About three years ago, my dear friend Doni had to undergo chemotherapy for his cancer. As much as I’ve heard about cancer before, this was the first time that I was actually going to be face to face with it, in a manner of speaking.
It was horrible for me to look at, and I wasn’t even suffering through it. It just wasn’t acceptable to me that my friend — who if you know him, you’d know he’s the life of the party — was in the state that he was in.
My friend is better now, but I’ve avoided cancer “things” ever since because I honestly don’t know if I can handle it. When we interviewed the founder of Kythe for my real job and when the topic of visiting the kids came up, I just knew that I would not be able to do it.
That was why I was a little apprehensive about John Green’s “The Fault In Our Stars”. As much as cancer is a very painful reality for a lot of people, more often than not it just gets treated as a plot device to force tears out of readers or viewers A Walk to Remember. Admittedly, I never thought twice about it before, but my limited experience had me afraid that Green might end up trivializing something so painful for so many people.
As much of a “trendsetter” I am when it comes to such questionable masterpieces such as “Modelland” and “A Shore Thing“, I am always, always woefully late when it comes to what is actually popular on most readers’ shelves.
For instance, I only started reading Paolo Coelho around his 29th (or is it 28th?) novel, “The Winner Stands Alone”, and my reaction wasn’t exactly the most positive one. I haven’t read a single work by Haruki Murakami, and I haven’t started on “The Hunger Games” yet, although I’ve been itching to do so. As for “Harry Potter”, I only started reading it when “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” came out. I’ve never really gotten into Nicholas Sparks or Mitch Albom, and the thought of even thumbing through Rick Warren’s “A Purpose Driven Life” makes me want to punch somebody’s nalgas.
Having outlined my un-hipness, it therefore shouldn’t surprise you guys that I only started reading Stieg Larsson’s “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” earlier this week. I was planning to read it anyway — the US adaptation of the movie airs on the first of February — but I was invited to a press preview and I had to push it up my to-read list because I didn’t want to go in there without having read the book.
Unfortunately, I was unable to finish the book, and I had to go into the movie without knowing what I was going to be in for. I’ll talk about how the movie measures up to the book in another post, but I will say this — the movie certainly didn’t spoil the experience of reading the book.
CATFIGHT! There was much wailing and gnashing of teeth over the internet in the past few days as Twihards took offense at on-again/off-again Catholic Anne Rice declared that Lestat and Louis from “The Vampire Chronicles” would feel sorry for Stephenie Meyer’s sparkly bloodsuckers. (Source 1, Source 2)
More “Twilight” stuff! io9 has four clips from “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn aprt 1”! (Source)
In case you’ve spent the past week buried under a particularly large rock, you probably know that bestselling author Nicholas Sparks spent a couple of days here in the country signing books and whatnot, all thanks to the efforts of National Book Store. In fact, the Manila Bulletin will be coming out with a three-page feature on him this Sunday!
I’ve managed to be indifferent to ebooks and ebook readers for the most part, but Amazon’s Lending Library kinda softens my stand on them a wee bit. (Source)
I’m not really into the zombie genre in general — the most I’ve been into it is my devotion to “The Walking Dead” series — so I don’t really know what to make of “Warm Bodies”, wherein a zombie falls in love with a mortal girl. It’s adapted from a book, so maybe I should check that out first? I’ll probably check this out anyway since Nicholas Hoult is in it. And one final point: Are we going to run down all the supernatural creatures of the world and pair them with humans at this point? (Source)
Salman Rushdie write a limerick about Kim Kardashian’s 72 day marriage. It’s got a lof of Ks in it. (Source)
The Prix Goncourt, France’s top literary prize, goes to a biology teacher. (Source)
The Guardian has a great slideshow on some of the illustrations that J.R.R. Tolkien did for “The Hobbit”. (Source)
Also from The Guardian, a really nice essay about the pleasures of writing your stories in longhand. (Source)
The New York Times has put out a list of 2011’s best illustrated children’s books. They aren’t putting up any artwork until the 13th, though. (Source)
Finally, check out seven clips from “Immortals”! Semi-accurate Greek mythology! Shirtless Henry Cavill! Shirtless Kellan Lutz! (Source)
Of course, the big news is Nicholas Sparks’ impending arrival on our fair islands. Check him out at The Podium on October 28, 5 p.m.!
