localfreak: (Mr Toad in Rehearsals Cosgrove Hall)

A couple of weeks ago I read this book. It is one my mother owns that had somehow been shuffled to the top of a pile in the move, rather than being hidden between books about chemical injuries and respiratory hazards in the workplace. I didn't really want to read it: my affinity for Wind in the Willows is well-known and I dislike using them as allegory. As a child any book that contained a character called 'Toad' 'Mole' 'Rat' or 'Mr Badger' automatically became the Toad/Mole/Rat/Badger (which of course it one of the many reasons why Badger's Parting Gifts is the most traumatising book ever).

I couldn't put this book down. It's an allegory written for psychology students and as a story doesn't always work out- there are plotlines which are left unfleshed and era/timeline issues that don't quite follow (including reference to 'pets' which were problematic) but still I couldn't. I read it, then read the ending chapters again, then read the whole thing again all in one day.

I don't know how much I have got out of it. But I am trying to acknowledge now that my already vaguely neurotic tendencies have been quietly going haywire pretty much since our kid died last year. Cooking, something I enjoy doing, has become stressful as I somehow become incapable of getting on with things without consistently asking questions- suddenly I will find myself unable to remember whether I should salt the pan for peas or how best to chop peppers or how long to roast a tray of vegetables. Another book I picked up encouraged me to examine my anxious behaviours by writing down my thought process every time something overwhelmed me. I am honestly suprised how many times a day, a week, even on 'happy' events that my though processes end with 'I will disappoint everybody and they will think I am stupid and I don't want people to be cross with me'. I've never claimed not to be an anxious person, but I think with everything else I'm just making myself worse because of an inability to make the world be rational for me. I can't make things better or fix things so instead I flap about being impotent and then feeling unhappy because I can't fix things and people are upset and I'm rubbish.

I am as hot a mess as Tony Stark most days, and I don't even get to be Iron Man out of it!

But I'm trying to find out how to stop being a ridiculously anxious mess of stress and worry and stuff. I just haven't got it worked out properly yet.

And that book was good. It's just...haunting me a lot. A lot.
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
I didn't post this yesterday because I had a wonderful time visiting my friend for a New Year's Eve gathering. Mum and I have never done anything on New Year's Eve before and it was so very lovely we had a wonderful time and today we were straight out again to take Nanny to Mass and then spend the afternoon with her, walk the dogs and get drenched to our underthings in the showers. Lol. Auspicious start to the year, anyway!

In 2013 I read 61 books and watched 21 films

This is, for the first time since I started recording, an increase in books (last year I read only 40) but an absolutely enormous drop in films (last year I saw 44). There are many reasons for this- buying the house and family commitments that have kept me away from the television, and equally a need for the comfort and escapism that books provide much more thoroughly for me than films- you can't 'drift off' in the same way from a book because the story waits for you to return your eyes to it.


Best Book I Read for the First Time in 2013 was:

I've read several marvellous books for the first time this year including The Opaque Garden by Anna C. Jones, Kalmari 1 by H. Stilwell and The Black Land by M. J. Wesolowski, but I think overall I shall have to say 84 Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff. I have wanted to read this book after hearing an article on BBC Radio 4 about the story about five years ago. Only trouble was? I couldn't remember the title or author, only that 'it was a street in london and about a bookshop' so I was in PAROXYMS OF GLEE when I found it in the library and realised that THIS WAS IT. I have re-read it again since then because it's just wonderful.

The Worst Book I Read in 2012 was:

I cant decide between The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim by Jonathan Coe which was just MISERY MISERY ALL IS MISERY FOREVER OH HOW CAN IT GET ANY WORSE? OH LOOK IT JUST GOT WORSE. Or Black Cat by Martyn Bedford which had a good premise but was quite hard going and then just turned terrible by CUT FOR BIG SPOILER )

The Funniest Book was:

You Made Me Late Again! by Pam Ayers. It's Pam Ayers, she's awesome.

The most poignant/moving book:

Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt I SOBBED INTO MY BATHWATER but it was very very beautiful.

Favourite Re-read/Old Favourite:
I did a lot of re-reading this year but probably The Children of Green Knowe by Lucy M. Boston and A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens but I did also re-read for the millionth time On Writing by Steven King I owe such a lot to it.

