Saturday, April 14, 2012

We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver

Last month’s Book Club pick: We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver. Honestly, I had a lot of preconceptions about what this book was about and, since I always read the last sentence of a novel but never the back, I really thought I had a handle on it.

Honestly, nothing could have prepared me.

A (new) friend described the novel as “earth-shattering”; I would have to agree. It was so well written, with genuine intrigue and mystery, that I felt compelled to find out exactly what Kevin did that needed any more talking about. The characters seem …real. Eva, as cold-fish mom, was in equal turns adorable and abhorrent. Her self-flagellating style (as the entire book is written in letters to her husband, Franklin) is so brutally honest that I can’t help but wonder: is she exaggerating? does she really think this? is she making herself to be worse than she really is? All the other characters are seen through Eva’s eyes, and yet she paints them with the same unyielding honesty so they too seem true.

Thursday, April 05, 2012


Sometimes, I feel completely overwhelmed.  

Doesn't happen often.  

I like swimming in a big pond with sharp-toothed fishies,
 darting about, through the murky waters and the shimmering seaweed.  
I like it because it reminds of those dreams I had as a kid where I breathe underwater.  

But sometimes, 
just sometimes, 
I swallow a mouthful and end up 
gasping and choking and floundering.
I'm lost in the deep dark 
and I feel like I have nowhere to go 
and if I don't figure it out right away, 
I'm going to drown.

It is then, 
especially then, 
that I repeat my mantra:

Start where you are.  Use what you have.  Do what you can.

Over and over until I'm a calm little crab once again, 
crawling about the depths, 
shaping the wild ocean 
one snipped barnacle at a time.

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Now Playing: Wrath of the Titans

The only time I found any amusement in this movie was when it made fun of itself: "Perseus? Oh yeah - the whole "Release the Kraken" thing" - haha.  They had a cool Queen Andromeda, but who was nothing like her mythological counterpart.  And then there was the whole plot line, which made absolute nonsense of what can often be garbled myths to begin with.  Ugh.

I wouldn't even rent it: 2 out of 5 stars.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Now Playing: The Hunger Games

I avoided watching The Hunger Games on its opening weekend.  While I truly loved the books, I was not prepared to battle the crowds.  Still, even on a Wednesday night, it was packed with people.  You know, the annoying kind of newbish theatre-goer who has to explain every scene to the person next to them. 

Anyway, on to the movie.

It was...good.  As with the Harry Potter series or Percy Jackson or even LOTR, it's hard for me to put aside obvious comparisons of the movie to the book.  I know it's unfair, but I can't help it.  (Perhaps this is why Game of Thrones is just so good - because you have 10 hours to tell a book, not a mere 180 minutes).  Keeping aside the fact I can count three noticeable changes from the book, the movie was done very well.  And even the changes were ones with which I could agree for the most part.  Could there have been a little more Gale?  Did I miss the Mayor's daughter? Did Haymitch get too soft?  Did I miss the muttations?  Maybe, maybe.  In the end, it doesn't matter.  As a standalone product, THG was an excellent movie.