Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Do You Like Books?

I love books. I mean I LOVE books. If books were people, I'd marry them. ;)

And I have a LOT of books. Not as many as I would like to have...but lots.

I keep most of my books because, you know, they're like friends to me....but there are some books that I have two copies of, or I didn't really like as much as I thought I would, or that I know I just won't read again.

So I was thinking...how about giving those books away? Usually, I head on over to the local used bookstore and trade them in...but wouldn't it be great if I gave them away HERE, to my readers?

I'd like to know what you think of this idea! Would you enter giveaways for books? Most of the books would be secondhand, but once in awhile I'd hold a giveaway for a brand spanking new books from the Book Depository.

And all you'd have to do to enter is follow my blog...and perhaps share the giveaway on your Facebook page, Twitter or your own blog.
That's it!

So, what do you think? Good idea? Bad idea? Would YOU enter to win a free book?

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Once Upon A Time 1.11-Fruit of the Poisonous Tree

We're getting closer and closer to learning exactly WHAT it was that Snow did to the Evil Queen to make her hate her so much!

This week's episode was full of twists and turns as we finally get to see how Gus Sidney became the Magic Mirror.
You knew when you saw the lamp in Mr. Gold's store that it was going to be in an upcoming episode...and THIS was that episode.

You see, the Mirror started out as a genie!

In Fairytale Land, we see how the Evil Queen's relationship with her Mirror began.
You know, just when I start to feel some sympathy for that woman, she goes and screws it up by doing something horribly EVIL!

You really do almost feel bad for her when you see the relationship between Snow and the King. It's obvious that Regina isn't really considered a part of the family...and that has to hurt, right?

We also finally see how the King died. Yep, Regina killed him with evil (and extremely fake-looking) snakes!
And then she goes and frames (Ha! Pun intended!) the genie, who, with his last wish, traps himself forever in her mirrors.

Over in Storybrooke, Sidney and Emma are working together to try and bring down the mayor. Of course, their plan fails miserably and Emma looks like a complete ass.
At the end we see that Sidney IS still working for Regina! *gasp*

And poor Henry lost his book. It's now in the hands of the mysterious handsome stranger! Oooooh.

So! What questions do we have this week?
-WHAT did Snow do to the Queen?
-WHO is that stranger?
-Why is he in Storybrooke?
-What does he want with the book?
-Why is Sidney working with Regina, considering what she did to him in Fairytale Land? (Yes, I know he doesn't remember)
-Is it possible Sidney is a double double agent?
-Is Mary really suddenly okay with David messing around on his wife?
-Why is Regina's name the same in both worlds? Does that even matter? :P

Remember, no new episode next week, Oncers! But in two weeks we get a HUGE treat! The beauty and the beast episode, which happens to be my favourite fairytale story, guest-starring EMILIE de Ravin as Belle! OMG, right?!?

Game of Thrones Teaser!

Have you seen this?? GOOSEBUMPS!
April can't get here soon enough!

Who else is crazy-excited?!

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Hugo-My Thoughts

I knew very little about Hugo before watching the film.
I thought it was about a boy who lived in a train station after being orphaned who was trying to fix an automaton.
Well, that's not really what it's about at all

Directed by the brilliant Martin Scorsese, this is NOT your typical Scorsese film! The cinematography is stunning, the acting is wonderful and the end makes the movie.

It's the parts before that that I had a problem with. I wanted to love this film. I really, really did. And maybe I should have watched it BEFORE The Artist so I wouldn't compare all other Oscar nominated films to that one.

It took me a good hour to finally get into Hugo. I found that first hour slow-moving and my mind wandered often.
But after that, the story came alive.

Asa Butterfield (who plays Mordred in Merlin!) is wonderful as young Hugo Cabret, the young orphan who steals your heart.
Chloe Grace Moretz shines as Hugo's friend, Isabelle.
Ben Kingsley (who can do no wrong in my eyes) is brilliant as 'Papa' George Melies and Sasha Baron Cohen (who I'm not usually a fan of at all.) was hilarious in the role of the 'evil' station inspector.

