Posts Tagged ‘book’
If you saw the movie Beaches with Bette Midler and Barbara Hershey and you think this book might possibly the same story then you’re partly right. There are enough similarities to ensure you can see where they got the ideas for the movie from but there are also major departures. Normally I have issues with some of these changes but in this case I’m struggling to find anything wrong.
The basic storyline of two young girls meeting on the beach, becoming pen pals, best friends and then one of them looking after the other while she dies is still there. CC Bloom is still an entertainer and goes on to become one of the best in the business. Bert (short for Roberta) is still very gorgeous and gets a fatal disease. There are many other similarities throughout but there are also places where they deviate and I have no problem with any of it.
In the book Bert is a housewife who has to look after her husband who doesn’t care, in the movie she is a lawyer. The daughter is an accidental pregnancy in the book but I don’t remember this detail from the movie. In the book Bert has ovarian cancer but in the movie she has a disorder which is fatal, called Viral Cardiomyopathy, I haven’t done any research on it.
There are so many changes and I don’t mind any of them, they have the essential parts of the book and the changes just accentuate them. I’ve cried my way through the movie every time I’ve seen it and cried my way through the book. I loved the book and am now torn between taking it to the op shop so I don’t read it and cry again or putting it on my shelf so I can read it and cry again. I’m going to have to find the movie so I can check out the similarities and the differences. I do think they got the casting absolutely right for the two main parts with both their young selves and their older selves, each actor is just perfect. When I first saw it I thought the movie was written for Bette Midler but with the book written three years before the movie was released that’s highly unlikely, unless the author had Midler in mind during the writing.
Brother Cadfael is a monk/detective, the books are set between 1135 and 1145 in the most beautiful area of Shrewsbury, England. The man himself is pragmatic, prone to getting himself into the thick of things, helping other people and making friends. This is the 11th book in the series. Here’s what it says on the back of the book:
In 1141 England is still torn by the civil strife caused by the struggle for the throne between King Stephen and the Empress Maud. Among the victims of the carnage is the Abbey of Hyde Meade, totally destroyed. Its brothers are scattered far and wide. Two seek refuge in Shrewsbury: Brother Humilis, who has abandoned his intended marriage and entered the clositer after crippling injuries received on the Crusade; and the mute Fidelis, his devoted attendant. All is well until Nicholas, once Humilis’ squire, resolves to pay court on his own account to the girl who was his lord’s affianced bride, and comes to ask his blessing on the suit. Then a latent tragedy becomes a present reality, and only the ever-indefatigable Brother Cadfael can distinguish between the innocent, the guilty and the victims foredoomed by the demands of honour, love, and fate.
As with all the Brother Cadfael books I loved it. Peters is good at showing us how they must have lived in that monastery and gives a good picture of life in those days. She gives me a good grounding in the etiquette of the period and informs on the political situation of the time. Hugh Beringar is the Sheriff of the area and becomes a very good friend of Cadfael. I suspect I could check up the history of the time and find it pretty accurate but I don’t want to find things are different and spoil the romance of the books for me.
Ellis Peters also writes under her real name of Edith Pargeter. She has written history and other historical fiction as well as translating Czech classics. Wouldn’t mind trying to read some of those translations, they could prove very interesting. I strong recommend reading the Cadfael series, the TV series with Derek Jacobi is okay, it does give some idea of the lay of the land but Jacobi doesn’t do a convincing job of Cadfael. Brother Cadfael was a solider and a sailor before he took vows and is described as having a “rolling gait” and I’d imagine he’d be pretty strong but despite doing a good job in every other part of portraying Cadfael he doesn’t seem to show the “rolling gait” or the strength. One scene he stopped someone from hitting another person and it’s not terribly convincing. I normally recommend seeing anything Jacobi has done and did an excellent job in the I, Claudius series. I’ll scribble a few words about those books and series one day after I’ve reviewed them.
Anyway, I heartily recommend reading Ellis Peters. The violence is gently portrayed as is every thing else that could cause a problem for younger readers, I have no hesitation in giving them to teenage devourers of historical fiction or crime fiction.
A new regular feature here is Mondayitis, published every Tuesday, it features guests discussing a series of questions. People have their own view of the questions and some use them as a starting point while others actually answer them, in their own particular way.
What do you read?
I love to read and write young adult fiction. Occasionally I’ll read a “grown-up book”, but it has to something out of the box. Growing up I was a huge Enid Blyton fan. I loved The Famous Five, The Naughtiest Girl books and her boarding school series – Malory Towers and St Clares. I also loved the “Little House” series by Laura Ingalls Wilder and all the Narnia books.
