It’s Monday! What are YOU Reading?

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Whew, another Monday down. This Monday marks a milestone for me, my first It’s Monday! What are you reading? post. It’s Monday! What are you reading? is a weekly meme that showcases different blogs where you can find even more book reviews and recommendations sponsored by Shelia at bookjourney.wordpress.com.  

Whew, what a week. I have been kind of silent this past week on the blogsphere so I am going to do a couple things here.

My reading has been going a bit slow. I finally finished “The Wind in he Willows” after months of periodic listening to multiple narrators. It was an OK book, not a classic I would really recommend. Although it is geared towards children, and I can see them happy at learning about animals being people and all that jazz, a lot of it just dragged on with kind of annoying characters. If you read my review, you could see I absolutely disliked the Toad. Of course, there needed to be one entitled animal, right? Just picture him as Bernie Madoff, ripping people off, fooling them, and getting their way. That may be a tad harsh, but hey. It’s my blog. 🙂

I had a sleepover at my best friend’s apartment where we watched Warm Bodies. As I did not have time to write a review of it this week, I am going to now.

                                                   Warm Bodies (2013) Poster oh yes he is!

If you haven’t watched Warm Bodies, it is a hysterical take on zombies. Based on the book Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion, the main “character” is R, a recovering zombie. Now, why is he in recovery, you may ask. Because he is getting warmer! Warmer! Like human. Oh my word! After a raid, R spots a girl that he decides to “rescue” in a nice zombie/human way. Slowly, his body and mind start getting attuned to each other.

R is played Nicholas Hoult. In case you don’t know who he is, you should check him out! He was the little boy in About a Boy with Hugh Grant. And, recently, broke up with Jennifer Lawrence and stars as Hank (the beast) in the X-men revamped movies. This role was perfect for him. He still looked kind of cute, struggling to walk and looking like half death. Because he is a zombie, a lot of his dialogue is spoken coming from his mind, not actual words out of his mouth. Because of that, Hoult’s narration was great. It was dry, with so much humor. 

As you guessed it, though, there is a girl who just makes him “warm”. Teresa Palmer played Julie, one of the few humans not infected and a recruit to kill the zombies. Although I never read the book, I thought she was great for the part. I may be biased, since I loved her in the movie I am Number 4. She plays Jane Doe (number 6). 

I expected cheesiness from this film. C’mon with a poster like this Warm Bodies (2013) Poster how can you really take it seriously? You can’t. But, you should. It was great fun. Just Hoult’s commentary alone is worth spending the hour and a half. I may not run to the bookstore to buy the book, but I recommend the movie if anything.

And, if you are in fact interested in the book, I just noticed on goodreads.com it’s part of a series. Yay for you series lovers. I can imagine it would go by quick. It just isn’t your typical zombie movie and that alone makes me happy. There are too many out there now, but go see Warm Bodies if that is your only one. It is not serious and life threatening like World War Z. It really plays (and reads I would imagine) as a great satire about the new zombie obsession our culture has developed.

Starting tomorrow, I will be going to LA and Disneyland, coming home bright early on Sunday. Hopefully, there will be some new reviews. A six hour flight? Six hours both ways? Yeah, lots of reading going on there. Currently, I am still reading Havisham, getting closer and more into the end. Still not going to be one of my favorites if the year, but I can see Great Expectation fans loving it. I am also listening to The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood. Sadly, Karen Savage is not the reader. Instead, I am back to listening to a recording of new people each chapter. The woman speaking in chapter three is terrible. She sounds like a big smoker.

Lastly, I am reading Ruby Red (The Ruby Red Triology #1) by Kerstin Gier  on my nook. I am excited about this one. The cover is so pretty. Ruby Red (Ruby Red Trilogy, #1) 

Another plus, it is about time travel throughout all eras and secret societies. Two of my favorite things. I got the book for under $2.99 a couple of months ago. I am finally sitting down to reading it and I love it! Check it out if you enjoy YA, YA Fantasy, time travel, and secret societies. I will hopefully have a review of that book for sure.

I think I am set. Got all three types in action. Plus, a classic, a classic retelling, and YA Fantasy. Yeah, I’m set. And well-rounded to boot!

Happy (almost dinner time) Monday! And good luck with your reading this week. I am looking forward to my trip and sharing more reviews with you.

Also, on a non-literary note, if you want to see a good movie, see Sofia Coppola’s new Movie The Bling Ring with Emma Watson. It is great!