In the end, this is a tale of wonder and adventure about a boy who transforms the lives of everyone around him as he attempts to unravel the mystery left to him by his father.
The end will leave you with a lump in your throat, warmth in your heart and a smile on your face.

I'll be very surprised if this wins the Oscar against The Artist...but I can absolutely see why it was nominated.

Have you seen Hugo? Id love to hear your thoughts! Comments are always welcome!

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

The Artist-My Thoughts

You've heard the buzz, you've watched it win the Golden Globe and now it's been nominated for an Oscar.
But have you actually SEEN the movie?

Not many people that I know have, and that's a huge tragedy in my eyes!

The Artist stars french actor Jean Dujardin as George Valentin, a silent movie star in a time where talkies are starting to dominate theaters.

The story that follows is magic.
Let me be the first to admit that I wasn't sure I would like this film. "What? It's a SILENT movie? How can a 2 hour movie hold my attention without ANY dialogue?!"
Oh, how wrong I was. The time FLEW by and after the first 5 minutes or so, you don't even realize no one is speaking.

Dujardin is flawless in this role and Berenice Bejo, who plays Peppy Miller, sucks you right into her world with just a few bats of her eyelashes.

This movie will tear at your heartstrings, make you laugh, and make you weep,and I can guarantee that when it's all over and you leave the theater, you'll understand exactly WHY this wonderful movie will win the best picture Oscar this year.

In closing, GO SEE THE ARTIST! ;)

I would love to hear your thoughts when you do! Comments are always welcome!

Monday, 23 January 2012

Once Upon A Time 1.10 -7:15am. My Thoughts

Wow. WOW! They just keep raising the bar higher and higher, don't they?

This week was ah-MAZ-ing!

You know, I was worried they'd drag out the Mary/David story too long. I mean, there's only so much 'when will it happen?!' the viewers will take before it gets old, right?
But I never expected it to happen THIS soon!

This week we learned more about the Snow/Charming--Mary Margaret/David stories.

In Storybrooke we see Mary Margaret pretty much stalking David at Granny's Cafe every morning at 7:15am.
She still has feelings for him and when they finally do get a chance to talk, she finds out that he feels the same.

Over in Fairytale Land, David is two days from his wedding day and he writes a letter to Snow, telling her to come to him if she has feelings for him.
Meanwhile, Snow has gotten a magic potion from our favourite villain, Rumpy, that will make her forget Charming ever existed.

Thankfully, his letter reaches her in time and she sneaks into the castle to see him.
Alas, she's caught and tossed in the dungeon, where she meets a wonderful little man named Grumpy.

Now, I'm a big fan of the dwarves in the Snow White tale, but OUAT outdid any Disney story I've ever seen here.
Grumpy is played wonderfully by the awesomely talented Lee Arenberg and if you don't fall in love with him during this episode, you have no heart!

Luckily, Snow escapes with the help of Grumpy and the EIGHTH dwarf, Stealthy!

But sadly, Stealthy and Grumpy are caught, and Stealthy is killed in the escape attempt.

Snow saves Grumpy, who's released from the evil King's clutches, and she herself is taken to see Charming's charming father. 
He tells her that unless she goes to Charming and tells him she doesn't love him, he will KILL his fake son.
What a jerk!

Of course, Snow does just that, which is where my heart started to break.

Grumpy and his six friends find Snow and he tells her she's going home with them. She won't be alone anymore.
He also persuades her not to drink the nasty forgetting potion from ol' Rumpy....at least for that day.

A few days later, we see Charming looking for Snow. It seems he has LEFT the bitchy princess and is trying to find his true love!
Word gets back to Grumpy, who rushes in to tell Snow the wonderful news!
Snow's face is puzzled when she says, "Prince who...?" and the camera pans over to see the empty potion bottle on the table. 

