Monthly Archives: October 2013

Reactions to Allegiant… (spoilers)

allegiantThis post contains spoilers for Veronica Roth’s Allegiant. DO NOT READ ANY FURTHER if you haven’t read it or do not want to know the ending yet. 

The reaction to Allegiant has been pretty phenomenal, albeit, not in a good way. The only other time that I’ve experienced a fandom lash out in anger like this was when Lost ended so disappointingly. I’m not going to officially “review” it, because I assume if you’re reading Allegiant then you’re familiar with the Divergent universe. These are my reactions to the finale of the series, for whatever they’re worth.

I really wanted to like this book. I didn’t want to jump blindly on the hate train just because others were so upset. Despite my best efforts of giving Allegiant the benefit of a doubt, I just couldn’t get on board–but not for the reasons that you would think. I seem to be in the minority on this one, but it doesn’t bother me that Tris died. I was shocked, yes, but it made sense for her character’s personality.

My disappointment fell more on the storytelling itself as well as the symbolism:

  • Holy lackluster and anticlimactic, Batman. Other than the “OMG!” realization of Tris’s death, what happened in this story? It just wandered on and on so slowly. We talked about factions. We talked about genes. We talked about why Tris was mad at Four. We talked about why Tris made up with Four. We talked about why we had to save the factions. Other than Four’s mini-rebellion in the middle somewhere and the final plan (?) battle (?) whatever you want to call it, nothing happened. I kept waiting for it to pick up or to make some alarming discovery, but it just stayed flat. Bland and flat.
  • Probably my biggest frustration is the major shift in what we’re supposed to find important. We spend two books learning about the factions and what it means to be divergent. Two books caring about how and why things are they way they are within the factions and having a stake in how they interact with each other. We spend two books moving in one direction to have the rug pulled out from underneath of us at the end. Even Insurgent’s cliffhanger with “Edith Prior,” that I was all “omg!” about, turned out to mean NOTHING.

Don’t get me wrong, genes are an extremely interesting topic and most certainly belong in a dystopian universe, but if they were going to be so important to this story, they should have been introduced way sooner so that we could delve into them way deeper. Which brings me to my next point:

  • Roth really dropped the ball on how powerful of a message she had with what it means to be “genetically pure” or “damaged.” I’m not going to get too far into this one because it was explored beautifully by Chelsea in her post “Genetic Purity, Racism and White Privilege in Veronica Roth’s Allegiant.” Check it out if you have the chance. As she puts it: “If a “damaged” person is killed by a “pure” person, there’s no justice because the “damaged” don’t have a genetic code worth protecting.” That sentiment could have been ripped directly from the 11 o’clock news, and it’s not even explored in any real way. We just were to take it for granted that “pure” Tris would save the day. Also to Chelsea’s point, once “divergence” became the ideal, the story was no longer Tris’s to tell. It should have been Four’s.

I could go on, because once I start asking questions, I find it hard to stop.

  • Why was it so easy for a bunch of 14-year-olds to stage such an elaborate coup?
  • Why were there about five adults in the entire airport?
  • Why did Tris and Four have the SAME EXACT voice?
  • Why don’t I care more that the heroine is dead?

At the end of the day, though, the trilogy had to end somehow, and there were some bright parts. I liked that Tris and Four were able to reconnect with their mothers in an unexpected ways. I liked that Tris made amends with Caleb. I enjoyed seeing Four’s fear landscape again and I liked that we got half of the book from his perspective. Not going to lie–I got misty in the end when Four was remembering Tris and I loved that he was finally able to zipline.

Mostly, Allegiant just feels so disjointed from the other two books. I feel that maybe it was slapped together without a clear direction, pushed through to make deadlines. Things are left unexplored. Ends left loose. Emotions left unresolved.

The silver lining here is that the movies are being made. If Divergent does as well as they expect at the box office, maybe by the time Allegiant hits the big screen, the movie can fix a lot of where the book fell short.

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Introducing “Retail Tuesday”

ImageI love swag of all kinds, but I especially love literary swag. Why not show off your love of all things bookish on your walls, in your wardrobe or in your accessories? Since most book lovers feel the same, I thought I’d start “Retail Tuesday.”

Why Tuesday? For the alliteration, mostly, but also because Tuesday isn’t anything. It’s not the first day of the week. It’s not hump day. It’s not almost Friday. And it’s certainly not Friday or the weekend. It just floats there, in the middle of the week being nothing. Maybe it’ll help me to dislike Tuesdays a little less.

Without further ado, please check out Bookishly for all your wall envy art, jewelry and greeting cards. Bookishly uses rescued books, comics and sheet music in hand framed eco-friendly wood. Since 2009, they’ve developed a range of offerings from literary and musical favorites to “geek” interests such as binary and mathematical equations. Each piece is printed onto an individual original book page using an exclusive hand drawn font, so you know your art will be unique.

Honestly, how great are these? I want them all.

