Sunday, June 29, 2014

Book to Movie Review: THE FAULT IN OUR STARS

The Fault in Our Stars (2014) PosterThe Fault in Our Stars
book by John Green 
directed by Josh Boone

Hazel and Gus are two teenagers who share an acerbic wit, a disdain for the conventional, and a love that sweeps them on a journey. Their relationship is all the more miraculous given that Hazel's other constant companion is an oxygen tank, Gus jokes about his prosthetic leg, and they met and fell in love at a cancer support group.

You can read my review of the book here.

I doubt I could have come to this movie without expectations even if I tried. As you all know, the hype was INSANE. And even if there had been less hype, after that book who wouldn't hope for the movie to live up to it? So yes, I had expectations. And for the first time since Catching Fire, they were met!!

The screen writing: This, I think, is what makes or breaks an adaptation. THANK GOD ALMIGHTY, the screenwriters stuck to the book, and used direct quotes everywhere, catching all the best ones. There were a few more that didn't make it, like 'My thoughts are stars I can't fathom into constellations' and one that I think wasn't done justice - 'I don't mind Hazel Grace. It would be a privilege to have my heart broken by you' was put in in the middle of a heated conversation so It didn't have the poignant moment like at the end of a chapter in the book.  (Just FYI, the above quotes were done by memory. They're everywhere!)

The Casting and Acting: B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L. No complaints there. They had Hazel and Gus. In everything they did. I even liked Hazel more in the movie. And Ansel- needless to say, my friends and I have found our new celebrity husband. AND HE TAP DANCES. As if he didn't have enough going for him.

Music and Effects: Wonderful. Great choices, cinametography was perfect. I loved how they actually filmed in Amsterdam and the Anne Frank house. Though I wasn't sure how I felt about the Anne Frank quotes being used during the kissing scene. I could see how they were relevant but... I dunno. Holocuast and cancer aren't the same thing. Other than that, the rest of the voiceovers were well done. I especially liked how they did the texting! 

What's that you asked? OF COURSE I CRIED. In fact, I was the one who had the forsight to bring tissues and was passing them to the row behind. The sobbing in the theater was deafening. I couldn't tell what was Shailene and what was the teenage girls until Shailene stopped but the crying continued. 
Well done, Hollywood!! Rating:

In other news, I've started watching the vlogbrothers. Oh.My.God. They are brilliant. Recommended. I learned more in 3 minutes than I do in a year at school. #Nerdfighter.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014


City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6)City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments #6)
Cassandra Clare
Fantasy, Romance



Why has it taken me forever to post this review? For starters, it took my copy FOREVER to get here. TEN DAYS AFTER THE RELEASE DATE IS TEN TOO MANY, BOOK DEPOSITORY. YOU COMPLETELY MISUNDERSTOOD THE IDEA OF PREORDERING.

Second, by the time I HAD gotten it I was back at the dorms and suffered from a lack of computers. AND BY THE TIME I DID HAVE ACCESS TO A COMPUTER, dance and exams set in and there was no time to write it. The last two reasons also (poorly) excuse why I haven't been blogging much. HOWEVER, last final is next thursday and then I'll be free as a bird (jk, still have dance and work) to read and blog.

As you can already see, anything written by Cassie Clare will have a whole long review in which I'll talk about only HALF the things I could go on and on about  and will be FILLED with capitals. Anyhoo, let's get to it. 

I'll start and say that unfortunately my expectations far exceeded the reality. I came at it expecting a Clockwork Princess level tear-jerker and staring-into-space-causer but it really wasn't like that. I did cry in the end when Simon had to give up his memories and I genuinely was sad, but it was a little forced. Did anyone else feel this way? In CP2, halfway through I was suffering from book PTSD.

Unrelated to the tear- factor, predictability for this novel was high. On that front, I didn't expect it to be anything like CP2 because we know already that Tessa's not involved, Jem is, two weddings, a boyfriend dies, and everyone's identities. Also, for me Jordan was the top of my likely-to-be-killed list. The only bf who could die without ruining the story and shattering TOO many people's hearts. As for the Heavenly Fire being used to cure Jem, that much Christine from PolandBananasBooks had guessed and I agreed. (I recommend this girl's videos ridiculously. She's always spot on and hilarious). So basically, the two major OMG moments I knew in advance.  However, I didn't think EVERYTHING would be that obvious- even the smaller OMGs were easy to forsee 100 pages before they happened. (Jessamine saving the London Institute, Magnus's father being the Prince of Hell everyone kept mentioning, etc) 

MY MAIN DISAPPOINTMENT was Jordan basically being wiped off the map after he died. Maya didn't even CRY, and was all like, WELL I WAS GOING TO BREAK UP WITH HIM ANYWAY. (GO FREAKING FIGURE OUT WHY) Cassandra Clare wrote about it on her Tumblr, but I was still not satisfied - I mean, he was stabbed right in front of you and died in your lap. THE TRAUMA ALONE SHOULD HAVE HER BAWLING. Let alone loving him. Even after that, his death was mentioned only when the other characters were told. No mourning or wishing he was there or doing something for him or anything. As a big fan of his, I wanted to see more reaction to him. REST IN PEACE JORDAN KYLE.

