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Monthly Archives: January 2015

Top 5 Wednesday: Anti-heroes

Hello it’s Saturday! I’m doing a Top 5 Wednesday today because classes this week kicked my ass! 😀 (let this be a lesson to me to schedule posts from now on) Today’s theme is Anti-heroes and I’m really excited for this one. So excited that I couldn’t let this one pass without posting something, even it if was three days late. Today I’m going to divide my top five into two lists – books/manga and tv/movies. I couldn’t neglect my anti-heroes on the screen so they’re getting their own list. Heeeere we go~
(TFW created by gingerreadslainey, full list of posters found here)


Books/manga

5. Rorschach from Watchmen
Rorschach is a very interesting character. If you’ve never read Watchmen, I highly suggest it. It’s pretty damn good. Rorschach is this person who wheres a constantly changing mask that looks like, you guessed it, a Rorschach pattern. When I first read this graphic novel, I was attending school for psychology, so I was immediately drawn to the very idea of him. He’s one of the Watchmen, but honestly, the phrase ‘Who watches the Watchmen’ could not be more made specifically for him. He’s a messed up guy, and I love it.
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4. Vegeta from Dragon Ball Z
Vegeta I think is one of my all time favorite characters, period. He’s just such an asshole, but at the same time, redeemable. His character development over the course of Dragon Ball Z is astounding. (I know ‘top 5 character dev’ is coming up in February. Spoilers for one person that will be on the list…) Vegeta is a character that doesn’t realize he’s not ‘the bad guy’ for as long as he thinks he is. When he first appears in the series, he tries to destroy the earth (obviously his ‘bad guy’ phase) but very shortly after he starts to show hints of a conscience. I don’t want to go into too much detail here due to spoilers, so I’ll end it there. He’s just such a wonderful character though. I highly suggest you check out Dbz if you’re into anime or manga, particularly if you don’t mind a lot of yelling and long fight scenes.
How long does it take a Dbz character to change a light bulb? Three episodes! A-hawhawhaw.

3. Sesshoumaru from Inuyasha
I have to admit, when I was a 15 year old girl and had just discovered this manga (anime pictured right, obviously) I had such a crush on this guy. On the exterior, he’s a powerful demon lord, ruthless, cold-blooded, would kill his own brother (wants to kill his own brother, even). And on the inside, he’s probably the same.

And then he came across a small child, all alone in the woods. And boom, character development. And I don’t know about you, but I have a feeling that he has a rather great sense of humor. Anyone who has read/watched Inuyasha knows all about the rocks that somehow always seem to find Jaken’s head. Wah, I love this character. Go watch Inuyasha, or go read Inuyasha. It’s super good, man.

2. Severus Snape from Harry Potter
If you don’t know why Snape is an anti-hero, I’m not going to tell you. You need to read the books. Go, shoo shoo.

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Read right-to-left

1. Scar from Fullmetal Alchemist
There’s nothing better than a bad guy who thinks he’s a good guy. And Scar is the one that sticks out most in my mind. He is a strong-willed character on a mission with a holy cause, but unfortunately, that cause includes exploding the brains of other people. Scar I feel could have a series written about him on his own. There’s just so much more I want to know about him, situations that I want to see how he would handle.

Lucky for me, fanfiction exists, I guess. Haha

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Tv/Movies

5. Sawyer from Lost
Sawyer is that character you love to hate to love. And on top of that, he’s easy on the eyes. ;D If you have never watched Lost, I say watch it. The first season is amazing. From then on, you’ll either continue to love it, or you’ll hate it. But it’s definitely worth watching at least season 1. And then hey, more pop culture knowledge, yay. There were so many times that I wanted to sock Sawyer in that gorgeous face of his, but at the same time, he’s a strong character that is definitely one of the more virtuous characters in the show. Just watch it. Go go go.

4. Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl
Captain.

At this point if you haven’t watched this movie yet, GET ON IT. This is such a good movie! (the second and third movies… and fourth movie… are debatable) Jack is such a good bad guy. Good guy? Bad guy? Honestly it’s hard to tell sometimes what his intentions are. Johnny Depp does a wonderful job with the character and mannerisms of Jack Sparrow. Go watch this movie, seriously.

