Dewey’s 24 Hours Read-A-Thon

This will be my master post for the event. All updates across the 24 hour period will be recorded on this entry.

I don’t really have an idea of what books I aim to read for this event because every time I set out to make a list, I rarely stick with it so I will just warn you that I plan to read whatever mood strikes me. And don’t look for me to check in every hour because I’ll probably do it only when I need to come up for air.

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24 Hours to Read or Die

Too much anime is the only explanation for my mental problems.

It’s that time of year again! The 24 Hour Read-a-Thon! I didn’t get a whole lot accomplished in the last event back in October, but I aim to do better this time around. I won’t be going off to offline social website gatherings with my friends. (Although I did get that pretty edition of Jane Eyre so I guess it wasn’t a total waste.) I’ve spent far too much time reading books from the library for April so it’s time to tackle my own books on the shelf! And Runelight arrived in the mail so there’s further temptation to deviate from my April goals!

The books I aim to be reading for this weekend’s event are the following:
The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank
How the Irish Saved Civilization – Thomas Cahill
This Side of Paradise – F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Man Who Created Sherlock Holmes – Andrew Lycett
The Wolf King – Alice Borchardt
Scarlet – Stephen R. Lawhead
Imperium – Robert Harris

Fitzgerald is an e-book so I should give my e-reader some much needed attention, I think. Imperium is a book that I borrowed from a friend last year and still haven’t read, so I really need to get on it and return the book to her. Will I keep to these books? I don’t know. It’s entirely possible that I get distracted. I added several more than I originally planned in case I find I accomplish more reading than expected. Anyway I’ve decided that I’m going to use this post as my collective for all updates for this year’s event instead of several after so many hours go by. Be sure to check back if you want to know how things are progressing.

Good luck to all my fellow readers during the next 24 hours! Keep calm and read on!

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Blogs Gone Bad Week: Chauvelin

Gladiator’s Pen

The Scarlet Pimpernel is one of my favorite books. As much as I cheer for Sir Percy, I also have a great affection for his arch nemesis Citizen Chauvelin. I’m not sure how it started, but I confess that the books in the Baroness’ series I liked best were the ones that involved Chauvelin. Not that the rest weren’t good, but they lacked a certain something.

Chauvelin’s sanity is shown to be very loosely gripped in subsequent books. The lengths that he goes to in order to trap that elusive Pimpernel! Despite his attempts to wear down Percy, the Englishman shows that he’s more than a match for Chauvelin. While Percy is a master of disguise Chauvelin uses a practical method of telling to difference between the real person in question, yet he couldn’t realize to what lengths that the Pimpernel would go to accomplish his own objectives. However, it is interesting to see that by this point in the books Chauvelin has grown extremely paranoid. A far cry from the arrogant agent in the original novel. He is the anti-thesis to Percy’s chivalry and heroics… and for some reason I find myself liking the character a great deal. It’s been a long time since I’ve read The Scarlet Pimpernel so I might make that one the title of “reread a classic of your choice” for the Back to the Classics reading challenge.

As I said earlier this week, Tom Hiddleston is now my dream cast option for the role in a film adaptation. Time to explain. I’ve seen some of the versions out there. I know that it’s hard to reconcile a film adaptation to be a perfect match to every reader’s perceptions, but I haven’t been happy with the Chauvelins in the versions that I have seen. Someone told me that the musical Chauvelin was wonderful, but I doubt I’ll get to experience that stage production so I must rely on film. However, during my recent viewing of Thor it occurred to me that Hiddleston might be able to pull Chauvelin off for me. And thanks to YouTube I know he can speak French so everything’s good!

Blogs Gone Bad Week: Sean Bean

Gladiator’s Pen

As much as I hate to admit it, Sean Bean is the epitome of the typecasted actor. How often do you see him playing in the role that is other than villainous? However, with this comes the fact that the man is a walking spoiler (if I can borrow a phrase from a Game of Thrones parody). The only movie I can think of off-hand where he’s a bit of a bad boy and doesn’t die is National Treasure.

My first serious exposure to his acting (at least that wasn’t overshadowed by a horse) was when he played Lord Fenton in the miniseries adaptation of Alexandra Ripley’s Scarlett. It’s been so long since I read the novel that I can’t really comment on the character in that version, but Fenton in the film seems to inspire a mixture of attraction and revulsion. Maybe that’s a staple of most baddies?

Although it wasn’t that long ago where I went on some kind of insane binge for Sean Bean films that I hadn’t seen, which was frankly quite a lot. I ordered them all from the library’s loan system and in my fervor my next trip to the library involved me picking up 20 movies on DVD and VHS (but that’s not to say that I ended up watching them all). Some of them I wish I had not watched. Brain cells committed suicide from the absolute horror of some films. Others I fast-forwarded to see if he made it, or stopped altogether once he died because there wasn’t anything else to keep my interest. Like Essex Boys.

Yet there was one movie that keeps the viewer guessing and I highly recommend it. If you can get Extremely Dangerous, watch it! It offers a wonderful spectrum of the man’s acting abilities. I wouldn’t mind owning that on VHS or DVD. (Yes, I still love my VCR.)