My secondary disappointment was the underlying theme of Some Things Can't Be Forgiven. That may be true, but when a person completely changes I believe they delete the person they were before and should be given a second chance. Jordan deserves COMPLETE AND TOTAL forgiveness, and Jonathan was who he was because of things that were physically and emotionally done to him before and after his birth, and therefore the untainted boy we got to see for a few seconds before his death deserved burial according to traditional Shadowhunter customs. The things he did weren't HIM, just as Jace is not held responsible for the things he did while possesed, nor Jordan should have been for hurting Maya on his first Change. IT'S NOT THE SAME AS SOMEONE SANE AND AWARE DOING SOMETHING UNFORGIVEABLE AND SHOULDN'T HAVE BEEN TREATED LIKE IT WAS. In both cases.


-Jem kidnapping Church. Now THAT made me happy cry. Their reunion was beautiful.
-Jace bringing a condom to Hell. You know, just in case.
-That interesting snippet of OMG information that was sooooo underrated about Luke's and Amatis's  mom being an Iron Sister. Ten bucks that comes to play in TDA.
-THE WEDDING COMIC (I know that there were two different comics for two different editions. Mine was the British one- the tear jerker for all TID fans. CASSIE CLARE, THAT WAS CRUEL. BUT GOOD. I DON'T KNOW ANYMORE
-Jessie saving the London Institute. I loved her a lot in TID and wished we could have explored her character more, so it was so nice to hear of her, even in passing.
-Izzy and Simon. Nuff said.
-Malec. Are. Back. 
-EVERYTHING AND ANYTHING SIMON SAID OR DID. I used to think he was annoying, and now I find him heroic. 
-Really hilarious scenes (the usual) e.g. the sarcastic clapping at Clace in the beginning, MY EYES MY EYES, You-straight-people, Simon feeding on Alec (It was not sexy. I had some feelings.) Jace visiting Magnus in the beginning, Jace and Jordan meditating, BROTHER ZACHARIAH STOLE OUR CAT.
-Magnus's speeches- especially in the end, about how if you show your enemies something other than harshness, you might get something other than hostility. 
-Tessa in the Spiral Labyrinth. I DEMAND MORE INFORMATION
-Simon Acsending. *commences party*

THE ISABELLE LIGHTWOOD THEORY. I'm still a believer. It'll happen.  

Okay, and with that I'll stop. 
It was fun, and beautiful.  Though I'm pissed that now we HAVE to read TDA (the next Shadowhunter series), and if you haven't read TID you're probably kicking yourself. 
On the bright side, MORE JACE, MAGNUS, AND JEM.  #TheShadowhunterMen 


Saturday, June 7, 2014

Review: An Abundance of Katherines

An Abundance of KatherinesAn Abundance of Katherines
John Green
Contemporary, Romance (?), Road Trip (ish)

19 Katherines and counting...

When it comes to relationships, Colin Singleton's type is girls named Katherine. And when it comes to girls named Katherine, Colin is always getting dumped. Nineteen times, to be exact. On a road trip miles from home, this anagram-happy, washed-up child prodigy has ten thousand dollars in his pocket, a bloodthirsty feral hog on his trail, and an overweight, Judge Judy-loving best friend riding shotgun - but no Katherines. Colin is on a mission to prove The Theorem of Underlying Katherine Predictability, which he hopes will predict the future of any relationship, avenge Dumpees everywhere, and finally win him the girl.

Do you really need to read the review? Everything John Green writes is uncontested sheer genius. It's not even gonna be long because what can I say? Katherines features a weird, lovable, social-pariah protagonist with a weird but cool obsession, a weirder and even more lovable best friend, a kickass girl and and some totally-bizarre-but-totally-could-happen circumstances. (This is true for Looking For Alaska and Paper Towns by John Green, and some of these elements are in Will Grayson, Will Grayson by JG and David Levithan. Link to my review)

Everything about JG's writing makes me laugh. In this book, things are explained through highly illuminating and highly hilarious footnotes- hence the cover. Through the journey Katherines took me on, I used my high school math FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER to understand the graphs Colin makes about his relationships. In the back, there's an appendix BY AN HONEST TO GOD MATH GENIUS named Daniel Biss, who talks you through all the calculations made in the novel. Thank you, John Green, for putting the object of my misery to funniest and best use in the world(:

Other pleasurable aspects of Katherines were the diversity and random and bizarre and no-way-I'm-gonna-go-look-that-up pieces of trivia. 

However, I did understand the critics who said this is legendary JG's weakest book, and while it didn't move me to tears and/or inspire big life revelations in me like the others, I'd hardly call it WEAK. It's just a different kind of novel. Sheesh, people. It's like we need another hit of our extreme-feels drug. TAKE IT AND LOVE IT FOR WHAT IT IS. 

What is that you say? I haven't been on my blog in 2+ weeks? 
I knowwwww:( 
I'm sorry. 
Screw you, finals.
I'll be back soon.