Adaptations: July 2015

Adaptations #3

Hello my fellow bookworms and adaptation lovers, here are the adapted films and TV series I watched during July:

Grimm (2015)          Read     TV Series     Television
The 4th series of the fantastical, crime drama inspired by the Brothers Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Nick Burkhart and the Portland police force not only need to tackle human criminals, but also fairy tale and mythological creatures. Likeable characters, and interesting creatures and crimes. On top of which this series had some real, shocking twists and turns. Good watch.

Jurassic World (2015)          Not Read     Film     Cinema
The 4th science fiction blockbuster in the Jurassic Park series, based on Michael Crichton’s novel. I have loved all of these films, and this new one was no exception. This time they’ve not just got a park but a whole resort-styled world of dinosaurs. However a new genetically modified creature is to cause mayhem. Great characters, action, and CGI; then you have that classic theme music. Don’t blink you might miss something! Great watch.

Dracula Untold (2014)          Read     Film     Television
Fantasy, horror prequel to Bram Stoker’s classic novel. Prince Vlad, wishing to protect his family and people from the Ottoman empire, seeks the help of an ancient and evil power. A lavish historical drama, with spectacular fight scenes, and great performances by Luke Evans, Dominic Cooper and Charles Dance. Great watch.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (2015)        Not Read     TV Series     Television
Fantasy BBC costume drama based on Susanna Clarke’s novel. During the Napoleonic wars, Strange and Norrell, two magicians work to bring magic back to England. A lavish and fascinating series with a surreal twist. There is also a great ensemble cast. Featuring Marc Warren, one of my favourites, as a scheming fairy. Great watch.

Wayward Pines (2015)          Not Read     TV Series     Television
Science-fiction drama based on the novels by Blake Crouch. Agent Ethan Burke awakes in a mysterious, small town after a car accident. To find he can neither leave nor contact the outside world. A gripping series, full of twists and turns, starring Matt Dillon, Toby Jones and Juliette Lewis.Warning: serious cliff hanger ending! Great watch.

I have had a great adaptation month, with great quality and quantity. As well as those featured above I also re-watched the final Harry Potter films; shown by ITV on Saturday evenings. Again no write-up because I re-watch them too often, and you’d be sick of the sight of them!  Then I still have the 2nd series of Penny Dreadful and the 3rd series of Hannibal to start. Plus brand new series Black Sails, a prequel to Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island. So hopefully plenty to share with you again in August.

Have you watched any of these? What have you been watching recently?

Meme: Tough Traveling – Climates

Tough Traveling

Nathan, over at the Fantasy Review Barn, runs the weekly meme Tough Travels, where readers are encouraged to tour the mystical countryside looking for adventure and fun (and tropes) from all over fantasy.

This week’s topic is EXTREME CLIMATES

“Perhaps the handsome prince lives in a castle surrounded by green countryside and sunny days.  The rest of the land is forced to deal with freezing cold, searing heat, and every other extreme climate mother nature can throw at you”

Well my fellow bookworms and tough travellers this really got me thinking! Here are my picks for this week’s topic:

A Song of Ice and Fire by George R R Martin – Up in the far north of Westeros there is a permanent winter. Where the Night’s Watch make their cold, lonely vigil on The Wall; a giant barrier of ice and stone.

The Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkien – Frodo and Sam make a perilous journey across Mordor, a hot, smoky, desolate expanse, to reach the fires of Mount Doom.

Closer by Roderick Gordon and Brian Williams – Book 4, in the subterranean Tunnels series, sees our protagonists discover a world with its own sun in the centre of the Earth. This has reminded me I need to get back to this series!

The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by C S Lewis – During the long, evil reign of the White Witch the land of Narnia is permanently covered in snow and ice. Always winter, but never Christmas!

Discworld by Terry Pratchett – Discworld by its very nature is extreme, due to the fact it is flat and round. The Hub at the centre of the world is made up of icebound mountains, being permanently furthest from the sun’s orbit. While the lands on The Rim, the edge of the world, are warm and tropical.

Can you think of some extreme weather and climates in books? Please let me know if you’re taking part in this week’s topic too.

