Saturday, May 30, 2015

Another quotes game!



    Hello, friends! I have made the executive decision that it is HIGH time we have another game. So! Quotes this time, people. Below are 14 quotes, and your job is to guess which movie each comes from! One point for naming the movie, and another for naming the character who said it. Sound good? Good.


#1

Character 1: "Say it again."
Character 2: "I'm sorry."
Character 1: "No, the part where you said my name."


#2

Character 1: "I disapprove of his very existence. I even considered ending it myself on more than one occasion, but self control got the better of me."


#3

Character 1: "Am I the only one who's embarrassed?"


#4

Character 1: "At present, I am eating muffins because I am unhappy. Besides, I'm particularly fond of muffins."


#5

Character !: "Yes, I love her! I love her with every breath I breathe!"


#6

Character 1: "Beef, yes. Roast beef. It's the Swedish term for beef that is roasted."


#7

Character 1: "What is that, sir?"
Character 2: "I very much fear it is a radish, carved by my spouse into an ornamental form."


#8

Character 1: "I wouldn't want you to examine me."
Character 2: "Why not?"
Character 1: "Because I like you so much."
Character 2: "I wouldn't want to examine you either."
Character 1: "Why not?"
Character 2: "Because I like you so much."


#9

Character 1: "You're the reason why I get up in the morning! You're the reason why Mary Kay is having such a good year! You're the reason why I don't look like some blob from a horror movie!"


#10

Character 1:"That was some mighty fine a-pickin' and a-singing', boys! I tell you what, you all come in here, you sign these here papers, and I'm gonna give you-- ten dollars apiece!"


#11

Character 1: "Do I know you?"
Character 2: "No, but I'm gonna know you!"


#12

Character 1: "The chauffeur's gone, I could always drive the car."
Character 2: "Preferably over the chauffeur."


#13

Character 1: "Only chance at an education that boy's got is listenin' to me talk."
Character 2: "What kind of education is that?"


#14

Character 1: "I think that if you have a bad taste in your mouth, you spit it out-- don't keep constantly swallowing it back."


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Answers next Saturday! 





Wednesday, May 20, 2015

A Love Like Ours // Review

23411527

by
Becky Wade

Former Marine Jake Porter has far deeper scars than the one that marks his face. He struggles with symptoms of PTSD, lives a solitary life, and avoids relationships.

When Lyndie James, Jake’s childhood best friend, lands back in Holley, Texas, Jake cautiously hires her to exercise his Thoroughbreds. Lyndie is tender-hearted, fiercely determined, and afraid of nothing, just like she was as a child. Jake pairs her with Silver Leaf, a horse full of promise but lacking in results, hoping she can solve the mystery of the stallion’s reluctance to run.

Though Jake and Lyndie have grown into very different adults, the bond that existed during their childhood still ties them together. Against Jake’s will, Lyndie’s sparkling, optimistic personality begins to tear down the walls he’s built around his heart. A glimmer of the hope he’d thought he’d lost returns, but fears and regrets still plague him. Will Jake ever be able to love Lyndie like she deserves, or is his heart too shattered to mend?


    I hardly ever, EVER read contemporary romance, so it was in a fit of unusual fancy that I requested this book for review. Truth was, I expected it to be very silly, and at the most something I'd have a reasonably fun time laughing over.

   It was silly, I've got to say. But that isn't to say I didn't like the book. I may have enjoyed it more than I'd bargained for, actually. It took my a long time to get through it simply because I wasn't very immersed in the story (at first, that is), but I did end up liking it. Some parts, I even liked it a lot. It was cheesy, some things made me roll my eyes (okay, maybe a lot of things), but it was cute and fun and sweet. 

   One thing that kind of bothered me was that the whole story was pretty much entirely about romance. It wasn't a bad thing, but I tend to not care for books solely centered on the subject. The whole dating thing got annoying. Some of it was very well-handled; in fact, most of it was, but there was just so MUCH of it. I was reminded again why I don't read these types of books all the time. It's the kind of thing that's fun every once in a while, but if I read books like this all the time I think my brain might turn to mush.

