Monday, August 30, 2010


I've been reading some blog posts that discuss things in YA novels that are dealbreakers for the blog posters. You know, things like weak heroines and cliches and whatnot. :) I thought I'd do a flip post and talk about things in entertainment-in-general that are my deal makers. In other words, if I hear that a book/movie/whatever has one of these in it, I'm almost CERTAIN to read/watch/rock it.

The end is here, or the end hath already come and gone.

Also known as post-apocalypse, dystopias, or zombies. If any of those 3 words (or all) appear in an advertisement, I will detour straight to it while happily knocking down any old ladies in my path. Although I don't end up liking everything I read/watch in those genres, the ratio of win:fail is significantly higher in these genres than the ratio of win:fail for things in general.

Conspiracy theories, or jiggly-camera mysteries.

Cloverfield. Paranormal Activity. Da Vinci Code. Quarantine. Who killed JFK. Bigfoot. Area 51. Some of these are ridiculous, true, but I don't care. Let me live in my bubble!!

Fighter jets.

I think I've watched at least 50% of the videos on YouTube that feature fighter jets in any capacity, especially ones with the F-22, F-15 (my fav), F-35, any jet with thrust vectoring or vertical take-off capabilities, and the Sukhoi-47. I just read Fighter Pilot, the memoir of famous ace Robin Olds. Two of my favorite shows are Great Planes and Dogfights. *salivates* Can you tell I was a Top Gun fangirl when I was little? Tom Cruise, even if you might be a little on the crazy side, I forgive you of everything and anything because you are forever Maverick in my brain.

Johnny Depp.

Since we're on the topic of celebrities.

Child prodigies.

This is a relatively new one for me to realize, but I think I always unconsciously gravitated toward stories about child prodigies (in any form). I will read any novel or non-fiction biography about Mozart (and I almost never read biographies), or his sister Nannerl, regardless of its quality. I looooooooooove Ender's Shadow and Ender's Game. Ender and Bean, you boys are my eternal heroes.

Now all I need to find is a post-apocalypse story about a child prodigy fighter pilot who uncovers a conspiracy theory while shooting home webcam footage of his/her antics in the sky. With a character somewhere in it that Johnny Depp can play. Oooh. I think I've found my next novel premise, muhahahaha.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Harry Potter and the Goobelty Goosh

(Reposted from my blog on deviantArt)

Boyfriend: Hey, did all the Harry Potter movies come out yet?
Me: No, they split the last one up into two movies. They're not out yet.
Boyfriend: Oh right. Harry Potter and something about Death.
Me: And the Deathly Hallows.
Boyfriend: What was the one before that? Half-Blood Prince?
Me: Yeah.
Boyfriend: And then something about Giblets?
Me: No it was Order of the Phoenix.
Boyfriend: And then the Giblets?
Me: You mean Goblet of Fire?
Boyfriend: Right, that. And then Prisoner of Azkaban, and then Chambers of Darkness--
Me: Chamber of Secrets. SECRETS.
Boyfriend: And the first one? Harry Potter and the Goblet of Sorcerers?
Me: *froths at mouth* AND THE SORCERER'S STONE! THE SORCERER'S STONE! THE SORCERER'S STONE! WHY DON'T YOU KNOW THIS!!! *frothfroth--* Oh, wait. You're making fun of me.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Mockingjay review (no spoilers)

(Reposted from my blog on deviantArt)

So I picked up and finished Mockingjay yesterday (Hunger Games 3 for those who don't know .... and again, why don't you know!!!! Even Obama's daughters are reading this series!). Let me just say that it did NOT disappoint.

As a whole I was absolutely thrilled with the way Collins tied everything together and wrapped it up. It's extremely dark, easily the darkest of the three, and probably the darkest book I've read in a very long time. This book has a very strong anti-war message. And if anyone thought that the love triangle in Hunger Games was somehow the main plot/conflict of the trilogy, you are sorely mistaken! Collins makes it very clear that the main issues we should be grappling with are not who ends up with whom, but just how devastating war can be and how much of your humanity you're willing to sacrifice in order to achieve victory. That's the theme of the books. Love in a very different light.

