This article at Slate.com made me laugh. Several of the books listed in it are on my short list for truly awful and inexplicably loved children’s books.
If I had to pick the worst children’s book of all time, I’d probably pick an animated film adaptation. (Cars 2: The book comes to mind.) But that’s such a forgettable tome, it’s not worth hating. So, were I to pick a beloved book I loathe, I’d pick the creepy and saccharine Love You Forever. Even after learning the heart-breaking story behind the book, I still find it icky and an example of terrifying parenting.
Do you have a book every one else loves that you dislike?
I don’t usually rush out and see films the day they are released. In fact, the last time I did that, I think it was for the IMAX version of the last Harry Potter film. So, yes, it’s been a while.
That said, yesterday, right after lunch, my husband and I went to see Gone Girl, the film adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s best-selling novel. The book is, for me, a tour-de-force of writing. Ms. Flynn’s vision of intimacy between two brilliant and deeply messed-up partners fascinates me.
The book has several jaw-dropping plot twists, as does the film, and, as I watched, I thought about what an utterly different experience seeing the film would be had I not read the book. (I was reminded of a similar experience with Scott Turow’s Presumed Innocent.) I enjoyed the film which is faithful to the plot of the book but not completely true to the novel’s vision of its protagonists, Amy and Nick.
Have you read Gone Girl? Do you plan to see the movie? (In the interest of suspense, please do not post spoilers in the comments.)
The song is so beloved that there are literally hundreds of versions of it on YouTube. Of them all, this one is my favorite. Not only does Alex Boyé get props for his ingenius Lion King-like vocal arrangement but the young girl who sings, Lexie Walker–she’s eleven–is a true songstress. (Check out her singing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” It made my husband cry.
I’ve watched this video about twenty times now and every time it makes me smile.
If you’ve turned on your radio anytime in the last year, you’re likely to have heard the song “Royals,” by the song recorded by a powerhouse teenager from New Zealand. The song won Song of the Year at this year’s Grammys and has spawned countless copies and parodies. This one, written, directed, and filmed by Tess Paras is funny and spot on.
With season four of Game of Thrones right around the corner, I began thinking about how much my television viewing habits have changed over the last few years. I used to be a news junkie and would glom the cable news channels throughout the day to see what was going on in the world. I am still a news junkie, but I get most of my news fix from the internet these days. The television has been relegated to movie binges and series television show marathons.
I blame that on getting my Roku. Several years ago, my husband and I were trying to figure out how to play YouTube and Amazon Prime videos on our OLD television set. The newer televisions had built-in HDMI hookups. Sadly, ours did not and I looked everywhere for a connector that would hook up my laptop to the television AND produce sound.
During my internet search, I ran across the Roku and decided this would make a great Christmas present for my husband. For those not familiar with the Roku, it is a streaming player that runs off WiFi and allows you to access Netflix, Hulu, Crackle, Amazon Prime, HBO Go and hundreds of other channels, many of which are free to use.
Sometimes I wonder about the originality of music – there’s a ton of great musical artists, but so many of them sound so incredibly similar (you can look at the confusion between Katy Perry’s “Roar” and Sara Bareilles’ “Brave” if you don’t believe me). Japan, however, has a different plan. When Suzuku Nakamoto got too old for the group she was in (too old = 16 apparently), her entertainment company decided to try something new – Jpop (Japanese Pop music) needed something a bit more intense, so why not add some heavy metal? (Sorry, can’t embed the video for some reason.
Someone wrote an article about it on The Daily Dot but this is the line that sticks out the most for me – “Babymetal is kind of like a magical, leather-clad, fire-breathing, sonic unicorn.” And it really is. I’m not sure if it’s the oddness of it, or the catchyness of the lyrics (my Japanese is a bit rusty, but it’s all about the tune anyways).
And what are those lyrics? Well, I found a translation for you!
“Check-it-out chocolate. Can I have a bit of chocolate? But my weight worries me a bit these days. However, chocolate. Can I have a bit of chocolate? But wait a while! Wait a while! Wait! Wait! Wait!”
Apparently I’m not the only one to think we need more songs in the world about chocolate.
What do you think? Ear-worm from hell, or the most ridiculous, catchy thing ever?
– Melanie AAR
PS – If you want to hear more, this is actually a better song. I just am highly amused by chocolate heavy metal…
I’m a sucker for a good teen TV drama. Well, that is, a teen drama that doesn’t involve obscenely rich Manhattanite royalty-wannabes or were-vamp-warlock love triangles. So when I saw previews for the CW’s newest soapy offering for the under 18 set, I figured I’d check it out. I’m kind of glad I did because Star-Crossed, the love child of Roswelland Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet (with a good hunk of District 9 thrown into the mix) looks to have all of the tropes I love most in a TV program.
September, 2014, brings about the day that an alien ship crashes to Earth, filled with Atrians looking for refuge after their home planet becomes uninhabitable. They had hoped to find at least a lukewarm welcome from us humans rather than the open hostility shown them in the form of armed soldiers and violent shoot-outs. Six-year-old Emery finds a terrified Atrian boy hiding in her family’s backyard shed and offers him kindness in the form of a blanket and a bowl of cold spaghetti. But alien-sniffing dogs suss out the poor lad who suffers a blaster shot when he throws his tiny body in front of Emery in a heroic attempt to save her.
Cut forward ten years and Emery has grown into the beautiful Aimee Teegarden (hello, Julie Taylor!). Continue reading →