Monday, August 21, 2017

ShakeTube Project

On Booktube I found a nice project on William Shakespeare's works - ShakeTube. It is organized by Luukashist Books. Check it and join if you are interested. The project is to read a new play each week and publish a video review/thoughts/opinions about it on your Friday/Sunday etc. reads, in my case it will be posts. From the list Lukas suggests I have not read I guess 5-6 plays, so it will be really great to re-read those that I read as a teen.

The plays we're reading:

The Taming of the Shrew: August 25th
Richard III: September 1st
Romeo and Juliet: September 8th
Julius Caesar: September 15th
A Midsummer Night's Dream: September 22nd
The Merchant of Venice: September 29th
Much Ado About Nothing: October 6th
Richard II: October 13th
Henry V: October 20th
Hamlet: October 27th
Othello: November 3rd
King Lear: November 10th
Macbeth: November 17th
Antony and Cleopatra: November 24th
The Tempest: December 1st

The dates are Fridays of the suggested discussion of the play that you read during the week before.
So this week is my favorite comedy by Shakespeare The Taming of the Shrew

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Sunday Post #15, Happy Reading

The Sunday Post is hosted by The Caffeinated Book Reviewer.  It’s a chance to share news, a post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books and things received, and share news about what is coming up on the blog for the week ahead. To get in on the Sunday fun, see the rules here: Sunday Post Meme. 

Outside the Blog
     I am trying to cover the debts on blog I have since the end of April. But you know it is always much more enjoying to read a book than to write about it, especially when it did not impress you. That is why I do now have dates anymore in my Sunday posts, sometime I just do not have the mood to write about this or that particular book and just check my reading statistic.
    One problem I have is connected to the movies - it seems I will not watch anything till the end of the month, since the PC on which I have all my movies is temporary out of order. It should be fixed till the end of a month, meanwhile... well...more books.
    On Booktube I found a nice project on William Shakespeare's works - ShakeTube. It is organized by Luukashist Books. Check it and join if you are interested. The project is to read a new play each week and publish a video review/thoughts/opinions about it on your Friday/Sunday etc. reads, in my case it will be posts. From the list Lukas suggests I have not read I guess 5-6 plays, so it will be really great to re-read those that I read as a teen.

Last on the Blog
Next on the Blog
  • I will review movie/book About a Boy by Nick Hornby 
  • I will publish ShakeTube project details
  • I will publish Tome Topple Readathon Wrap Up
  • I will publish May 2017 Wrap up
  • I will review All You Need Is Kill by Hiroshi Sakurazaka
Newcomers on my Shelf
       I am still waiting for my bigger boxes to arrive with plenty of books, but meanwhile I was checking local bookstores. The English section is so poor and expensive that I usually just looking but not buying. this time however I got across some recognizable books and decided to get them since there were so much hype on booktube and book blogs: The Vegetarian by Han Kang and The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Oblomov by Ivan Goncharov

Author: Ivan Goncharov  
Original title: Обломов 
Pages: 634 
Edition Language: Russian 
Series: no 
Format:  Paperback 
Genres: Classics, Russian Literature  
Goodreads  

About:     
     The novel focuses on the midlife crisis of the main character, Ilya Ilyich Oblomov, an upper middle class son of a member of Russia's nineteenth century landed gentry. Oblomov's distinguishing characteristic is his slothful attitude towards life. While a common negative characteristic, Oblomov raises this trait to an art form, conducting his little daily business apathetically from his bed.  

 My thoughts:  
     Absolutely the best book I have read so far this year! The author style is so distinct and beautiful. By no means this was an easy read, the story dragged and it took around 200 pages for main character just to get out the bed. But the language is sooo good, it is like a warm cozy blanket that wraps you up and makes you calm and peaceful and sleepy. But be aware and do not miss in this sleepiness many philosophical ideas about life, destiny, friendship, love.
      This book has no sudden outbursts of emotion, no unbelievable plot twists, and that is why it is so brilliant. The reader can see the emotional and intellectual depth of this novel once he gets past the superficial stereotypes surrounding this novel. 
    The book is so reach on different characters, they are so well written that a reader can see a vivid picture of middle class gentry life in the mid of 19th century with all the troubles, concerns and issues.  The main theme of the book it is the clash of old and new lifestyle. The "new" style is all about striving to the better future, acting, resolving, moving, education yourself and never stop and waist time. "Old" style is all about enjoying yourself, laying, watching, talking, listening to good music, eating tasty food, dreaming and not straining yourself with worries and obligations. The first according to Goncharov leads to prosperity, spiritual stability and satisfaction, the later to decay and destruction of body and soul.
       This work captures every aspect of the Russian attitude, intellect, emotion, soul, and lifestyle from the most superficial level to the very deep. It can be recommended to anyone who enjoy character driven books, when not much happening in reality but a lot in heads and hearts of main characters.
Rating: 
     9/10    
 

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

April 2017 Wrap up

Read books:
read: 4/ listen: 0/ pages: 2375/ hours listened: 0
1. Police by Jo Nesbø p.636 - my review
2. The Chemist by Stephenie Meyer p.522 - my review
3. Blankets by Craig Thompson p.582
    Exquisitely drawn, but the story didn't do much for me. 
4. Oblomov by Ivan Goncharov p.635 - my review


Movie watched: 
1. Ghost in the Shell (2017) - my review
2. Assassin's Creed (2016) - my review
3. Girl on the Train (2016) - my review
4. The Bucket List (2007) - my review
5. Sherlock Holmes (2009) - re-watched
6. Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011) - re-watched
7. Lucky Number Slevin (2006)

