A Brief Hiatus

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Hi everyone!

This is a quick update to let you know that I am getting a little break from this blog over the next 6 weeks or so. The reason behind this short pause is I am going to be a mother within next 2 weeks. I will be very busy welcoming the new member to our little family and won’t get enough time to blog or even read a book. But that is for a short time. These days all I do is watch movies to get distracted from my pains. This little baby is going to be a sports star for sure since she/he having a really fun time playing inside my belly :D

Hopefully, I will be able to update the blog after mid-December.

Until next time,
Cheers!

Julie & Julia

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Julie & Julia

I didn’t get any chance to watch this film when it came out in 2009. I thought it might be boring since it is about food and cooking. I have to admit that I am not a foodie and I hate cooking. So I didn’t bother to expend 2 hours to watch it. Anyhow very recently one of my good friends recommended this movie and I thought of give it a try since that day I had nothing to do and was feeling sick.

Before watching this movie I was oblivious of these two amazing women Julia Child and Julie Powell. I have not read or heard about their books before; anyway I have never read a single cook book or chef biographies in my entire life. What glued me into this movie was Julie’s and Julia’s personalities. Their commitment to pursue their passion sends an inspirational message that anyone can be successful. Julie’s everyday constant struggle to continue her cooking project and the feedback she gets at the end excellently elaborates that consistent commitment does really pay off.



I love Julia Child’s personality and the sweet smile that never left her beautiful face. Her positive attitude towards her life and her love for her husband and food really touched my heart. They, Julia and Paul, are an adorable couple. Both Julie and Julia are really blessed to have such supportive and loving husbands.

Meryl Streep does an excellent job portraying Julia Child. While I was watching this movie I watched a YouTube video of Julia Child just to see the real person. I was impressed about Meryl Streep’s acting. She expertly impersonates the personality and mannerism of Julia Child, no wonder she was nominated and won so many awards in her acting career. Amy Adams is also amazing as Julie Powell. She is one of my favorites. Both Stanley Tucci and Chris Messina also have done an amazing job portraying respective husbands of these amazing women.

This is a nice combination of food, passion, commitment and relationship. I have to admit that this movie makes me craving for French food though I am not a foodie. Beyond just being good entertainment, this movie is very inspiring.

My Rating: 4 out of 5



Welcome to Level Seven - Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Agents of Shield



Welcome to level seven; Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg) is back from death. He is assembling a new team for the S.H.I.E.L.D (Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement, and Logistics Division). The team includes Grant Ward (Brett Dalton), a combat specialist and espionage; Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen), pilot and martial art specialist; Leo Fitz (Iain De Caestecker), a weapons technology specialist; Jemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge ), a genius bio-chemist, and new recruit computer hacker, Skye (Chloe Bennet).



After so many teasers and hype, Marvel’s Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D (Oh NO!! do I have to type this official title every time?) has finally aired last night. When I saw the first trailer and the cast I thought this might not be very exciting as Marvel movies. So I didn’t have a huge expectation from this new TV series. However, surprisingly I enjoyed the premiere episode very much. It was awesome, so much more than I expected, and hilarious.
 
Agents of Shield almost felt more like a movie than a TV series. Even though there were few fake shots, the overall special effects were impressive. The directing was really good and there were lots of humor throughout the show which reminds Joss Whedon’s signature. The cast is colorful and great. I hope we will be able to know each character and their backgrounds very well in future episodes. So far my favorite character is Skye. She is a witty, super smart hacker. I really want to see how she fits into this Marvel Universe with her personality.



SHIELD-cast



This, the premiere episode, is a great start to a promising series. However I have no idea about how they are going to continue the series. Will they go on hunting for new heroes/villains each week? Anyhow, Joss Whedon has his good reputation of not disappointing the audience. Therefore, now I have full confidence in him and his team to keep this show exciting and moving.



The Perfume Collector by Kathleen Tessaro

Monday, September 23, 2013

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“Perfume should tell a story – the story of who you are, who you might be, perhaps even of who you fear becoming… all of these things are possible. It’s a very intimate element of a woman, just like her signature or the sound of her voice. And it conveys feelings and states of being that have no name, no language. Its very ambiguity makes it truer than words because, unlike words, it can’t be manipulated or misunderstood.”



The Perfume Collector is not all about perfumes or the history of perfumes. It’s about two women and their life journey, about their dreams and hopes. With fascinating details about perfumes, the story reveals the beginning, the middle and the end of the life story of Eva D'Orcey. Being married to a loathsome man, Grace Munroe attempts to find her true self. Without her knowledge she takes a huge part in the story of Eva D’Orcey.