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There is indeed Wind in the Willows: The Wind in the Willows (audio) book review

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The Wind in the Willows

The Wind in Willows

By Kenneth Grahame

First published in 1908

Audio book from librivox recording

Two Stars 

       First off, I would like to do a happy dance. I finished it, finally!

The Wind in the Willows is penned in lyrical prose, the adventures and misadventures of the book’s intrepid quartet of heroes—Mole, Water Rat, Badger, and, of course, the incorrigible Toad—raise fantasy to the level of myth. The animals’ world embodies the author’s wry, whimsical, and unfailingly inventive imagination. It is a world that succeeding generations of both adult and young readers have found irresistible. But why say more? To use the words of the estimable Mr. Toad himself: “Travel, change, interest, excitement!…Come inside.

Simply put, this story is an imaginative telling of talking animals. With all the animals, known only as their species name, live a life of free thinking with human behaviors. This novel is a child’s classic. A book often seen in a child’s library. Maybe I am getting older, or too cynical, but this story didn’t do it to me.

 Toad was a frustrating character from the beginning. Maybe that was Grahame’s intention, and if so he succeeded in me despising him as a character and with no sympathy towards this entitled animal prancing around the world with barely any remorse towards the havoc he wrecked.There were more animals that were more that I could stand, but none that made a lasting impression.

Since I listened to this book on my Itouch over an extended period of time, I became apathetic and not very attentive as I have been with other audio books I chose to listen to. As this was a librivox recording, all narrators were volunteers. The narrators changed ever chapter, both a positive and negative for me. Some of the narrators were decent. Mostly, the male narrators I felt for some reason. But as the narrators change, so does my attention span. If one narrator doesn’t stay put, why should I? Just made me less interested.

I understand this novel may be geared towards children, and there is a Disneyland ride based on this book, I had hopes. I loved The Secret Garden that was just as much geared towards children. Narration really is an important part of an audio book. I am realizing that now. Would touching and reading the book change my perspective, not sure. 

If you read or listened to this, let me know what you thought? A lot of my goodreads friends rated it high. Am I missing something?

 

Move over paper: E-books and Audio books

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These days, even with books still in print, there are too many different ways to read. I never grew up with e-books, or audio books quite frankly. Now, these two formats are hard to avoid. They are cheap, convenient, and widely available. Of course bookstores are still around; children running around with new toys, or trying to listen to story time; students taking all the available seats, and the floor, too!; adults stroll; with cafes in store, people settle and read magazines. Then, there are advertisements for Nook books, Kobo books at independent bookstores like the one I once worked at. You can browse the limited audio book sections.

 

 

More people are listening to audio books. I am constantly seeing e-readers. I admit I have one, but the power dwindles more than I turn the fake pages. The one format I am having trouble grasping is audio books.

I admit to getting joy of finding great and cheap reads on my Nook. For each gift card, I stretch it out by only getting $2.99 or less books. I have learned to stay away from free, google copied classics. I rather buy a new book than buy it on my Nook. I don’t like that the prices don’t differ as much. You would think with ink being limited, trees untouched, the price would be lower. But, audio books, I have passed on.

I have only read a few audio books. Often though, you will hear my music seeping from my headphones rather than hearing unfamiliar voices speaking Dickenese, Austenian, or any other dialect. When I clean, which isn’t too often, I still choose music. Why, because I don’t want to not hear a novel. I can’t concentrate and focus on the words being spoken. I try to listen to The Wind in the Willows, but it has taken me around six months, or so, to reach chapter nine. What happened during the book, I just don’t know. I can’t quite remember because I don’t think my brain was really listening.

But, I have discovered my problem, narrators! I am listening to The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett and absolutely love the narrator! I am enjoying it so much I forget I am listening to it, instead I feel present with the narrator. Other works I have listened to, I just didn’t like the voice speaking to me. When I listened to Peter Pan, a librivox recording, the narrators switched; a new voice each chapter, but not for each character.

For all you audio book fans, what makes an audio book work for you? And, what format do you really enjoy?

I know audio books are not for all, but now I think I will give them a second chance. Unfortunately, I am on a budget, I only listen to the books featured on the 99 cent app on my Iphone and Itouch. Who can pass up unlimited audio books with a one time fee of 99 cents plus tax?

Feeling a book is great. But I have no more room for books. My library is terrible. Audio books just be something I want to keep as a major option.

Happy reading!

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