But back in Storybrooke, after David saves Mary's life, he has a talk with Katherine and discovers that she's not actually pregnant.
They decide to try harder to get to know each other again, and the next morning, David skips his 7:15am coffee at Granny's.

As does Mary, who we see watching the clock as she sits with Emma.

At 7:45, Mary does go into the cafe for her coffee and WHO walks in? David, of course!

And finally...FINALLY...the two kiss! In public...with evil Regina watching on. Dun dun DUN!

Also, that stranger? He appears to be a writer of some kind. He's carrying a typewriter in that wooden box.
Veeeeery interesting!

So! Highlights for me?
-Rumple's giggling! I LOVE that guy!
-Grumpy whistling 'Hi Ho' in the jail cell!
-There were originally EIGHT dwarves!
-Grumpy: "It makes ME Grumpy." Yeah, I teared up! ;)
-Charming: "I'll find her. I'll always find her." D'awww.

Questions we have after this episode:
-What does Rumple want Snow's hair for?
-WHO is that masked stranger?! Er....that's not right, is it? ;)
-What is he writing?
-How does Snow eventually remember Charming again?

What did YOU think of 7:15am? As always, comments are most welcome! 
Until next week, Oncers! 

Monday, 16 January 2012

Once Upon A Time-True North-My Thoughts

Tonight's episode was Hansel and Gretel, and I loved it. There are so many questions raised with each episode, I wonder if they'll ever have time to answer them all!

Once again, Robert Carlisle is wonderful as Mr. Gold, and I still can't decide whether he's good or evil.

The gorgeous and talented Emma Caulfield (Buffy The Vampire Slayer),
plays the heck out of her part as the creepy blind witch with the oh so yummy house, and almost outshines the Evil Queen...almost.

Speaking of the Evil Queen, is it just me or does her wardrobe get more and more awesome each week? I can't help but wish they'd use some of her clothing budget to get better special effects, though. The scene with the vines was almost laughable.

But in my opinion, it was the end that made this episode. From the tow truck coming around the bend in the road (yeah, call me sappy, but I didn't see that coming!), to the mysterious man on the bike with the weird wooden box on the back.

So, what questions were raised this episode?

-Is Gold good or bad?
-Why did Gold lie about reading the name off the card?
-WHO is Henry's father?
-Why did the Evil Queen want Hansel and Gretel to live with her?
-WHO is the guy on the bike?!
-What's in the wooden box?!
-Why did he come to Storeybrooke?
-How is he able to stay when no one else can?

Many people are saying he's the Big Bad Wolf....and that's definitely possible! (I was wrong about the Sheriff being the wolf, remember?)
But I need another episode or two before I decide. ;)

So what did you think of this episode? As always, comments are welcome!

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

11/22/63-My Thoughts

I've been a big Stephen King fan since I read Pet Cemetery at the young age of 13, and it's been a long time since I could say I LOVED one of Mr. King's books. I think the last one was the final Dark Tower book.

I'm so happy to be able to say that now! I LOVED this book!

The Master of Horror has written a beautiful, touching novel that's not at all like his usual work.

Let me be clear...This is NOT a horror story. This is a love story, through and through, and it's not at all what I expected it to be.

Without spoilers, 11/22/63 is about a man who finds a 'rabbit hole' that transports him back in time. He decides to try to stop Lee Harvey Oswald from killing Kennedy.

What follows is a masterpiece of twists and turns, of love and heartbreak. Mr. King makes every single character come alive in this novel, and you quickly fall in love (or hate, as the case may be) with them.

The end is brilliant....perfect...and it had me sobbing when I finished the book at 4am. Yes, that's how engrossing this book is. It WILL keep you up well past your bedtime, just reading 'one more chapter'.

Mr. King, you've done it again. Hats off to you, good sir!

Meeting a few people from the past. Again, I can't say much without spoiling it, but I grinned from ear to ear ( and, of course, got teary) when we ran into these 'old friends' of mine. :)

Horror fan or not, King fan or not, I can guarantee you'll love this book. If you read it, let me know what you think!
As always, comments are most welcome!