Eva is a beautiful, charming and intelligent woman. She has a good sense of finance and business. She is always wonderful and very talented. Grace is more believable character to me with her own flaws. I enjoyed little conversations and scenes between Grace and Monsieur Tissot.



I felt the natural scent of Eva when I was turning the pages towards the end of the book. The descriptions of three perfumes as well as the other perfumes are simply awesome; I could almost smell all those scents. Being a huge admirer of perfumes and scent, the idea of having a special perfume just for myself fascinated me.



The story switches between two timeframes of Eva and Grace. Even though I am not a fan of the dual narrative style, Tessaro managed to articulate this ordinary story evocatively. The plot line is very ordinary and not surprising at all. However, The Perfume Collector is more about the journey than the destination. I knew from the beginning where the story would end up though I enjoyed that journey very much to the end.



Some Quotes from The Perfume Collector;



"We try and fail, like archers who aim for the target but fall short of the mark...When you are older and have swum out into the stream of life, you'll see -- there are no "good" people, little girl. We're all trying and failing, trying too hard and failing too often. Remember that. We shouldn't judge too harshly, in the end, the sins of others.”



"Scent memory is incredibly personal, very private experience."



“Fragrance is an aspiration. A goal. Not just a tool of seduction but of power and status.”

My Rating: 3 out of 5


The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (JK Rowling)

Monday, September 16, 2013

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I’m guilty of only buying this book because it revealed the real author behind the pen name, Robert Galbraith, is JK Rowling. Before that I have not heard about this book. As soon as I heard JK Rowling’s new secret book is a detective novel, I paid a visit to a local bookstore and purchased it.



The Cuckoo’s Calling is a murder mystery. Lula Landry, a supermodel, fell to death from her apartment a few months earlier. The police closed the case as suicide because of Lula’s history of drug problems and her fragile mental state. But her brother, John Bristow, doesn’t believe it was a suicide. He hires Cormoran Strike, an ex-military man who is currently a private detective, to investigate the case.



Somehow this book reminds me of a few old mystery novels. Cormoran’s military background and the physical damage from the war remind me of Dr. Watson from Sherlock Holmes. Also Cormoran’s investigation style and the final revelation brought back old memories of Sherlock Holmes stories. Cormoran’s relationship with his temporary solution secretary, Robin Ellacott, hints of a romantic side plot, though she is engaged to another man. Can we expect za za zu between the two in the upcoming sequel?



The mystery itself is ordinary. There wasn’t a “whoa” factor for me at the end of the story. From the beginning of the story I had my suspicions and Cormoran helped me to perceive the mind behind the crime, though I didn’t think much of the precise motive of the crime. There were lots of interviews throughout the story and it marvelously revealed the differences and complexity of characters; their different and conflicting views of the other characters. I really enjoyed those conversations while trying to understand their inner thoughts.



JK Rowling has created realistic, believable characters in this story. They are not perfect; even the hero himself is not a perfect, Hollywood hero type man. Everyone has good and bad faces inside them; pretty, average, and ugly people on the inside as well as on the outside. It is truly impressive how JK Rowling creates these characters with such credibility.



This is a good read with lots of new words and I had to peek into my dictionary more than I used to. I haven’t got any chance to read mysteries recently, but I really enjoyed this book. Sometimes I think the name behind the book might have influenced my opinion of the book. However I tried my best to put my thoughts about this book into words without favoritism.

My Rating: 4 out of 5

A Letter to My Husband on Our Anniversary

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Darling,

I can remember the first moment that I saw your face. You were looking at me as I am a different species and I was annoyed by your look, yet you seem very familiar to my heart. When you were around me I was very anxious and thought the reason is I don’t like you much. I was in my own mess of love at that time and didn’t believe in love much. Somehow you managed to steal my heart and we began our life journey together five years back.

Since the moment we started our life journey, you have being my rock, my best friend, and my life. Though we are so different from each other, we both also have a weird, silly side to us that perfectly match. You like comics, anime and I like sci-fi, romantic comedies. You hate books and I always have a book in my hands. You enjoy staying home quietly and I enjoy going out with friends and dance a bit. You always want to have music around you while working or doing something and I always want it to be quiet. Yet we are staying together and perfectly matching. Sometimes I think these differences make us work and happy.

You always read me better than I read myself. You lift me up when I am down. You always encourage me and support me on working out my plans. It doesn’t matter to you whether I am fat or skinny, beautiful or ugly, you always admire me. You always think about my happiness and comfort. Sometimes you are a big father to me. Sometimes you irritate me with your advices, but I always know that those are true and glad you are alongside me.

