Only one way to see Mockingjay Part 2

Opening night.

I’ve seen all four movies on either Thursday or Friday. But this time around Lionsgate started Thursday night showings earlier. I counted ten showings at my local theater for tonight. I don’t remember that many for any of the other movies.

And as a result I managed to try out my local theater for the first time since their heavy remodeling last year. The auditoriums aren’t as big as other movie theaters and there’s less seating because every chair is a brand new leather recliner. They’re huge.

Anyway, my question tonight is simple. How do you plan on seeing Mockingjay Part 2? And what have you thought of the movies? I’ll have a great post tomorrow morning about the series as a whole.

Uh Oh

That uh oh is for two reasons. First, my lack of posting or reading any blogs. Second, because Half Price Books is forcing more books upon me.

When I started working there last month I saw that other workers had a bunch of books on their stash shelves (they’re basically a holding shelf.) It’s where we put books/movies/games we may want to buy in the future. Some of the shelves are overflowing with things. Of course they aren’t all new, but they’re from the store.

I was of the opinion that I wouldn’t hardly use mine at all. Then I saw Mockingjay for $3. Then I saw The Perks of Being a Wallflower for the same price. And Gone Girl. These aren’t necessarily books I was planning on getting soon, but when you see that price you gotta act. I’ve since added several more. And it’s essentially become a weekly thing. Finding some book that I’m interested in or have known about for a long time and then putting it on my shelf.

Half Price Books is forcing me to buy more books when I’m not even reading any. I hate it. And love it at the same time. Ha. No question today because none of y’all are going to see this anyway. Just a slight update.

The Best of 2014: Books I read

I began this series of posts yesterday by telling y’all about the best bloggers I know. Today we’re going to talk about the best books I read in 2014. Although not over yet, it’ll be my worst reading year since high school. I’ve only made it through seven books. Seven. Oh well. But there were some standouts among those seven that I do want to talk about. Remember these are NOT books released in 2014 but books I read in 2014.

#1 The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank

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I read this book as part of my journey to read every book on Amazon’s 100 Books to Read in a Lifetime. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. This isn’t really a book. It’s her diary, as you well know. And maybe that’s why it really hit me like it did. She takes you through every emotion imaginable and she does so in such an eloquent manner that you can’t help but be impressed by her grasp of the written word. She’s able to take you back to one of the worst periods the world has ever known, and she does it while in hiding. It’s a remarkable work that everyone should read.

I currently have this book ranked #1 on my list of the best books I’ve ever read. There’s no doubt that it will stay there for some time. Here’s the post I wrote the day after finishing it.

#2 The Drop (Harry Bosch #15) – Michael Connelly

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Michael Connelly is right near the top of my favorite authors and I’ve never once been disappointed by one of his Bosch novels. The Drop is no exception. Bosch is working two cases at once. One is the death of a city councilman’s son and the other is a cold case. That’s all I’ll say. It’s vintage Bosch and I already have the next book in the series on my shelf.

I currently have this book ranked #13 on my list of the best books I’ve ever read. One spot ahead of the third and final book on the list.

#3 The Fault in Our Stars – John Green

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I don’t need to tell you anything about this book because you’ve probably already read it and made up your own mind about the story itself. This was the first time I’d read any YA title since Mockingjay in 2012. I really enjoyed this book. Yeah I thought Gus was too perfect and I thought the way he talked to Hazel was a little too much for a couple of teens, but those are pretty minor things. I loved them both as characters and John Green got millions of people to read about a tricky subject.

I currently have this book ranked #14 on my list of the best books I’ve ever read. Here’s the post I wrote about it earlier this year.

So that’s it! Those are the three best books I read this year! Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone just missed being included in the list. I won’t ask if you’ve read these titles because you’ve almost certainly read at least two of them, but I would like to know what your top reads of the year were. Tell me now.

Which Characters Would you Follow into Battle?

I’ve been thinking of this post for a few weeks now. I think I may have been watching a Narnia movie when I came up with it. Pretty sure. Anyway, I want you to do something for me. Get off your phone or computer or whatever for just a minute. Now think of some books with ridiculous battle sequences. They don’t even have to be actual battles. Maybe a particular character or two or ten is embarking on an unknown journey and knows a fight’s ahead. Or maybe a character has been told not to examine something further. A battle can be any sort of conflict for this. Now let me tell you who I’d follow into battle or stand with against the worst of odds.