   I loved the Texas setting, the horse theme, and most of the characters were quite charming. It was a sweet story, and I admit I did swoon a couple of times. ;-) Not something I'll read again, but A Love Like Ours ended up being just what I needed, when I needed it.

My rating: 7/ 10

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

The Journey of August King (1995)


    (Otherwise known as, my new favorite movie ever. Or one of them.)

    Oh, goodness. How do I find the words? My first reaction to this movie was WOW. My second reaction was WOW WOW WOW. I just.....I don't trust my own words to do it justice. *Emma weeps on sister's shoulder* Even so, I'm going to try to pull myself together and compose a coherent review for y'all, because I just HAVE to share my delight over this story, even if my own little exclamations come up short. I've got to. I'm 'bout to burst. ;-)

    Basically, The Journey of August King is the story of a man who, on his way home from a long trip to a stock market in 1815, happens upon a young slave girl who is running away from her master and decides to help her on her journey to freedom. August King  (Jason Patric) is a widower, a farmer, a quiet man who keeps mostly to himself living in the rural Appalachians. When he meets Annalees (Thandie Newton), he feels compassion for her, but is reluctant to take the risk of helping her. In a turn of events, though, he's stuck with this girl in the back of his cart, and ends up sacrificing pretty much everything to keep her safe.


    I can't get over Jason Patric. ;-) I probably don't need to mention that he was the initial reason for my interest in this movie....but yes, if we're going to be truthful, that's how it happened. As August King, he has a quiet, backwoods, unpretentious, gentle manliness about him that is just the most beautiful thing ever. August King is a widower, a pretty lonely guy, but mostly content with his humble life. What I love most about him is how he's ultimately willing to give up anything he has to for something bigger than himself that he knows is right.


    Like I said, he's quiet. August doesn't say much, really, but not in an uncomfortable way. And what he does say is absolutely gorgeous. I wish I could remember everything August says so that I can use it when the right situation arises. ;-) He's modest, honest, unusual. Not to mention apparently totally oblivious to how achingly handsome he is. He may very well be my favorite fictional hero.

I love his hat-- this hat is in a class with Woodrow's and Gus's as far as great movie hats ;-)

 

   Annalees is a totally unique character, unlike anyone I've encountered before. She's adorable, saucy, and incredibly brave. The way she comes out of her scared little shell and makes friends with
August (sometimes asking impertinent questions, *cough*...) just melts your heart.



   Watching this, I just sat there going "Oh! Oh! OH!" (Inwardly, of course-- to do so aloud would have been annoying. Not that it wouldn't have been true to character...ahem.) Because everything August does just makes my heart tingle and flutter around like a hummingbird, and every look Annalees gives is just so full of EMOTION and everything's just so stinkin' REAL and BEAUTIFUL. (And sometimes ugly, too. You'll get that.) You know when you watch a movie for the first time, and almost immediately you get that feeling: this is mine. That was The Journey of August King. From the beginning, I fell in love. I was transfixed. I still am.


   It has a bittersweet ending. You could have guessed that. ;-) I love those kinds of endings best. Happily-ever-after, everything's-perfect, Jane-Austen-type endings just don't do it for me. Now, I'm not saying I prefer Thomas Hardy endings-- but when a story leaves you in a less than ideal place, with a note of promise, it's much more satisfying, to me at least, than if everything ends up hunky-dory. 

   (And let's get one thing clear right away-- this is not AT ALL a romance. There's no August-Annalees thing. Not like that. Good, I just wanted you all to know.) ;-P


    August and Annalees's journey takes place through the Appalachian mountains, and the entire scenery is absolutely gorgeous. Forests, rivers, mountains. One thing we found unusual was the ridiculous number of people they run into along the way! I mean, it's supposedly rural country, yet there seems to be a festival going on practically every stretch of the trail. It's kind of funny (but inconvenient for August, hiding a fugitive slave!) Another thing that amused us was how characters from Christy kept popping up every five minutes; first there was Tom McHone, then Opal, then Little Burl, then Swannie O'Teal. It was like, hey, the whole family's here! We figured those people probably just live up in those mountains, and they get recruited to be in movies whenever a filming crew comes along. ;-)


   
     It's a simple movie, with not many characters and not a whole lot of intricate plot-- and yet it's really super profound. That's what I like most; the simple goodness. It's nothing flashy or big. There's no star-studded cast, just good ol' Jason Patric and an amazing actress named Thandie Newton who no one's ever heard of. Not a false note in the whole thing. The story rings with old-fashioned charm, historical realism. Watching it is like you're there-- and seriously, what better thing can you say about a movie?! The Journey of August King is a movie I will be singing the praises of for a long time. Not many movies get me like this one did. 