Challenges overview:
Goodreads Reading Challenge: 25/50
Pages Read Challenge: 5812/12000
Audiobook Challenge: 6/15
Russian Literature: 2/30
World of Literature: 7/50
Booker Prize Project: 3
Classics Club: 1/50

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The Martian by Andy Weir

Author: Andy Weir  
Original title: The Martian 
Pages: 384 
Edition Language: Russian 
Series: no 
Genres: Science Fiction   
Goodreads 
Name: The Martian  
Year: 2015
Director: Ridley Scott
Cast: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig
Genres: Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi
Language: English/Mandarin
Country: UK/USA
Time: 144 m


 Blurb:       
      During a manned mission to Mars, Astronaut Mark Watney is presumed dead after a fierce storm and left behind by his crew. But Watney has survived and finds himself stranded and alone on the hostile planet. With only meager supplies, he must draw upon his ingenuity, wit and spirit to subsist and find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive. Millions of miles away, NASA and a team of international scientists work tirelessly to bring "the Martian" home, while his crewmates concurrently plot a daring, if not impossible, rescue mission.  
 
  My thoughts:     
  I like both book and the movie. This is the case when the book was not much better than the movie. It has slight differences and I found it much drier. The scientific stuff was explained in so many details that I believe I was a pleasure read for boys. My father and brother loved it. I however preferred the movie, since where were unbelievably beautiful martial scenery. The plot was really nicely developed, there were no obvious flops and the story kept the reader and viewer on the edge of their seat. great adventure with a lot of humor and self-reflection. I would recommend it to everyone as a good inspiring book/movie

Rating:
     8/10    

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Sunday Post #14, Busy, busy...

The Sunday Post is hosted by The Caffeinated Book Reviewer.  It’s a chance to share news, a post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books and things received, and share news about what is coming up on the blog for the week ahead. To get in on the Sunday fun, see the rules here: Sunday Post Meme. 

Outside the Blog
     The weather is so awesome now: it is not hot anymore, but windy, but unfortunately you can feel the light breath of the autumn approaching, especially in the morning. So feeling a little bit gloomy I ordered two parcels of books as a summer treat, which should be delivered at the end of the month...so exited.
      I am in the middle of Tome Topple Readathon and finished two books (The Son by Jo Nesbo and The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith). I have three more to read, but I guess if I read two of them it will be still a good result.

Last on the Blog
Next on the Blog
  • I will review movie/book About a Boy by Nick Hornby
  • I will review Oblomov by Ivan Goncharov 
  • I will review The Martian by Andy Weir
Newcomers on my Shelf
       Around Christmas I took part in Secret Santa and got a book A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Mass. Later on I could not find any reasonable explanation why I added this book to my wish list in the first place, but in the end here it is I have a book which I know nothing about. It turned out the it is the first book out of 3 and the final one is released in May. So, I decided since I have the first one I will complete the series and read all of them together and most probably get rid of them after that. My newcomers are: A Court of Mist and Fury and A Court of Wings and Ruin.
Now I have them all. Did I make a mistake?

Friday, August 11, 2017

Movie: The Girl on the Train| The Bucket List

Name: The Girl on the Train 
Year: 2016
Director: Tate Taylor
Cast:  Emily Blunt, Haley Bennett, Rebecca Ferguson
Genres: Crime, Drama, Mystery
Language: English
Country: USA
Time: 112 min


Outline of the movie:
     A divorcee becomes entangled in a missing persons investigation that promises to send shock waves throughout her life.

My thoughts: 
      I deliberately gave this movie some time before I watched it: not to mix my impressions from the book. I must confess that I quite enjoyed the book and was not hoping for any successful adaptation. I was right: the movie was much weaker than the book. This is I believe due to the incapability to show on the screen the inner confusion and disability to cope with the reality of the main character. Emily Blunt is a very talented actress and she gave this unreliable and confused heroin a very distinct voice, but I still think the book creates a better premises and atmosphere for those events.
      Altogether, I enjoyed the movie, even though I was aware of the ending. It is a nicely adapted story with a lot of suspense, hopelessness and desperation, but anyway, it lacked the creepy atmosphere I felt while reading a book.
Rating:
     6/10    


Name: The Bucket List
Year: 2007
Director: Rob Reiner
Cast: Jack Nicholson, Morgan Freeman, Sean Hayes
Genres: Comedy, Drama
Language: English
Country: USA
Time: 97 min


Outline of the movie:
      Corporate billionaire Edward Cole and working class mechanic Carter Chambers have nothing in common except for their terminal illnesses. While sharing a hospital room together, they decide to leave it and do all the things they have ever wanted to do before they die according to their bucket list. 

My thoughts:
     There was a time I truly enjoyed those motivating movies. I like how the energy they provide makes you believe in better times and does not allow to give up to circumstances. But at the same time, they make me think that yes, we are all equal in the face of death and there is no discrimination against race, gender and position in life, but still some people can make their ending more interesting if they have the means. Yes, this will not make them happy, but it might bring some sort of comfort, while less fortunate people will have less opportunists to make the rest of their life brighter.
      In this picture, the ideal balance was reached Morgan Freeman gave Nicholson the great feeling of belonging and friendship support, while Nicholson gave the opportunity for the crazy ideas from Freeman's Bucket list.
      It is a good, kind movie with a philosophical view on death and great and talented cast, but I cannot say I was taken away by it. For me the best movie with such topic remains Knocking on Heavens Door.

Rating:
     6/10