Katniss Everdeen

There are way too many reasons for my eagerness to stand with Katniss through anything for me to list them all here. Like she said in Mockingjay Part 1, she never asked for any of what’s happened to her. If I have to give at least one reason why I’d stand with her, then that’s it. Because she starts off fighting just to stay alive, and for her family. But eventually she embraces who she is and what she has come to represent and fights for so much more than just those immediately around her. She’s the mockingjay. And she’s ready to fight for me. I’d be ready to fight for her.

Albus Dumbledore

Don’t tell me I can’t say him if I haven’t read all the books yet. My reasoning for choosing him is because I don’t think he’d ever hesitate to help someone, especially a student in need. But eventually he’s going to find himself in a position in which he can’t get by on his own. And I’d want to be there. So someone could help him for once.

Elvis Cole

Y’all probably don’t know him as well as the first two selections, but I’ve talked about him a number of times in the past on here. He’s an LA private eye. I would want to be right there next to him as he faces impossible odds because that’s what he always finds himself doing. I’m sure some of you don’t even read detective fiction, but this guy doesn’t just think of his clients as a means to make money. His clients are people in need. And they’ve gone to him for help. And he never lets them down. He refuses to.

Master Chief

John-117 is more than the last of the Spartans left. He’s more than a super soldier. He’s more than a guy in fancy armor. He’s hope. Mankind is on the brink of total annihilation, but it’d be impossible to give up if you get one look at him. Knowing that he’s ready to fight to the death. Knowing that he will never give up. Knowing that he still believes the war can be won. No. He doesn’t make me want to go into shelter and hope that he’ll eventually come through and save humanity. Seeing him makes me want to suit up and grab an assault rifle to stand with him. To fight alongside him. Even knowing the war may never be won.

So those are the four characters I would follow into battle! What about you? Which characters would you stand with?

The Mockingjay (poem)

This is my third straight post that has something to do with my favorite series. Yeah. I’m a little obsessed. Oh well!

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The Mockingjay

Every cause
Needs a face
We have ours
The Mockingjay

Katniss is ready
To fight the fight
That needs to happen
To make things right

She’s the leader
Who we need
To lead us
To ultimate victory

Photo Credit

When are you Seeing Mockingjay?

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Photo Credit: To Hollywood and Beyond

Part one, obviously.

Now I know that most of you aren’t obsessed with Jennifer Lawrence or Katniss or just the whole series like I am. I get it. But I also know from previous conversations that most of you have enjoyed the series and read all three books. You’ve likely also seen the first two movie adaptations.

As I’m sure you’re well aware, the movie will be out here in the US tonight. My theater has four showings at 8:00. Then one every half hour until midnight. That’s pretty insane. You all should know by now that I never ever ever go to the movies. I haven’t been once in 2014. But there was never any doubt that I’d see this in theaters. Just happens that instead of going Friday morning, as has been my custom with the previous installments, I’m going to one of those four 8:00 showings. Yeah. Call me crazy. But maybe I’ll take some pictures of Katniss and Peeta and Gale?

I’ve only been to three other midnight/Thursday showings. Deathly Hallows Part 2, Half-Blood Prince, and Transformers 3. That’s it. And it was pretty ridiculous for all three. But this is an earlier showing and I’m not particularly worried about being trampled by teens who can’t wait to set sight on Katniss. Although that is a very real possibility.

So tell me, when are you going to see Mockingjay Part 1? Crazy enough to brave the crowds on opening night or perhaps waiting for a matinee showing on a later date?

Do you Reread Books Before The Movie Adaptation is Released?

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Photo Credit: Angelena Pierce/Pinterest

This is something of a companion post to yesterday’s post in which I admitted that I’ve finally decided to reread a series of books for the first time ever. I think the timing is perfect with Mockingjay Part 1 fast approaching release.

See, I’ve never had to answer this question myself. I just started the Harry Potter series this year, so obviously I never had to go back and read any books. And I’m not interested in all the YA adaptations released each year. Cause I’ve never read them anyway. So this is the first time that I’m kind of having to answer this question. I’d just read The Hunger Games before the release of the first movie and then read the other two books in the series shortly thereafter. But I didn’t reread Catching Fire last year, though I did think about it.