In much more controversial news, there’s been quite a ruckus over this year’s American National Book Awards’ finalists. “Shine”, a gay-themed YA novel revolving around a hate crime committed in the South, was removed from the list of nominees and replaced with “Chime”, a YA novel about a teen witch. The reason? Organizers misheard the title of the book. Messy, messy, messy. (Source 1, Source 2, Source 3, Source 4)
I don’t know what the age range of the readers of the blog are, but I am certainly old enough to remember the mindfuck that was the 1988 anime movie adaptation of the groundbreaking manga. And since Hollywood can’t leave good things alone, they’re apparently remaking the classic into a live action adaptation — set in Neo Manhattan. Rumored to play Kaneda? Garrett Hedlund from “Tron Legacy”. And as cute as I think he is, couldn’t anyone have found somebody Asian for a movie titled “Akira”? I mean, what the fuck. (Source)
The Guardian lists down all of the authors who have expressed for the now global Occupy movement. Some of the big names include Salman Rushdie, Neil Gaiman, Margaret Atwood, Jonathan Lethem, and Ursula K. Le Guin. (Source)
In a development that Bram Stoker himself could have written, one of Stoker’s descendants find an old notebook of his that offer “cryptic clues” to his own work. (Source)
Finally, “Immortals” is shaping up to be the must-see mythology inspired movie of the decade, at least by my standards. Kellan Lutz, who is playing the role of Poseidon, gives an interview to The Advocate that totally panders to the gay audience. Now I’ll totally paner to you guys and include some shirtless Kellan Lutz pictures under the cut! (Source)
Here’s the trailer for Daniel Radcliffe’s newest movie, “The Woman In Black”. The movie is based on Susan Hill’s 1983 novel of the same name. This isn’t the first time that the novel has been adapted to another medium; there’s a 1987 theayer version by Nigel Kneale that is still being staged today.
Has anyone of my readers gotten their Pottermore email yet? Because my owl seems to have disappeared somewhere in the vastness of the internet. I am jealous of all the people who’ve already experienced what it’s like inside. Tidbits from The Guardian and Snitchseeker just ain’t cutting it anymore. (Source 1, Source 2)
And since we’re talking about the Snitchseeker anyway, I hope you guys know that they’re giving away a Hogwarts Acceptance Letter. They don’t usually ship the letter outside of the States, and the contest rules are ridiculously easy, so go ahead and test your luck! (Source)
The Register is reporting that the ebook versions of the “Harry Potter” series will be bundled with Sony’ newest e-readers. (Source)
Yet another Potter-related item: a print-on-demand group called PublishAmerica is threatening to sue J. K. Rowling for defamation, because she put out a press release denying that she had any relationship with group. Why’d she have to do that in the first place? Because PublishAmerica sent out a letter to its clients claiming that they could have J. K. Rowling comment on their books for a fee of $49. The whole story is over at the Writer Beware blog. (Source)
Today in book banning news: A Virginia school board has removed “A Study in Scarlet” from a sixth-grade reading list because a parent complained it was anti-Mormon. Not to worry — those kids can always download it from Project Gutenberg anyway. (Source 1, Source 2)
Finally, National Book Store is bringing Nicholas Sparks to the country this October! Sparks will be in the country for a book signing tour, but so far that is the only detail that National Book Store has ironed out. I haven’t read a Nicholas Sparks novel ever (I know), but I will admit to crying while watching “A Walk to Remember”. I may have even perused some fanfic. (Source)
I’m a twentysomething who loves reading books, whether they’re good or bad. I started out stealing books; now I review them.