Friday Favourites – Book to Movie Adaptations

Author – Laura

It’s Friday, and that means that we Bookspa girls get to share all our favourite book-related things. This week we’re looking at a topic that can divide opinions and turn friends into foes. Well, maybe not quite that dramatic, but still…

I think book to movie adaptations are always a gamble, because no two people read a book in the same way. Every reader has their own idea of what the lead character looks like, how they fall in love, what their home looks like etc, regardless of how detailed the authors description is.

These are the adaptations that hit the spot for me.

Twilight

I know, but hear me out. I think Catherine Hardwicke did a brilliant job of the first in the Twilight series of movies. She nailed the atmosphere, the tension and of course, Edwards hair.  I think the director really understood the book – she was the only female to direct any of the films, so perhaps she looked at the story in a different way to the others? I enjoyed the rest of the series, but Twilight will always be my favourite. The scene at the end, with the fairy lights and Iron and Wine playing in the background? *Sigh*…

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

If you haven’t seen this film, then you should stop what you’re doing and find yourself a copy right now. The book is poignant, touching and funny, and this really comes across on the big screen. I think Logan Lerman did a great job in the lead role, he is cute and awkward, and his scenes with Emma Watson are some of my favourite. Even though it’s not a hugely uplifting story, I felt like I’d been a part of something quite special when I left the cinema.

The Green Mile

I cried reading the book, so I wasn’t sure how I’d feel watching the movie. Needless to say, I cried even more, sat in my lounge surrounded by tissues. If you’ve had any exposure to either the book or the film you’ll know what I mean. The subject matter was handled sensitively, but without a smidge of sugar coating, hence the 18 rating. The casting was spot on; you couldn’t help hating Percy Wetmore and feeling heartbroken for the gentle giant, John Coffey.

The Lovely Bones 

This is the only adaptation I did back to front, in that I saw the film before I read the book. Either way, it’s a haunting story that will stick with you long after you’ve read or seen it. Peter Jackson doesn’t really make bad films, and although this is a million miles away from The Shire it’s still as affecting as any story about a ring. You sort of get lost in it, caught up in the life and death of Susie Salmon The film really catches the sense of other-worldliness (probably not a real word) that you get from the book.

What book – to – movie adaptations have really impressed you?

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Book Club Review – Kaleb by Nicole Edwards

imageZoey Stranford might’ve had a crush on the sexy boy next door since middle school, but she’s a woman now, and that crush has turned into a full-blown case of lust. So why is it that at twenty-nine, her libido decides to ramp into high gear and the only thing she can focus on is the intensely sexy, scorching hot boy next door who is definitely not a boy anymore?

Just a small warning – this book contains adult content, and lots of it!

Laura – So this book is hot. And by hot I mean ‘holidaying on the sun’ hot. I will admit I had a little thing for sexy cowboys before I read this book, and now I have a big thing for them, if you’ll forgive the pun. Kaleb Walker is quite possibly a perfect book boyfriend. He’s gorgeous, naughty but a real gentleman. Outside the bedroom at least 🙂 It may be my innocent nature (I can hear the other girls laughing right now), but I wasn’t entirely prepared for the introduction of Kaleb’s best friend to the party. All I’ll say is that this isn’t for the faint hearted or sensitive reader. Aside from all the, ahem, ‘coitus’, the story is actually quite engaging, and I liked the characters. I’m keen to find out more about the Walker brothers, so I think the Alluring Indulgence series could be my new (very) guilty pleasure!

Hazel – well what can I say, I knew this book was going to be smutty, but I wasn’t prepared for just how much and how naughty the sexy times were going to be! Like Laura said in her review, I wasn’t expecting Kaleb’s friend to join the party or exactly what was going to happen. I blushed a lot whilst reading this book, and I’ve read some smutty stuff! There was a plot behind all the sex but let’s be honest, that’s not the reason we’re reading this, hehe. Sometimes you just need a good old dirty romance story and that’s exactly what this was.

Antonia – Thank you Goodreads for suggesting this book and well to Nicole Edwards for writing it. This book is extremely hot and full of very sexy goings on. I enjoyed meeting the Walker brothers and each of them are hot in their own way. I enjoyed the story line and the hotness was on a very big scale. I wasn’t quite prepared for some of the story (As mentioned above Mr. Walker’s hunky friend). I would love to read the rest of the series to meet the other brothers in their own story. I would definitely recommend this for a hot and steamy read :o)

Kiera – There are times during your reading life that you just need something that is so straightforward that it’s a balm for your brain. I hope that makes sense because this book was exactly that! Hunky cowboys strutting their stuff all over Texas, claiming their women and spreading testosterone in their wake. What more could you want? The sex scenes are sizzling hot and topped with whipped cream and chocolate, the storyline moved at a good pace and the characters are all so different you’re bound to find one you love.

Favourite Reads 2014 and Reading Goals 2015

Author-Hazel

2014 was the year I discovered the New Adult genre and I think my favourite reads of the year reflect my love for it….