New Books: July 2015

New Books - July

Hello my fellow bookworms, here’s what goodies I have managed to add to my bookshelf and Kindle recently:

The Professor by Charlotte Brontë

Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell

Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell

The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame

Master of Shadows by Neil Oliver

Added to my Kindle this month are 5 novels. The Professor, Cranford, Wives and Daughters and The Wind in the Willows are all on my Classics Club list. All of which I picked up for free from Amazon (UK). I am particularly excited to finally read something by Elizabeth Gaskell. Then I received a copy of Master of Shadows through Netgalley. I have enjoyed many of Neil Oliver’s history documentaries so I couldn’t resist finding out what his fiction might be like.

Innocence by Dean Koontz

Trouble at the Little Village School by Gervase Phinn

The School Inspector Calls! by Gervase Phinn

Added to my shelf this month are 3 books. In June I enjoyed The Little Village School by Gervase Phinn, the first Barton-in-the-Dale novel. These are the next two books in the series which I am pleased the same family friend has been able to lend me. Although not photographed above the last but not least addition to my shelf is Innocence. My father just finished reading it and passed it on to me; with high praise.

Have you read any of these? What new books are you excited about?

Meme: Six in Six 2015

Blog Post #4

The Six in Six meme is the brain child of Jo at The Book Jotter, and this is its 4th year! I am joining in again as I think it is a fun and easy way to reflect on my reading half way through the year. So here goes six authors/books in six different categories from the last six months:

Six new authors to me:

  1. Frances Hodgson Burnett
  2. Deborah Harkness
  3. Joanna Hickson
  4. Peter Ackroyd
  5. Cheryl Mahoney
  6. Veronica Roth

Six authors I have read before:

  1. Dan Brown
  2. Susanna Kearsley
  3. J R R Tolkien
  4. Arthur Conan Doyle
  5. Terry Pratchett
  6. Suzannah Dunn

Six authors I am looking forward to reading more of:

  1. Susanna Kearsley
  2. J R R Tolkien
  3. Terry Pratchett
  4. Deborah Harkness
  5. Veronica Roth
  6. Charlotte Bronte

Six historical books I have enjoyed the most:

  1. Mariana by Susanna Kearsley
  2. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
  3. Red Rose, White Rose by Joanna Hickson
  4. The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle
  5. Rebellion by Peter Ackroyd
  6. The Lady of Misrule by Suzannah Dunn

Six fantasy books I have enjoyed the most:

  1. The Fellowship of the Ring by J R R Tolkien (re-read)
  2. The Two Towers by J R R Tolkien (re-read)
  3. The Wanderers by Cheryl Mahoney
  4. A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
  5. Mort by Terry Pratchett
  6. The Storyteller and Her Sisters by Cheryl Mahoney

Six series of books read, continued or started:

  1. The Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkien (re-read)
  2. Chronicles of the Goblin King by Mike Phillips
  3. A Very Brief History by Mark Black
  4. All Souls by Deborah Harkness
  5. Discworld by Terry Pratchett
  6. Divergent by Veronica Roth

What new books and authors have you discovered? What have been your favourites so far this year? Please let me know if you have taken part in this meme too.

Meme: Tough Travels – Independence Battles

Tough Traveling

Nathan, over at the Fantasy Review Barn, runs the weekly meme Tough Travels, where readers are encouraged to tour the mystical countryside looking for adventure and fun (and tropes) from all over fantasy.

This week’s topic is INDEPENDENCE BATTLES

The good fight.  Casting off the chains of tyranny!  No one in fantasyland refuses the call of the good fight.  And what fight is more important in fantasyland than FREEDOM?

While last week’s topic of Fathers was quite tough, this week I had the opposite problem; too many examples! I had to reign myself in a little or we could have been here all day, because really who in fantasyland is not fighting for freedom? Here are my picks for this week’s topic:

The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by C S Lewis – Peter and Edmund Pevensie lead a large army of talking animals and magical creatures. Into an epic battle against the White Witch and her evil minions for the freedom of Narnia.

Prince Caspian by C S Lewis – 200 years later… the Pevensie children, with the help of Prince Caspian, unite all the talking animals and magical creatures. This time to fight King Miraz and the Telmarines.

Queen of Hearts: The Wonder by Colleen Oakes – In volume 2, of this Wonderland re-imagining, Dinah raises a large army of defected Cards and some unlikely allies to take on her tyrannical father, the King of Hearts. This reminds me; I really hope volume 3 comes out soon!

The Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkien – Elves, Men, Dwarves and Hobbits must fight together to stop Sauron and his dark army from taking over Middle-Earth.

A World Apart by David M Brown – Even though I might not of agreed with their methods. The infamous Black Iris pirate and their crew are, in their own way, fighting for freedom from the oppressive rule of the Order.