Now we’re here. 2014. And I AM going to reread a book before its movie adaptation is released. Why? Maybe this is a normal thing that people do all the time and I’m just catching up. Or maybe I just want to read SOMETHING.

Also, I’ve never had to ask myself this question because I never go to the movies. Ever. I saw one move in theaters in 2013. And two in 2012. The one and only this year comes out on November 21. The tickets are over $10 here. Forget that.

So tell me, do you reread books before the movie adaptation is released?

I’ve Never Reread a Series of Books…Until Now

Yep. I’m going to do it. It’s hard to believe that I’ve never once gone back and read a series from start to finish a second time. I mean, I know my last two years of reading have been a joke, but since 2010 I’ve read a good number of books (128). I don’t know exactly how many different series are in there, but there are a few. And never once did I tell myself that I wanted to experience it again. Eh. Oh well.

But now I am telling myself that. Why? Because why not. I’m not going to make a habit of this, but there’s really no difference between never having done something and having done it just the one time. So now I should probably tell you which series I’m going to reread, right? Hm. If you’ve read my blog long enough to remember who my favorite character is, then you know the answer. If you’ve read my blog long enough to know my favorite series of books, then you know the answer. Or if you’ve read my short bio on my About Me page, then you may or may not be able to figure out the answer.

Still wondering? Okay. I’m rereading that kinda sorta popular trilogy written by Suzanne Collins. There’s this girl named Katniss, maybe you’ve heard of her? I’m not doing this to refresh my memory of the series. I know it. I know the story. I know the characters. I know what I think of Katniss. I’m doing this because I simply feel like rereading three of my all-time favorite books. That’s it.

I first read the series in the first half of 2012. I loved every book, though I definitely have a favorite of the three. And oh by the way, I’m also doing something else for the first time…I’ve never read a series straight through all at once. I always jump from author to author and series to series in order to diversify my reading habits. I’ll also be continuing that practice, but only after I finish the series.

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Here They Come

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Photo Credit

The title of this post could literally mean any one of a hundred different things. I bet if I gave you the chance to guess before I get into what this post is actually about you’d be wrong. Go ahead. Guess.

Now you have something in your head that I am quite certain is incorrect. So let me tell you what is right. Every year Hollywood adapts a million books into movies. We know this. It’s not a new trend. This fall has quite a few new movie releases that are adapted from books. I mean, we know the big ones. Mockingjay. The Hobbit. Gone Girl. And there are more. This comes during a year in which we’ve already seen a number of adaptations released. Divergent. The Fault in Our Stars. The Giver. It appears that Hollywood is fast searching for the next phenomenon, but studios have recently been hit or miss when it comes to literary adaptations. Mostly miss. And the two wildly successful series (THG & The Hobbit) will be over this year and next, so the search will continue.

This article from USA Today lists their ten highlighted adaptations of the fall. Which movie adapted from a book are you most looking forward to? You know the answer for me. Mockingjay Part 1 cannot get here fast enough.

Questions 41-55 About Books and Reading

So we’ve reached the final set of questions. I think you’ll know just about all there is to know about me and books and reading once we finish this last bunch. But if you need to catch up, here are the links to the previous posts with the questions leading up to today’s post.

Monday.

Tuesday.

Wednesday.

Thursday.

All caught up? Perfect. Let’s see what else I have for you all. Fair warning, this is a little lengthy. As in my longest post I’ve written. But it’s okay. There are some great questions toward the end!

41. The longest you’ve gone without reading

Well I didn’t hardly read at all during middle or high school. I mean, those are like full time jobs. Where could I find the time? So I’ll just say I’m sure somewhere along the line I made it a full year without reading a book from start to finish that wasn’t assigned reading.

42. Name a book that you did not finish

Well up until very recently my list of DNFs was quite small. But then I just started reading some books I didn’t like. I’ll just mention the most recent one. A Wrinkle in Time. And it’s so short, but I hated it from page one.

43. What distracts you when you’re reading?

Everything. I’m almost always in silence when I read. Occasionally I’ll read with the TV on mute.

44. Favorite film adaptation of a novel

This is tough. I think I’ll have to declare a three-way tie. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. But the only thing is that I haven’t actually made it that far into the world of Harry. Those two are based solely off the movies because I think they were great. I’ve obviously read Catching Fire and saw the movie on release day and thought it was true to the book and better than the first.