3 V from V for Vendetta
This is one of my favorite movies ever. On my flickchart, I think it’s currently sitting at number 3 out of 800+. I love this movie, loved it since the first time I ever watched it. I’ve seen it probably over 20 times now and I still can’t help but be completely consumed by it every time I see it. I know this one is technically cheating, since it originated as a graphic novel, but while I own the graphic novel, I have yet to read it. So I’m using V as a movie character instead. V is again, a character with a mission. A good bad guy technically. His character in the movie is played by Hugo Weaving, and I feel like that’s the main reason why he sticks out to me so much. Everything V says throughout the movie is rather poignant and because it’s delivered in Hugo Weaving’s sharply articulate voice, the words stick in my mind long after the movie is over. If you have not seen this movie, and you feel like I say ‘go see/watch this’ too much, then ignore all my other suggestions and go watch this one. If you’re only going to listen to me once ever in your life, listen now. Go watch. o:<

2. Sherlock from BBC’s Sherlock
Specifically this Sherlock. I haven’t read or watched any other Sherlock Holmes (I know, I know. For shame!) Benedict Cumberbatch just makes the perfect ‘I’m rooting for you but seriously, shut the hell up’ character. You want him to succeed, but at the same time, his lack of… I don’t know, morals, is disturbing at times. Other times it’s hilarious. I can’t wait for season 4, though I’m going to have to for a while still (when’s it coming out, 2016? 2017? Buh). .

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1 Castiel from Supernatural
Supernatural is my favorite television show ever, so it’s fitting it contains my favorite anti-hero ever. If you’re a fan of X-Files, horror movies or classic rock music, I suggest checking this show out. Carry On My Wayward Son will never be the same for you again.

THE FOLLOWING CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR SUPERNATURAL SEASONS 4-7.
I can’t talk about why Castiel is my favorite anti-hero unless I reveal some major spoilers, so I’m sorry about that. If you’re still reading this after ignoring my big red warning and you haven’t watched that far into the show, don’t yell at me for spoiling you. I warned you.
Castiel first appears at the beginning of Season 4, but doesn’t really become an anti-hero until season 6 or so. He’s my favorite character in the series, followed closely by Bobby. I particularly love him in seasons 4-5. And then, he goes bad. I mean bad, man. Sucking up leviathans and becoming a fake ‘god’, falling from grace, basically everything bad an angel can do, Castiel does at one point or another. But at the same time, it’s soul-crushingly sad, because all you want to do is hug him and tell him it’ll okay because he thinks he’s doing good. SIGH.
 END SPOILERS

So those are my lists! Hope you enjoyed this (long) post!

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Posted by on 01/31/2015 in Books, Movies, Television

 

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Book Review: The Diviners by Libba Bray

The Diviners by Libba Bray

I read this book for one of the January picks of the Reading Adventures Book Club on Goodreads. I rather enjoyed this book, which is good, though apparently the founders of the club did not, which is not so good. But whatevs, I enjoyed the book, and therefore my review is going to skew positive.

I’ll start off by saying that this book is a chunker. At 578 pages, it’s one of the longer books I’ve read in the past year or so. I was rather intimidated at first, but I was so happy to realize that this book, for me, read super fast. I could sit and read 100 or 200 pages in one shot. I hadn’t been able to do with with a book in a while – it was refreshing! So that immediately made me like it – it’s readability.

This book is supernatural historical thriller young adult fiction. It’s set during the 1920s and revolves around these people known as Diviners (duh). I suppose the simplest way to describe them is to think X-Men, only more psychicy abilities rather than physical ones. The source of the abilities is not known for certain and I hope to find out what it is in the next book or so. I’m hoping it’s something really cool. 😀

One thing I particularly liked about this book is the attention to detail Libba Bray put into the dialogue. I felt like the characters were actually from the 20s. Flappers, glitz and glamour. It was immersive. The main character for me I think grew on me as the book progressed. Towards the beginning, I really couldn’t relate to her. By the end, I wanted to be her friend – I feel like she went through a decent amount of character development wihout losing her flapper spunk. I know this character in particular has been hit-and-miss for people from what I’ve seen in other reviews, but for me, I liked her. I think it’s because I have a few friends who would fit right in with her ,but that’s besides the point, haha. I liked the subtle hints of romance throughout the book too. It didn’t seem rushed or awkward or anything like that.

Overall, I rather enjoyed this book and will be buying the next one when it comes out in July of this year.

Overall Rating: 4.5/5
Holy cow, the sass man.

 
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Posted by on 01/26/2015 in Books

 

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Top 5 Wednesday: Series I Want to Start

Top 5 Wednesday was greated by Gingerreadslainey on youtube and the full list of 5ers can be found here.

These are the Top 5 series I’d like to start this year!