As a teen, I became obsessed with Gone with the Wind and it’s still one of my favourite books. I also became a fan of Jane Austen and remain one today. I’ve probably read Pride and Prejudice a hundred times.
As an adult I struggled to find books I could be passionate about – until I discovered Harry Potter and then the wonderful world of YA fiction. Recent favourites include the Hunger Games trilogy, The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak, Matched by Ali Condie and Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices series.
I just finished reading Divergent by Veronica Roth, which is a fantastic dystopian YA novel.
Why do you read?
I’m a story person, and I think this is why YA appeals to me. Adult fiction is often too focussed on characters, leaving the story unsatisfying. I love to read books that have complexity. When I like a book, I’ll usually read it five or six times and love it when I can find something new in every re-read.
Do you read for work or pleasure?
I’m the kind of person who finds comfort in books and always has. I love getting lost in a story and obsessed with a series.
I’m a news junkie, which is fortunate as that’s also my line of work, so I read a lot of newspapers and journals. I also love to read biographies.
Do you read to your kids or someone elses kids?
I’ve always read to my kids and because I love YA fiction, my daughter and her friends often come to me for book recommendations. I love it because not only does it give me an opportunity to talk about the books, it’s also a great way to connect with the kids.
Can you do the Safety Dance while reading?
I couldn’t do the Safety Dance, but I’m pretty good at reading on the treadmill or step machine at the gym – does that count?
Are you a Discworld/Twilight/Harry Potter fan?
I’ve never read Discworld, I’m not sure why, maybe I should give it a try. I was very meh about Twilight. The writing annoyed me. The premise was interesting, but the story failed to deliver.
Harry Potter was a great passion for many years. I ploughed through the first four books in three days one Christmas and then discovered it’d be six months till the 5th book came out. No one I knew was reading them, so I went online and discovered the fandom. I was immediately hooked – so much so that I once won a competition to ask JK Rowling a question after the release of the 6th book. I loved the experience of Harry Potter – lining up at the crack of dawn on book release days, locking myself away to finish the book before I could be spoiled and dressing up for movie openings. I absolutely love Jo Rowling and am so excited to read her new book.
Would you attend a flash mob dressed as your favourite character?
Definitely, I already have runs on the board having dressed up as Professor McGonnagal and Narcissa Malfoy for movie openings and parties.
Vanessa is a writer and blogger who works full time in media and marketing. She loves to read and write YA fiction and blogs about family travel, internet marketing and creative writing. Her facebook page is here and she is also on Twitter
William McInnes, star of stage and screen was born in Queensland but I won’t hold that against him. He has a beautiful speaking voice and has used that to great effect as the ‘voice’ of so many characters. I’m wondering when he’ll follow in the late Leonard Teale’s footsteps and set Australia’s poems into audio form.
McInnes has an interesting writing style, I quite like it. This book illustrates Australia and our interest in both sports and politics, it makes me wonder if I’m really Australian despite being born here as I don’t like either sport or politics.
McInnes takes a simple walk down to the shops or a visit to the beach to take us back to a particular time in our history and examine the sport of the day and the politics. His father was a big Labour supporter, giving our How To Vote cards during elections and even running on one occasion so he had some inside knowledge but he didn’t leave it at that, he’d often ask people about politicians of the day and share the other person’s thoughts.
I loved this book. I thoroughly recommend it to Australians new and old, and to other nationalities if you’re wanting to try and understand the Australian psyche and why the majority of us are so excited by sport. There is the odd swear word in it.
This is one of those all time great books. It’s been made into a movie several times and brings with it that immortal phrase “all for one, one for all” (“tous pour un, un pour tous”). It was originally published in serial form in 1844 and by 1846 had been translated into three different English versions. Many of explicit and implicit references to sexuality had been excised. I believe the most recent translation by Richard Pevear (2006) has corrected most of those and makes it easier to understand the relationship between d’Artagnan and Milady.
The story of d’Artagnan is continued in Twenty Years After and The Vicomte of Bragelonne: Ten Years Later. Those three novels by Dumas are together known as the d’Artagnan Romances.
Moby Dick is one of the books that everyone should read and I’m only mildly embarrassed to say that I haven’t. I did pick it up a few months ago and stymied myself by insisting I read the introduction. One day I’ll get back to it and I’ll ignore the introduction and get straight into the book.