Showing posts with label book review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label book review. Show all posts


Nancy Drew Review: The Message In The Hollow Oak

It's time for another installment of the Nancy Drew Review project. The Message in the Hollow Oak was my third reread of the 64 original titles. For those of you intrigued by Carolyn Keene not being real, since I keep bringing it up, here's a nice chart that goes over the ghostwriting process for these 64 books. 


Side note: Anybody have any recommendations for me for easy-to-use video editing apps or software? Preferably free. Preferably. 


Nancy Drew Review: The Spider Sapphire Mystery

Okay, I'm back with another video in my Nancy Drew Review project. Apologies for the handheld shakiness, I wanted to sit in my comfy chair and still have good light. I'm going to be a pro at these videos by the time I finish all 64 books!


Nancy Drew Review: The Bungalow Mystery

Introducing the Nancy Drew Review Project. For the next few months - assuming it takes that long - I'll be rereading my way through all of the classic Nancy Drew stories.

I've decided to do a short(ish) video review following each one where I go ever my thoughts on the books, characters, and series as a whole. I'm a terrible rambler, so I'll apologize in advance for that. Below is my first video for the project.

Since I won't be creating a book style for each of these, you should really check out my Book Style for Confessions of a Teen Sleuth by Chelsea Cain.


Book Style + Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Harry Potter And The Cursed Child
Click image for product details.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, inspired by an original story by J. K. Rowling is the subject of today's Book Style. I'm going to talk about the book below in more detail, since it's a bit spoiler heavy, so let's jump right into the Book Style.

A pair of black Harry's jeans and a vibrant "Ginny" tank form the base. On top I've added a "Stockholm Syndrome" cardigan for an extra witchy vibe and because I have some feels about how Delphi was raised. A pair of magical "Scorpius" sneakers and a "Magic Touch" hat will keep the tip and the toes covered. For jewelry I added a "Rubber & Magic" ring, a serpent arm band, an Augurey-inspired feather necklace, and a pair of skull earrings. For accessories I chose a "Witch Craft" clutch, a black magic phone case, and a pair of "B'witched" sunglasses to hide that evil gleam in your eyes. The final touch is a bit of sparkly "Dirty Baby" nail lacquer.

Okay, onto my thoughts about Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. Careful, SPOILERS ahead!

I won't be the first person to proclaim that Harry Potter and the Cursed Child gave me a lot of mixed feelings. Unlike some people, I'm okay with the story continuing. I'm even okay with the play as a whole - even if I wish it wasn't ONLY a play. Losing Jo's voice, as integral to the world of Harry Potter as the Boy Who Lived, himself, is a bit of a blow to the emotional depth of the story. And reading a play always means experiencing less character insight than a novel allows. We are suddenly stripped of the inner monologues, the nuanced emotions, the narrative point of view. If I saw Harry Potter and the Cursed Child live in London, I believe that I wouldn't be mourning this lack of intimacy. I like to think I'm blessed with a fairly creative imagination and Jack Thorne's stage direction allowed me to get a sense of what being in the theater would actually be like, but reading it on paper is cold. I would recommend really looking at the cast and performance photos ahead of time to help envision the characters better. I will admit that picturing them as the overdone "aged" versions from the final film never worked well for me. With the lack of physical descriptions in the script, I found it easier to see them that way.

What I do love about the direction that Jo guided Thorne and John Tiffany in is that the play addresses a few of the qualms I had with her original ending. They are able to add a bit more depth to Dumbledore and Snape by acknowledging that while admirable in their sacrifices, they were deeply flawed humans. I'm still not sure how I feel about Voldemort and Bellatrix getting it on. I know Bellatrix would've been all about it, but Voldemort always struck me as being incredibly asexual. I can't picture him getting off on anything but power and cruelty. Maybe the were into BDSM. Or maybe they used some sort of magical in vitro to produce an heir of the Heir of Slytherin. So, that's weird. I hate that Delphi misses out on an opportunity at being a more three dimensional character by being introduced in a play and losing out on us seeing her better. Not thrilled that there's an air of being desperate for daddy's approval, either. I feel like making her evil in her own right would have been a better move. Voldemort's heir would surely want power for herself in her father's absence, not to bring him back to power. Maybe if they'd elaborated on her background more and her upbringing and how much indoctrination she had actually been subjected to. Ah, if wishes were horses... All in all, I am glad I read it and I enjoyed dipping my toes back into the magical world of Harry, Ron and Hermione.

If you're on the fence about this one, I would recommend it with a couple of caveats: Remember it's a play. Remember that it isn't a story about Harry, it's a story about Albus and Scorpius.


Book Style: Sexy Feminism

Sexy Feminism

Sexy Feminism by Jennifer Keishin Armstrong and Heather Wood RudĂșlph has been my go-to recommendation for women (and men) trying to dip their toes into women's studies and feminist reading since I first skimmed it a little over a year ago. This time I sat myself down and read it cover to cover, taking time to reflect on the end of chapter questions and action points, and digging my teeth into some of the referred web sites and literature. This time reading Sexy Feminism was a breath of fresh air for my psyche and a warm hug for my soul. I tend to be quiet about my values and beliefs because I grew up surrounded by voices that differed from mine. It's taken me most of my adult life so far to even really come to understand what my own beliefs are on several points. But I do know I believe in the radical idea that women are people who deserve the exact same rights as men. And if you believe women aren't property and shouldn't be denied basic rights because of their gender, then you too are a feminist. Saying it loud and proud is a freeing experience that I recommend to everyone. If even Taylor Swift can learn that feminism does not equal being a misandrist or being unfeminine (although it's totally cool if you want to dress, act, look more masculine) then everyone can get over the media-imposed implication of the word and start embracing it for what it actually is. Read this book. If you still have questions, send them my way. Talking openly about feminism is something I'm embracing.

This Book Style is a bit different, it's not really an outfit just a bunch of awesome lady-power oriented swag. From pro-feminism messages to clothing and jewelry from lady-run and women-friendly companies to products inspired by some of my own personal feminist icons - Lady Gaga, Wonder Woman, Frida Kahlo, the trio behind the Blogcademy (Shauna Haider, Kat Williams, and Gala Darling). Check out my own choices. Find your own. Research companies manufacturing and advertising practices to ensure they are kind to women. Throw your money at small businesses run by women. Read feminist literature. Read books by women. Buy the children in your life books by women and about women. Dress how you want because you want to. Pick a feminist hero; and yeah, they'll probably all have a flaw or two, we're all human after all.