Thursday, December 24, 2015

Inkling Explorations {December 2015}

Time for Heidi's link-up!  This month's prompt is:

a Christmastide movie scene

WELL.  What better time to post it than on the very Eve of Christmas?  [Or, as we like to say in the security business, Christmas Eve.  (If you got that reference, though…)]

I'm going to select the scene of Jesus' birth, as portrayed in The Nativity Story, a movie of which, as I'm sure you all know, I think rather highly ;)  

Here it is.  DRINK IT IN.  And then go watch the whole movie, as I plan to do tonight, and drown in the music and the atmosphere and *cough* Joseph and just the general epic-ness that is this movie.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

because I love you, here's this

So I promise to catch up on commenting/replying/posting SOON.


It's just, ya know, Christmas.


In the meantime, here's a gif that I'm posting out of the sheer goodness of my heart, because I know we all need to watch it about fifteen thousand times, especially if we haven't before ;)


It's a really cute gif, y'all :D


Basically, I ship these two like Fedex.  I'm sorry but I just do.


Ya ready for this?  Here it is.




Okay, bye-bye.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

The Bookshelf Project 2.0

Hello again!  Here's round two of my Bookshelf Project, and you can read round one here.

Let's get right to it, shall we? :)  (Again, lots of parentheses, lots of links, and lots of random pictures/gifs.)

Those I Finished:

Little Men by Louisa May Alcott.  I liked it!  It wasn't exactly my favorite, but it was Alcott; ergo it was good and interesting and charming and all those lovely things.  The part when *SPOILERS!* Danny comes back and Teddy runs to his bed the next morning made me deep-down-in-my-soul happy. *END OF SPOILERS*  4 out of 5 stars.

Goodbye, Mr. Chips by James Hilton.  I think I'll just go cry now.  No, really, it was a very sad book, but it was so gentle and darling that I couldn't help falling in love with it.  Oh, and for those of you who have read the original book of One Hundred and One Dalmatians, Chips reminded me of the old man whose fireside Pongo and Missis visit on their journey!  Mind=blown.  5 out of 5 stars.

Mary Barton by Elizabeth Gaskell.  WHOA.  WHAT.  This one was amazing!  I've read that it was Gaskell's first book, and that really surprised me at first, because personally I think it excelled North and South and even Wives and Daughters.  But then again, I guess I can also see where it's her first:  she is extremely blunt in this novel; there's virtually no subtlety of theme at all--you are left in no doubt of what her intentions are with the story.  Also, she interjects herself into the narrative a lot, with use of first person, the author appealing to the audience, perhaps just a little more than is strictly constructive.  Anyway, the story is convoluted and dark and I'm not going to try to write a synopsis, so I'll just mention that it "kept me on the edge of my seat", so to speak.  I didn't know how everything would turn out.  Would there be a happy ending?  A so-so ending?  A tragic ending?  Who actually did what? (Well, I kind of guessed that one, but it's pretty obvious.)  *SPOILERS*  Guys when Mr. Carson came and held Mr. Barton as Barton was dying.  JUST HOW. *END OF SPOILERS*  I don't think I'm getting across to you how good this book was.  Read this quote, just read it: 

Bright, beautiful came the slanting rays of the morning sun.  It was time for such as she to hide themselves, with the other obscene things of night, from the glorious light of day, which was only for the happy.

I mean! *sputters*  Yeah, it's definitely a rather depressing book, but I loved it, and I usually don't love depressing books.  I don't even like Dickens (THERE I SAID IT).  So, ya know, don't let that deter you from reading it, if you're like me and don't like those kinds of books.  

Oh, OH, and THE COURTROOM SCENE I MEAN I SERIOUSLY ALMOST LOST MY ABILITY TO CAN.  This is basically what I wanted to do to all of the characters afterwards:

Gahhhhhhh.  5 out of 5 stars.

Yankee Stranger by Elswyth Thane.  You can read my Goodreads review here.  4 out of 5 stars.

My Ántonia by Willa Cather.  I'd heard glowing things about this book, and it lived up to its reputation. An authentic, simple, but epic depiction of the way relationships change us, and the courage and grit of those who settled our country.  Plus, it's SO beautifully written.  Wowzah.  4 out of 5 stars.

Those I Didn't:

Hans Brinker by Mary Mapes Dodge.  Just wasn't feelin' it, I'm sorry to say.  I'm sure it's a good book, but I wasn't "in the mood."

