February 22, 2017

Play(list) by the Book: The Handmaid's Tale


Hello, everyone! By now it's no secret that Play(list) by the Book is one of my favourite things to create. I just love finding out all those musical, and sometimes lyrical, references in the novel that I read. And it's even more delightful when I do find such references in books that I didn't really expect to find some in them, like The Handmaid's Tale. Let's face it: when you read Haruki Murakami, Nick Hornby, or David Mitchell, you know that there will be a lot of songs mentioned in the book. But when I started reading The Handmaid's Tale, I never expected to find familiar songs and lyrics in this dystopian setting. But there it is! It might not be a lengthy playlist, but it still is. I hope you'll enjoy it!




As usual the rules are the same. Every song and artist that is mentioned in the book goes in the playlist. Every lyric that is mentioned, qualifies the song for the playlist. In this one, I added the Lithuanian folk song (Kalėdų rytu rožė inžydo), not because it was mentioned but because there was a tape found with the title Folk Songs from Lithuania. I thought that it would be fit for such a song to be included here.


Find more playlists at: Play(list) by the Book

February 20, 2017

The Reading Book Post, February 20th

The Reading Book Post - with the most interesting literary news of the previous week

Hello, everyone! I have to admit that so far I've been lucky with my reading. Since the beginning of 2017 I've read some amazing novels, like The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood and I'm currently reading Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman. I only hope that I'll be just as lucky in the months to come. Anyway, let's see what happened in the literary world the previous week (so many exciting news!).

  • This is the first and biggest (and most exciting, to be honest) news of this week: Philip Pullman has announced The Book of Dust trilogy. This trilogy will be set in the world of his much beloved His Dark Materials trilogy (actually Lyra will be featured in two of the three new books) and I can't hide how much I'm happy about it! The first book of the new trilogy is yet to be named, but we already know that it's due on 19 October 2017. I've already marked my calendar!

  • The next exciting news of this week concerns one of my favourite authors and one of my favourite books, Neil Gaiman and his novel Neverwhere. 20 years after the publication of Neverwhere, the author has announced that he's writing the sequel. The book will be called The Seven Sisters, but we know nothing else about it yet.   

  • MISFIT CITY is the new monthly comic book series by BOOM! imprint, written by the screen writer Kirster "Kiwi" Smith and Kurt Lustgarten, and art by Naomi Franquiz. It sounds pretty interesting because of its Goonies inspired setting and plot (just look at the first cover). The series will hit the shelves in May 2017.

  • Adorableness alert! How about some comics with Funko versions of very popular characters, like Ghostbusters, and The X-Files? To be more precise, this May will be published five one-shot comic books with Funko-fied heros. The books will be Ghostbuster, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The X-Files, Strawberry Shortcake, and Judge Dredd 

  • Until recently the only way to find out what Marcel Proust looked like was through one of his photographs. But a Canadian professor claims that he has discovered some footage with the French writer. It's a black-and-white video from a marriage that took place in 1904. 

  • Mr. Darcy, a name - many feels! The fictional man responsible for all of our unrealistic expectation of men. But did he actually look like Colin Firth (because let's face it we all have his image in mind)? Look what Mr. Darcy would actually look like in 1790. I'm not shocked, he'd actually still be good-looking.

  • Oh, how I love to listen to actors read stories! It doesn't matter if it's Tom Hardy reading a bedtime story, or Benedict Cumberbatch reading just anything, I absolutely love it. Today I'm sharing with you a video featuring Zach Galifianakis reading the story Next Big Thing, written by Gibby Haines. It's a little scary though, so listen to it with the lights on!

  • Which Dark Fantasy World Do You Belong In? Take the quiz to find out! I got Ink by Alice Broadway, which world did you get?

January 16, 2017

The Reading Book Post, January 16th


Hello, everyone! I'm so pumped up with this year's reading challenges that I've already made a quick list of the books that I'm going to read. In fact, just yeaterday I finished reading Arabian Nights and Days, written by Naguib Mahfouz. This book qualifies as a book from the Middle-East and as January's historical novel. Let's see what happened in the literary world the previous week.

  • Marlon James, the author of the novel A Brief History of Seven Killings, announced that he's planning on writing a fantasy series. To be more specific, he describes it as "an African Game of Thrones". The first book of The Dark Star trilogy will be called Black Leopard, Red Wolf.