 Short version is: Absolutely loved it.

"I won't deny what I did. I don't want to be only what I was."
~ August King
    

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Society of Literary Ladies // Natalie



     Hello friends! For this month's installation of the Literary Ladies interviews, I'm tickled to present to you all a dear friend, Miss Natalie. I've been reading Natalie's blog, Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens for a while now, and have been so blessed to get to know this sweet girl! She's like the Anne Shirley of my circle of blogging friends. :-) Her blog is a haven of literary characters, photography, vintage-everything, and all sorts of delightful things. Do have a look!

   And now, here's Natalie:

Introduce yourself! Tell us your name, your age (if you don’t mind sharing), three of you biggest passion and one thing you love about May.

  Hello! My name is Natalie, I am 16 going on 17 (no, of course I didn't sing that aloud, who do you think I am?) and love reading, writing, and photography.
Hmmm...May...I love that spring is finally here and it's becoming warm and flowery and fresh outside.  :)



 Where is home for you? (Be as vague or specific as you like.)

  I live outside of a lovely small town in Michigan, but home is where my family and familiar objects are. I recently moved, so it was a little hard adjusting to a new house and place, but it has finally felt like home for awhile now, and I'm so happy here. :)

 What is your current situation academically? (For example, what grade are you in, are you homeschooled, our of school, go to public school, or take lessons from an elderly spinster aunt.)

  Haha, the last option. ;) Just kidding, I am a  homeschooled high school junior (11th grade).


 What would you describe your writing style as?

Hmm.....I'm not sure. Quiet, simple, and emotion-driven, I think. (I'm still trying to "find" my writing style, so forgive my weak answer! :))

 Is there one author who has particularly influenced you in your writing?

  Not really, although I have many favorites. L. M. Montgomery, Jane Austen, Maud Hart Lovelace, Jennifer Erin Valent....shall I continue?

 Favorite book series?

  Oh, goodness. What a hard question. I will list three of my favorites:  The Anne of Green Gables books, The Betsy-Tacy series, and the A Life of Faith: Millie Keith books.


 Favorite childhood book?

Any of the American Girl books, namely Felicity and Samantha.

  I know it can be hard sometimes for us bookish personalities to pick a favorite author, but if you had to choose just one, who would you pick?

Uuugghh....all these questions are so hard! Emma, how can you ask these things??
I'm going to say L. M. Montgomery. Although I have many favorites.


 What’s your favorite book that’s been made into a movie? How do you feel about the film adaptation as compared with the book?

Probably Anne of Green Gables. The book is so wonderful, and the movie version is perfect. I know I don't even have to say which  movie version, because there's only one perfect one. :) Anyone who says otherwise….well, let’s just say I will try to be civil.

 Who is one literary character you feel you are most like?

I really related to Emily Webster in Emily of Deep Valley, by Maud Hart Lovelace. She is quiet, reflective, kind, and caring of others. She felt different from all the other girls her age, which I have myself felt many times at different churches my family has attended and such. I have a close group of friends now that I didn’t have quite as much when I first read the book, but I still feel for her. I just think she and I would get along quite well in real life. :)

 Where is your favorite place to read? What about writing?

I read just about anywhere, but my favorites places would be in bed or outside in the sun-or shade depending on the weather! To write, I prefer sitting in my bed (sometimes even at night with a flashlight because I can concentrate best when there is absolutely NO noise or family members moving about, haha).

  Do you normally write first drafts on a computer, or do you prefer old-fashioned pen and paper?

So far in my illustrious writing career (ahem) I write my first draft on pen and paper. If I can ever finish a whole story, then my second draft will obviously be on the computer. :)


  Be honest: what is your handwriting like?

