The Versatile Blogger Award

The Versatile Blogger Award

Versatile Blogger Award

I have been nominated by not one but TWO fellow bloggers for the Versatile Blog Award.  A big thank you goes out to D. Bryant Simmons and Stephanie at The Anxiety of Authorship for honoring me with the Versatile Blogger Award.  I accept this award graciously :)  I have been lucky enough in the few months since Mookology has first launched to receive nominations for several blogger awards.  The recognition is much appreciated and I hope you all continue to read!

As always, there are a few rules I am obliged to follow.  First, thank & link back to the person who nominated you (see above). Next, I’m to share seven things about myself.  I had to do something similar when I received the Kreativ Blogger Award so here are seven totally different facts about me…

  1. I’m short.  Like 5’1″ kinda short.
  2. I paint my nails about two or three times a week. My hands feel naked without polish.
  3. I have two dogs and a beta fish.
  4. My favorite TV Show is True Blood (although season 5 isn’t too great)… some close runners up are Game of Thrones, Homeland, and Shameless.
  5. I have a HUGE crush on Hunter Parrish AKA Silas Botwin on Weeds.  Sooo dreamy.
  6. In the future I would love to learn more about professional photography.
  7. Rainbows make me smile :)

The third responsibility in accepting this award is to name 15 other bloggers deserving of this award.   While I intend to award a full 15 bloggers with this lovely recognition, for now I am going to post whoever comes to mind first and add the rest later.  I like reading blogs on all topics, but mostly ones about books, crafts, and music so definitely check out these blogs below:

Reflections of a Book Addict

Amanda Loves Movies

Glitter N Glue

Miss.Zoe

KateSpanish

Steeshes

The Unbearable Lightness of Being Me

Beat Rack

Hearya

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Mook Review: Salmon Fishing in the Yemen

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen – Novel by Paul Torday

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen Book Cover Paul Torday

via BN.com

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen was a really interesting and well written novel that inspired belief of the impossible in the most realistic way.  While one can argue that it lacked build-up and was scattered and hard to understand at points, this definitely drew me in.  Since the novel was more difficult to get into, it pushed me even harder to read and appreciate the story.  Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is an epistolary (one of my favorite techniques, but often the most terribly done) which included emails, letters, interviews, news clippings, etc, all surrounding the introduction of salmon fishing into the Yemen.  The story circulates around two main characters, Alfred Jones and Harriet Chetwode-Talbot, along with several supporting characters such as the Sheik, Mary Jones, and Peter Maxwell, all of whose stories unfold amidst a very unusual project.

It is hard to give a proper review of Salmon Fishing in the Yemen.  I could comment on the plot and climax, but it seems upon finishing the story that it wasn’t really the point.  In Torday’s novel we are introduced to very honest and likeable characters, although all are entirely different, and their journey throughout the story is the remarkable part.  I immediately fell in love with the Sheik and actually felt his faith and wisdom reaching me through the pages.  During scenes with the Sheik I almost felt like I was reading an inspirational, self-help guide rather than fiction.  Also, since the epistolary technique was so well done, it really made these characters and their situations come to life.

The love aspect of this novel was probably the most interesting in terms of character building,  the Salmon Yemen Project (as named in the novel) moves the story along, but in the end there isn’t much I can say.  What is meant to be the most climactic point in the novel (the Sheik’s first time fishing for salmon in the Yemen) is actually kind of uneventful and, to be frank, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is boringbut it is boring in the most remarkable way possible.  I understand that doesn’t make sense, but I really found myself attached to this story although it wasn’t traditionally of my interest.  I would suggest this novel to someone looking for a deep, stirring beach-type read that isn’t afraid of a story that lacks action.

“Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” – Directed by Lasse Hallström

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen Movie Ewan McGregor Emily Blunt

via IMDB.com

When I read that this movie was labeled a “romantic comedy” I was very taken aback, for I found this story to be neither very comedic nor romantic.  It was merely satirical and had a few elements of romance thrown in the mix but I would never consider its story to be a “romantic comedy.”  Obviously, this was a red flag.

