Saturday, March 25, 2017

Musical theatre lines that Do Things to my emotions

You know when you hear a line from a musical and it hits you that it's one of the best and deepest musical theatre lyrics you've ever come across?

It might be because of the simple power of the lyrics, or the raw emotion of the music itself, or a combination of both.  (In my experience, such lines are usually rather sad *ahem*, so, y'know, prepare yourself.) Anywho, I've decided to compile a list of some of the aforementioned song lines that have really Touched Me.  (I like lists, in case you haven't noticed.  But mainly just in blogging and/or fandom things.  I don't do many other kinds of lists.  Moving on.)  This is by no means a comprehensive list, of course.

"I'se tired o' livin' and scared o' dyin', but Old Man River, he jest keeps rollin' along." ~ from Show Boat

"Oh, my Creator, what is the good of the strongest heart in a body that's falling apart?  A serious flaw -- I hope You know that." ~ from Evita 

"I loved you, Julie.  Know that I loved you." ~ from Carousel 

"Let future historians wonder how Eliza reacted when you broke her heart . . . you have torn it all apart; I'm watching it burn." ~ from Hamilton 

"Don't cry for me, Argentina:  the truth is, I shall not leave you.  Though it may get harder for you to see me, I'm Argentina and always will be." ~ from Evita 

"Christine, I love you." ~ from The Phantom of the Opera

"Here they talked of revolution; here it was they lit the flame. Here they sang about tomorrow, and tomorrow never came." ~ from Les Misérables

"Yet in his eyes, all the sadness of the world -- those pleading eyes, that both threaten and adore." ~ from The Phantom of the Opera

"To be willing to march into hell for a heavenly cause . . . " ~ from Man of La Mancha 

"Let others rise to take our place until the earth is free!" ~ from Les Misérables 

And -- let's just be real -- the entirety of the last few minutes of Les Mis and "Down Once More/Track Down This Murderer" from Phantom.  

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Sheesh, this was depressing.  Sorry 'bout that.  In other news, I have again changed my look.  Behold.  I don't think the last one was quite doing it for most of us -- myself included -- and I realized that I will probably want to use that background for a different look later in the year, so here we are :)

Saturday, March 11, 2017

A Bookish Post

It has been too long, my dear friends, since I've had a post specifically devoted to bibliophilic things, so here we are.

I thought I'd let you know what I've been reading lately, what I'd like to read soon, etc., as well as filling out my answers to a tag I received from the awesome Lia over at Catholic Girl Stuff!  Go check out her blog!

So, first things first.

Recent Bookworm Stats

~ The last book I read all the way through was Crime and Punishment.  (And yes, this was a school read.  As a general rule, I do not dive towards the Russian authors when I'm reading for fun.  Sorry.)

~ The book I am currently reading (for fun) is Little Women.  A re-read, this, and GUUUYYYYYSSS.  I love Alcott's writing.  She's just awesome.  (Plus, um, the '94 movie.  Can I get an amen.)

~ The book I'm really looking forward to reading next is either The Wizard of Oz, The Seakeeper's Daughters, or Charlotte's Web.  That last one would be another re-read, but I've had sort of a hankering for it recently . . .

~ I have recently acquired lots of books.  I worry sometimes that I'm a compulsive thrift-store book-buyer.

~ Two of the last books I have to read for literature class are both by Lewis, and one of them happens to be my favorite. #win

~ You guys, I finally took the plunge and arranged my bookcase according to color.  AND I LOVED IT SO MUCH.  It doesn't look absolutely stellar (yet ;)), but it was and is immensely satisfying.  Wanna see?

The Bibliophile Tag (originally by Catherine of The Rebelling Muse)

As I understand it from Lia's post, the rules are simply to answer the questions, link back to Catherine, and let her know that you've answered the questions.  (And to share with other bloggers, but being the lazy person I am, I'm not going to follow that last one.)  Thanks for creating the tag, Catherine!  And thanks again to you, Lia, for tagging me! :)

1. What is your favorite fantasy novel/series?  Ach, I don't know!  It all depends on how strict your categories are -- if Peter Pan by Barrie counts, then Peter Pan.  But, since that could also be classified as a children's book, Inkheart is another favorite.  Mainly the first book and the movie -- I want to give the other books another try, but they weren't doing it for me last time.  And, of course, The Lord of the Rings.  But.  Well.  That kind of goes without saying. ;)  Actually, I don't read/watch LotR all that often *ducks* (though I do want to re-read the trilogy soon), and you can read what I say about my relationship with it in this post -- it's the very last story mentioned -- if you want.

