Monday, 28 June 2010

Monthly Reading Check-in: June 2010


Another month has passed to it's time to see what's made it off the shelves and piles and gone from 't-read' to 'read'. I'm down to 12/20 read off my 2010 Book to Film Reading Challenge, and what I'm left with is almost exclusively Harry Potter books! I've stepped up timing on reading those by working in both Chamber of Secrets & Prisoner of Azkaban this month to give a bit more ease to get through the rest of the series as from here on it they get rather large. Overall, June was quite a book filled month and I've made it through 11 books and still have a few that I'm in the middle off. Wow. That's a lot of reading. Let's look at some of the highlights.

2010 Book to Film Challenge

Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling (re-read) Book 2 of 7
This second entry in the Harry Potter series was like the first, a very fun, fast read. In terms of a book to film adaptation it was also very strongly aligned from book to film with very little that didn't make it to screen or was changed. I'm really enjoying revisiting this world through the books which I've only read once each up until this point, although I know the films very well.

Harry Potter & the Prisoner of Azkaban by J. K. Rowling (re-read) Book 3 of 7
This is the first book in the series where there are not only omissions from book to films, but actual changes in the book to film adaptation. I don't really mind any of the changes though and overall have found that the book provided more insights to the characters and even their actions that I hadn't picked up on before - even if it's something in the film! This is astonishing to me as out of all the films I've likely seen this one the most, so any new insight has floored me and here there were several from the signifigance of chocolate to use of locations or even just that Madame Pomfrey has a first name (Poppy).

General Reading

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (Book 1 of 3)
I hummed and hawwed a little bit on reading this one as I had already seen the film, and I'm usually a read the book first kind of person. But, given that the story in the film is so fascinating I was curious as to how the book read. I was also hesitant as there is some really harsh content in the film and didn't want to revisit that, but seeing the film gave me a bit of an out to skim those sections if need be. Oddly, I found the harshness way more explicit in the film which I wasn't expecting at all. Overall, I did find it a fascinating read and gave many insights to the characters, and I really enjoyed the writing style. I'm going to continue reading the series, but likely continue this backwards tradition of watching the film first because of the high quality of the films.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians: Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan (Book 2 of 5)
The adventure continues with Percy Jackson in this modern take on Greek Mythology in an urban fantasy environment. I really enjoyed this second book in the Percy Jackson series, and although I didn't think they were going to continue with film adaptations it actually appears that they will... and just as I wrote that now I can't find a reference for it. I hope they do continue this films, I thought the first film was a lot of fun and this one would be as well although the story might be more aligned to myths people are familiar with and certainly would have a few challenges. But, the first book to film was a good and pretty liberal with change adaptation, so it's certainly possible to do that again. Here's to hoping!

The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella by Stephenie Meyers
Released aptly just less than a month before the film release of The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, this novella follows part of the time line of the book Eclipse from the perspective of the character of the newborn vampire Bree. It fell pretty flat for me, and I like to call it "The Short Reign of Riley, or the Mysterious Disappearance of our Dangerous Villainess Victoria", even though it's first person perspective from Bree, she doesn't really 'do' much and pretty much feels like a victim. If you want to hear more about it, it was the focus of a current episode of Before the Dawn where Marina & I discuss it more in depth. You can listen to that episode of the podcast here.

Dear John by Nicholas Sparks
Full disclosure: my reason to read this book was from continually reading quotes, hearing remarks and even saying myself "Oh, that's another film based on a Nicholas Sparks novel" as a way to describe a film. Then I stepped back and acknowledged that I've never even read a Nicholas Sparks novel, so it felt a little off to categorize a film for that reason. Anyhow, I liked the film Dear John so I thought this would be a good place to start and it was. It felt very genuine and wondrous, and was interesting to read a relationship focused story from a male point of view. Now I'm curious to read one of his books where I've not seen the film

The Reckoning by Kelley Armstrong by Kelley Armstrong (Darkest Powers 3 of 3)
I wrote about The Awakening back in February which is the second book in the Darkest Powers trilogy and the whole things caps off here with The Reckoning. Wow. This was such an enjoyable series for so many reasons. First: it's not a trillion books like so many YA ones are these days. Second: Paranormal goodness. Third: Great characters! Fourth: Solid page turning goodness. I really loved this series and am a little excited yet hesitant to jump into the Kelley Armstrong's adult series The Women of the Otherworld, because it's long and I know I'll get sucked into quickly and easily - and that's an 11 book series. Aie!!

Up Next - July Reading
Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire
Eat, Pray Love (film out Aug 13, 2010)
The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader (trailer, film out Dec 10, 2010)
The Girl Who Played with Fire (film out July 2010)

Added to the longer term 'to read' list (likely for 2011)
On the Road for upcoming film adaptation, and it is just 'one of those' that is so referential that I feel like I should read. Also, I want to check out A Game of Thrones (IMDb Page), the first in the A Song of Ice & Fire series which is having an HBO adaptation starring Sean Bean, Jamie Campbell Bower, Lena Headey & Peter Dinklage. Not completely sure what it's about or how many of the books will be incorporated to the TV series but I do know there will be snow, swords & Sean Bean and to be honest, that's enough for me.
Are you an avid reader? Feel free to friend me over at GoodReads!

Titles on
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Book 3)
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
The Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book Two: Sea of Monsters: Percy Jackson & the Olympians Book Two
The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella
Dear John
The Reckoning (Darkest Powers, Book 3)
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Book 4)
Eat Pray Love
The Voyage Of The Dawn Treader (full Color)
The Girl Who Played With Fire
On The Road
A Game of Thrones: Book One of A Song of Ice and Fire

Titles on (US):
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Book 2)
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Book 3)
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Vintage)
The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 2)
The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella (Twilight Saga)
Dear John
The Reckoning (Darkest Powers, Book 3)
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Book 4)
Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (The Chronicles of Narnia, Book 5, Full-Color Collector's Edition)
The Girl Who Played with Fire (Vintage)
On the Road (Penguin Classics)
A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1)


Ryan McNeil said...

Currently I'm working on re-reading Nick Hornby's "Fever Pitch"...a hardcover copy that Lady Hatter tracked down for my birthday!

Prior to that I finished off Chuck Palahniuk's "Tell All" (disappointing), and the fifth Scott Pilgrim graphic (can't wait for number six in July!).

As for the Larsson series, I find myself torn. I tend to read a lot of books that have movies based on them (coming soon or just released) I'm not sure that I want to dive into this series right now.

Then again, everyone seems to be reading them...

Unknown said...

I actually picked Martin's Game of Thrones from my shelf last night in preparation for the long wait in line tonight and then changed my mind. Want to get through a few more long dormant items before I jump into the series!

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

I've heard the Scott Pilgrim is great, I wish I was as jazzed about that one as everyone else seems to be!

Oddly, I rather enjoyed reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo after seeing the film - the writing is *so* good, but on the other hand the story is told so well in the film is feels like it should feel redundant reading it - but it wasn't. Very strange, but true.

Ah, so you are going to read Game of Thrones too, Marina? I'm in the middle of so many series right now it feels insane to jump into another (especially considering it still has more books to be released).. but I know.. I will read it. But not yet.

Chris said...

I thought the first book in the Larsson trilogy is exciting, but don't much like characters, so won't be reading the 2nd/3rd parts.

I am curently asking my readers to share some of their favourite books, any one on this thread interested?

If so you can go to sidepanel on my blog:

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