as Elena and she just doesn't fit that picture for me at all. Ditto Clayton who the book always made a big deal of having golden curls and being quite angelic-looking, this is just some generic beefcake guy. Not a comment on his acting as I've never seen him in anything before, just in terms of looks he is all wrong for Clayton IMO

First Look: photos from the set of Bitten

Read more... )

Or am I being too picky? :P


frelling_tralk: (Default)

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