Full List of my Books for 2013: http://listography.com/localfreak/books/books_of_2013


The Best Film I Watched in 2012:

Not much to choose from this year but probably Iron Man 3. Sorry, Wolverine, I liked you in parts but the plugged 'bullet train' was really a bit dull.

The Worst Film I watched in 2012:

Hercules I never saw it when it came out, although our Prawn loved it. I see my childhod instincts were correct, it is SO BORING.

The Funniest Film Was: either Iron Man 3 or Paranorman. It's a bit weird to look back though because we watched the latter on the campsite for Nanny's 80th birthday party which, of course, is now the last time I saw the kid alive. :-( so it's hard to remember really,but I think we found it hilarious and I was going to lend it to him.

The Most Uplifting Film Was: The Muppet Christmas Carol

Favourite Re-Watch:

Same as above. I love Muppet Christmas Carol.

Full list of my films for 2013: http://listography.com/localfreak/movies/films_of_2013
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
I continue to surroung myself with books. I have read Educating Peter by Tom Cox, The Shopkeeper's Daughter by Lily Baxter and Cold Christmas by Nina Beachcroft since I last wrote. I have another two from my Lady Heyes pile left and another one on order from the library that hopefully will come soon.

I'm working there on Saturday anyway so I'll be able to see where I am in the queue and also probably acquire more books. I know I need to start getting down to hard academic tomes again, but they are not quite as comforting- one zones out of them more easily, when I need to be sucked in.
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
I have being surrounding myself with books. One forgets, it seems at times, what a wonderful haven just the smell of an old book can be. I am transported to the trips to the library of my childhood, imagining myself devouring the entire section (sans the picture books, naturally, which even at five or six I felt had too few words) just like Roald Dahl's Matilda. I used to fight tears when Nanny would tell me we had to go because the library would be closing soon and I must choose my six to keep me for the week.

To many, I'll be talking nonsense, I always have books. Surely, I have never turned away from them? And I suppose not, never entirely, but I had somehow forgotten, apart from brief moments quite what a comfort books are. That they transport, redeem, hold and embrace. Thinking about them, breathing them in, makes the Wide World stop at the locked door and slink away for a time.

I have re-read Stephen King's On Writing since last Saturday. I clung to its weight in my bag even when I had no time to read more than a paragraph, the little library book has been near my hand, a hand-hold itself for dealing with the funeral and everything. I have also finished re-reading, for the millionth time The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame, my childhood comfort blanket. I am grateful for both of these.

On Friday, which was my mother's birthday, she, I and [personal profile] still_lycoris went to Lady Heyes and whiled some happy time looking at the bizarre and the shiny and the tat in the shops, before whiling away some hours in the amazing, towering second hand bookshop. There was an offer- buy 2 get 1 free. Even up to a few months ago I would have resisted, decluttering after all buying when I already have books on my to-read pile and so on. But right now I need books, I crave them and concerns about hoarding and mess can go hang when it comes to reading more.

I have just finished House of Tribes by Garry Douglas Kilworth. It is a story about a mouse named Pedlar and his adventures from Hedgerow to meet the house mice and unite the tribes and factions within. I said at the time, after reading the blurb, it would either be rather good or dreadfully tedious. It was very good. The pace is lightning-quick and the book thoroughly un-put-down-able. I liked it very much and am very glad to have bought it. I have five more on the pile from that trip, plus two or three rather more weighty tomes in my to-read pile. I also have a longing to re-read some others: Harry and the Wrinklies, Rowan of Rin maybe even Swallows and Amazons or the entire Harry Potter series.

There just aren't enough hours in the day for all of the books. I am so very grateful for them all right now.
localfreak: (Chef!Wilson)
This morning I boasted my delight across the internet because I managed to acquire two marvellous bargins before 9am. The first was a book that I read at an Undergraduate and have now decided I need to read again. New, the book's cost is obscene, second hand the cheapest I could find were on Ebay and Amazon at around £12.75 and £11.75 including postage respectively. I was debating the merits of this, when I noticed there were being sold by the same seller and said seller is one whom I have bought from previously, and thus subscribed to their newsletter.

I hastened to their website and found the same used book for around £4.98 including postage.