The Black Arrow by Robert Louis Stevenson.  This is the second time I've started and then stopped this book.  Something must be wrong with me, because it sounds like a really fun story.  I DO plan on reading and finishing this eventually, honest I do.

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy.  Haha, no.  I'm sure I'll read it eventually (famous last words), but I was so not about to start that mammoth thing as school and music were winding down.  

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.  Hehe.  I sowwy.  It's a gothic romance, gothic romance is just Not My Genre, I read about six chapters, and decided to postpone my reading.  Abject apologies, and all that (sort of).

And there she be!  Now, on to tackling the third and final shelf, as soon as I finish the last three chapters of my re-read of Inkheart (that book is life, guys)!  See you then ;)  (Not that I won't be posting before then, of course.  You understand.)

Amazing Grace {2006}

"Billy, no one of our age has ever taken power."
"Which is why we're too young to realize that certain things are impossible!  So we will do them anyway."

All right, LET'S DO THIS.  

(I'm not even going to try to keep from spoilers in this review.  You've been fairly warned.)

Amazing Grace follows William Wilberforce while he starts as promising, charismatic politician of integrity ("Where are you going?"  "To look up the word 'integrity' in Dr.                's dictionary."), becomes a passionate and faithful advocate of the abolition of England's mega-franchise, slavery, and has his fervor reignited after his health and spirit experience a decline due to his loyalty to the cause.


I always forget just how special this movie is between watches.  I mean, I always know it's a special movie, but I forget just exactly how much I love it.

I think I'll just ramble a bit.  Kay?

SO.  William Wilberforce, or, as he's called in the movie, "Wilby" or "Wilber" (isn't that adorable?! :D).  I don't know that much about Wilberforce, because my knowledge of history is positively dreadful, but from various special features, and the little bit I do know, he was apparently the first man to start a number of clubs/associations/etc., such as:  the first animal welfare society, the first Bible study, I think I might have heard something about the first book club?  He was a dedicated, passionate spokesman for God and justice.  

…Basically, I want to marry him.  

Their FACES.

Oh, OH, and can we talk about these two?!?!?!  MAH WORD.  I just...

Words fail, and all that, but here are just a few more:  "Barbara and I have discovered that we're both impatient and prone to rash decisions...but she wants to tell you about it herself."

Whereupon I, as a friend of mine put it, "am a squishy puddle of goo" as the wedding scene happens--their looks as she's walking to the altar, and then the hymn "requested by the bride".  JUST.  SQUEE.

Did I mention that Benedict Cumberbatch makes an appearance, back when he was just a wee unknown laddie?  Indeed, he plays Wilberforce's friend William Pitt (Billy).

I just love the characters in this movie.  They're all wonderful:  great people, excellently cast and acted, and I like how we get to know each one a little bit.  I'm especially partial to Charles Fox (because Michael Gambon) and Thomas Clarkson (because Rufus Sewell).  Oh, and John Newton (of course) and the young guy who assists him later after he becomes blind.  They seem to have a sweet relationship :)

I love the part when Wilby and Thomas go to talk to Billy about their plan regarding the use of neutral flags on ships, or something or other.  "We just need someone really really…boring."   Clarkson is especially awesome.  (I just said that, didn't I?)  I mean, his lines!  "It's just a word."  "Sweet little…rabbit."  "Why did you wait for your butler to leave before you…came out of the box? *cracks up*"

And the butler…and Marjorie…gahh, they're just all beautiful, okay?

The movie is full of so many spine-tingling moments.  The above quote, for one.  And the amazing, glorious, tear-jerking ending.  It's so beautiful.  I think I'm going to talk a bit more about it in another post, so that's all I'll say for now.  

Long story short, I LOVE THIS MOVIE.  And you will, too, if you watch it.  So go watch it.

Sunday, December 13, 2015



School, I mean.  (And only for the most part; I still have some catch-up work and break work to do.)  My co-op has finally finished, and concert season is winding down both for piano and choir.  And none too soon; I may have been on the brink of an emotional or mental collapse!  (Not really.  But it felt like it.)

Oh, yeah, this is totally me.  (It's not me.)