5. The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare

This is a 6 books series, and if I get through these, I’d like to read the 3 book companion series as well. This is a weird series for me – I used to own the first two books. I read the first one, then I gave the two books away. Why, I don’t remember. It seemed like a good idea at the time… but now I re-have the first five books in paperback and won’t buy the 6th until I can get it the same size, but I have a while to go before I get to that one. Hopefully this series will happen soon.

4. The Lord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien
I just wish I had editions as pretty as these ones. You never know, if I love them as much as I’m hoping I will, maybe I’ll invest in a nice set :’D

3. The Magicians trilogy by Lev Grossman
This one, I’m particularly excited for. This, from what I’ve heard, lulls you into a sense of ‘this is Harry Potter for adults’ but then it goes dark. Very dark. The main character I believe is one of those characters that you despise but can’t help but read about. I can’t wait! I own the first book, need to get the other two!

2. Chronoptika series by Catherine Fisher

I can’t find a picture of this whole series all together!! I have no idea how many books there will be, if this is to be a trilogy or a larger series, I don’t know. I own the first two and the third is expected to be published this year. The main reason I’m excited for this one is because it’s written by Catherine Fisher. I have yet to read one of her books that I didn’t absolutely adore, and I’m hoping this will be no exception! I have no idea what it’s about, which is silly, but it doesn’t bother me all too much. I still want to really, really read this book.

1. Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon

This one, I am DYING TO READ. It just sounds soooo damn good! I own the first, and I feel like this one could become one of my favorites. I’m trying really hard not to let myself form a prior opinion going in, but it’s haaaaard. Hopefully I can get to this one really soon.

And there we have it, 5 series I’d like to start. Happy reading!

 
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Posted by on 01/14/2015 in Books

 

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Book Review: Perdido Street Station by China Miéville

Perdido Street Station by China Miéville

Let me start off by saying that this book took me a very, very long time to read. Today is January 9th, 2015. I don’t even remember the exact date I began reading this book. October, maybe September even. This book for me was a challenge to get through – it is not a bad book by any means (it’s actually really, really good) but it’s just so. damn. dense. This little book, this little unsuspecting book, that upon glancing at it might be an inch and a quarter wide, is over 600 pages. It’s packed to the brim with anything and everything. And I loved it.

The first thing one will notice when reading this book is Miéville’s writing style. This is the first book I’ve read by him, but I know I need to read the rest of his work now. It has to happen. I own the second book in his companion series and the third I can get my hands on if I want. It’s going to happen. Miéville’s writing is rich – it paints a picture in your mind of this intricate city and makes it feel like his characters are living and breathing and sitting in your living room. Without this level of detail or density, the book would have not been nearly as good as it is.

One thing that I noticed though, is that before I read the book, there are two synopses – one on goodreads and one on the back of the book. Both kind of touch on what the book is about, but neither one really… paints the picture fully. This book has plot in it for sure, but that’s not what the book is about. The book is about the city of New Crobuzon and those who live within it. China Miéville populates the city with these fantastic creatures, and they all are pretty damn cool. You won’t find elves running around here, but Khepri from Egyptian mythology and Garuda from Hinduistic lore and a bunch that he created himself that I won’t spoil. I just love them. It was so cool reading about these creatures and what they look like and how they interacted with the rest of society. It was just fantastic.

I think that one of my favorite parts about this book was that I sympathized with a lot of the characters. I almost teared up twice while reading this, I laughed a few times, I got tense, everything. None of these characters are 100% good. They all have something about them that is a bit unlikable. And I loved that. They had flaws, it made them feel more real.

The only thing about this book that I disliked was the ending. Well, dislike is too strong of a word I guess. More like, ‘wasn’t fulfilled’. I don’t know. The ending was good, but I felt like one of the plot points was tied up in a way that was unsatisfying, I guess. All the points were tied up, and I suppose the way the one I’m talking about was done so in a way that fit the characters and ended the book at a good time, but I don’t know. I can’t quite put my finger on why I didn’t like how that particularly part resolved. It just didn’t sit right with me.

Otherwise though, I really enjoyed this book, and I’m glad that I didn’t quit reading it when I realized it would take me a long time to read. It was definitely worth the wait to get through this book. I know I’m going to be thinking about this city and these characters for a long time to come. My poor copy of this book has gotten so beaten up over the course of being read. It lived in my bookbag throughout my past semester – it’s corners are frayed, its spine is cracked, the color has started to fade in the creases… it’s well read now, well loved. I highly suggest reading this book if you’re looking for something steampunky fantasy-y, sci-fi-y. This book is addicting and it will suck you in.

Overall Rating: 4.25/5 stars
My heart, it twists.

 
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Posted by on 01/09/2015 in Books

 

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