THEN I noticed the author had written another text, absolutely relevent to my interests in a I must posess this book and read it NOW kind of way. However, even second hand the copies were rare (one listing on Abebooks only and a couple on amazon) and eye-wateringly prices (£30+). I even looked at the library catalogue for the nearby city library to see if they might have a copy and began to seriously debate arranging my local library to order a copy for me.

Then I looked on ebay and found a student selling an old copy for 99p +£1.20 PP. So I have bid on it and have every hope of it being mine.

I was Very Pleased with my sucesses.

That was probably the fatal mistake, as this evening the television has decided to randomly break. So it's a good job I saved all that money this morning because IT'S ALL GOING TO HAVE TO GO AWAY NOW.

localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
Absoultely done in this week, and it's only halfway through! Got home tonight to find a concerning letter from the council saying I owe them money, when I kind of have signed documentation from them previously stating I don't. I'm sure I'm right but it's just very worrisome. Mum is going to call them tomorrow for me as I'm in work and hopefully it can be all sorted out easily. I really don't fancy learning how to complain to the ombudsman, when I've only just learned that one exists for this kind of thing.

Anyway that's all messy and horrible. How is everyone?

Currently reading De Profundis and Other Prison Writings which I am enjoying much more this time 'round. I think it is mostly because I can read a page or two and then pause to ruminate on it, whereas last time there wasn't that kind of leisure.

Bits and pieces going on life wise, lots of my limited time being spent contemplating depressing things and tallying up my failures...and telling myself off for tallying up failures rather than doing something USEFUL to try and achieve something more successful.
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
Today I went to get the lottery tickets after getting my monthly haircut and was asked for age identification by the lady in the shop. As I am ONE WHOLE HORRIFYING DECADE older than the minimum age to buy tickets I was mildly pleased. On my way back to The New House, taking time to facebook this fact whilst walking (because I haven't totally lost my 'down with yoof' yet) some boys who had been hanging around the chippy all afternoon approached me politely.

"Scuze me. Will you go the shop for us?"

"No, sorry love." I replied.

How funny that one minute I am de-aged and in the other feel so very old! Of course I wouldn't go in for them, there will be plenty of people who will, but truthfully for a moment there I honestly FORGOT that of course the kids used to do that all the time when I was one. Usually for fags or booze, at their age (which I'd estimate between 13-15) more likely to be fags.

Didn't get a lot done on the house today, but did manage a sneaky slip to the library to get out De Profundis between reading that and Rum, Sodomy and the Lash I feel I need something frothy to balance it out. So far am managing quite well be re-reading Pirate Vindaloo by Elessil and Hippediva (Sparrington) (in keeping with the sailors and sodomy theme, naturelment.
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
Super Suprise Party for Nanny's 80th? SUCCESS :D.

I am very impressed with my crazy, crazy Family after last weekend, for the party and the suprise both succeeded. Uncle Peter and John had invited her to stay at the same park where their Retreat is but she had no idea that Uncle Paul & Auntie Janet were coming to stay in their caravan and Mother and I had also booked another of the statics to stay. On Friday as we arrived we then found out Mum and I were staying next door to her! Luckily it was easy to find as the twins & their SOs had arranged with the cleaners to get in early and festooned Nanny's caravan in banners, balloons and streamers. She was just settled in when the door opened and THE WRONG TWIN walked in to the one she expected, followed by Auntie Janet and Mum and me. She was so surprised! Then, for the soiree the next day I'd got a big poster printed and Uncle Peter and John had a giant carboard cut out of the queen which we glued Nanny's face to and put it in the window of The Retreat, again festooned in bunting and things, and so Nanny arrived to see not only that but my other Aunties, Uncles and also my cousins Zog and Bean (sadly, Prawn couldn't come as he had an exam on Monday). She was so happy! And just generally spoilt all weekend we ate delicious food and talked, drank tankards of tea and it was really, really great.

Now we can all breathe a sigh of relief that we pulled it off! Trying to keep a secret for so long that was this big was driving us all potty towards the end- I was worse than most as whilst the brothers and sisters conspired I kept getting sent to keep Nanny talking!

So yes, it was lovely and very relaxing to be in the middle of the nowhere with exceedingly limited mobile signal. I re-read Second Hand read The Graveyard Book and watched ParaNorman.

But back to work I am now. I have to give a very important presentation tomorrow evening. At the moment I am only mildly concerned, mostly because I'm too tired to work up to a full-scale panic I think. It'll be fine. As long as no one heckles.