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

I Wrote A Poem!

For a few weeks last month, those of you on my Facebook saw me talking about my 'sooper seekrit' poem.

It was recently posted on the blog it was written for and I wanted to share it here too, complete with the written poem.

It was written for Nikki Stafford's blog, Nik at Nite for the Great Buffy Rewatch...I've mentioned that here before.

But before I get to the video, let me answer a few FAQ's--

Yes, it was difficult to write. Putting together words that rhyme seems to come easy for me..especially when it's about people or TV shows...but there is still much swearing and rewriting that goes on. ;)

It took me about 3 days of straight writing to get it written the way you see it now. While I'm writing poems, I have a thesaurus, rhyming dictionary and regular dictionary open at all times.

Yes, I realize that some of my rhymes are a stretch. I don't care. :P

To get the video you see below took about 20 'takes'. I either flubbed lines too badly, got too emotional during "The Body' and 'Your shirt, Tara says..." lines, or at the end when I describe how difficult it will be to say goodbye. In some takes, I was actually sobbing too hard to speak. No one needs to see that! ;)

If you have any other questions, post below and I'll answer 'em!

So..here it is! The video and written poem below it!

The Great Buffy Rewatch
By Christina Boulard

Lost was over, The End had come.
Our hearts were reeling, our souls were numb.
And then, from the dark, a bright light shone through,
Our saviour, she cried, "We'll start something new!"

"A rewatch...or first watch!...for some, I suppose!
Of Buffy, you know, the best of all shows!
Three episodes a week, I'll post on my blog!"
We all felt such joy, coming out of our fog.

She gathered contributors, the best of the best,
She plotted, she planned...This would be quite a test!
A start date was chosen, the schedule was right,
And finally, the first post was on Nik at Nite!

Now, I could go on, tell you all about Nik,
About all the comments and viewers and wit,
But lets get to Buffy, the star of the show,
And her gang, called the 'Scoobies', who we've come to know.

Season One was the start, where we met one and all.
There was Willow and Xander and Cordy, the doll.
We met Giles, the Watcher, and Buffy herself,
And Angel the vampire, who made my heart melt.

The Big Bad for the season, The Master, that fool,
Tried to open the Hellmouth that's below the high school.
He killed our dear Buffy, after drinking her blood,
But Xander revived her, proving he's NOT a dud!

Season Two broke my heart, it's the best of the show.
It brought Oz, the werewolf, Willow's stoic new beau.
We met Spike and Drusilla, vamps we loved to hate!
We saw Giles with Jenny, it seemed it was fate.

We saw Cordy with Xander, and Angel with Buffy,
We met Kendra, the slayer ( she was kinda stuffy).
Willow started to dabble in watchcraft and spells,
If only we'd known! ...but we couldn't foretell. ;)

Then drastic results came out of the blue,
When Angel turned Angelus, and Jenny, he slew!
The tears, oh, they flowed, for our Watcher, Giles,
How could our Angel, be something so vile?!

But Buffy, as always, stood strong and severe,
She stood against Angelus, she showed him no fear!
She staked that bad vamp! Drove it right through his heart!
She sent him to hell...and then saw with a start...

That Angel was back, his soul had returned,
But it was too late, now in hell, he would burn.
And Buffy lost strength. Her heart wouldn't mend,
She left Sunnydale...Could this be the end?

But, no! Season Three, was next to arrive!
With Buffy now 'Anne', in LA to survive.
She quickly returned, to her proper home,
And thank God she did, the Slayer wasn't alone!

You see, Faith followed Kendra, when that Slayer died,
So she joined the Scoobies, (and had a bit too much pride).
Then Angel returned, from the pits of hell!
But Buffy, she knew, what fate would befell.

So they stayed apart, as hard as it was,
And then we met Welsey, who created a buzz.
We also meet Anya, here in season 3,
Now most of our players are here, you will see.