  • Any fans of the Greenglass House? Good news for you, as Kate Milford is preparing the sequel, which will be called The Ghosts of Greenglass House. You can now see the cover, as well as read an excerpt from the book that will hit the shelves on October 3, 2017.


  • Last year, we watched and we loved The Night Manager. The BBC's mini series was adapted from John LeCarré's novel with the same name. Now we can all rejoice, as the same team team will adapt another John LeCarré's novel, The Spy Who Came In From the Cold

  • I had never really noticed before, but Klaus from A Series of Unfortunate Events, and Harry Potter look very much alike! Once you see it, you can't actually forget about it! I'm amazed.

  • What goes best with books? It's certainly tea! And author George Orwell had many tips on how to prepare and enjoy your tea properly. And there are just too many!

  • Could this really be happening? E.L. James confirmed that she is in talks with theatre bosses, in order to adapt Fifty Shades of Grey into a musical. I'm not sure though how can this series work as a musical.

  • Can You Match The Superheroes to Their Arch Nemesis? Take the quiz to find out! If you're a keen comic book reader then you'll find no trouble with this one, as for me I've still got some catching up to do!


January 8, 2017

Book Adaptations to look for in 2017


Hello, everyone! Every year there is a tone of movies, tv series, and even video games that are actually book adaptations. So, I couldn't resist making a list with all those book adaptations that we should all look for in 2017 in the big and small screen.

Here are the 17+1 Book Adaptations to look for in 2017:

1. A Dog's Purpose

Release Date: 27 January 2017

Director: Lasse Hallström

Starring: Britt Robertson, Josh Gad, Dennis Quaid

Summary: A dog looks to discover his purpose in life over the course of several lifetimes and owners.

Comment: It's about a dog (several dogs actually), how can you resist such a movie? And if I judge by my reaction in Marley and Me, I will be crying the whole time.


2. Tulip Fever

Release Date: 24 February 2017

Director: Justin Chadwick

Starring: Alicia Vikander, Cara Delevingne, Dane DeHaan

Summary: An artist falls for a young married woman while he's commissioned to paint her portrait during the Tulip mania of 17th century Amsterdam.

Comment: It's a historical drama. Furthermore it's about an artist. And it features a forbidden love. Well, I don't need another reason to watch this movie!


3. Wilson

Release Date: 24 March 2017


Director: Craig Johnson

Starring: Judy Greer, Woody Harrelson, Laura Dern

Summary: A lonely, neurotic and hilariously honest middle-aged man reunites with his estranged wife and meets his teenage daughter for the first time.

Comment: There is no way I'm going to miss this movie! If you love Daniel Clowes' graphic novels like I do then put it in your calendar. If you have any doubts, just remember Ghost World and give it another thought.


4. Wonder

Release Date: 7 April 2017


Director: Stephen Chbosky

Starring: Julia Roberts, Owen Wilson, Jacob Tremblay

Summary: A young boy born with a facial deformity is destined to fit in at a new school, and to make everyone understand he's just another ordinary kid, and that beauty isn't skin deep.

Comment: This gem of a book promises to make one of the finest movies of 2017. When I read Wonder back in 2012 it moved me and I really hope that this film will provoke the same emotions in me.


5. The Handmaid's Tale

Release Date: 26 April 2017


Director: Reed Morano (3 eps.), Mike Barker (2 eps.)

Starring: Jordana Blake, O.T. Fagbenle, Joseph Fiennes, Elizabeth Moss

Summary: Set in a dystopian future, a woman is forced to live as a concubine under a fundamentalist theocratic dictatorship.

Comment: This is the first tv series in the list, and I can't wait! What can I say about this Margaret Atwood's novel? It's one of the greatest dystopian novels! The series will have 10 episodes. Also, Hulu has already showed us that it can make great book adaptation, after they released 11/22/63, by Stephen King, starring James Franco in 2016.


6. The Circle

Release Date: 28 April 2017


Director: James Ponsoldt

Starring: Tom Hanks, Emma Watson, Karen Gillan

Summary: A woman lands a job at a powerful tech company called the Circle, where she becomed involved with a mysterious man.

Comment: I expect this to be a powerful movie. The novel raised many serious questions, and please make this a film with the same concerns. Plus, I like the casting!


7. Everything, Everything

Release Date: 19 May 2017


Director: Stella Meghie

Starring: Amanda Stenberg, Nick Robinson, Anika Noni Rose

Summary: A teenager who's lived a sheltered life because she's aleergic to everything, falls for the boy who moves in next door.

