I stumbled upon Andy’s blog post on Fandango Groovers Movie Blog that invites fellow bloggers to choose their favorite movie for all the years they have been alive on the planet. Without further adieu, I will include my 29 favorite pictures (with a few runner ups mentioned). Continue reading
Author: Libba Bray
Published by: Delacorte Press (2009)
“The best day of my life happened when I was five and almost died at Disney World” – first lines from the satirical and hysterical tale of Cameron Smith, the boy who contracts mad cow disease at his employment, Buddha Burger (or so we think). After contracting this disease, he’s admitted to the hospital in where he meets an angel decked out with combat boots and hot pink hair named, Dulcie. She enrolls him to go on a quest to find Dr. X, the man who will help cure him. On this quest, Cameron is accompanied by his schoolmate, Gonzo, the Mexican dwarf, meets a gnome named Balder, and travels all around the country to find Dr. X. The end result provides Cameron with a new meaning for his life.
At a whopping 480 pages (hardcover edition), this book never appeared long or tedious. Libba Bray has a magnificent grasp on the youthful voice with a nostalgic twist. There are sections that recall the nineties MTV Spring Break reality TV shows which made this reader laugh with recognition. Apart from appealing to adults, the ability to make apathetic Cameron likable was incredible. Bray’s talent was showcased straight up and down in this novel. What worked particularly well, was the banter between Gonzo and Cameron; one could hear the dialogue clearly which never sounded stilted or forced. Teenagers all across the country are speaking, thinking, acting, and feeling like this. As an adult, I was able to empathize with Cameron through his journey. This was a delightful, fun, amusing, and playful novel on all fronts. I haven’t laughed this much while reading a book since S.G. Browne’s Breathers (see my review here). Do pick this book up when possible because you will not be disappointed.
One more thing, as a reader, one will have a sense of Libba Bray’s silliness with her acknowledgements section (located at the beginning of the book) which had me chuckling out loud. It was like reading Scott Pilgrim vs. The World in my head! It was bright, colorful, witty, and very memorable as well as having heart.
I’ll end this review with a few of the last lines (no spoilers, I promise) which is how I responded upon completion of the book.
“And there’s nothing to say but wow. Wow. The same word backward and forward. And I can see why.”
Author: Christopher Pike
Published by: Archway Paperbacks (1996)
A week before Paige Christian is about board the spaceship Traveler as part of her father’s crew, she meets and falls in love with Tem. Albeit Paige leaving, they promise to write to each other. She vows she’ll see him again. With each hour that passes when she does board the ship, years go by and Paige suffers heartbreak. On the ship, the Shamere, an alien race, plan to obliterate the remaining human race (they’ve been in space for thousands of years at this point) but do not succeed. Without giving too much away of the remainder of the story, time weaves upon itself for Paige and love prevails.
At times, convoluted in execution but the message of love was clear. Pike’s books have that contemporary touch even though most of them were written in the late nineties. I think his work is the only work (some of them anyway) that doesn’t feel dated at all. I remember when I first read this and how I scratched my head in confusion – but when I re-read it as an adult, I could appreciate the beauty of the story he wrote even with all the craziness. The time travel isn’t explained particularly very well; it gets muddled in the process but doesn’t detract from the overall message. I really enjoyed this book and I’d like to re-visit this in another decade and see what I’ll be able to cull from it. Pike is still great.
Author: Elizabeth Gilbert
Published by: Penguin (2006)
Elizabeth Gilbert is tired of being married because she’s in her thirties and her biological clock is not even close to ticking. After a devastating divorce, she takes pleasure in Italy for a few months, finds peace in India and falls in love in Indonesia. The last part was unexpected for her but she was ready for it after her heart had been broken.
I started reading a novel which is in the new “Bitch Lit” genre and I have to say, I couldn’t get down with it. I read a quarter through the story and absolutely hated the lead character. The writing was good but I was completely unenrolled with the story.
Upon completely discarding this tale about a feminist and fashionista, I researched the author’s blog. I liked the author’s message about feminism in real time than in the story. She talks about the ability to have it all: successful career, marriage, and babies. I don’t know how the story ends but I sure wasn’t interested in the protagonist’s journey to love because I’ve read books like that and it’s a lot harder than it seems.
If this is the other side to “Chick Lit,” I’m not down with it. I comprehend the genre and I can truthfully say I have not encountered women like the protagonist in this novel. The author did such a great job at painting her, I had to stop reading. It was as if I was in the same room with this woman, listening to her thoughts, and I had to run away as far as I could in the other direction. I’m not the kind of person to watch a train wreck happen or even as an accident nearly happens but turns out okay. I don’t pay much mind to that but for others who love drama, I can see why folks enjoyed this.
I applaud this author, Erica Kennedy, who made this person so authentic, I couldn’t stand her! Good job! Her blog is especially empowering and I respect her message.
I’m not a fan of “Bitch Lit” and don’t read much “Chick Lit” either but I’d be interested to see more incarnations in the genre.
Author: Patrick Suskind
Published by: Vintage Books (1986)
Jean-Baptiste Grenouille was born unwanted, non-smelling, and with the sense of smell a perfumer would die for. Bouncing from orphanage to tannery, Grenouille learns how to use his acute sense of smell to make perfume at a young age. He becomes the apprentice of Baldini, a hack of a perfumer, and learns the procedures to mix scents. After almost dying, he comes out alive and moves forward – living in a cave for seven years. When he re-emerges, he is taken in by a mad scientist then works at another perfume shop where he creates scents for himself and creates the best scent in the world – to be loved – which proves to be too much at the end. Continue reading