Monday, October 31, 2016

Pride and Prejudice Book Review

It should be a truth universally acknowledged that even someone who has read Pride and Prejudice twice, watched adaptions several times, seen a local play production, and who's writing a school essay about one of the characters is not qualified to formulate a review for the perfectness that is Pride and Prejudice.



But she'll try it anyways. :D

I'm going to try my four category review format. Maybe that will help. :)

Characterization-- 

Jane Austen's characterization comes in halves. Half brilliant, half so-so. Her female characters-- Lydia, Elizabeth, Jane, Mrs. Bennet(my poor, poor nerves!)-- are often well thought out and developed, while her male characters are somewhat one-dimensional. *hides*

But that's okay! The brilliance of her female characters makes up for her sometimes flat male characters. And Mr. Collins is good! ("Lady Catherine de Bourgh")

Plot--

I found it more engaging on this read since I was anticipating what would come next, but that could also have something to do with being a little young when I read it the first time. xD

Writing-- 

Not bad at all, but actually not my favorite style. It's a little--hmm...stiff(?).



Entertainment-- 

Very entertaining! More so as a re-read, but again, that could have something to do with my originally reading it as a junior high student.

As much as this goes against my principles(haha), I might recommend watching the movie first. It may help you enjoy the book more.

Either way, you should read it if you haven't yet, even if just to experience what all the hype is about. :) If you don't like it, that's okay because confession: I think it's overrated. It's amazing but overrated.

~~~

Hey, I actually reviewed it! That wasn't so bad! And, truly, it's very good; it's not like it's the book's fault for being overrated! :)

Have you read Pride and Prejudice? Do you, too, think it's overrated? 

Sunday, October 23, 2016

G. K. Chesterton 101- A Guest Post by Art3mis Took

Hullo, readers! 

My awesome friend, Art3mis Took, kindly agreed to grace my blog with her writings! Go check out her blog, because obvious reasons. :D Well, without further ado...

~~~

One typical day in 20th century England, an impressively portly gentleman wearing a cape and swinging a sword cane went on a trip and ended up sending a telegram home to his wife, "Am at Market Harborough. Where ought I to be?" 

This same absentminded man wrote The Everlasting Man, one of the reasons that the atheistic C.S. Lewis converted to Christianity; Lewis later wrote that at the time he thought G.K. Chesterton "had more sense than all the other moderns put together; bating, of course his Christianity." 


Chesterton also inspired the Irish Independence movement with his novel The Napoleon of Notting Hill, and encouraged Ghandi's work in India with one of his essays.

He also happens to be my favorite author of all time.

And since I can't think of a transition after that...hi, everybody! Thanks, Meredith, for graciously inviting me for a guest post! Let's hope I don't scare away your audience. xD  

My name is Art3mis Took (because my family is paranoid when it comes to the internet), and I am here to rave about one of my favorite topics. Man, I love blogging.

A brief bio: G.K. Chesterton was an intellectually brilliant Englishman who went through a long, difficult journey from agnosticism to Catholic Christianity. Basically he decided to make up his own philosophy of life, but then realized that this philosophy already existed--it was Christianity. Today he's known for his books of apologetics (such as The Everlasting Man and Orthodoxy), as well as his rebuttals of famous modern thinkers such as Bernard Shaw and H.G. Wells. 


He definitely had a gift for words, but his writing takes a while to get used to, since he enjoyed making somewhat confusing paradoxical statements and referencing other 20th century British authors that nobody knows about. He's also infamous for his tangents, which are still not as bad as Victor Hugo's--Meredith can vouch for that.  ;D

You may have run into some quotes from the man himself:
 "The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.
"An adventure is only an inconvenience wrongly considered."
"When we step into the family, by the act of being born, we do step into a world which is incalculable, into a world which has its own strange laws, into a world which could do without us, into a world we have not made. In other words, when we step into the family we step into a fairy-tale."
“The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.”
“I have little doubt that when St. George had killed the dragon he was heartily afraid of the princess.”
The thing I like the best about GKC is that he makes me look at life in a different way. He takes a familiar concept--families, for example--and makes a point about it that makes me think about it like I'm discovering it for the first time. He's brought me through a lot of tough times with his optimism and joviality.