Which means that I'll finally get to stop seeming to ignore you guys!  I can reply to y'all's lovely comments that make me so tremendously happy, and I can comment on your blog posts that I enjoy so. I truly do apologize for my absence recently, but school and music really have been rather hectic.  You understand :)

I'm excited for Christmas break, in case you couldn't tell.  Yes, yes, there are still some academic things to get done, and helping around the house and everything, BUT REALLY.  I'm sooooooo looking forward to snuggling in and re-reading all zee favorites (not that I'll get through all the favorites, but a girl can dream):  Inkheart, The Return of the King, The Last Battle, The Age of Innocence…ahhhhhhh :D  

I'm down to the last shelf of the Bookshelf Project!  How happy :D  The lowdown on the second shelf should be coming sometime soonish.  

A lot of you have been so kind as to tag me lately, and I really appreciate that, since I do love a tag!  However, since I'm so behind on everything in the blogosphere, and since I'm still trying to stop the hyperventilation brought on by the past two weeks (not that I was seriously hyperventilating. Of course), I'm going to pass on all the lovely tags.  They all seem really fun, but I think I need to "restart", as it were, on a clean slate.  

Guys, I just watched this black-and-white Cary Grant movie called Penny Serenade, and WHAT JUST HAPPENED TO MY LIFE.  I don't think you understand.  I've been having movie hangover.  It was so SAD and SWEET and heartbreaking and funny and beautiful and GOOD.  I definitely plan on reviewing that soon.  

Speaking of reviews, I'm going to force another post poll on you (I think I might do that too often).  Which of these books/movies/TV shows would you lovelies most like me to review, or do you even give a rip?  (It'd be totally fine if you didn't, btw.)

~ Penny Serenade (that's a bit of a given)
~ The Tourist 
~ What A Girl Wants
~ The Princess Bride (book)
~ Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (it's high time I review that, no?)
~ Roman Holiday
~ My Fair Lady
~ While You Were Sleeping
~ Leverage (television)
~ Sherlock (television)
~ Amazing Grace
~ The Parent Trap (the newer one with Lindsay Lohan, and yes, I will argue with you if you want to try and tell me that the Hayley Mills version is the only true version…not that I've actually watched the Hayley Mills version, but the LL version is basically my childhood, so…)
~ The Nativity Story
~ Bringing Up Baby

Preferences?  No promises, now ;)  Those are just some random ideas.

Don't you just love when you read books, and you feel like the author just gets you?  Like he or she simply understands your life, how you think, how you feel?  What are some of those books, for you guys?  I'se curious :)

This is really random, but one thing that I'm really excited for about Christmas (that seems extremely grammatically incorrect) is getting iTunes gift cards, because THERE ARE SO MANY WONDERFUL SONGS TO BUY.  I've updated my wish list and everything--getting iTunes cards probably excites me too much ;)

I think I'm going to change my blog look soon.  I know, I KNOW, I do that too often.  But, while I like this arrangement, it's not really doing it for me.  Plus, I have a header featuring Marian coming up, so this one doesn't really stand a chance ;)  

Well, I can't really think of anything else to tell you, so I must just give one smirk, and then we can be rational again.

…And with this, I leave you.  

I can't wait to catch up with you all :)  

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

"You're the darndest girl, Liz!"

A number of weeks ago, I was in an odd emotional funk.  Y'see, as I've mentioned before, I am an INFJ.  I suspect I've even mildly irked some of you by carrying on long conversations with fellow INFJs in the comments.  But the reason we INFJs cling so tenaciously to our "label" is, as I read somewhere, that it feels SO good to finally understand why we are the way we are.  Because trust me, we spend a lot of time trying to unravel the intricacies of our personalities, and when we get that test result on Myers-Briggs and read the description that describes us--in almost every particular--so uncannily well, we are finally able to think, "This is it!  This is why I am the way I am!  SOMEONE UNDERSTANDS."

Since I have a strange personality (well, really, who doesn't?) that even I don't anywhere close to fully understand, I often feel, oh, how to put this…chronically misunderstood.

By nearly everybody I know.

Yes, go ahead.  Pity me;)  

No, really, I do think that my thoughts, actions, and motives are often rather misconstrued, and that is annoying.  

But a number of weeks ago I let it all go way too far.  (I'd known my INFJ results for a number of months, and I'm not entirely sure what got me started on this negative thinking recently.)  I started resenting the fact that more people, at least from what I thought, "didn't even try to understand me."  I began to bemoan my "trial" to my mother to a perfectly ridiculous extent.  "I AM SICK AND TIRED OF NOBODY UNDERSTANDING ME.  YOU AND GOD ARE THE ONLY ONES WHO UNDERSTAND MEEEEEEEEEE!"  