Comment: A beloved YA romance! If you loved this novel (and I know that there are a lot of you), then you won't want to miss it.


8. Captain Underpants

Release Date: 2 June 2017 


Director: Rob Letterman, David Soren

Starring: Kevin Hart, Nick Kroll, Kristen Schaal

Summary: Two mischievious kids hypnotize their mean high school principal and turn him into their comic book creation, the kind-hearted and elastic-banded Captain Underpants.

Comment: This is going to be HILARIOUS! I mean, just look at the cast. And this is the only animated feature in this list!


9. My Cousin Rachel

Release Date: 14 July 2017


Director: Roger Michell

Starring: Rachel Weisz, Sam Claflin, Holliday Grainger

Summary: A young Englishman plots revenge against his mysterious, beautiful cousin, believing that she murdered his guardian. But his feelings become complicated as he finds himself falling under the beguiling spell of her charms.

Comment: It's yet another historical drama. This is enough reason for me to watch this movie. End of story.


10. The Dark Tower

Release Date: 28 July 2017 


Director: Nikolaj Arcel

Starring: Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey, Katheryn Winnick

Summary: Gunslinger Roland Deschain roams an Old West-like landscape in searcch for the dark tower, in hopes that reaching it will preserve his dying world.

Comment: It's truth that Stephen King's novels usually make good movies. The Dark Tower series is an exceptionally popular one, and let's face it Idris Elba is the perfect casting for the Gunslinger!


11. It

Release Date: 8 September 2017


Director: Andrés Muschietti

Starring: Bill Skarsgård, Finn Wolfhard, Jaeden Lieberher

Summary: In a small town in Maine, seven children known as The Losers Club come face to face with life problems, bullies and a monster that takes the shape of a clown called Pennywise.

Comment: The second Stephen King novel in this list. There is actually a mini series adaptation of this novel back from 1990. Will this movie live up to its scary predecessor?


12. Murder On the Orient Express

Release Date: 22 November 2017

Director: Kenneth Branagh

Starring: Daisy Ridley, Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz, Kenneth Branagh

Summary: Renowned Belgian detective Hercules Poirot investigates the murder of a wealthy American traveling on the Orient Express, the most famous train in the world.

Comment: This is one of my favourite adventures of Hercules Poirot! Apart from the novel, already exists an excellent adaptation of it from 1974. But I want to watch this new one mostly out of couriosity. How will be Kenneth Branagh as the famous detective?


13. Annihilation

Release Date: 2017

Director: Alex Garland

Starring: Natalie Portman, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tessa Thomson

Summary: A biologist signs up for a dangerous, secret expendition where the laws of nature don't apply. 

Comment: It's Annihilation and it's Alex Garland! These two facts are enough for me to be super excited for this film. I hope that they will announce the release date soon, as well as some teaser/trailer. 


14. Graceling

Release Date: 2017

Director: TBA

Starring: TBA

Summary: A smart, beautiful young woman lives in a world where select people born with an extreme skill -- called a Grace -- are feared and exploited.
Comment: I love this fantasy series, and I can't wait for an adaptation of it! Unfortunately, we don't know anything about it yet.


15. On Chesil Beach

Release Date: 2017

Director: Dominic Cooke

Starring: Saoirse Ronan, Emily Watson, Anne-Marie Duff

Summary: A drama set in the early 1960's and centered on a young couple on their honeymoon. 

Comment: It's no secret that Ian McEwan is one of my favourite authors. On Chesil Beach is my second favourite novel of his (after Atonement). Plus, he wrote the movie script himself! 


16. American Gods

Release Date: 2017

Director: David Slade (3 eps.), Adam Kane (2 eps.), Vincenzo Natali (1 ep.), Guillermo Navarro (1 ep.), Floria Sigismondi (1 ep.), Craig Zobel (1 ep.)

Starring: Demore Barnes, Gillian Anderson, Yetide Badaki, Dane Cook, Ian McShane

Summary: A recently released ex-convict named Shadow meets a mysterious man who calls himself "Wednesday" and who knows more than he first seems to about Shadow's life and past.

Comment: Another favourite novel written by a favourite author. This is another 10 episode tv series to look for in 2017. This is a must-watch whenever they decide to release it!