You know what my problem with the “ending too terrifying for theaters” of The Hitcher is? This is going to be spoiler, or perhaps not so much considering whom we are talking about on this post. Okay, if you’ve seen the regular ending of the film you know he dies. He always dies, you think it would get old after awhile. The girl shoots him in the face. Now this alternate ending that is supposed to be so much scarier merely shows her killing him by beating his head in with the shotgun once their bullets run out in their respective pieces. How is this supposed to be so terrifying? Is it because the general public can’t conceive of a woman engaging or enjoying such savage brutality, even against such a vile individual that Bean does a great job portraying? Perhaps I have been spoiled on horror movies with the cliche of allowing the villain to not really die, but come back for one more scare before cutting off what happens next for the closing credits. I think allowing the serial killer to live would have made for a more terrifying ending. Not for me, but as a general rule to most people.

And if anyone even dares to call Boromir a villain I have the following to say to you: GET THE HELL AWAY FROM MY BLOG!!!

Blogs Gone Bad Week: Seduction of the Dark Side

Gladiator’s Pen

I’m not quite sure of the exact moment when villains started to become really appealing for me. Somewhere along the way of crushing on Prince Philip, I started to realize the true awesomeness of Maleficent. Somewhere in my extensive film study, I started rooting for the bad guys to win. As much as I adore the hero there are times where I didn’t want his adversary to die.

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Blogs Gone Bad Week: Loki

Gladiator’s Pen

Now I know that the mythological Loki isn’t truly a villain, merely the Trickster. However, I confess that I rather fell for the Marvel-Loki in the movie Thor. I seen the film in theaters and just recently watched the movie again. Unlike Iron Man 2 where I skip to the good stuff involving Black Widow and Whiplash, I have very little screen time that doesn’t feature either Tom Hiddleston’s Loki or Natalie Portman’s Jane so it’s a movie I can watch in full. Although it is pretty fun to see in general, and definitely my favorite of the Marvel films released so far.

Although I hesitate to call Loki a true villain. Granted all I know of this fandom is what I’ve seen in a single movie, but he seems more of a mere antagonistic force in the story. I don’t see him as really evil in this film, still just something of a mischief maker overall. Loki wants to be Thor’s equal, but in what way? The love and affections of their father? The brutal strength of a warrior? Both? Is it funny that Loki sees more wisdom than Odin about how Thor isn’t ready to be king, hence the little prank of letting in the frost giants? But of course, in this version Odin doesn’t lose his eye in exchange for wisdom, so maybe that has something to do with it. Blindness of a father’s love and it takes a brother to point it out. If you watched the little epilogue after the credits, you know that Loki survived and we’re going to be seeing him again in The Avengers.

BecauseHiddles is becoming my favorite stop for Loki and Tom Hiddleston stuff.

P.S. I think Tom Hiddleston would be my dream cast option for Chauvelin in The Scarlet Pimpernel. I will comment on this later.

Blogs Gone Bad Blogfest 2012

Gladiator’s Pen

We always celebrate the heroes and the good guys. But what about the black hats? The bad apples in the bunch? Those bad boys and girls need love too. Let’s show them some by joining the Blogs Gone Bad Blog Fest 2012.

From February 12th thru the 18th, bloggers will write short stories, articles, musings, reviews, and more about the darker side; the characters we love to hate or the evil things that scare us the most.

I just couldn’t resist deciding to take part in this event on the blogsphere. And it has Joker on the graphic… my fate was sealed. I’m not sure what I shall do, but I’m sure it’s also going to be the perfect excuse to taint this blog even further with my film devotion. My blog, my rules, ha! I have a few ideas on posts to compose for this event.

Belated Readathon

Dead White Guys is having a belated 24 hour read-a-thon this weekend. I haven’t really accomplished much so far. I think my problem is that I am not sure what I’m in the mood for at the moment. The Night Circus left me in one of those states where I’m at a loss to decide what kind of book could possibly follow it in awesome, but alas I must read something or I shall never know. Unless I want to reread, but I would really like to chisel more into my TBR pile before visiting something I’ve already read again.

The first book I read and finished during this event was something I had already started reading. I had acquired a bargain priced Nancy Drew mystery from a big-chain bookstore a couple of months ago. Yes, I know that these books are hopelessly old fashioned and outdated, but they’re tokens of childhood nostalgia when my love for reading really took off. This book was Nancy’s Mysterious Letter. Yes, these books have the predictable happy ending where Nancy solves the case and saves the day, but sometimes this isn’t a bad thing.

I’m only a few chapters in the book I am reading now. Don’t ask me why I decided to read an X-Files novel. These were my reading crack in high school. I never paid attention in the Current Affairs class because I always had my nose buried in these books yet somehow I still pulled A’s on everything. Somehow I missed Skin though. I found this selling cheap in one of the dollar stores over the summer and again nostalgia took over. I confess that I had a crush on Fox Mulder back in the day. It’s unclear whether or not I’ll be able to finish this book in the time frame. I’m afraid I could get distracted having a new kitten around.

Is anyone else participating? How are you doing in your reading this weekend?