(Yeah, I think I did actually say that verbatim a couple of times.  I already admitted this was not my best moment ;-P)

The problem, plain and simple, was that I had slid into self-pity.  More succinctly, the plain-and-simple problem was that I had become hugely self-focused.  Of course, as a human being, I'm naturally selfish, but thankfully the Lord gives us grace from the day to day.  But a few weeks ago, I decided to feel injured by something I had worked up out of nothing.  Starting with the fact that my personality traits are rather complex, I exaggerated that to mean that nobody truly understood me except for my mother and my God, and what was worse in my mind, I imagined that nobody even exerted themselves to try and understand me better--perhaps they were actually deliberately misunderstanding me for their own mischievous ends!  What could be more logical, right?!  

(It was a funk.  It has passed.)

Because I felt misunderstood, I decided that I was.  I decided to victimize myself, something I've been trying to guard against for quite a while.  And yes, I might be, by some people and in different areas, not crystal-clearly known.

And then I realized something.  A few things, actually.  

So what if I am a little misunderstood?  (Wow, I am overusing that word something dreadful, aren't I?)  It's extremely likely that if that is the case, those around me aren't exactly trying to do it.  They probably do try to understand me, as my mother tactfully tried to point out to me.  However much it may feel like it at times, there is most likely not a mastermind plot out there to Misread Olivia.  Even if my friends and family do miscalculate me sometimes, they do love me.  They are good to me.  They are considerate.  And I can't accuse them of attempting to take advantage of me or ridicule me--I know, I know, my mind is a farfetched place--just because my spoiled little self has decided to have an ego crisis.  

Is this post making any sense at all?  I feel like I'm rambling horrifically.  

I guess what I'm trying to say is:  I don't need to be so self-focused as to make misjudging my personality a Capital Crime, or a personal attack against me.  I really don't even need to think about whether I'm understood by my general acquaintance or not.  I shouldn't, what's more.  I am who I am, and more importantly, I can be who Christ will make me.  Jesus is still sanctifying me, Heaven knows, and apparently He won't be finished "'til He returns, or calls me Home".  And in the meantime, I think He wants me to stop nitpicking the Olivia He made me, and I'm pretty darn sure He wants me to stop obsessing over what others think of me.  

Really, what drives this overwhelming infatuation with being understood by those around me?  Why is it so important to me?  I mean, it's important to everybody, but there's got to be a limit!  

Yes, as Francesca Battistelli so catchily reminds me, I am free to be me on His shoulders.

I can choose to antisocially read in the midst of social gatherings, yet be constantly distracted by the conversations going on around me (and I may or may not mildly judge the participants while doing so).

I can take a moment in the midst of reading chemistry to ponder about "the origin of life and the universe."  I can "stare dramatically off into the middle distance" for no apparent reason.

I can read The Princess Bride and Ivanhoe a copious amount of times.  I can be too intimidated to start Anna Karenina in the middle of the school year.  I can be equally excited about Star Wars and Wives and Daughters.

I can be my weird, insecure, generally happy INFJ self. 

But I don't have to be a narcissist about it.


Sunday, November 29, 2015

'Happy Birthday' to my favorite author ~ C. S. Lewis Week

Well, today is the last day of Abigail's C. S. Lewis Week, and it also happens to be the birthday of Jack himself.  (I didn't actually know that, so thanks for the info, Abby! :D)

I thought perhaps I'd attempt a "commemorative post" for the last day/his birthday.  We shall see how it goes;)

C. S. Lewis is my favorite author.  Have I announced that before?  Probably, I just don't remember it.  Well, now you all know (just in case the title didn't clue you in).  Lewis is my favorite, and not just because of Narnia.  I LOVE Narnia, especially the first movie and the books The Magician's Nephew and The Horse and His Boy, but sometimes I think that people judge Lewis's "depth" solely off the Chronicles, and that just MAKES ME MAD.  (I know, I know, I said all this yesterday.  Just stay with me.)

Y'see, I've encountered this a couple times:  people compare Lewis to Tolkien, which I don't think is fair or legitimate in the least.  Because Middle-earth is darker and more epic in proportion to Narnia, people not only think that the Chronicles aren't deep, but they also think that Lewis's writing is more shallow than Tolkien's.