17. Let it Snow

Release Date: 2017

Director:  TBA

Starring: TBA

Summary: Three unexpected romances take place over the course of one Christmas Eve.

Comment: We don't know anything yet about this upcoming movie, but it's safe to assume that it will be released at the end of 2017. Indeed, it will be the ideal holiday movie! 







Bonus:
18. Seasons of Heaven

Release Date: TBA

Studio: AnyArts Productions

Platform: Nintendo Switch

Summary: Seasons of Heaven is about a post-apocalyptic world, which has undergone some dramatic events. Thankfully, there are some survivors. The game will focus on Yann, a telepathic boy with Asperger's Syndrome, and his French bulldog, Ani. His parents, Elise and Tim, are part of a larger group of survivors, including James and Sarah, their son Thomas, and two other children called Nina and Ana.   

Comment: I have to be honest here: I've never heard of this novel. Could it be because it is a French novel? Does an English translation exist? Well, the game trailer is beautiful, and I can't wait to play it!

January 7, 2017

Review: Deadpool v Gambit, by Ben Acker, Ben Blacker, Danilo Beyruth, and Cris Peter


Title: Deadpool v Gambit

Author: Ben Acker, Ben Blacker

Illustrator: Danilo Beyruth

Colours: Cris Peter

No. of issues: 5

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Date of Publication: June 2016 (issue #1)

Number of Pages: 23 (each issue)



Summary

Gambit - one of the smoothest, best-looking operators in the world of the X-Men. Deadpool - one of the most annoying, ugliest dirtbags in the world of everything. Naturally, these guys got beef. But do you know what they have in common? A secret history of working together to pull con-jobs. That's right - the grift is on as the Regeneratin' Degenerate and the Ragin' Cajun begrudgingly take on one last job together. Writers Ben Acker & Ben Blacker (Thunderbolts, The Thrilling Adventure Hour) and artist Danilo Beyruth (Gwenpool) lead us into the dirty underbelly of Deadpool and the squeaky-clean abs of Gambit!

Review

2016 was certainly the year that we've all been talking about Deadpool! With one of the best movies of the year, the mutant won over even the most reluctant of us, even the ones that don't usually read comics. On the other hand, Gambit doesn't get the love he deserves. I would so much love to see more of him, both in comic books and possibly his own movie (please make is happen!). So, when earlier this summer the series Deadpool v. Gambit hit the shelves, I was more than eager to read it.

For this series, Wade and Remy, aka Deadpool and Gambit, join forces in order to pull some con-jobs under the influence of Chalmers, an old guy that promises them a lot of riches. But while the two superheroes argue with each other, the gentleman double-crosses them. So, there is no other choice left for them but to put up with each other in order to retrieve what was stolen from them. In the meantime, Chalmers then surprises them by proposing another business to them just to save his hide. And...then the story is lost!

Another mutant enters the story, named the Scrambler, and moreover the true identity of Chalmers is revealed. To my great disappointment the old man is none other than Loki in disguise in yet another plan to take over Asgard. Everything felt rushed and over-complicated, while the end came out of nowhere without much explanation. I didn't even have the time to realize how quickly the crisis, that Loki's plan created, was resolved. And Scrambler's role was in the least confusing. He took away, more lickely scrambled, Deadpool's and Gambit's powers, but at the very end it was he who saved the day. And all of this while he didn't want to be involved with the other mutants. He had even created a normal family! Well, at least we got to see Gambit frustrated because he couldn't touch anyone, and especially a lady.

Apart from the resolution of the story, which was anti-climactic, I enjoyed this comic book very much. I mean, come on! We have the greatest troll alng the greatest womanizer after Casanova! It's as funny as you'd imagine, and as meta as you'd expect it to be. My favourite issue was definitely the first one, while my favourite cover came from the second one (the one you see right here ➡️). The first issue was the most suitable introduction to the series, although it might have created high expectations compared to what actually followed. It also featured the funniest scene of the whole Deadpool v Gambit, where the two superheroes pretend to be Spiderman and Daredevil.

Deadpool v Gambit is an enjoyable series. If you can get past the fact that the whole story is just one of Loki's plot then this comic will make you laugh. A lot! Moreover, I have to add that these two mutants have an excellent chemistry and they would make THE greatest heist movie. Of course, this would be without the presence of Loki. Wade and Remy have the potential to steal our hearts (pun intended).  

For the complete experience check out the Play(list) By the Book of Deadpool v Gambit.
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