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Oscar Wilde

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Pride and Prejudice

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Wuthering Heights

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Final “Catching Fire” trailer released… (cue fangirling)

catching fire

Image Credit: imbd.com

Alright fellow Tributes… the final Catching Fire trailer debuted last night during Game 4 of the World Series. Even though it’s only a minute long, there’s plenty to be amped about.

We’re getting our first glimpse of the Quarter Quell arena–an unprecedented (and exciting) marketing decision considering The Hunger Games trailers didn’t show the arena until after the movie hit theaters.

You can check out the trailer for yourself below, but here are some of the things I noticed:

  • 0:46 – The 10 o’clock to 11 o’clock sector, the salt water wave that washes out the entire sector to the beach. And that cornucopia is pretty dope.
  • 0:47 – I think it’s safe to assume that that is Finnick running with Mags on his back through the woods.
  • 0:48 – The locket (but not the pearl?)
  • 0:52 – The 2 o’clock to 3 o’clock sector, the paralyzing fog.
  • 0:53 – The 3 o’clock to 4 o’clock sector, MONKEY MUTTS!
  • 0:55 – The 4 o’clock to 5 o’clock sector, JABBERJAYS!
  • 0:58 – The Jabberjay attack–Peeta is definitely yelling at Katniss “It’s not real!”

Chills. I have chills. November 22nd cannot come fast enough.

I also wanted to note that I don’t have the sector times and traps committed to memory. I found an awesome fan-made map/visual guide of the arena. Check it out here if you’re reading the book now, had trouble imagining it as described or just want a refresher.

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Imagine a world without words…

Image Credit: Buzzfeed.com

I’ll be the first to admit that A LOT of things get me irrationally excited. One of those things is creative and innovative marketing. Remember earlier this year when dragon shadows started to pop up all over the place, heralding the return of Game of Thrones? How about the giant gnarled zombie hands that appeared one day in Union Station in Toronto? Every day the hands lost a finger in the countdown to The Walking Dead season 3 premiere.

Yesterday morning, two basically blank full page ads appeared in the New York Times. The stark contrast of all that white space juxtaposed against the day’s news was nothing if not eye catching. The lone URL on the page, wordsarelife.com, takes you to the website for the film adaptation of The Book Thief by Markus Zusak.

If you’re unfamiliar with the novel, The Book Thief follows Liesel, a young girl in WWII Nazi Germany who begins to steal books from war torn areas where book burning bonfires are a regular occurrence in the streets. As she learns that words can be used for good and evil, her love of books begins to transform her life as well as the lives of those around her.

With that in mind, the message of the book, film and advertising campaign seem to echo off the blank pages of the newspaper: Imagine a world without words. People are debating whether or not the ads are actually clever. I think the bigger point is that people are talking about them. They’re working and I think they’re genius.

If you haven’t already read The Book Thief, I highly recommend it. I read it this summer and it’s one of those books that digs itself inside of your heart and stays there. It’s haunting and beautiful and amazing. The movie hits theaters November 8th and I’ll definitely be one of the first in line.

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I pledge “Allegiant” to Veronica Roth…

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Image credit: hypable.com

That line will probably be used a billion times in the coming weeks, but whatever. I love a good cliche. I meant to throw this up here yesterday, but time got away from me.

Allegiant, the third and final installment in Veronica Roth’s Divergent trilogy dropped yesterday and I couldn’t be more excited. I got my grubby little hands on a copy last night and I can’t wait to crack it open. Divergent was there for me at a time when I was suffering from a serious Hunger Games hangover, so I’m excited but also a bit anxious to see how it all ends.

I’m sure I’ll have a lot of opinions. Until then.

Unicorns and Wizard Sleeves.

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An introduction… of sorts

Books turn Muggles into Wizards

Image Credit: thehpalliance.org

Quite a few months ago, possibly a year or more by now, I started a book blog. I read books, reviewed them and provided recommendations on next reads. It was fun for about a minute. For some reason, I started making rules for myself–what I could and couldn’t post, post length, voice, etc. Needless to say, it only took a few weeks for that blog to fall by the wayside. It started to feel like work when all I really wanted was a place to channel all my book loving energy. And let’s be honest… I didn’t have clamoring hordes of readers. I was being strict on myself for no reason.

Lately I’ve been getting the itch to write again, so here is my attempt to shed those rules and just write whatever I want. I have a lot of obsessions that come with a lot of feels and no where to put them. Dog-eared & Foxing is born. (What’s with the name?)

I could read one hundred books and write one hundred book reviews, but that’s not why I read.

I read because I get a rush every time Harry sees Diagon Alley for the first time, on paper or on screen. I read because I cried like a baby when Augustus said, “I lit up like Christmas Tree, Hazel Grace.” I read because there simply isn’t a better couple than Lizzie and Mr. Darcy. I read because Middle Earth is so much better than anywhere.

This time around, I’m doing it without rules. Books, fandoms, comics, cosplay, movies, video games. They’re all in my head and they’re all on the table. So… down the rabbit hole we go.

Unicorns and Wizard Sleeves.

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