The Dark Tower by Stephen King – Roland, the last gunslinger, is on an epic quest. Along the way he stops to help many small communities fight against the tyranny and evil that is sprouting up; over many worlds.

The World Below by Mike Phillips – The magical inhabitants of a rubbish tip metropolis rise up against the nasty Baron Finkbeiner and his brutish minions.

Harry Potter by J K Rowling – At the very end Harry and his friends unite students and teachers to defend Hogwarts against Lord Voldermort and his Death Eaters.

Can you think of some fantasy, battles for independence? Please let me know if your taking part in Tough Travels this week too.

Goodbye June, Hello July 2015

June 2015

Hello my fellow bookworms, I hope you are all well? June is another month which has just flown by for me…no seriously it has flown by. There is now a mere two and half weeks till my school breaks up for the summer holiday.

During June I know I have done several puppet shows for various churches in the area. My own church had a wonderful Renewal Night and the local ladies choir came to do a performance; both of which I attended. I held a yummy barbecue to celebrate Father’s Day for my dad and granddad. Then near the end of the month I squeezed in a visit to Calke Abbey with a friend, on a glorious day (photo above and I hope to share more soon). When it comes to work and my general life though it has been a blur.

Both my reading and my adaptation watching have been slow. I spent most of June watching long TV series and the majority of my reading didn’t happen till the end of the month (I have a lot of reviews to catch up on). Here is what I managed to read:

Fiction: 3     Non-Fiction: 2     Poetry: 0

I spent a good chunk of the month completing the long, slow, and rather epic classic The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens; 31st read off my Classics Club list. A frivolous and lighter tale but it just didn’t grip me or have the drama of previous Dickens’ novels. Looking for a lighter and quicker read I picked up The Little Village School by Gervase Phinn, and it delivered everything I hoped for. Plus it my 1st read towards the 10 Books of Summer challenge. Then at the end of the month I finished children’s classic The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling; 32nd off my Classics Club list. My full thoughts still to be posted.

Alongside these fictions I also read 2 non-fictions. First I read My Autobiography by Guy Martin. A fascinating, funny and very candid account of the famous road racer, truck fitter and TV presenter. Then at the end of June I flew through Titanic another instalment from Mark Black’s A Very Brief History series. My full thoughts still to be posted for these.

Pick of the Month: My Autobiography by Guy Martin

That’s my consistent 5 books finished again; although 3 of them I finished right at the end of the month. Through out June I have continued to dip in and out of inspirational, Christian non-fiction The Praying Woman’s Devotional by Stormie Omartian. I have also made a good start to Victorian Fairy Tales edited by Michael Newton.

In July I am looking forward to more good reading, my friend’s hen do, and of course the start of the school summer holidays.

What did you do and read in June? Any plans for July?

Adaptations: June 2015

Adaptations

I absolutely love adaptations. I know this can sometimes be a controversial subject with book lovers but not for me. I think my real love of them came from my time studying performance at university. There I became fascinated with taking a story and telling it through a different medium; whether that be book, film, TV, or on the stage.

Here are the adaptations I watched during June:

Sleepy Hollow (2015)          Not Read     TV Series     Television
The concluding half of series 2 of supernatural drama, based on Washington Irving’s short story The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. An up-to-date retelling where the headless huntsman, demons, witches and ghosts meet the modern world. I still loved the camaraderie between Ichabod Crane and Lieutenant Abigail Mills, but there were some weak episodes. Okay watch.

Game of Thrones (2015)          Not Read      TV Series      Television
Lavish fifth series of this epic fantasy drama, based on George R R Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series. Another gripping series of war, intrigue, family, politics, love, lust, lies and dragons! This would usually be a great watch for me but by the end of this series I was left with an overwhelming sense of sadness, and for that reason this time it is a … Good watch.

Looking at this it doesn’t look like I had a very good month of adaptations in June. At the time though it didn’t feel like that though. I’ve just been watching several long TV series. I also re-watched a couple of Harry Potter films, which ITV has been showing on Saturday afternoons/evenings. I didn’t do a write-up though because I re-watch them too often, and you’d be sick of the sight of them! I am still watching the epic, 4th series of Grimm and the BBC’s new drama Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell. Then I have the 2nd series of Penny Dreadful and the 3rd series of Hannibal to start. So hopefully plenty to share with you in July.

Have you watched any of these? What have you been watching recently?