Easy (Contours of the heart, #1) by Tammara Webber

image When Jacqueline follows her longtime boyfriend to the college of his choice, the last thing she expects is a breakup two months into sophomore year. After two weeks in shock, she wakes up to her new reality: she’s single, attending a state university instead of a music conservatory, ignored by her former circle of friends, and failing a class for the first time in her life.

Leaving a party alone, Jacqueline is assaulted by her ex’s frat brother. Rescued by a stranger who seems to be in the right place at the right time, she wants nothing more than to forget the attack and that night – but her saviour, Lucas, sits on the back row of her econ class, sketching in a notebook and staring at her. Her friends nominate him to be the perfect rebound.

When her attacker turns stalker, Jacqueline has a choice: crumple in defeat or learn to fight back. Lucas remains protective, but he’s hiding secrets of his own. Suddenly appearances are everything, and knowing who to trust is anything but easy.

Wait for you (Wait for you, #1) by J.Lynn

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Some things are worth waiting for…

Traveling thousands of miles from home to enter college is the only way nineteen-year-old Avery Morgansten can escape what happened at the Halloween party five years ago – an event that forever changed her life. All she needs to do is make it to her classes on time, make sure the bracelet on her left wrist stays in place, not draw any attention to herself, and maybe – please God- make a few friends, because surely that would be a nice change of pace. The one thing she didn’t need and never planned on was capturing the attention of the one guy who could shatter the precarious future she’s building for herself.

Some things are worth experiencing…

Cameron Hamilton is six feet and three inches of swoon-worthy hotness, complete with a pair of striking blue eyes and a remarkable ability to make her want things she believed were irrevocably stolen from her. She knows she needs to stay away from him, but Cam is freaking everywhere, with his charm, his witty banter, and that damn dimple that’s just so… so lickable. Getting involved with him is dangerous, but when ignoring the simmering tension that sparks whenever they are around each other becomes impossible, he brings out a side of her she never knew existed.

Some things should never be kept quiet…

But when Avery starts receiving threatening emails and phone calls forcing her to face a past she wants silenced, she has no other choice but to acknowledge that someone is refusing to allow her to let go of that night when everything changed. When the devastating truth comes out, will she resurface this time with one less scar? And can Cam be there to help her or will he be dragged down with her?

And some things are worth fighting for…

Archer’s Voice (A sign of love) by Mia Sheridan

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When Bree Prescott arrives in the sleepy, lakeside town of Pelion, Maine, she hopes against hope that this is the place where she will finally find the peace she so desperately seeks. On her first day there, her life collides with Archer Hale, an isolated man who holds a secret agony of his own. A man no one else sees.

Archer’s Voice is the story of a woman chained to the memory of one horrifying night and the man whose love is the key to her freedom. It is the story of a silent man who lives with an excruciating wound and the woman who helps him find his voice. It is the story of suffering, fate, and the transformative power of love

All three are of the New Adult genre, and all three deal with traumatic events, responsibily and maturely. The stories completely sucked me in from start to finish and gave me all the feels, these are wonderful books 😀

And of course, there are sexy times 😉

Onto my reading goals of 2015…

I didn’t quite reach my Goodreads reading goal of 75 books last year, so this year I’ve lowered it to 52. I think this is a more sensible number considering the busy life I lead.

Alongside that goal, I would like to get through some of the books I own. I own a lot that I haven’t read yet, and I want to change that….

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I’m trying to be more picky about which books I add to my tbr list too. It’s an ever – growing list but realistically, I only want to add books I’m really going to read!

Happy Reading ❤️📖

Wednesday Wonderings

When You Finish a Book

This has happened to us on many occasions – the last time I had ‘that moment’ was after reading Half Bad, by Sally Green. It wasnt until I’d put the book down that I realised how emotional I actually felt! New Moon, The Deathly Hallows and The Green Mile all created a bit of a sobfest as well.

You really do have to have a little quiet time after reading something emotional, just to find your way back into reality. By the time you’ve finished a book you’ve invested so much in the characters that it’s like you’ve made the journey with them. I find a little nap and some chocolate helps!

We’d love to hear which book made you have ‘that moment’.

Laura
x

Book Review – 172 Hours on the Moon by Johan Harstad

Author – Hazel

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THERE’S A REASON WE NEVER WENT BACK TO THE MOON

It was supposed to be the adventure of a lifetime. Mia, Antoine and Midori had different reasons to enter NASA’S competition for a seat on the first shuttle to go to the moon in over forty years.

But while they all wanted to escape Earth, they never realised there might not be a chance to come home…

172 Hours on the Moon is a Science-Fiction/Mystery/Horror story set only a few years in the future. NASA announce a competition where three teenagers can win a once in a lifetime trip, to go to the moon. Mia from Norway, Midori from Japan and Antoine from France, are the lucky three. They travel with their families to the U.S. to train for three months for the trip. The journey and landing on the moon goes ahead smoothly, but what happens when they enter DARLAH 2 is when the story really kicks off!

