1. Stepford Wives. Short summary: weird town where all the women are extreme homemakers with no time for anything else but scrubbing and cooking and serving their families.
I've seen (and actually own) this movie. As usual, when I ran across the book on paperbackswap recently, I had to get it because I just have a thing about reading the books that movies are developed from. Primarily because the books are nearly always substantially better. But not always. As was the case here.
Its an interesting read, and I think would have been a better read if I hadn't already known what was going on. I did not like the feminist movement attitude throughout the book of "only robotic women would possibly be the kind of women who really find fulfillment in caring for their home/family". Granted, the book took it to the extreme, but the undercurrent of anti-homecaring women was still there. And frankly, the movie end was far better. More, the good guy wins, and therefore, less depressing. Wouldn't recommend it.
2. Life of Pi. Short summary: son of a zookeeper is on a boat with his family, moving from India to Canada while transporting some of the (now closing) zoo's animals with them. Ship sinks, he winds up in a lifeboat with several very odd companions--including a tiger. Survives for months.
This is one of those books I've heard all sorts of mentions of, and again finding it on paperbackswap the other day, I ordered it. Great read. Fascinating story and the writing itself is fantastic. If you want a quirky, somewhat mysterious, insightful, thought-provoking read, go for this. Now how they are going to turn this into a movie with substance, I'm really not sure. Because what drove the book was not the action (I mean, come on, the guy is stuck on a life boat for months--how much action is there really!) but the language and insights. I don't know how well that's going to translate into screen.
3. Alex Rider. So I admit to being a sucker for young adult fiction. While I love a good "grown up" novel, I enjoy the easy-reading, perspective, and frequently simpler or faster pace of good young adult fiction. This summer, Turtle was reading through this series of books. As I'd not heard of it, and my sometimes reluctant reader was absolutely devouring them, I figured I'd better get in on the action. And action it is. Decent writing, good story line, it's a teen MI6 agent. Hard to explain, and despite the implausibility of the book, the stories feel plausible. If such an oxymoron can exist. Mystery, action, adventure...loving this series. (just picked up book 5 for Chris from the library this morning).
4. The Inn of the Sixth Happiness. Short summary: Glady Aylward was a young, single woman in England who felt called of God to go to China. Despite being told no, she overcomes a bunch of obstacles and ends up going any ways. She serves as a missionary in the remote regions of China with all sorts of crazy adventures, and ends up saving about 100 children from the Japanese occupation of China.
Growing up, I watched this movie more times than I can count, but I hadn't seen it in years. Then, on Netflix the other day, I found it! So I settled in for a bit of nostalgia, and to introduce my husband to a good movie. The movie was every bit as good as I remember, and afterwards we started talking about how the whole story is based on a true story. I got intrigued to know the "real" story of Gladys Aylward, and so snagged myself this book. And wow, as much as I love the movie, the full story of her life is even more incredible.
5. Children's Literature. Our favorite library finds of the last few months for Blueberry were the following:
- Poppleton. A multi-book collection of rather mundane stories about a pig called Poppleton and his friends. Cute despite the mundane. And I love the fact that they're old enough to not be entirely politically correct.
- Love the Baby! love, love, love this book. So cute. Its now on my "to own" list. About a little rabbit who gets a baby sister and is told by everyone to love on his sister. He doesn't want to because everyone keeps doing all of his special things with her. Until he eventually caves and does love her. Great illustrations and super sweet writing.