17 year old GKC :) 


If you haven't read any of Chesterton's stuff yet and this has intrigued you, a good place to start is with his Fr. Brown mysteries. They center around a small, quiet crime solving priest and his arch nemesis, the master thief Flambeau. Some of them get pretty strange, so a good normal-ish one to start with is "The Blue Cross." It's about the length of a Sherlock Holmes mystery, and it's a good sample of Chesterton's writing style. 

And if you're interested in Christian apologetics, or just a sample of Chesterton's more philosophical writing, Orthodoxy is mind-blowing. 

Lastly, GK's works are now public domain so they're easy to find by typing in "Chesterton" on gutenberg.org. Now you have no excuse! Muahahaha!

Happy reading, and thanks for listening.  :)

~~~

Thank you, Art3mis for appearing here! I'm still only a beginner when it comes to Chesterton works, but I'd really like to get into more of his stuff. Like she said, I guess I have no excuse.

Plus, he shares a name with one of my favorite L. M. Montgomery characters(Gilbert), so that must mean something. :) 


What about y'all? Have you read anything by G. K. Chesterton? 

Friday, October 21, 2016

Anticipating Winter and the Holidays

IT HAS SNOWED.


Last night I was up till 1:30 finishing a lab report I should have written much earlier in the week, and I was thinking about how excited I am for the winter and holiday season.

Somehow some of my best memories happened during the November and December months. Finals(yes, I rather enjoy those), Christmas shopping, reading allll the books, Thanksgiving, visits from grandparents, starting Downton Abbey Season One on Thanksgiving morning(good times ;D), and Christmas cookies.

Image result for christmas

Seriously something about the snow and cold and dark and busy school days contrasted with holiday breaks make me happy.


Image result for snow


As I was mulling over winter expectations, I thought I should flip on the porch light, just in case there might be any snow. And there was. Fluffy, pure white, and cascading from the sky in overwhelming scope. That made my night and the rest of today.

Proof I live in Narnia. 

Brace yourselves. Winter and the holidays are coming. :D

~~~


By the by, I'm sorry I haven't written in so long! Here are some random things I should update you on, just 'cuz:


~I hopped on the Hamilton bandwagon. (But I still only listen to some of the songs.)

~I started listening to more of the Piano Guys. Watch this:

the only One Direction song I like ;P


~I realized how deficient my Starbucks-ordering skills are. Between indecision and incompetence at swiping a debit card, you couldn't exactly call me a pro. XD

How have you been coping with the school year and increasingly colder weather? Are you cringing or elated like me? 

Are you looking forward to the Holidays? Are you terrible at ordering at Starbucks? :D 

Thursday, October 6, 2016

The Railway Children Book Review

Oh dear! I am late this month.

My choice of September for the 12 Month Classics Challenge was The Railway Children. Unfortunately I didn't get around to it till now, but if I can finish the book for October, I should be back on track.

Back-Cover Synopsis: Father is suddenly called away and Roberta, Peter, Phyllis and their mother have to leave their happy life in London to live in a small house in the country. But the quiet countryside isn't nearly as dull as they'd thought it would be when they discover a railway line nearby, and make friends with Perks the porter and the Station Master. Only the mystery remains: where is Father and is he ever coming back? 


















There's nothing particularly ingenious about this book. No mind-bending plot twists or complex plot. Just a colorful cast of characters, sweet dialogue and many pages of nostalgic, endearing railway scenes. There's something quaint about railways(especially those of the early 20th century) and E. Nesbit captures it well in these pages.

The children's angelic behavior bothered me a bit, since I've never met any children so virtuous, but they had enough faults to keep it realistic. I wouldn't want to read about terribly naughty children.

You may find it a yawner, or you may find it darling like I did. :)

Have you already read it? What did you think?