Ahem.  I am civil when this happens, truly, I am ;)

Outwardly I typically just smile or ask if the other person has read much of his other works than Narnia.

Inside I think 'Seriously, READ THE OTHER BOOKS.'  The Chronicles of Narnia are an excellent series of books.  They're amazing.  But they're not all Lewis wrote.  I love Narnia, but I hate it when people see Lewis as only the creator of Narnia, and don't credit him with the stunning other works he produced.  (Though, seriously.  'The creator of Narnia' is an epic title for anybody.)

So.  Yeah.  There's my little rant about misunderstanding and misjudging Lewis;)  Narnia is epic, and so is LotR.  I love them both very, very much.  (Especially LotR.)  Their respective authors need be in no paltry competition.  

Okay *takes deep breath*  Moving on.  

So far--and I plan to lengthen this list greatly--these are the books I've read that were written by Jack (in no particular order).

~ The Problem of Pain 
~ Mere Christianity
~ The Chronicles of Narnia (7 books)
~ The Screwtape Letters
~ Out of the Silent Planet
~ Till We Have Faces

Huh.  That doesn't look like very much typed out.  Oh, well ;)  I hope to read ALL of his works one day, but it'll probably take a while.  For now, how about talking about the ones I have read?

You all know my opinions on Till We Have Faces ;)  It is my favorite of his books, and I can't stress enough how good it is.  The story is gripping the whole way through, but then you get to the latter chapters, and the booklover practically swoons with delight.  IT'S JUST STUNNING.  It's heartrending, uplifting, brutal (in a way), and sympathetic.  Just go read it.  Please.

The Screwtape Letters and Out of the Silent Planet are probably my least favorite of the ones I've read :-P  Don't get me wrong, they're good, but just not my favorites.  OotSP is very well-written, but not my favorite genre (though I do plan to finish the trilogy), and TSL is…well, TSL ;)  It's a bit, um…dark.  It's a very good book, and it should be read, because it definitely is eye-opening, but it's not one that I'd rush to read again.  Ya feel me?

The Problem of Pain is excellent.  It's a bit "over my head" in certain parts ;-P  but it's really good.  Lewis has this incredible knack for taking ideas that everyone has had, and putting them into words in a clear, concise, yet beautiful way.  Can I get an 'amen'?!  He deals with controversial issues, such as free will and the existence of pain and suffering, and it's very good.  He doesn't so much come to a final conclusion as he simply presents the facts, and different arguments to try to make sense of them in a rational way.  I think he does it pretty well, personally ;) 

Mere Christianity is WONDERFUL.  I think it was the first non-Narnia book of his I read, and it is SUCH a good book.  If I were to try to collect quotes from that book, I'd end up with the entire book in my quote collection.  (I do actually have very meaty paragraphs from it in different collections, hehe.)  He encapsulates the reality of a Christian life, and some of his points have been really helpful for me, such as how feeling devoted to God is quite a different thing from being devoted to God.  I need to re-read this again, actually…

And then, of course, there are the Chronicles.  *sniffles*  These are just…*blissful sigh*  They're nostalgic and comforting and convicting and just plain awesome.  They're written for children, but they're beneficial for any age.  Plus, did I mention that they're just plain FUNNY?  The man had a gift for humor.  Lasaraleen = point made. 

There you are!  Jack, thank you.  Thank you for your faithfulness, for your honesty, for your versatility, for your sensitivity, for Narnia, for your teaching, and for your fiction infused with the light of the Lord.  

You're my favorite.  Happy birthday!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

The C. S. Lewis Tag ~ C. S. Lewis Week

Here I am to answer the questions Abigail put together for Lewis Week (hey, better late than never, right?)!

I apologize (ish) in advance for the superfluity of Narnia pictures, particularly those pertaining to "The Call." ;)

1. How did you hear about C. S. Lewis?

I can't remember not hearing about him, if you know what I mean.  I grew up on the older (and yes, fairly stereotyped as pretty bad) BBC movies, of which I do really like The Silver Chair, but which, other than that, I can do without.  And then I read the Narnia books, of course, and stuff kind of happened from there;) 

2. What was the first of his books that you read?
The first?  Hmm…probably The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

3. Which one of his book(s) is your favorite?
He's my favorite author!  How can you ask me to pick a favorite??  Actually, it's okay.  Um…I think Till We Have Faces wins.  Mere Christianity, The Magician's Nephew, and The Horse and His Boy are really close, but TWHF is just stunning.