The Big Bad, the Mayor, won over poor Faith,
Who's now full of anger and malice and hate.
She battled with Buffy, and our Slayer won,
In a coma, she's down for the count, Faith is done.

The Mayor ascends and Snyder is eaten,
The students assembled, the Big Snake was beaten!
The school is destroyed, Angel heads to LA,
And the Scoobies move on to college, hooray!

But, wait! Not so fast! Now we're in Season Four!
Yes, THAT dreaded season, which is mostly abhorred.
With its highs and its lows, like Hush and Beer Bad,
We meet Riley, the Initiative, and Oz leaves (so sad).

The Big Bad is Adam, and Spike gets his chip,
And Willow meets Tara, and they start their courtship.
Faith comes and goes, as Faith tends to do,
And Xander and Anya, start their courtship, too.

Adam is beaten, and Restless comes last,
Which foreshadows what will next come to pass.
And that's season four...Well, that's more than enough.
Now let us move on, Season Five! Oh, it's rough.

It's here that we meet Buffy's little sis, Dawn.
It is she who's at fault for the current goings-on.
As annoying as heck, but I guess she's the key,
And she's wanted by this season's baddie, Glory.

We must bid adieu to Riley, poor guy.
Flew off in a chopper, away into the sky.
Spike's shocked when he's hit in the face with a fact,
He's IN LOVE WITH BUFFY! Opposites DO attract!

The brilliance of Joss must be mentioned here.
The Body, it's excellence and genius is clear.
It's where we lose Joyce, and I sob without shame,
Joss knew how to write it,  he's felt that pain.

In the end, is The Gift, that our Slayer gives,
Sacrifices herself, so that Dawn may still live.
Our Buffy is gone, her friends are distraught.
On her headstone, the words, "She saved the world....a lot."

Season Six is up next, Buffy's brought back to life,
By her friends, meaning well, thinking hell wasn't nice.
See that's where they thought, she was suffering, alone.
But they pulled her from heaven...And they didn't know.

It's here that we see, my favourite of all.
It's Once More, With Feeling! Oh, how I bawl!
I know all the words, and sing along loudly!
My three year old requests it, "Mommy, Buppy, peese!" she says it so proudly.

Ahem...back to the show, where...? Season Six, yes, that's right!
Giles returns to England, Dawn's a thief, what a plight!
Buffy gets a job, she starts selling fast food,
She also starts seeing, um...Spike...in the nude.

The Troika's a threat, Warren, Jonathan, and...um...Whats-his-name?
And Xander leaves Anya at the alter, what a shame.
Anya returns, to her demon-y vengeance,
And Willow's addiction makes things very tense.

Spike attacks Buffy, then feels shame and remorse,
He leaves Sunnydale, to find his last resort.
Willow stops using, and Tara comes back,
And Buffy, she thwarts the Troika's attack.

But Warren returns, and he brings a gun!
He shoots our poor Slayer! The viewers are stunned!
And then, oh we see, a stray bullet has found....
"Your shirt...", Tara says, as she falls to the ground.

Our hearts, again broken, for Tara, held dear,
And Willow goes dark. It's the worst of our fears.
She tortures, then slays he who's at fault.
Then turns her attention to another assult.

But Giles returns, in the nick of time!
And battles with Willow, but she's in her prime!
Our Watcher is bested, our Slayer is trapped!
The world is in danger, Dark Willow has snapped!

But out of the darkness, our hero appears.
The heart of the Scoobies, he's known her for years.
How does he do it? What finally breaks through?
Just one yellow crayon, and the words, "I love you."

I almost forgot to mention that Spike,
Has been busy with passing some tests and the like.
And what does he get, at the end? What's his goal?
Oh, nothing of any import... JUST HIS SOUL!

At last, Season Seven, we've come to the end,
Potentials are dying, must learn to defend.
James Marsters as Spike is the best of the best,
When he asks, while I sob, "Can we rest now, Buffy? Can we rest?"