Sometimes you annoy the hell out of me. You spend so much time on your computer with headset on and you can’t hear what I am saying. So I have to scream or have to hit you to get your attention. Sometimes you ask so many questions just to irritate me. You don’t talk to me or don’t even look at me when you are angry, and you keep staying like that for hours or even for days. But still I love all those things too.

I know our life is not perfect, yet it is perfect for us, though it’s not a fairy tale. I am glad about the decision I took five and half years back to be your wife and that’s the best choice I have made in my entire life. Thank you for being my life partner and my life coach. Thank you for accepting me as I am and not trying to change me.

I love you more than yesterday and surely less than tomorrow. You are the best thing happened to me in my life. On this wonderful day, I wish more years to be with you and grow old together. Happy anniversary!!!

Your Wifi :D

Orphan Black – How Many of Us Are There?

Monday, September 09, 2013

Orphan Black


When I found out about this new show, Orphan Black, it has already aired the first season. But I am glad that I got to enjoy the entire season without any interruption. It is hard to wait week after week to get answers for the questions and satisfy the curiosity, when watching a TV series like Orphan Black. Surprisingly I enjoyed this show more than any of the sci-fi TV series I have ever watched and I have never got bored for a second.

Sarah Manning witnesses a woman, who looks like her (Beth), jump in front of a train while she was returning to States to reclaim her daughter. Sarah assumes her dead doppelganger’s identity and lands in the middle of a huge human cloning conspiracy. The story elaborates the ethical issues and impact of human cloning.

One of the strongest elements of this show is its cast, to be more specific, the leading performer who portrays Sarah Manning and her other clones, Tatiana Maslany, is brilliant. She can disappear into a role so deeply you forget the actor and only see the character she portrays. Honestly, she can play ANYONE. Each of the different characters of the clones has unique personality, mannerism, and dialect. Maslany disappears into each woman’s identity effortlessly and you never have to wonder which character you are looking at, and you almost forget the same actress performs all these characters. I have never seen a performer play multiple roles simultaneously with such success.

Other casts of the show also perform brilliantly in this show. Jordan Gavaris plays Felix Dawkins, Sarah’s foster brother, who is gay. Dylan Bruce plays Paul Dierden, Beth’s lover and later Sarah’s lover. Maria Doyle Kennedy portrays Mrs. S, Sarah’s foster mother and Kira’s guardian (Sarah’s daughter). Michael Mando plays Vic, Sarah’s drug-dealing, abusive boyfriend. Kevin Hanchard plays Detective Art, Beth’s police partner.

Even though I don’t like to spoil the storyline with many details, I must say that the plot is very unique, captivating and thrilling. You can’t find other sci-fi elements in this series such as time travelling, aliens with actions, and teleporting. Instead you land to a more realistic scientific world of clones and genetic experiments.

Orphan Black is one of the best TV series I have ever watched with a good cast and a unique storyline. I am impatiently looking forward to dive into the second season of the series in the next year, and it is really sad that I have to wait that long.

My Rating: 5 out of 5

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

Monday, September 02, 2013

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I must confess that I didn’t just like this book, I loved this book. Deborah Harkness’s A Discovery of Witches is a mixture of fantasy, history, science and romance, which is a perfect read for me.

In this fascinating world of A Discovery of Witches, vampires, witches and daemons have to live without interfering into human lives while hiding their true nature from people and pretending as humans. Thus, different creatures have to live separately from each other and it is forbidden to associate with different groups since humans become suspicious when these different creatures blend.

Diana Bishop, a witch, is falling in love with Mathew Clermont, a vampire, in this forbidden world after discovering a long lost manuscript that contains the origin and the evolution of all creations. Diana and Mathew have to protect themselves from the congregation of creatures while learning to control the great power that Diana possesses without her knowledge.

The research on history, science and manuscripts glued me into the book that I read those detailed descriptions without taking a break to feed myself. The colorful descriptions of history, science, wine, and food made me feel as I am alongside the characters in the book. There is so much information that should be read carefully which closely relates to one another. Even though there were negative reviews about those lengthy informative descriptions, I had a great time visualizing all of the beautiful settings and wonderful architecture.

I love the world that Harkness created in this book, and all the magic, myths seem very realistic. Reading this book was a pure enjoyment for me and the information on the history of alchemy was compelling me to research it myself. I have the second book of the series, A Shadow of Night, and eagerly looking forward to reading it.

 

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5



P.S. Wandering around Life has been on a long, very long, pause since life has been hectic with my studies and career. With this post I am trying to get back to my blogging rhythm.