As with almost every intellectually stimulating book out there, filmmakers got their hands on it and turned it into a backwashed version of the book.  Separately, the novel and the movie standalone as totally different works.  For me, the novel Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is something that I would read of my own volition.  The film “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” is not something that I would typically go see or even enjoy.

There are some serious changes in the adaptation, particularly the ending.  I felt that what happened in this film completely depleted the integrity of the story.  The Sheik lives, the salmon strive in the water, Alfred and Harriet end up together.  Indeed, the underlying concept of the story is that the impossible IS theoretically possible, but it just seemed a little cheesy to me.  The performances by Ewan McGregor, Emily Blunt, Kristin Scott Thomas (yet another change – Maxwell was a woman. Go figure.), and Amr Waked were great and if it weren’t for their stellar performances the movie would have (most likely) been terrible.

All of this being said, it was a good movie.  Rather long and not very funny for a “romantic comedy” but it was good.  Nothing to write home about.  I did not enjoy the changes made to the story and the Hollywood happy ending which strayed from the book, but if I had not read it I would have probably liked “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” much more.

Mook Rating  ★★ 1/2

The Hunger Games: “Catching Fire” Updates, Casting, and More!

Readers, I need to sincerely apologize for being M.I.A. these past few weeks!  A lot has been going on, giving me barely any time to read (let alone blog!) but do not fret; your good friend Mookology has some awesome news for you regarding no other topic than our beloved “The Hunger Games” trilogy.

The Hunger Games DVD Blu Ray Jennifer Lawrence Josh Hutcherson Lionsgate Katniss Everdeen Peeta Mellark Suzanne Collins

via Amazon.com

First off, if you didn’t already know, the official DVD/Blu-Ray release of “The Hunger Games” is just over a week away, August 18th.  You can pick it up at any digital entertainment store or you can pre-order it off Amazon and have it safely delivered to your doorstep upon release day.

The dual disc pack includes both a Blu-Ray and Ultra Violet digital copy of the film, as well as a second disc including tons of behind the scenes goodies.  Some bonus features include a “Making Of” video, interviews with Suzanne Collins and Gary Ross, as well as the Propaganda films used by the Capitol and played throughout Panem.  Personally, I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy and relive the awesomeness of this movie.

The “Catching Fire” movie is set to begin filming at the end of this month and the rumor mill has been running its course deeply and quickly.  Replacing Gary Ross as the role of director will be Francis Lawrence, famed director of Will Smith’s zombie apocalypse flick “I Am Legend.”  Shooting for the sequel will take place in Atlanta, GA, and Wilmington, NC, where several casting agencies are looking for extras, as well as on the Hawaiian island of Oahu.  If you’re in these areas, definitely keep your eyes peeled over the next few months for your favorite Hunger Games stars!

Several well-known actors have been confirmed for the coveted roles in the sequel: Jena Malone as Johanna Mason,  Philip Seymour Hoffman as Plutarch Heavensbee, Amanda Plummer as Wiress, Meta Golding as Enobaria, and Lynn Cohen as Mags.  However, there are still some major unconfirmed additions to the Catching Fire team, particularly the roles of Finnick Odair and Beetee.  Although it has not been officially announced by Lionsgate, Sam Clafin has been named on IMDB.com as the actor filling Finnick’s role as well as Tony Shalhoub for Beetee.  Patrick St. Esprit is also rumored to be the aggressive Peacekeeper of District 12, Romulus Thread.

As of the moment, “Catching Fire” is set to be released November 22, 2013 but is, of course, subject to change.  Be sure to grab a copy of “The Hunger Games” when it hits stores next week.  I sure will be!

**UPDATES**

8/8: It has officially been announced that Bruno Gunn will be playing the role of Brutus, a District 2 tribute.

8/9: Alan Ritchson has been given the role of District 1 tribute, Gloss.

8/10:  The District 11 tribute Chaff will be played be E. Roger Mitchell!

8/17:  Congratulations to Liam Hemsworth’s “The Last Song” Co-star Stephanie Leigh Schlund on landing the role of Cashmere, a District 1 tribute and brother of Gloss.