4. Describe what you feel when you read his books.
Deep questions, these…I guess one thing I really appreciate about his works is his ability to convey different emotions with the different genres he writes.  In Mere Christianity or The Problem of Pain, I get "aha" moments--you know, when you read something that describes what you've been trying to grasp for ages but have never been able to formulate into an intelligent thought.  In The Chronicles of Narnia, I feel many things:  nostalgia, safety, happiness, laughter, etc.  And in Till We Have Faces I feel human.  I feel the human follies, the human glories, and the sublimity of the supernatural touching the human with love.  (You really need to read TWHF if you haven't.  Have I stressed that enough?  Seriously, IT IS AMAZING.  And definitely stick it out until the end, because that is when he ties everything together so shockingly and beautifully.)


5. How have you been touched or impacted by his works?
See above;)  Mere Christianity, among other things, touched me in how he explains that we will not always "feel" close to God, and that's okay.  We need only to act on His Word and as if we adored Him, and eventually we will.

6. What would you say to anyone who hasn't read any of his books?
Well, I think I'd say, don't base your judgment of him as an author off the Narnia books.  Now, before you pelt those rotten tomatoes at me, I don't mean that the Chronicles aren't spectacular--they are.  They're brilliant, touching, funny, beautiful books.  BUT I think that sometimes, people read only the Narnia books and think that is always his style, and I think that sometimes people judge him unfairly by them and think that they are "as 'deep' as he gets."  (And even if that were true, they're plenty deep, if you dig beneath the surface.)  

7. If you could write a letter to Jack, thanking him, or asking him questions, what would it be? (show us as your answer.)
Oh, yikes!  I wouldn't know where to start!  But I'll try.

Dear Mr. Lewis,
     I just wanted to thank you so much for what you've done.  By simply using the gifts God gave you, you impacted more lives than you will ever know and drew so many countless people closer to the Creator.  By always being candid, warmhearted, recognizing those the world would overlook, and being willing to write unpopular things, you've touched me deeply and I thank you and our Savior for it.  
     Oh, and by the way:  did you by any chance draw your inspiration for The Lady of the Green Kirtle from Bernlak's wife in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight?  Just wondering :)  
     Thank you again so much--
                                                                  a friend in Christ

Monday, November 23, 2015

In which I ramble about various book couples I ardently adore

Since you all were so kind as to give my television couples post a wonderfully warm reception, here I am with my suggested book-ship post! :)  The same caveats apply:  these are by no means all the couples I ship from books, and I must admit that most of the ships I'll list here actually sunk, but no matter.  Hope you enjoy!  I tried to pick those couples that were not totally obvious or that I didn't know from the beginning would end up together (case in point, there are no LotR ships in this post).  Let's get started, shall we?

Be aware:  spoilers, of course, follow;)

Julie Wallace and Graham Gillin (I think that was his last name?)
From:  Julie by Catherine Marshall

I was disappointed that Julie did not end up with Graham at the close of Julie.  (Of course, I was a bit disappointed in that whole book, but that is nothing to the purpose.)  I think the relationship between Julie and Graham had the most depth to it out of all Julie's (manifold) beaux.  It had a bit of a rocky start, but at least they actually got to know one another.  At least their relationship was founded on a little bit more than infatuation.  

Is this not like the cutest picture ever?! 

Digory Kirk and Polly Plummer
From:  The Magician's Nephew by C. S. Lewis

I really wish Digory and Polly had become a thing.  They're just so priceless together :D  They had their quarrels and their differences, but in the end they were always a sweet duo who understood each other and were the best of friends, standing by one another through thick and thin.  I think theirs would have been a happy relationship, had it ever evolved.  

Jordan Baker and Nick Carroway
From:  The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Literally the only compelling, potentially healthy relationship in the book.  Of course it falls apart.

Shasta/Cor and Aravis
From:  The Horse and His Boy by C. S. Lewis

YES!  Called it! :D

Shasta (or Cor, whichever you personally prefer) and Aravis make me sooo happy.  I was listening to Alex Jenning's recording of THaHB recently, and THEY ARE JUST THE BEST.  When he goes back to fight the lion…and then when he returns from the battle and they're acting really awkward around each other…and then how he describes their relationship:  "when they grew up, they got married, so as to go on doing it more conveniently."  

