Saturday, 28 February 2009

Closure: Lit Flicks & Companion Challenge

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Back in October I took up the Lit Flicks Challenge and it's Companion Challenge, the (combined) goal was to read 5 books that were turned into films, watch the films and write about them between September 1, 2008 and February 28, 2009. Starting a month into the challenges I thought this would be no sweat - 4 months for 5 books and 5 films? Sure thing, sign me up! My original post including book and film choices is here.

Oh my goodness, did I fail miserably! I did start of strong reading and seeing Memoirs of a Geisha. Loved the book. Loved it. In fact, if nothing else I am happy I took the challenge just to have read the book. I enjoyed but didn't love the film, which retrospectively I can see as the reasoning why I didn't review it. Especially as it is full of actors I love like Michelle Yeoh, Gong Li, Ken Watanabe and Kôji Yakusho. The next book I tackled for the challenge was "Eragon", which I thought would be a fast read but nope it wasn't. I still haven't finished it, in part because I didn't love the writing style but also found the main character a little whiny and not that likeable. I still would like to finish it at some point.

There was one barrier I didn't anticipate for the timing of this challenge. Almost all the reading I do is while I'm waiting for or on the bus, streetcar or subway. Let's look at that timing again - October through February.... in Toronto. Let me fill in the blanks for you:

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Yeah, so - it like snows a lot and is cold here. My hands were often tucked away in my pockets and not holding a book to read. I'm not a read at home type so this totally dampened my progress. And once I felt like I wouldn't cross the finish line with flying colours I left the goals to the wayside.

Oddly, I did manage to make it through some other books including "New Moon", "Eclipse" and "Breaking Dawn" from the Twilight series by Stephenie Meyers. Enjoyed "New Moon" the most by fair. I've heard rumours that there is a fifth book in the works as well which was surprizing. I also read those at lightning fast pace, I haven't done that since I was a kid.

I also read "Dead Until Dark" by Charlaine Harris, the book the tv series 'True Blood' is based on. Fun book although it pretty much is the same arch as first season of the show. Keeping with the book to film theme I just finished "City of Ember" by Jeanne DuPlau and loved it - it's a kids book and another really quick read, finished it in a week on transit.

The last book I'll mention has no screen adaptation as far as I know but it's a fantastic book: "Beggars in Spain" by Nancy Kress. It's Sci-Fi but very accessible (i.e. not tech heavy) but brillant. I haven't read a book with that kind of wide eye curiosity of what would happen next since "Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card. Huge recommendation from me to you on that one.

So, here we are on February 28, 2009 and I only got though about 25% complete on the challenge. But, I am thrilled that I did end up reading a lot of great books and learning it's cold in the winter (duh). On the film side, although I didn't get to the 5 I thought I would I did manage to watch 114 during the time period. So, I'm good with that.

Last but not least, a big shout out to The Bluestocking Society and Bitchin' Film Reviews for hosting the challenges - they certainly challenged me!

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5 comments:

Jenn said...

I think you've read more books than I have since September! Memoirs of a Geisha is one of my favourite books of all time. I didn't love the movie either. I also just listened to the audiobook of City of Ember and loved it. I've got the next in the series downloaded and ready to listen to after I finish my current audiobook. I think I've seen the movie for Eragon, but it didn't interest me as much as I thought I would, so I don't know if I'll end up reading that one at all. Only have so many reading hours in the day after all.

Most of my reading used to be done on transit too. But now that I carpool most of the time I think it's rude to read in the car even though I'm not driving.

Genie Sea said...

Eragon was a squalid movie. I can't imagine the book being any better :)

Might I recommend White Oleander?

blake said...

Thanks for participating, and don't sweat it. I still have one book to read, and, well, I certainly didn't make it by the end of February. Oh well. Glad you were challenged!

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

I'm glad you enjoyed Memoirs of a Geisha Jenn! I'm also awaiting to download the 2nd City of Ember book - in text format :)

Genie Sea - thanks for the heads up on Eragon the film, I think I missed it on TMN already anyway! I absolutely loved White Oleander - both the book and the film, that one I read after I saw the film though.

Blake thanks so much for your comment! Sounds like you came really really close! I'm happy I did the challenge, it was fun and a learning experience.

blake said...

Hey Shannon, a fellow blogger passed along the Dardos award to me. I'm now passing it to you. I don't know if you do the awards thing, but you definitely deserve it!

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