45. Most disappointing film adaptation

The Great Gatsby (2013). When you see that cast you expect a pretty damn good movie to result, and it didn’t. I had this on my DVR for months and I finally started watching it a few weeks ago. To say that I was wildly disappointed would be an understatement. I just didn’t understand the crap music in the movie. And it won a freaking Oscar for it! Just didn’t like the final product that was adapting a great, great book.

46. The most money you’ve ever spent in the bookstore at one time

I’ve never been one to buy a bunch of books at once. It’s expensive. And you all know I only read one book at a time. I’ve spent maybe $35 on Amazon at one time. And I think when my local Borders store was closing down I may have spent between $20-$30. I’ll never spend more than that at any one time. Makes no sense. I’m sorry I’m not rich like you.

47. How often do you skim a book before reading it?

Never. I read mostly series. And when I finish one I don’t even see what the next is about before buying it. I’ll literally read the back cover text of the book seconds before I start reading the book. I have no idea what the book is about until I’m ready to read it through. Just how I am. Skimming a book seems like stealing to me. Why not just go to Barnes and Noble everyday for a week and finish the whole book there? That’s what skimming is like to me.

48. What would cause you to stop reading a book halfway through?

The story. The main character. The writing. Any number of things. One of the most recent books I stopped halfway through was because the author wrote entire chapters of description. These were like 25 page chapters of nothing but description. not only was that boring, but holy crap it was annoying. Give me some dialogue or action or something!

49. Do you like to keep your books organized?

Whaa? I love books. More than non-book blogging people can possibly understand. You know how we randomly play out crazy “what-if” scenarios our heads to see if we’ll know how we’d react? Well I do that all the time. And very recently I thought of a house fire and what I might do. Guess what I came up with rather quickly? I’d break the window in my room by throwing my night stand out and then I’d grab one of those super heavy duty trash bags and just start throwing all my books in there as fast as possible. I think they’d all fit without ripping the bag. Then I’d throw them through the window and see what else is happening in the house. So yes, I keep my books organized because they’re my most prized possessions. Sure I have one on my bed and a few on my desk, but my shelves are perfect.

50. Do you prefer to keep books or give them away after reading them?

Reread my answer to the previous question. Do you honestly think I would give away books if I’m over here talking about breaking windows and inhaling smoke just to save my books? No. Matter of fact, hell no. I will never give away any book I own. Even the ones I don’t like. And it really ticks me off to see that some people are willing to give away boxes and boxes of them. If there ever came a time in which I didn’t have enough room to keep all of my book, then I would throw away unnecessary furniture or I’d have them in storage or in the garage if it was climate controlled. I don’t care what you say, there will never be a valid reason for me to give away any one of my books. And when I’m older and dying I’ll probably leave them to someone in my family who vows not to ever give them away, in writing. If no one like that can be found, then I’d donate them to a library or charity. They’ll never just be given away. Rather serious answer there.

51. Are there any books you’ve been avoiding?

Avoiding isn’t the correct term. There is only one type of book that I’ll never read. Erotica. Cause no. Even though there are several books I’m not interested in reading like Twilight, I would read those four books fifty times before ever reading erotica.

52. Name a book that made you angry

Crap. Plenty of books have made me emotional. But I really can’t think of one that made me angry. Honestly, I don’t get angry but in very specific circumstances. Books don’t fit the bill.

53. A book you didn’t expect to like but did

The Hunger Games. Shocker, right? It wasn’t that I didn’t expect to like it, it was that I had no idea what it was about or why the heck my brother had been telling me over and over to read it. It was one of those rare instances in which I went in with no expectations because we all know my take on recommending books. Just because he liked it didn’t mean I would. But hey, now I’m obsessed with the series and I’ve been introduced to my future wife in Jennifer Lawrence and I’ll likely be getting that mockingjay tattoo I told you all about.

54. A book that you expected to like but didn’t

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I mean, we’ve all seen the first movie. And probably many of you have seen the second. I really thought this would be a great book. Roald Dahl is freaking beloved. But it wasn’t. It was not good at all. Oh well.

55. Favorite guilt-free pleasure reading

Nothing. I read whatever I want. Period.

Yeahhhh! All done! Any thoughts on the last bunch of questions? Or are you just ready for me to get back to my regular posts? Probably choice B. No worries. Monday shall be more normal.