The highschool's rebuilt, in the exact same old spot,
And Buffy starts working, at the place she was taught.
Potentials move in, the Council is dead,
The First Evil is back, there's so much bloodshed.

It's hunting the Watchers, the Slayers, the Chosen,
If they go extinct, the balance is broken.
The Uber-Vamps, are tough to defeat,
The Bringers? A group of assassins, elite.

The son of a Slayer, Principal Wood,
Sculpted and trained, right from his boyhood,
To kill the vamp, who'd beaten and drained,
His mother...Wood learned, SPIKE was that vamps name.

Of course, his plan failed, but sadly it caused,
A rift between Buffy and Giles that was,
The start of the doubt and distrust in our Slayer,
As one,  all the Scoobies and Chosen betray her.

Willow brings Faith in to help with the fight,
Its to her they turn, leaving Buffy outright,
After a battle, gone horribly wrong,
They tried to beat Caleb, but he's terribly strong.

Xander loses an eye, Potentials are slain,
Is it possible the First, WILL have its reign?!
The townsfolk are fleeing, they're leaving their homes,
Our Slayer's dejected, defeated, alone.

With Spike's help, she snaps out of her despair,
She battles with Caleb, she knows that Faith erred!
Now wielding her scythe, she runs to the trap!
She helps them escape, from the bomb blast, holy crap!

The Scoobies all pledge, their loyalty again,
To Buffy, the Slayer, the Hero, amen!
She kills off bad Caleb, kisses Angel 'hello',
He gives her an amulet, to be worn by a vamp souled.

Buffy declines, Angel's offer of aid,
He backs into the shadows, as he did that first day.
Our Buff has a plan, the Potentials now Slayers,
The last battle comes, the earth needs a saviour.

The high school, the place, the last of their fights.
It's all come full circle, it only seems right.
A wonderful scene, as death and pain loom,
Our original four, and Giles, "The earth is definitely doomed."

The four become three, then two and then one,
On the front line? Buffy, Spike, Faith, the Chosen.
White Willow brings tears. THIS is our beloved!
We all saw her strength! Knew she'd rise above it!

As we watch the battle, it seems all is lost,
Buffy's down, Anya's dead, what a cost, WHAT A COST!
But Slayers all rally, Buffy stands and she fights!
And our least-likely hero, suddenly bathed in sunlight...

You see, Spike is ensouled, and so he is the key,
The amulet Angel brought, around Spike's neck, aptly.
It channels the sunlight, through dear William's soul,
And dusts all the Turok-Han, to hell they all go.

The ground starts to shake, the earth quakes and rumbles,
The Slayers all flee, Buffy stays, doesn't stumble.
She tries to bring Spike, he insists, he must stay,
"I love you.", "No, you don't, but thanks for sayin'."

Buffy runs and Spike laughs, "Wanna see how it ends!"
Our dear boy turns to dust as the Hellmouth descends.
The Scoobies escape, but they're not without loss,
Anya, Spike, many Slayers, so, so sad, such a cost.

Sunnydale was destroyed, and my tears were now flowing,
The last shot of Buffy, with a smile, clearly showing,
That they will live on, be okay, fight the fight,
Out there, somewhere close, with her stake, in the night.

As I snap from my thoughts of the Scoobies and Buff,
I realize this time for goodbyes will be tough.
My Tuesdays will lack, I'll feel lost and alone,
Nik at Nite and you all feel so much like home.

Marebabe and QM, Lisa, Colleen and Missy,
Page, Dusk, Quarks, Efthymia, Suzanne...oh, I'm being a sissy!
Nikki, let me just say, from the bottom of my heart,
THANK YOU, YOU'RE AMAZING, (which I knew from the start.)

Take a break and relax, take some time, you deserve it.
A few weeks, a few months, we all know you won't quit.
I'm here, at the end. It's my final goodbye....
So, what do you think, guys? Next rewatch, Firefly?!