Lovely, folk-style wood-carved maternity nurse
On Sunday, November 21st, on the Feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple, my nephew John Cornelius was born. My brother and his wife have been at the hospital with baby John all week, and yesterday I got to meet the little guy for the first time. What a beautiful, precious little boy he is. We are all incredibly blessed with his presence in our lives. I am knitting a blanket for him, which I hope to have completed by Christmas, and now that I have seen and held him, my motivation to work on the blanket is renewed. Plus, each stitch is an opportunity to say a prayer for him, which is perhaps the most productive and worthwhile gift I can give my new nephew as he acclimates to the world and builds his strength.
The other bit of news worth sharing is the exciting fact that I got to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1 twice in theaters this past weekend: last Thursday night at midnight, and again on Saturday morning. Put simply: I loved it. I have written up my reactions to the film, on both viewings, in two comments (here and here--some of my comments will make more sense to you if you've seen the film), left on a post by Jenna St. Hilaire over at The Hog's Head in which she reviews the movie. If you are so inclined, take a gander at my comments there for a list of all of the things I loved about this film, and while you're there give Jenna's original post a read as well. I am very much looking forward to Part 2, to be released in theaters next July.
And now, on to the past two weeks' worth of Thursday Book Questions. Jenna's original posts can be found here and here; for my previous installments, click here.
41. The longest I’ve gone without reading.
I am not counting reading that was purely for homework purposes, when considering this question. I didn't really get seriously bit by the reading bug until around age 14, if you'd believe it, so I'm sure that prior to that age stretches of time (weeks? months?) would go by without my seeking out a book for pleasure.
42. Name a book that you could/would not finish.
I will file this in the "could" not finish, since I hope to someday give this one a go again: Les Miserables. Yes I know, this probably makes me a poor literary citizen... I first received this story by way of the musical, and I have gathered that the musical represents the heart of the story--people who have read the book and seen the musical tend to say this. When I tried reading the book, I unfortunately got a bit bogged down by the level of detail, that the actual story got lost for me at times. Hopefully I will feel differently the next time I pick this one up.
43. What distracts you easily when you’re reading?
Once I have started, not much. Reading is a bit of a vortex for me... I suppose that sleepiness can distract while I am reading (assuming I have had a long day). One of the worst inner battles is between the desire to read another few pages, and the desire to sleep. Man that battle rages in me more often than I care to count. Blasted long days at work!
44. Favorite film adaptation of a novel?
Oh this is a tough question, and controversial to boot. I may get flack for this, but I love Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings trilogy of films. I adore Tolkien's world and the story he crafted within it, and for me Peter Jackson nailed these two things in his films. Oh, come to think of it, I do have another favorite film adaption of a novel worth sharing: the 2003 version of Peter Pan. This film version of the story is very true to the book, and the script that was written for the movie draws out and highlights so many of the beautiful and rather mature themes, while still being whimsical and enchanting in all the right ways. I absolutely adore it (especially the scenes between Wendy, Peter, and Captain Hook).
45. Most disappointing film adaptation?
I tend to block bad artistic experiences from my mind, so I am coming up blank on this one, though I am sure there are plenty out there I have not been enthused by.
46. The most money I’ve ever spent in the bookstore at one time?
Oh man... Although I am now a librarian, in high school I was not a library user but a bookstore junkie. I am sure at one time or another, probably around either Christmas or my birthday, I have spent close to $200 in a bookstore. *blush*
47. How often do you skim a book before reading it?
Quite often, particularly with books for my research. Fiction books, I almost always read the excerpt from the text at the beginning of the book, to decide if the style is one I will be able to dive into, as I love doing when I read a new book.
48. What would cause you to stop reading a book half-way through?
Hmmm... Well, the practical answer to this is, my life getting too busy for me to finish it, but this would need to be coupled with a rather dull story (or a dull telling of an otherwise good story) to be truly effective. I rarely stop reading a book for reasons having to do with being offended by its content. I am one of those hopeful readers that, when faced with something less than moral or good in an outright way in a story, I am compelled to keep reading to see if the story will redeem itself; often, I have found, it does. I recall one time that it didn't, and that was in the third book of the Philip Pullman His Dark Materials series. I do recall, about halfway through the third and final volume, sensing all the negative and (in my mind) unnecessary conclusions the book was heading towards (I read it well before the negative hype surrounding the release of the film version of The Golden Compass), and reading on determinedly hoping my suspicions would somehow be proven wrong; they weren't, but I did finish the book hunting for a better ending. Ah, well.
49. Do you like to keep your books organized?
Ahem. I am a librarian. The short and rather obvious answer for me is: Yes. :)
50. Do you prefer to keep books or give them away once you’ve read them?
Generally I keep them. I usually don't opt to purchase a book (or series of books) these days unless I sense I will like them enough to want to reread them again in the future, hence keeping them instead of giving them away.