The other reason my head has been up my rear for months is that I have been buying a house. This is a HUGE THING and very scary to someone who has lived in the same house all his life (truly, Mum actually told me "I got the keys for the house on Saturday and you arrived the following Tuesday"). All things being well I get the keys soon, although we aren't moving all in one go, Mum and I, as we have the luxury at the moment of not having to, so I can get into the New House and decorate and arrange for various workmen to come and Do Things to it before I have to actually put all the big furniture in. So that's good. Terrifying, but good.

*collapses in a heap* *only not really because I need to email the solicitors about some last minute stuff*
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
I am Having A Week. I've had rows with Tesco's customer service, the pollen count is insane and there's a lot of pressure for a big family (suprise) event that reminds me why I both absolutely love being in a big family, and at the same time why it's a pain in the neck! (Someone should observe us and then write a big HP fic replacing us with Weasleys, we're probably more chaotic!)
So rather than whinge incessantly about how stressed I am I'm going to write about books.

I recently bought three e-books from Riptide Publishing online. The conversion rate of dollars to pounds in my favour, but also because the other month when I was not spending anything and also in the middle of lent so had no fanfiction to distract me, I went through every book I thought I might like on the site and read the extracts!

The first one I read was Portside by Elyan Smith cut for spoilers ) Overall, I liked it but it is more a short story than a novella in my view.

Next I read Second Hand by Marie Sexton and Heidi Cullinan and Covet Thy Neighbour by L.A.Witt

cut for discussion potential spoilers ) So in conclusion, I liked both of them, but I really really liked Second Hand. A LOT. I just wanted moooorrrreee.
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
Life is very troublesome at the moment. Soon I will probably explain why but at the moment I can't really, although those of you who do view my blog via Deadjournal rather than Dreamwidth may notice that I have temporarily let my paid account die. I will probably ressurect it in the next few days but my head's been up my arse (not helped by the fact the new outlook seems determined to put all notifications in the junk EVEN WHEN I TELL IT NOT TO).

Today I have worked on Essay 2 and completed Draft 1, then gone through it with the red pen of doom. It is not going to be my best work but I simply can't help that, I haven't the time to go as deeply as I would like to, but at the moment I think it's looking pretty okay. Now if I can get it sorted in the next day or so then I can go and see Iron Man 3! (That's a strong motivator, although occasionally I am gripped by a fear I am making it into too strong of a motivator, as I'm a teensy bit scared that I might not like Iron Man 3...I REALLY LIKED 1 & 2 but this will hopefully be the first Iron man I see actually at the pictures so there's some pressure there).

I have also been reading some Harry Potter fics for a change, mostly ones that are long serials that I had read but of course have since been updated. I'm randomly in a real mood for long plotty Harry-centric gen, either Master of Death stuff, which I love anyway, but also Sevitus/Snape-Adopts-Harry fic. Sadly I'm finding filtering for this on Ao3 is really bloody difficult, but for some reason my browser hates potions and snitches. In that it shows me three chapters in a readable font and then randomly one in a tiny tiny font which the text enlargement ceases to work on so I have to manually zoom into my screen to read. Which sucks quite a bit. Luckily the two I have been (re)reading were also posted on Ao3 so I've found them on P&S then opened Ao3 and found them on there, as I can actually read it without killing my already somewhat troublesome eyes (I need an appointment. It is in my future. Probably next month).
localfreak: (Drunken Sailor)
I broke my Lenten promise yesterday. I am SO STUPID. I’ve been doing so well even with daily emails from archive of our own that fics I’m subscribed to are updated, let alone another throwdown on tumblr and [personal profile] copperbadge posting a list of recs. But Mum has been recently motivated to go through some of the boxes of papers in The Hovel (I know!) and when I got in from work yesterday I thought I’d show solidarity by going through the Last Unopened Plastic Wallet in my room, the first page of which was an innocuous hand-out from a parish sing-a-long with lyrics to songs like My Old Man’s a Dustman and Maybe It’s Because I’m A Londoner. Underneath? Ahahahah.