Ehhh....it's better than it used to be but I can still see room for (a lot of) improvement. Especially in my cursive. I tend to write fast (too fast) and my letters end up scrunched and slanted and pretty illegible. If I take my time, however, it can look pretty decent. :)

  How long does it generally take you to read a good book? (Of course I know it depends on just HOW good it is, but in general.)

A week, perhaps? Of course less if I have time and it's a REALLY good book.

  What’s your record time for finishing a book?

Oh goodness. I really don't know! I could tell you my record time for taking the LONGEST to read a book (Les Miserables, about 6 months). But as for the quickest time....well, I've  read an American Girl 6-book series in one day when I was about 10...but that doesn't really count since the books are so small. Does it?


  Name five of the best books you’ve ever read that you recommend to other fellow bluestockings.

-Rubs hand with glee-
If you like World War 2 and nurses, I'd recommend With Every Letter by Sarah Sundin.
If you like the South, tense drama, sisters, and a sarcastic, funny heroine who gets herself into trouble  nearly every day, I'd recommend Fireflies in December by Jennifer Erin Valent
If you like the early 1900’s, sweet "growing up" stories, and funny, girlish escapades, then you must read the Betsy-Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace.
If you like a dramatic, sweeping tale from the first person perspective of a quiet governess, you have to read Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. (trust me, the book is better than ANY of the movies!)

Okay...I've been staring at my bookshelf trying to pick only one more book to recommend, when I could easily recommend a thousand more........

If you’ve never read the Little House on the Prairie books then you should do so as soon as possible. Childhood is not the same without them, and if you still haven’t read them, then you are missing out on one of the best things ever,

 Tell about the things you think are most important in a good novel.

I love a story that has a relatable hero/heroine with great character development. I think the characters are usually the first thing I notice in a book I'm reading for the first time-if I don't connect with the characters, I probably won't connect with the book. I also think writing style can be important, especially in the first few pages. If the first chapter is draggy and boring, it'll take me longer to get into the story. And, of course, the plot should be exciting (or at least interesting) and not have any disappointing anticlimaxes or anything!


  About what age did you start writing stories? Do you still have your early works?

I started writing stories pretty much as soon as I could write! I still have many early "books" I wrote (complete with an illustration on every page, of course, haha) and love to look through them and read them. It's encouraging to see how far I've come in my writing since I was about 7 years old. ;) hahaha

 Are you currently working on a novel/story/project?
Yes, I am! I know I've talked too much about this story in all my recent writing interviews, but I'm currently writing a loose retelling of The Princess and the Pea. I'm about halfway through, yay! :)

Thank you SO much for interviewing me, Emma! I enjoyed all your questions and am honored to be featured on your blog!

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Thank you, Natalie!

Monday, May 11, 2015

I'm expected to pick ten favorite screen characters?!


   I've been tagged by Hamlette with the Ten Favorite Screen Characters tag! The only thing is, the idea of picking only TEN screen characters to represent my absolute favorites makes me stagger. I puzzled over it for a while, and finally decided: I can't do it, people. Sorry. That being said, I've decided to generalize it so that these are only ten OF my favorites, to save me the trouble of laboring over it. ;-P In other words, I'm taking unauthorized liberties.

  So here's my list! (Oh yeah, and this is excluding all Hornblower characters. I started out listing them, but I'd filled all ten and was still going, so I figured I ought to give the other characters a chance.)



 1. Mattie Ross (Hailee Steinfeld) in True Grit -- Ah, Mattie. I love her. I want to be like her. She's a girl that gets things done. She's got grit and gumption, but in some ways she's still very much a little girl. I admire her courageous determination, her firm stance to do things right. She doesn't let things scare her, either; she knows what she has to do and does it.



2. Daniel Simon (John Schneider) in Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman -- Daniel's just a great guy. But then, John Schneider can't seem to manage not being awesome. Daniel's a true friend, a gentleman, and a very hunky sheriff. ;-)



3. Tom Branson (Allen Leech) in Downton Abbey -- Something about Branson always has and continues to tear my heart to shreds. I admire him, I feel sorry for him, I cheer for him, I scold him, I just....love him. He's changed so much since he first arrived on the show, it's almost unbelievable! I loved him then, and I love him now, though I miss the old fiery, broody Branson. ;-P He'll always be one of my favorites.


