Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Last Song

The Last Song
Nicholas Sparks
390 pages

"Life, he realized, was much like a song. In the beginning there is mystery, in the end there is confirmation, but it's in the middle where all the emotion resides to make the whole thing worthwhile." page 376

Veronica "Ronnie" Miller has not spoken to her dad in three years, since her parents' divorce. She was always just too angry to speak with him whenever he called, or even when he came to visit them in New York City. Now, three years later, Ronnie is being forced to spend the summer with him in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. Ronnie expects this summer to be a painful one; one full of bad memories and forced conversations. Instead, she finds things she hadn't expected: second chances, and Will Blakelee.

The Last Song is written mostly from Ronnie's point of view, but occasionally, a chapter will be written with regards to Will or her father. This gives the reader a more vivid idea as to the broader scope of the story.

So far, this has been my favorite of Sparks' novels. This is the first novel by him where I have felt entirely connected to the main character, and that I felt had the most sense of plot. Although this book still has a sad ending, I thought it was more subtle than The Notebook and A Walk to Remember,  causing no tears to flow.

Overall, this was a good read; captivating, sensitive, and sweet. This would be a great summer read, or for someone who is in need of cloudless skies and salty ocean air!

This book was adapted into a film in 2010.To watch the trailer for the movie, starring Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth (from The Hunger Games), click here.

On a side note, Off The Shelf now has 4,000 views! Thanks to all of the dedicated readers, the lookers, the skimmers, the glancers, and especially those who have typed "Laurie Halse Anderson" into Google Images causing my blog to pop up! Thanks to all of you Americans, Russians, Germans, and Austrians! I hope you have found something worth your while!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Thoughts, Rambles and Looking Ahead

The leaf at the right is one of many, many, that I found scattered across the lawn this morning. I could have sworn the piles had multiplied in just one evening. And as I look out the window now, the leaves are continuing to fall, but never straight down, always zig-zagging back and forth through the air.

The sun didn't really decide to show itself today, making the sky a never-ending plane of different shades of gray. No signs of rain though, no clouds, just vast color. I think the trees are making up for it though. My backyard alone has enough yellow, orange, green, red, and brown to to create half the rainbow. The thermometer currently reads 49, and that is the kind of thing that hits you really hard - Fall is now in full swing, and time is really flying by. For goodness sake, it's October 12th already!

The following poem seems to fit my thoughts at the moment. (I suggest you read it a few times, then reflect)

Nature's first green is gold, / Her hardest hue to hold. / Her early leaf's a flower; / But only so an hour. / Then leaf subsides to leaf. / So Eden sank to grief, / So dawn goes down to day. / Nothing gold can stay.  -Robert Frost

On a different note, you will notice I have added The Crucible by Arthur Miller to my "Currently Reading" section in the sidebar. Supposedly, this is one of the greatest American plays of all time, so I figured it must be worth a look. I find it interesting so far, and plan on reading some more of it after I've finished here.

Some upcoming posts will include a review on The Last Song by Nicholas Sparks, and post about the themes of The Crucible. You might even find a The Movie vs. The Book review in the near future.

Enjoy the weekend!

Monday, October 8, 2012

The Movie vs. The Book: A Walk to Remember

On Saturday night, I sat down and watched the movie adaption of Nicholas Sparks' novel, 
A Walk to Remember. The movie was released in 2002, and is rated PG.

As the novel was fairly short, several scenes were added to the movie to give the story more dimension. For example, the movie opens up with Landon and his friends out after their curfew, therefore letting the viewers know that he is not a well-behaved kid. As the movie progresses, you see his change in character more profoundly than in the book.

An example of another added scene would be one where Landon names a star after Jamie. This scene shows the viewer that he really cares for Jamie, and that this is not just some short-lived high school relationship. No matter how "cheesy" that might sound, it was a great addition to the story. To watch this scene from the movie click here.

Overall, I really enjoyed the movie, maybe even more so than the book. (which is usually quite rare) A Walk to Remember is definitely a movie to watch with your friends, and a story you certainly won't want to forget.

Be sure to check out my review of the book!

Friday, October 5, 2012

I've Got My Ticket!

I have my ticket!
Advance tickets for the movie Breaking Dawn Part - 2 went on sale this past Monday at midnight. Although the movie is not in theaters until November 16th, according to this article, Monday's ticket sales brought in an estimated $1.7 million.
The ending of the upcoming movie has been rumoured to have a different, newly thought-out one as compared to the book. I'm not sure how I feel about that yet, I guess I will just have to wait and see. Only 41 more days!
In the meantime, be sure to read my reviews of all of the books in The Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer:

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Notebook

The Notebook
Nicholas Sparks
214 pages

It is 1946, World War II has ended, and Noah Calhoun has come home to New Bern, North Carolina. After being deployed overseas to Europe, his life has returned to normal. He works from dawn till dusk, only stopping to read poetry. Everything is normal, until Allie Nelson shows up in his driveway. Like a drive back into the past, Noah is soon caught up in feelings and questions he had felt and thought once before. And the most important question is, What is true love?

On a normal trip to the library, I would not have checked out The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks. But at a recent get together with friends, I got the whole "You've never seen The Notebook? Oh my gosh, that is like the best movie ever! And Ryan Gosling's in it!"

Before they could persuade me into watching it right then and there, I stated my philosophy of "book before movie".  And so, I went to the library last week to check it out.

Honestly, I don't really understand what all of the hype is about Sparks' books. Yes, they are short, very chick-lit, and well told, but they are all so tragic. Both A Walk to Remember and The Notebook had me tearing up. What happened to the prince and princess living happily ever after?

For me, this book was like a puzzle with a few missing pieces. I had questions that were never really answered, and things were mentioned, but never were they elaborated. I found myself a bit bored at times, and a 214 page book can't really afford that.

On a more positive note, the story itself touched my heart, in a way no one who reads this book can deny. The reader will feel the pain Noah and Allie feel, that is a fact, it is just a matter of whether you've felt you've been told the whole story.

To watch the trailer of the movie my friends think is "the best ever" click here.