Monday, September 27, 2010

The next Harry Potter...or Twilight?

Since Harry Potter and the Twilight movie series will come to an end in the next two years, Hollywood is striving to give audiences a new reason to head over to their local movie theatres. This is why a lot of the popular young adult fiction novels are having their movie rights bought so quickly.

This small article by Jenny Davies gives us a list of 10 books that could possibly be the next record breaking hit at the box office.

The list includes:
-The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
-The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare
-Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr
-Maximum Ride series by James Patterson
-Uglies series by Scott Westfield
-Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
-Wake by Lisa McMann
-Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
-Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater
-The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

Now don't get too excited. These novels all have a chance of being scrapped by the movie studios that now have rights to them. I remember when A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray was all set to be cast and then everything kind of just stopped.

This also leads me to my next point, does a book's fanbase have anything to do with the success of the film adaptation? Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief was set up and hoped to be the next Harry Potter but that didn't turn out to be the case.

In my honest opinion, it has a lot more with luck than anything else and you can't recreate luck.

Update on my reading of The Hunger Games

So basically, I am screwed. Read The Hunger Games slowly because school readings take top priority and now that I have finished it, I find myself in a spot of trouble.

1. I'm addicted.
2. I am hold request #245 for Catching Fire at the library. (fate worse than death)

It's going to be a long wait so I'm hoping that I'll either win the lottery or have a stroke of luck during Christmas. Either one would be lovely.

But yes, late to the game but at least I attended the opening ceremonies. I don't want to say too much so as not to ruin the book for other people so I will just say that I really enjoyed it. Loved the pace, didn't feel slow in the least. Really enjoy the setting and the type of world in which the story takes place however horrible and sad it is.

I know the series is being made into a movie. That bit of news hasn't escaped me and I hope it turns out well. Suzanne Collins is apparently writing the screenplay herself which is a nod in their favor at this point.

Looking forward to seeing and reading more of this series.

Monday, September 6, 2010

The long Life of Sherlock Holmes

I don't think I've been so bombarded by an author's work as I have by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock Holmes made his first appearance in 1887 and spanned four novels and 56 short stories. It's 2010 and the fascination with the detective and his doctor sidekick has not stopped or rested.

My first memory or real awareness of SH was when I was in elementary school and during my half hour for breakfast, I'd sit and watch a cartoon show called Sherlock Holmes in the 22nd Century. It was futuristic and dealt with a clone Moriarty and a robot Dr. Watson but I loved it. Some of the episodes were even based off of Doyle's original stories.

I know there were a lot of BBC dramas in respect to SH but I live in Canada so coming into contact with it was next to nonexistant. I feel almost like I've missed out because by what I've been reading, some of those productions were well done and enjoyed by many. Something I also noticed is that Sherlock Holmes never goes away for very long. He comes back bigger and better than ever and sometimes not even by his true name.

For instance in 2004, the tv series House premiered and brought audiences a doctor that cared more for puzzles than for his patients and wonder of wonders; his only true friend is a fellow doctor called Wilson. Moriarty and Irene Adler have even been referenced in the series.

Living in Canada, I spend most of my time watching American programming rather than home grown productions because few Canadian shows live to make it through their first season due to their lack of funding. But there's one show I adore that has kept coming back each year, which is based off a series of mystery novels written by Maureen Jennings. Murdoch Mysteries centers around detective William Murdoch and his adventures in the 1890s. How does it relate to SH? Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was a character in the show who came to Canada to observe Murdoch as part of his research for a novel he was writing. A novel we eventually find out is about Sherlock Holmes.

In 2009 on Christmas Day, Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes was released to mixed reviews. Some liked the new interpretation and some didn't much care for it. I loved it. I own it on DVD. It sits lovingly with the rest of my small DVD collection right by my bed in a cupboard. I liked this version of Holmes because it was a tad more...realistic? Let's face it, he probably wasn't paid well by the police and the era in which he lived in was one of great poverty and new inventions (i.e. The Industrial Revolution). So Sherlock looking smart and sharp and well done in a suit all the time with his drinking and bit of drug habit? Didn't seem likely to me. So yeah, this Sherlock definitely fit with what I'd pictured.

Now in 2010, a tv series named Sherlock has erupted on the scene. A series where we are on a first name basis with these characters: Sherlock and John. One of them is a consulting detective and the other a military doctor - they solve crime. What can I say about this modern adaptation that hasn't already been said? Because it's brilliant. Every minute of it is witty and fun and engaging. Three 90 minute episodes, one case for each.

Do you hear that screaming? Those are the voices all over the world that want more. Preferably now rather than Fall 2011, which is when we'll actually be getting the second series. It has a team of great people behind it like Steven Moffat (He does Doctor Who. New Who. 11th Doctor. Fezzes are cool.) and Mark Gatiss (Wrote Doctor Who novels. Wrote Doctor Who episodes. Acted in a Doctor Who episode.) and it's just such a great addition to the long list. Also, the chemistry between the actors and characters just pull you in. Truly something I think we've been waiting for with Sherlock Holmes.

1887 is when he was born in this world and 123 years later, he's still solving cases with Watson.

Friday, September 3, 2010


I first read Beastly by Alex Flinn a year and a half ago and later bought it as a birthday present to myself. It was hard to find. I actually had to look it up using the store computer and search for a location that carried it. When I did find it, it was one of two copies at a particular location that didn't have a large book collection and mostly carried chapters.indigo's non-book items like stationary, cups and metal water bottles. So I was very very lucky.

I really adore this book because one of the things I always wondered about when I watched Beauty and the Beast is, what happened during those years after the Prince was cursed? Why was he so mean? Why was he destroying furniture? There was suffering and pain there that I wanted to understand and with Beastly we get to read about a version of it.

I didn't even know that the movie was being made until I looked up the author on wikipedia just to check in and see if she had anything new in the works. I'm going to be honest and say that I've been dubious of film adaptations of novels since the release of the movie version of Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine. I remember being greatly disappointed that the book I so loved had been so thoroughly and utterly destroyed. HUGH DANCY WAS NOT ENOUGH TO DISTRACT ME. I was a kid then but I still cannot watch the Ella Enchanted film without scoffing.

I'm hoping this might be a little different but I'm not entirely sure. First of all, while I have nothing against Vanessa Hudgens, she just doesn't resemble the character Lindy in any way to me. I'm going to give her a chance though. I really will.

Also, Kyle's transformed state (which you can see in the trailer I'll be posting below) is not like it is in the book. And I suppose I had been hoping for fur and claws instead of what I was met with but I will say, it's an interesting interpretation. You don't have to look like an animal to be considered a monster.

One thing that I got really excited about was the fact that Neil Patrick Harris would be in it and playing Will, the blind tutor. That character was one of my favorite things about the book. And I have no doubt that NPH will be stealing the show.

Despite all my apprehension, I'm going to give it a try. I won't completely knock it until I've actually seen it.

Beastly comes out in North America Friday March 18, 2011.