Giving Life to The Giver: No Thank You!

I love movies. The soundtrack, the actors, the location of filming, all coming together to make a wonderful work of art. I also happen to love books. A LOT. Usually, whenever I hear that a movie will be made based on a book I have read, I am elated. I want others to experience the story, cheer for the protagonist, develop strong feels for the “bad guy,” and basically ride the emotional roller coaster that is every good novel. Of course, I am a firm believer in reading novels before they become box office hits, and not the other way around. Yes, it may ruin the surprise of the movie, but it is better in the long run. If you read the book first and something truly resonates with you, you will experience those same emotions in the theater. My biggest beef comes when movies leave out important pieces of stories. I understand that they need to cut some things, or else all movies would be five hours long, but it still leaves a mark. Take the Harry Potter film franchise for example. I read the books, watched the movies, and essentially grew up with Harry, Ron, and Hermione. The movies, however, fail to mention many major points (and some not so major that still would have been cool to see). Basically, if you live your entire life just watching the movies and not reading the books, you’re missing out on half the fun.

Enough about my Harry Potter rant though (I’ve attached a link to a Buzz Feed article that explains what you’re missing out on by just watching the HP movies if anyone is interested).
http://www.buzzfeed.com/pipsicle/28-things-the-harry-potter-movies-left-out-aoev

The real reason I am writing this post is because it has been announced that the beloved Lois Lowry novel, The Giver will be made into a movie. This movie, which is scheduled for release on August 15th, 2014, stars Brenton Thwaites as Jonas, Jeff Bridges as The Giver, Meryl Streep as the Chief Elder, and, wait for it, Taylor Swift as Rosemary. Now, I loved T-Swift back when she actually sang country music, and Meryl is always great, but I cannot go see this movie. One of the most amazing aspects of the book is the idea that so much is left up to your imagination. The utopia society in which Jonas and co. live has no pain, war, suffering, or differences. Everyone is the same and there is little mention of color or otherwise differing characteristics. This is what makes the book so special. You are free to imagine the world within The Giver however you wish to see it. Making this book into a movie is robbing younger generations of children the pleasure, and at times confusion, that comes with reading the book.

Another major issue I have with The Giver being turned into a movie is the ending. Lois Lowry left the ending very open, allowing you to envision what you wished. I can vividly remember sitting in Mrs. Bebb’s seventh grade Reading class discussing the ending to The Giver. We were free the decide what we thought happened. At first, I thought that everyone imagined the same ending as me. However, after hearing the various takes my classmates had, I came to the startling conclusion that everyone saw the ending a different way. This idea both fascinated and confused me. I truly believe it was at this point that I fell in love (again) with books and the power they have over us. I feel it is a true shame to deny children the joy of discovering this by turning The Giver into a movie. Well, that’s my rant. If you haven’t read The Giver yet, I strongly urge you to. Please read it and discover your own ending before the movie ruins it.

xoxo,
Ciara

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Book Review: Eleanor and Park

While searching through Pinterest for new books to read, (yes, I use Pinterest for more than just planning my future wedding and honing my baking skills for whenever I get the chance to appear on Cupcake Wars) I stumbled upon a YA novel entitled Eleanor and Park. I read the summary and decided it was worth giving a shot. Boy, am I glad that I did.

Eleanor and Park, written by Rainbow Rowell (whose name I happen to love), takes places in a small town outside of Omaha, Nebraska in the 80’s. Eleanor and Park come from very different worlds, despite living only a few streets away. Their paths cross on the bus ride to school and both of their lives are changed.

Although I was skeptical during the first few chapters, I grew to love the book. By the end, I had laughed, cried, and rooted wholeheartedly for Eleanor, Park, and their 1980’s version of Romeo and Juliet. Told from alternating points of view, it focuses on both characters and allows readers the pleasure of hearing the story from two different sides; providing a more complete understanding of what each character is feeling. The book reminded me a great deal of a novel I read in sixth grade Reading class; Flipped. Eleanor and Park is a great summer read and I highly recommend it!

Happy reading!

xoxo,
Ciara

My First Love

Books were my first true love. Before I had discovered dance, Pinterest, the snooze button on my alarm clock, or a certain comedy show about six friends finding their way in New York City, I uncovered the worlds of the Bernstein Bears, Anne of Green Gables, and Laura Ingalls. I trekked through the wilderness with Jack London. I partied with Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan. The prairie became my home and the Ingalls my sisters. Books allowed me to escape from the real world. I was able to travel to any time or any place without having to leave the comfort of my living room couch. My summers were spent curled up with a book, (or five) while my fair Irish skin avoided the burning UV rays of the sun. My mom didn’t threaten to take away my cell phone when I was being defiant; she would take my book. Many times, I would emerge for breakfast with dark circles under my eyes, but a satisfied smile on my face. My parents would look at me and say, “how late were you up this time?” After I responded with an answer usually in the range of 2-4 AM they would sigh and remark, “well, did you finish it?” The answer was always yes. Books are my drugs and the library is my dealer. 


As I grew older, books became an even more important part of my life. Reading for school was never a burden. In fact, school introduced me to some of my most favorite stories. The love of Jean Valjean and his willingness to live a righteous life; watching Scout and Jem grow up in the troubled South and seeing them realize that every life is valued; even the metamorphosis of Gregor taught me valuable lessons. Books have opened my world up in more ways than I can count. 

Whenever I read a book, I have the incessant urge to tell people about it. Anyone really. My brothers, parents, friends, or even random people I stumble upon in libraries or Starbucks. If I see them reading a book, or looking at a book, and I have had an experience with it, I must tell them how I felt. Now, this can become a nuisance, I know. Thankfully, my best friend shares the same love of reading that I do, because my family often does not want to hear about the latest YA novel I finished. (This is not to say that my family hates reading; they just don’t always enjoy my constant blabbering about reading. Lucky for them though, I go to school in a different state so they don’t have to deal with it as much these days.) It is because of this desire to share my literary experiences with others that I have decided I am going to do book reviews on here. Hopefully I will introduce you to some new reads and, if you have any suggestions or find yourself yearning to share your experiences with a particular novel, please let me know! I love when I get recommendations for new things to read! Well, now I have exposed you to my first love, and at times my only. I find that we make quite a lovely pair. Please come back to see what we’re up to!  

xoxo,
Ciara  

Welcome!

Hello! 

Welcome to my new blog! It is summer and my brain is itching for me to write, so I’ve created this blog in order to express myself. I love to read, bake, and write, so if any of those things are of interest to you, then you have come to the right place! 

You may be wondering why I have chosen the name, “Delightfully Chaotic” for my blog. It comes from a line in a quote by Dr. Steven Maraboli. The quote itself reads “She is delightfully chaotic; a beautiful mess. Loving her is a splendid adventure.” I found the idea of something being “delightfully chaotic” extremely refreshing. So often we look down on chaos; we strive for perfection and order in everything. While I do believe in order, (to a degree) the fact of the matter is, life is chaotic. At least my life is chaotic. It is a welcomed chaos though, and I would not wish to have it any other way. So there. That is why my blog is titled, “Delightfully Chaotic.” It is a simple description of my wonderful life. 

I hope that you will continue to follow my blog and experience my delightfully chaotic life with me. 

xoxo,
Ciara