The writing had an eerie quality, perfect for the atmosphere the author intended. There were a few chilling moments, a few jumpy moments and I did actually feel spooked out reading this story. The book read like a horror movie, exactly how it played out in my head.

‘In space, no one can hear you scream.’

The characters didn’t have a huge amount of depth, but the three competition winners did have a detailed back story. I enjoyed the chapters from the old man with dementia, whilst reading I wondered what clues his story held and how they would help me de-code the mystery.

There is a huge plot twist at the end which makes the ending really scary and creepy, no happy ending here! I was completely sucked in by the story, I needed to know what was going to happen next, what was around the corner so to speak, it was completely gripping.

I would definitely recommend this book to those who enjoy a good mystery, and who don’t mind being spooked out a little along the way.

 

 

Book Review – The Crown Tower: Book 1 of The Riyria Chronicles by Michael J. Sullivan

Author – Laura

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Two men who hate each other.  One impossible mission. A legend in the making.

A warrior with nothing to fight for is paired with a thieving assassin with nothing to lose. Together they must steal a treasure that no one can reach. The Crown Tower is the impregnable remains of the grandest fortress ever built and home to the realm’s most valuable possessions. But it isn’t gold or jewels the old wizard is after, and this prize can only be obtained by the combined talents of two remarkable men. Now if Arcadias can just keep Hadrian and Royce from killing each other, they just might succeed.

This book was recommended to me by my lovely Dad, who is an avid fan of all things sword and sorcery. The Crown Tower is actually part of a prequel series to the Riyria Revelations trilogy, telling the story of how the main characters, Hadrian Blackwater and Royce Melborn, met and became partners. I haven’t read Revelations, but my Dad said to start with The Crown Tower as reading them in chronological order might make more sense to a Riyria noob. Of course, if you want to read them in order of publication by all means read the trilogy first. It won’t detract from the story, if anything I imagine you might even get more out of it than someone who hasn’t read it.

The first part of the story is focused on Hadrian, who has spent the last few years as a mercenary, killing for money. In an effort to leave his past behind him he sets off on an eventful journey to meet a family friend, who has some things that have been left to him following the death of his father. Hadrian isn’t very good at making friends, which makes for a few fun and games on the way.

We don’t meet Royce until later, when the friend, a professor at a school for the gifted, sends the two on a mission to steal something important. They have to work together, but the instant mutual loathing is a bit of a hurdle. Unfortunately for them, the only way to survive the job is by learning to trust each other. Which, of course, is easier said than done…

Alongside their story we also meet Gwen DeLancy, a whore who refuses to let herself and other girls be used and abused by the tavern owner or their customers. I imagine Gwen has an important role to play in future books.

There is plenty of action in The Crown Tower, and I immediately liked both Hadrian and Royce. I think that’s largely thanks to the brilliant writing. Alongside the fast paced action and beautiful descriptions of the world, I found this book unexpectedly funny. The humour is dry and sarcastic, and I loved the banter between the main characters. It isn’t written like a prequel, and there doesn’t seem to be any assumption about what the reader already may or may not know. I’m looking forward to reading the second book in the series – The Rose and the Thorn.

Although its more sword than sorcery (I imagine that changes as the story goes on) The Crown Tower is a great introduction into both Fantasy fiction and the world of Riyria, and perfect for Young Adults and their *ahem* slightly older counterparts as well!

My rating – 4/5

Check out The Crown Tower on Goodreads

Reading Goals – 2015

Author – Laura

Reading Challenge image

Amazingly, despite being a member of our fabulous Book Club for over 2 years, I’ve never set myself a reading goal.

2015 is the Year of the Book, at least for us here at The Bookspa, so I am going to have a go at the Popsugar 2015 Reading Challenge. There are 52 items on the list; the equivalent to one a week (and that is maths, people) which should be quite achievable. There are a million other challenges available, but this particular list really appealed to me because it’s going to encourage me to diversify. Although my Goodreads list is pretty varied I will always go back to my beloved Historical Fiction and Fantasy if I’m feeling lazy or unimaginative, which happens more often than it should.

If you want to join in, or if you’re just looking for a bit of inspiration to kickstart your own 2015 reading list, you can download a copy of the challenge here – DOWNLOAD

2014 was a pretty amazing year in my reading life. I discovered The Night Circus, fell in love with Karou and Akiva and became slightly obsessed with The Black Dagger Brotherhood. I also joined our local library, which led me to gems like Shiver, Carnival of Souls and We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves. Our Book Club has outdone itself as well, with some really diverse choices across many different genres. Thanks girls!

I’ve just started The Luminaries by Eleonor Catton, and at 848 pages it’s a bit of a tome, but I will definitely be able to tick off the first item on the challenge!

If you’ve set a 2015 goal of your own we’d love to hear all about it!

Laura x

 

 

Wednesday Wonderings

I have a couple of books on my shelves that I am saving. Not for a special occasion, or for any reason other than I’m looking forward to it so much that I can’t bring myself to read it, because then it will be over.

Do you have any books that you have put on a pedestal, or that you are saving for the ‘right time’?

Laura xx

Yes