When I was fourteen we had a dial up internet connection that was rather pricey considering how little money we actually had coming in, so I was only allowed a very short amount of time per week on the internet. What I would do, then, would be to click as many pages as possible in my allotted time and then read through them via the history buttons when I was offline. Sometimes, particularly in the case of fics where the sites’ history didn’t always save, I put them on word and printed them off, for enjoyment and/or distribution among friends. In this folder, discretely hidden away, were three such fics: two Savage Garden onesand a Bucky O’Hare one. I read them through and made the executive decision to recycle them, so I brought them downstairs, popped them in the recycle bin and sat down. Then realised what I’d just done. DAMMIT FANFICTION. DAMMIT SELF!

I spent the evening re-reading last November’s failed attempt at Nanowrimo. I still like it, I still think I have something of a story there, even if it isn’t as strong an idea as some of my others, but I’m also still stuck on how Gerry (my main character) is actually going to find out (and stop) the blackmailer before he ruin’s Mask and Ophelia’s lives forever. I know who the blackmailer is, but trying to find a way for this to be discovered still eludes me.
I started reading another of my library books Mobile Library Mystery #1: The Case of the Missing Books by Ian Sansom it was blurbed as humorous but I’ve had to give it up after a few chapters. Some of it was funny but I found it very frustrating as the ‘humorous’ disasters that happened to the main character went on, and on, and on. Not really my kind of humour. I’ve started re-reading Charitable Getting by Sam Starbuck instead.

But I need to stop all this for now and get on with some uni stuff.
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
I've given up fanfiction for Lent. I am trying to make this even include those fics on Archive Of Our Own which email direct to my inbox when they're updated. The Blind!Tony one in particular is KILLING ME. But then, it's meant to be hard and horrible and difficult to give up, otherwise it wouldn't be a Lent thing.

I've just finished reading Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt. I am the first person to have it out of the library, I've had it on reserve since I knew a copy was being ordered.

I can't actually seem to stop sobbing. It was so very beautiful.

Life has lots in it at the moment also, which is possibly making me a little oversensitive.
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
Work is being a bit of a stressbag at the moment, but it always is on the leadup to what is known as Changeover, even though February is like the mini-me version compared to the Epic Hell of August. Nontheless, Changover is tomorrow and it looms evil and ominous in my general direction. I am comforted, somewhat, however, by the fact that next week I have a couple of days off. I am probably going to spend the fourteenth either going to do a lot of pressing errands (going to the bank, arranging to meet up with people etc) or else working on the hovel, which has got somewhat worse due to a combination of Christmas, bad weather and the fact that towards the end of last year the Tip was closed for two months.

I am currently reading Brown Owl's Guide To Life in between an extract from Malinowski's work on the Trobriand Islanders. I dug out some of my old English Language folders today and am amused to find that some of the handouts I kept from there may potentially come in handy on this module.Of course I have to decipher my 17-year-old-self's handwriting first, which is no mean feat. I do get a lot of practice at deciphering scrawl at work though so I should manage with time (and possibly a magnifying glass, I had a tinywords phase somewhere in those two years.
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
This evening I am mostly having a fit of artistic temprement, which in my house is termed for "Being A Melodramatic Ranting Wanker". But it's all rotten and I can't write. I'm desperate, dying, deranged to write something, anything, a smutty limeric, a tiny bit of verse, a drabble, a flash fiction ANYTHING that I can write and think "That's okay." But I haven't managed one completed thing all month. I spend more time staring lost into space thinking of nothing to say, or writing down bits of words that never seem to gel together. I have IDEAS but nothing seems to formulate correctly. Which then makes me feel like a failure. Which is unpleasant.

Maybe I'm coming down with something, my throat is sore; if in doubt, blame the body rather than admit to fears of a dullard's soul.

In mildly brighter news I have submitted both my essay and virtual presentation on Monday. So that is good. My next module is Research Methods, which originally I was not looking forward to but after feeling like a dunce for the last few months feels like a breath of air. My readings for week one are IMMENSE so I made a small start yesterday, as I finished both my fiction library books (Gerald's Game by Stephen King and The Godfather by Owen Whittaker ) rather quicker than expected. The first reading is one of those late 30s social anthropologists, always fun and at least never too dry it's all "It was on the corner of forty-second street I first encountered Ronnie. He was a good boy, rought like they all were, but he must have thought there was some merit in what I was trying to do. Pretty soon Mama and Papa deVola were having me round the table for supper at least once a week like one of the family so when Joey, the youngest, got into some trouble at the local gambling dens, of course he came to find me, as did the guys he'd annoyed." Shades of....oh damn, what was that black and white Film Noir where the camera was restricted to the view of the main protagonist? My google-fu is not working tongiht.