One of my favorite things about Mockingjay was the intense character development happening throughout the book. Dude. I have not seen such deep character dev in a long, long time! There are some painfully eloquent "monologues" where Katniss ponders the dark issues of war and morality, and both Gale and Peeta's characters are explored thoroughly. Even many of the minor characters are very fully fleshed out. This is one of Collins's greatest strengths and most enviable talents, I think, and what makes her series so popular. She is dynamite at character development. They go beyond 3-dimensional. This is one of the few series I've read where the love triangle's angsty romance isn't there just for the sake of being emo and angsty, but is angsty for very very good reasons. The relationships are real. The angst is justified. It makes all other love triangles look like trivial and frivolous walks in the park.

And finally, the last line of the book in the epilogue gave me goosebumps. Rest assured that when you close the book, you will feel pretty satisfied. Thank you, Suzanne Collins! Seriously, she is one of the greatest YA writers ever. I hope to one day have even a smidge of her talents. <3

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Mockingjay, Gale, and Peeta

(Reposted from my more updated blog on deviantArt)

Mockingjay (Hunger Games 3 for those who don't know .... why don't you know!!) comes out next week. SQUEE. I am going to die from anticipation.

I was reading some forum posts online and although there are fans for both Gale and Peeta, I have to say everyone seems very heavily leaning Peeta. Which makes me sad and borderline defensive because I like both boys equally. Why must I choose! It's not really a fair argument because Peeta got SO much book time in Catching Fire (and Hunger Games, for that matter), while Gale only had a couple of chapters devoted to his character. I know, I know....Peeta is noble, lovable, sensible, logical, understanding of Katniss's many sides and weaknesses, etcetc. But he also never seems to really react to anything. He never really gets angry, or sad, or happy, or whatever. (Edit: except for that one part in Catching Fire, as one commenter pointed out, where he does go off on Haymitch and Katniss. Ok, I'll give him credit for that one bit. :) ) When I think of Peeta, I think of someone very "level-headed". Which is a good trait, to be sure. Maybe Katniss needs more of that in her life, given her impulsive ways of handling situations. Sometimes, though, I want to slap Peeta upside the head and tell him, "REACT, dammit! Are you at all angry? Shout it to the heavens! More moments like that one in Catching Fire!"

But Gale. There's something about Gale. First of all, as aforementioned, it's not fair pitting him against Peeta because he just hasn't had the chance to be developed as much. I think we'll see much more of him in Mockingjay due to the circumstances of Catching Fire's ending (no spoilers in this blog, although I can't promise the same in the comments, so be careful if you haven't read both books). And when Suzanne Collins gets that chance to develop him more thoroughly, I think we'll see more people on Gale's side. Yes, he's rash and impulsive, and sometimes quick to anger, but I like to think of those things as things that make him interesting and admirable. He's flawed. He's stubborn. He's hot-tempered when appropriate and he can show a wide range of personality traits that range everywhere from nobility to selfishness. I like his selfish moments, when he just wants to leave everything behind and run away with Katniss. He's extremely human, and I find that aspect of him quite appealing. Anyone in his situation would feel that way at times. Granted, that might not be the best match for Katniss. They're both hotheaded and relationships with two hotheads tend to end in flames (or at least, a lot of angry sparks). Still, chapters with Gale hold my attention with a vice-like grip. Peeta is more like lukewarm water....very comforting and soothing, but no Bellagio fountain. :)

Anyway, that's my assessment. I figure Katniss can't really go wrong with either one. And on August 24, I will be in line at the local Vroman's bookstore, clutching my copy of Mockingjay to my chest with a feverish light in my eyes. Muhahaha. My precioussss! *faint*