These two just make me HAPPY.  (You said that already, m'dear.)  :) :) :)

Yes, yes, I know it's not technically what happened.

Una Meredith and Walter Blythe
From:  Rilla of Ingleside by L. M. Montgomery

"Una shook hands quietly, looking at him with wistful, sorrowful, dark-blue eyes.  But then Una's eyes had always been wistful.  Walter bent his handsome black head in its khaki cap and kissed her with the warm, comradely kiss of a brother.  He had never kissed her before, and for a fleeting moment Una's face betrayed her, if anyone had noticed.  But nobody did…"  


Naomi, you understand.  Words fail.  

Tom Shaw and Polly Milton
From:  An Old-Fashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott

I've only read this once, something I need to remedy, but I remember really liking their relationship.  Warm fuzzies, and all that :D

Neela and The Guy (I can't remember his name, but the soldier guy she hides)
From:  Neela:  Victory Song by Chitra Bannerjee Divakaruni

This is one of those Girls of Many Lands books--you know, the subset of American Girl?  If any of you have read it, you probably know who I'm talking about.  Anyway, I always really wished that Neela and whats-his-name had ended up together.  I "wrote" fan fiction plots and acted them out with my Neela doll and one of my brother's GI Joes.  I was that committed;)  

Bardia and Orual
From:  Till We Have Faces by C. S. Lewis

That is, I WOULD ship these two, wholeheartedly, but for the fact that Bardia is married *scowls at his ill judgement*  I can choose to believe, however, that Bardia was not married when he first met Orual.  (It probably says he is in the book, though.)  

But honestly.  THE PAIN.  I know the whole impossibility of a relationship between the two of them contributes to the drama and emotionalism of the story, but I think Bardia could have/should have seen past Orual's "ugliness".  Wouldn't they be a good couple?  Wouldn't they?!  

Rebecca Randall and Adam Ladd
From:  Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm by Kate Douglas Wiggin

I'm not a pedophile, I promise!  The idea is suggested in the latter portion of the book, after all.  Do they actually become a couple in any of the sequels?  Anybody know?  

I couldn't find a SINGLE PICTURE OF THEM FROM THE BOOKS.  This is making me very upset.

Andres Montoya/Papá and Tía Dolores
From:  the Josefina books by Valerie Tripp

I remember being SO happy when these two became engaged at the end of Changes for Josefina.  So much joy :D  Really, though, are they not an awesome couple, those of you who have read the books?  Totes adorbs :)

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Till We Have Faces by C. S. Lewis {review} ~ C. S. Lewis Week

GUYS.  So my friend Abigail is hosting a C. S. Lewis party (mayhap you've noticed the button on my sidebar?) this week, November 22-29, the latter date happening to be the beloved author's birthday!

I got very excited when I heard about it, because, hello, Lewis.  I don't know how much I'll be able to participate in the party post-wise, but I at least wanted to contribute this--very short--review of (probably) my favorite Lewis book:  Till We Have Faces.

(Originally posted on Goodreads; I've made minor adjustments.)

This book is the one that solidified Lewis's place as my favorite author. (Mere Christianity started the process, though.) What blew me away was the utter complexity of his writing (and also his impressive flexibility and aptitude in being able to change his style for his various books). The first time I read it, I didn't know "where he was going with it," so to speak, and when I reached the end I was floored by the power in his pen.

Harnessing all the desperate, raging impotency in the human outcry against injustice to the self, Lewis makes me feel with Orual even her most irrational and base emotions, and then leads her to one of the most powerful and earthshaking climaxes--revelation from "the gods."

Lewis was skillful enough to make his Christian theme very subtle, but still very noticeable. He never once mentions the Christian God by name, but the ending chapters (which are sheer joy to the book-lover's soul) make it unequivocally clear that all along he has been painting a tale on a mirror, to show us where we, even dedicated Christians, have all felt a complaint against our God.

Aside from the stunning theological inflection of the book, the story itself is compelling. One feels for Orual in the midst of her unlovable-ness, wishes her happiness and peace, mourns with her every time they are taken away, and rejoices when at least she realizes:

"How can they meet us face to face till we have faces?"