Study Day!

Jan. 21st, 2013 05:19 pm
localfreak: (carryon)
Off work today, of which I am glad because of the snow, despite it not being too deep it has been melting quite a lot all afternoon and the long walk to the car park would have been exceedingly wet and horrible.

I have completed and submitted both my Essay and Virtual Presentation. This means The Module of Doom is OVER. Free, free, free! Of course this now means I need to make good on promises I made in my head (that when I no longer had the essays looming, I would arrange a catch up with one of my relatives who I see very rarely these days and should try harder to keep in touch with). I've submitted them now anyway so that's a relief, I spent all that drafting, redrafting, cursing, cursing some more, redrafting, finding other words for "arguably" (which is one of my tic words for essays. Every sentence, arguably, requires an 'arguably' in it.) apart from a quick trot around the block after dinner to get a bit of fresh air (very fresh!). I also finished reading Gerald's Game by Stephen King, which I started last night. I had picked it up at work on Saturday because the last time I'd been in shelving a whole load of new copies of Kings I had read the blurb on the back and thought it quite interesting. I wanted to know how he managed to sustain a book with what would undoubtedly be a very limited viewpoint in a very confined parameter, but I was very nervous. Apart from one aborted attempt at Tommyknockers when I was about fourteen, I've never read any Stephen King fiction. My friend K LOVED them as a teenager, she always had one in her bag at school, and I remember catching a glimpse at some random passage in Misery once and just thinking "I don't really have the stomach for this." Scary books are harder than scary films, because with scary films you can look away from the screen, look at the light streaming in from outside, or look at your friend watching with you or even go and hide on the stairs until the really vile bit is over, with Scary Books you can close the book all you like but if you want to go on you have to GO BACK AND READ THROUGH IT. I found that out at a very young age, maybe sixish, with the part where the soldiers are in Giant Country in The BFG and any moment the giants might wake up and squash them all, and it still holds true. But this book I think I quite liked. It was clever (and a little bit grisly) rather than downright scary, which perhaps explains why there seem to be a lot of negative reviews on goodreads from people who otherwise love his writing- maybe this is an exception to the rule? Who knows. I thought it was pretty decent anyway.

Currently waiting for it to be time to cook the peas to go with the cottage pie in the oven for our tea, pondering the universe. I only wish it would ponder me some inspiration- I've got at least three writing competitions I wanted to enter and it's all just desert dry in my head, or else, with the poetry, crippled by self doubt and lack of rhythm.
localfreak: Willo the Wisp (Willo the Wisp)
In 2012 I read 40 books and watched 44 films

This is (once again) a decline in books (last year I read 45) but an increase in films (last year I watched 37).

I think I could attribute some of my drop in the books both to reading some rather hefty tomes and also a lot of Uni reading. (and fic, always the fic).

Best Book I Read for the First Time in 2012 was:

I kind of want to say one of the Temeraire books I read, but the problem is I can't actually remember what happened in which book. So probably Robbie Ross: Oscar Wilde's True Love by J. Fryer

The Worst Book I Read in 2012 was:

Becoming Jane Eyre by S Kohler it had random pointless obsessions with sex and sex parts early on which (figuratively at least) dropped off but the book never really recovered.

The Funniest Book was:

Wow, again, I don't read many funny books do I? Was probably The Masters of Sitcom from Hancock to Steptoe by C Stephens it's non-fiction but included a lot of extracts from scripts.

The most poignant/moving book:

The Book Thief by M Zusak

Favourite Re-read/Old Favourite:

I re-read What Katy Did by Susan Coolidge which is one of my absolute favourites. I also however re-read On Writing by Steven King which I (again) couldn't bear to put down.

Full list of my books of 2012: http://listography.com/localfreak/books/books_of_2012


I don't usually do New Year's Resolution. But last year I privately resolved that, now my home town has a cinema, I would Go To The Pictures More, even if it meant going on my own. By my reckoning I saw 14 films at the cinema, just over 1 per month which I am very pleased about.