2. What is your favorite historical novel?  *clutches at heart*  Why?!  I . . . how can I possibly . . . most of what I read is historical!  So . . . it's a little hard to say.  Two OF my favorite historical novels are Christy by Catherine Marshall and Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Larson.

3. What is your favorite contemporary novel?  One that I read recently (ish) that I really liked was Dandelion Summer by Lisa Wingate.  I now have two other Wingates on my shelf waiting to be read, and I'm looking forward to them. ;)

4. Which character/book best reflects your personality?  LANDS, these questions shouldn't be so difficult for me, but they are.  I think one that does capture my personality pretty well is Little Women, in fact.  (People who know me well -- do you agree or disagree?)

5. What is your favorite book character of all time?  "You're killing me, Smalls."  I don't know!  Um . . . Faramir is the character that initially jumps to mind, but I'm not sure if that's accurate or not.  Maybe Beth March??

6. What is your favorite author?  Whew, an easier one.  C.S. Lewis. :)

7. Do you judge a book by it's cover?  Yeah.  Hehe.  That is, if it's a book I've never heard of.  If it's one I know more about, I'm less likely to be influenced by the cover. 

8. Paper books, ebooks or both?  Typically, paper books, but I have to say that my Kindle has been SUUUUUPER helpful for school the past two years, because I've found several of the assigned books for free on there.  And it's really easy to annotate with a Kindle, so that's fun. :D  

9. Have you read a book you didn't like?  Yes.  Probably several, in fact.  (Unlike movies -- there have been very few movies I have disliked.)  *stops to try and come up with some*  Oh, Frankenstein. I DISLIKED THAT BOOK.  Now, granted, the character of The Monster is p.h.e.n.o.m.e.n.a.l., and the writing is pretty good (for a Gothic Romance, which genre of writing I dislike in general), but still.  Victor Frankenstein himself ruined the entire book.  I hated him.  Passionately.  In fact, I could go off on a rant but "I shall restrain myself."  Also most of my American literature course, although I do feel I should re-read most if not all of them now that I've had a few years to "mature." (Ha.)  And Robinson Crusoe.  Do not get me started on Robinson himself.  

10. What is your favorite book villain?  CAPTAIN HOOK.  I wuvs him.  Honorable mentions go to Dom Claude Frollo (at first -- after awhile he just went all crazy-pedophile and became gross) and Javert. (Shout-out to Lia for reminding me.)  I will defend Javert if need be.

What have you been reading recently?
What is your opinion of Javert?

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

wordless wednesday / / things of period drama pretty

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Saturday, March 4, 2017

Christy ~ 1994-95 TV show {review}

Well, folks, how are you?

{You may have noticed a change in the look around here.  As you may also have noticed, it is March, which means that SPRING IS HERE *throws confetti*.  (Hush.  "But me no buts" about specifics; in my estimation, spring begins PROMPTLY on March 1.)  Thus, the change.  I know it's a rather big one, and honestly quite different from what I had in mind when I set out to "refresh the look."  What think you all?  We'll have to see if I stay sold on it -- I may miss having a header and an (always) visible sidebar too much after a time. :-P}

I first watched the TV show adaptation of Christy (1994-1995) while hunched over a small iPod screen a few years ago, and recently I borrowed the series on DVD from a friend, and I've loved the book for several years, so I thought, what the heck, better crank out a review.

I don't recollect whether I watched the show prior to reading the book . . . I don't think I did . . . maybe I started the book, didn't finish it, watched the show, and then read the whole book?  Anyway, these details are inconsequential.  Let us to business.

*Warning:  This post will probably include spoilers for both the book and the show.*

I suppose I'll start with my feelings on the cast?

With Kellie Martin as Christy, I'm not sure exactly what I think.  She's cute, and she's spirited but sweet and all that jazz, yet . . . I don't know.  Something seems just a leetle off?  Perhaps it's just the fact that the whole series itself (and I do really like the series, let me be clear) has a tendency to wax cheesy now and then, reminiscent of a Hallmark production.  (In fact, I thought it was Hallmark up until recently.)  But other than some slight notion of her not completely capturing the Christy of the book, I think Ms. Martin did an excellent job.