4. Ruth Jamison (Mary-Louise Parker) in Fried Green Tomatoes-- Ruth is the kind of girl you want for a best friend. She's sweet and almost fragile on the surface, but underneath she's tough, and she'll do what she has to for people she loves. She loves long and steadfastly. I also think she'd be a lot of fun. :-)


5. Mr. Cox (Robert Duvall) in The Stars Fell on Henrietta -- Why do I love this guy? Because he's crazier than a bedbug. Because he's a dreamer, with loony ideas and hilarious adventures. Because he goes around with a cat slung over his shoulder. I don't know-- because he's Robert Duvall, I guess. ;-)


6. Marilla Cuthbert (Colleen Dewhurst) in Anne of Green Gables-- Marilla's such a solid character full of old-fashioned goodness. She's tough and tender, scolding and loving when necessary.


7. Brett Main Hazard (Genie Francis) in North and South -- Brett is such a sweetheart. I love how she grows to adjust to her circumstances, however difficult they might be, but without bending to it. She goes from being a naive little southern belle to a hardworking, invincible woman whose husband is fighting for the North while her entire family fights for the South. She's one of those characters it takes a while to get attached to, but once you do, man, is she awesome.


8. John-Boy Walton (Richard Thomas) in The Waltons -- I feel like I grew up with John-Boy as my older brother. :-) He's like a dear old friend. I also feel like I've watched him grown up, haha. There are many things I admire about John-Boy, but I won't bother you all with them now because I'll just start rambling, and no one needs that. Suffice to say, John-Boy is my darling.


9. William Wilberforce (Ioan Gruffudd) in Amazing Grace -- Ahhhh! This man is....I don't have words. Ioan Gruffudd's portrayal in this movie is one of the best in history, in my opinion. It's not every day you feel a character so deeply. William Wilberforce is a unique and complex character, with strong morals and a passion to change things, and you can see and feel that in every move he makes in this movie. Reason number five hundred why Ioan Gruffudd is my favorite actor ever.


10. Beatrix Potter (Renee Zellweger) in Miss Potter -- Miss Beatrix! She's adorable. :-) Whimsical, imaginative, cheerful, kind. I would have loved to play with Beatrix and her little brother on their country estate in the Lake District, chasing rabbits and climbing trees, or take a walk with older Beatrix and just talk about anything and everything from 'bunny books' to romance. I think we would understand each other very well.


  Well, there you have it! Those are some of my dearest friends from movies and tv shows. I really could go on and on, but, y'know, that wasn't the point of this. ;-P Who are some of your favorite screen characters?

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Period Drama Gentlemen's Apparel Game {2} // Answers!


Thanks for playing, girls! And now for the answers:


#1



Matthew Goode as Captain John Lindsay in Belle (2014)


#2


Viggo Mortensen as Frank T. Hopkins in Hidalgo (2004)


#3



Mel Gibson as Benjamin Martin in The Patriot (2000)


#4



Robert Duvall as Augustus McCrae in Lonesome Dove (1989)


#5



Jeff Daniels as Joshua Chamberlain in Gettysburg (1993)
(I realize this one was really hard, what with all the Civil War dramas out there-- sorry!)


#6



Ioan Gruffudd as William Wilberforce in Amazing Grace (2006)



#7



Robert Lindsay as Captain Sir Edward Pellew in Horatio Hornblower (1998-2002)


#8



James McAvoy as Tom LeFroy in Becoming Jane (2007)


#9



Paul McGann as Eugene Wrayburn in Our Mutual Friend (1998)


#10



David Suchet as Hercule Poirot in Poirot (1989- 2010?)


#11



Jim Carter as Charles Carson in Downton Abbey (2010- )


#12



Kevin Costner as Jake in Silverado (1985)


And the bonus question....



Craig Schaffer as Norman McLean & Brad Pitt as Paul McLean in A River Runs Through It

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Players' Scores

Sadie-- 35 points
Olivia-- 22 points
Naomi Bennet -- 15 points
Hamlette-- 7 points
Meghan Gorecki-- 3 points
Morg-- 2 points

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