The Best Film I Watched in 2012:

I watched A LOT of awesome films. At the pictures I particularly loved Avengers Assemble but I also loved The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and Rise of the Guardians quite a lot.

Also following the Avengers I then watched A LOT of superhero films this year and fell madly for Iron Man and Iron Man 2 (BLACK WIDOW!). I watched a lot of seriously cool stuff this year.

The Worst Film I watched in 2012:

The worst film I watched at the cinema was undoubtedly We Bought a Zoo which was (in turns) dull, predictable, tripey, lacking in animals and ever so slightly culturally insensitive (Fine so you took a RL story based in the UK and set it in the USA? That's fine. What isn't fine is then having the Zoo's Grand Opening on 7/7. It just felt like...seriously lost in translation here. And it was boring.

The worst film I watched all year however has to be A Christmas Carol the Musical which happened to be the only Christmassy thing on telly the Saturday before Christmas, when I was putting up the tree. WORDS FAIL to fully explain the mawkish, badly acted, badly directed schmaltz that totally lacked any of the sublteties that provide the needed tension in the story. Fail. Bad film. If it was a choice again between that or Jeremy Kyle...okay so it would still win but I would not be so quick to make that call.

The Funniest Film Was: probably either Avengers Assemble or Rise of the Guardians. Or My Best Friend Is A Vampire

The Most Uplifting Film Was: The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. Because it was WONDERFUL.

Favourite Re-Watch:

Either Passport to Pimlico which is one of my all-time-absolute favourite films or Basil, the Great Mouse Detective

Full list of my films for 2012: http://listography.com/localfreak/movies/films_of_2012
localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)
First Monday back is probably the hardest day in the world. Killer headache for most of the day. I was going to do some sort of rec post but my brain is cabbaged to it will have to wait. I've read my first two books of the year now. The first was Becoming Jane Eyre by Sheila Kohler

my thoughts )

The second one is the reason I was going to do a fannish post soon. For I have been reading Harry Potter/Temeraire crossovers. And Then a Sharpe/Temeraire crossover. I'd heard about Temeraire books before but as I am iffy both on historical novels (my mum reads a lot of them and although I want to like them I often find them hard going) and fantasy I wasn't really tempted. But then there were crossovers and it all started sounding kind of lovely and fun and not like "You must travel to the great fire pits of Agrisin-Baye and there battle the forces you find before snatching the dragon's egg from the eye of the Unburning Fires" kind of book. So I made up my mind to ask a friend to lend them to me. Then on Saturday I realised we had some in the library. Amusingly, I was first disappointed to find the second and third but not the first in the Sci-Fi/Fantasy section, and then found out that the first one (and the fourth) both lived downstairs in the Historical section. Lol. So, still wary, I only got the first one out (in case I didn't like it).

I finished it in a day. Suffice to say I really did like it and found the friendship between Laurence and Temeraire absolutely adorable and fun and I am not at work for three weeks. Now, I do have about a MILLION books to read in the meantime so I must make the tricky decision: Do I send a messenger to the library to exchange book one for book two OR do I wait patiently and read something else in the meantime. There is merit to both. On the one hand I did like the first book and am holding off reading the Temeraire-only fic until I read the others because of spoilers, so the desire to Read THem All is quite a pull, on the other hand I don't want to read them all so fast I get story-fatigue. It has been the killer of books past, and often the reason I don't read many books that run in a series. It doesn't mean I stop liking them, but if I dive in too quick I then find myself unable to read them again for years at a time. It happened with Prisoner of Azkaban- I read it about six times in a month some years ago, and haven't been able to focus on reading it since. It doesn't mean I don't like it anymore but I just find myself unable to look at it. It's a bit like if you've ever eaten too much of something- when Muppets in Space came out at the pictures myself and a friend went to see it and she ordered a large bag of popcorn to herself, so I did the same. I ended up giving her the half I couldn't finish and haven't been able to stomach sweet popcorn since.

So I'm not sure. On the one hand it could be good for me to wait to get book two for a few weeks, on the other hand I'm not sure I'll last that long, particularly as I have access from home to the library catalogue and I know that we have a copy of the second book in the local library. I'd have to bomb-it home to get there before it shut one day but still...


localfreak: avatar which I have used as mine since scarboard days 10 years ago (Default)

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