Tyne Daly nails Alice's personality, though she doesn't look much like Alice is described in the book.  Of course, *spoilers* the TV show changes -- among other things -- the whole Margaret issue, and since Margaret is alive in the series, that adds a different facet to Alice's personality.  I'll admit, in the show Alice seems more . . . fallible, I guess?  Which is really a good thing, if I think about it, because she IS, after all, most certainly human.  Some of her responses to the dilemmas in the show just seemed somewhat un-Alice-like.  Again, however, that's probably a) a good thing, since neither they nor Catherine Marshall (I assume) were trying to portray Alice as an angel, and b) largely due to the huge impact of her daughter's still being alive and alienated from her.  On the whole, bravo, Tyne Daly! 

Neil MacNeill is -- pretty good, actually.  Stewart Finlay-McLennan looks and acts the part well.  Due to the series' rather abrupt ending -- ahem -- we don't get to see Neil's denial of God get resolved, but it is covered in the TV movies that they made after the show ended.  (Also, okay, help:  I can't decide whether his hair is cool or not.  Sometimes it looks good and then sometimes it don't.  Thoughts?)

Some of the cast is Spot. On., though -- particularly Randall Batinkoff's David, Tess Harper's Fairlight, and Mike Hickman's Birds-Eye.  Most of them are, actually -- the children, including Lundy (though he's hardly in there enough to be able to develop his character), Ida, Rob Allen (such a dear lad), Opal McHone, little Sam Houston (THE CUTENESS THOUGH), the rest of the Cove people . . . by and large, the casting is well-done.  



The story-lines of the show differ from the book, this is true.  Several of the incidents recorded in the book aren't included in the show, and several that aren't in the book are invented in the show.  So that's a little strange.  But I have to say, all in all, that I really like this series.  Not to be totally cliché, but it captures a lot of the "spirit" of the story and the characters.  One element I really appreciate is the show's handling of just the community in Cutter Gap.  Its depiction of the poverty is excellent, and the way it highlights the bond between families and between the children and Christy is most satisfactory.  And then, of course, there are the -- ahem -- love stories interspersed, so that's a thing that is cool (most of the time). ;)  

The children, especially, are a major draw of the show.  Their innocence and sweetness and quirks and strengths and weaknesses and misfortunes and jubilees are all touchingly portrayed.  

Favorite Episodes

~ "Pilot"
~ "Both Your Houses"
~ "Eye of the Storm"
~ "The Sweetest Gift"
~ "Green Apples"
~ "The Hostage"  (I was VERY much a fan of this one. It was all Good and Dramatic. ;D)

*Spoilers -- ish*  Leaving aside the question of whether the makers should have altered the situation surrounding Margaret, Miss Alice's daughter, I think it's done pretty well.  Of course, they also change the circumstances of Miss Alice conceiving her, which is ehh.  But other than that, the actress who plays Margaret does a really good job, in my opinion.  It's interesting to see how it influences the different characters and brings out different aspects of them that you wouldn't see had they not changed it.  

My favorite romance was -- well, Neil and Christy, obviously, because of reasons. :D  But I also really, really love Tom and Opal McHone.  Particularly at the end of "Babe in the Woods" when *still spoilers -- ish* Tom tells Opal that they're adopting the baby, and that he wants to name her Iris.  That moment really touched me, because you can really see in his face how much he loves Opal and wants to make her happy, to help her heal after the tragedy with their daughter.  THEY'RE JUST SWEET AND PRECIOUS AND THE MORE I THINK ABOUT THEM THE MORE I LIKE THEM.  Also, I thought it was sort of Really Adorable how the makers incorporated a few hints of the romance that might possibly happen between Ruby Mae and Rob Allen.  (That is who they were in the book, right?) In that scene during "Green Apples" when Ruby's confiding some of her fear to Rob, and she tells him that she's always looked forward to her first dance, and then he gets up and goes over to her and dances with her in the middle of the sickroom?!?!  I mean, yes, they're a wee bit young for "such foolishness," but still.  'Tis cute.  

Final verdict?  Though the TV series certainly has its flaws, and some of them are more glaring than others, it also has definite good points.  In general, I think it's awesome. :D

What about you?  Have you read Christy and/or watched the show?  What did you think of it/them?