24/04/2017

12 BOOKS TO READ BEFORE YOU ARE 30


There are many timeless books you should read, but even books are best read at a specific age. If you are in your twenties, you have already exited your teens happily and started entering adult life, which introduces an inevitable change in obligations. Life is your best teacher, but it is always helpful to get some guidance from good writers along your way.
'The things you learn and how you understand the book depend on the phase in your life' – says Jack Matheson, a content manager at Essayontime. For this reason, we have selected some of the best books that may not have read before, but can certainly shape your identity and your worldview.

1.     Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky

At some point in your life, you will need to make an important choice. Reading Dostoyevsky's novel is a great way to learn about the difference between choosing the good and the bad, and the consequences that come from both.
A gripping story and an argument against nihilism, 'Crime and Punishment' speaks of a 23-year-old man, Raskolnikov who murders two women and suffers from the consequences. The story speaks of humanity and how we are responsible over our actions and the death of others.

21/04/2017

PERIOD & MORE PERIOD: NEW SHOWS & OLD ACQUAINTANCES

The White Princess





Have you seen episode 1 of new Starz The White Princess? I saw and liked The White Queen when it was on, so I have been eagerly waiting for this new series which was announced as a sequel. However, I'm sure it can be seen as an indepent chapter of the tragic Cousins' War, so don't worry if you haven't seen the previous series.
I didn't expect to like The White Princess, though.  Being a Ricardian, I am supposed to watch it with a scowl, despising King Henry VII (Jacob Collins-Levy),  probably as much as Prince Elizabeth of York (Jodie Comer),  who hated him for killing her beloved uncle (and lover?), King Richard III. But just like her,  I unwillingly accepted  to grant him the chance to prove himself the rightful king of England  and I let him be just the hero of a new TV show.  Beware Henry/Jacob, you'll have a very hard task to make Elizabeth and me change our minds!
Jokes apart, I liked what I saw in the first episode: lavish, intriguing, introspective. Little history, much fiction, but good period drama. Right balance of sex & violence, intrigue & politics. Hence, green lights, Starz! (N.B. Those who are in search of historical accuracy as well as perfect 15th clothing and hair style had better look for academic essays and documentaries).

    Interview with Jodie Comer and Jacob Collins-Levy        Preview episode 2

18/04/2017

5 REASONS TO WATCH BERLIN STATION


What it is about


It's a 10-part spy series which follows Daniel Miller (Richard Armitage) just arrived at the CIA foreign station in Berlin, Germany. Miller has a clandestine mission: to uncover the source of a leak who has supplied information to a now-famous whistleblower named Thomas Shaw. After  ten years spent as a CIA analyst, Daniel goes back to the rough-and-tumble world of the field agent guided by veteran Hector DeJean (Rhys Ifans).

17/04/2017

BOOK REVIEW - LUCA DI FULVIO, THE BOY WHO GRANTED DREAMS


The Boy Who Granted Dreams



New York, 1909: Fifteen-year-old Cetta arrives on a freighter with nothing but her infant son Natale: strikingly blond, dark-eyed, and precocious. They've fled the furthest reaches of southern Italy with the dream of a better life in America. 

But even in the "Land of the Free," the merciless laws of gangs rule the miserable, poverty-stricken, and crime-filled Lower East Side. Only those with enough strength and conviction survive. As young Natale grows up in the Roaring Twenties, he takes a page from his crippled mother's book and finds he possesses a certain charisma that enables him to charm the dangerous people around him ... 

Weaving Natale's unusual life and quest for his one true love against the gritty backdrop of New York's underbelly, Di Fulvio proves yet again that he is a master storyteller as he constructs enticing characters ravaged by circumstance, driven by dreams, and awakened by destiny.  (Book Blurb)

13/04/2017

AUTHOR GUEST POST - SIDDHI PALANDE, THIS HAPPENS ONLY IN INDIA



India is a country of age-old traditions and customs. We have an auspicious day every day of every week, 365 days. We have set limits for everything. No brochures are issued but we know how a man ought to behave and how a woman ought to react. There are one too many curfews imposed. Our social setup is as much stifling as it is welcoming.  However, when it comes to marriages we are tad too strict.

06/04/2017

MOVIE REVIEW - A CURE FOR WELLNESS

        
A cure for wellness sounds rather contradictory. Nevertheless, it does exist. At least in a movie by Gore Verbinski,  which this article is going to be about.

It is the story of a young and ambitious worker of a New York company who is given an important mission to visit a forsaken health center in Swiss Alps in order to get his boss back out of the prolonged vacation. He warned everyone that he is not going to be back by means of a strange letter. It makes it to where everyone worries in the company and which is why a man was sent there to solve this problem. There are rich and powerful people having a rest, stressed due to hectic life for a treatment with a water with curative powers.

On arriving and spending some time within its walls, he realizes that miracle-working procedures of spa-saloon are not what they seem to be. While the main character begins to unwrap scary secrets of the place, his sound mind undergoes a checkout for stiffness. Despite all the attempts, Lockhart is not allowed to meet his boss due to some reasons.

Failed to accomplish the mission, he is going to go back to New York but it looks like now he suffers from the same weird illness, which is the reason why all the rest guests of the center are there wishing to get their dose of the cure. With each new day, hopes of Lockhart to be cured and returned home are fading away. Instead, he has thrilling hallucinations and borderland between fact and fiction disappears.

26/03/2017

WUTHERING HEIGHTS 2018 - INTERVIEW WITH PAUL ERYK ATLAS: BECOMING HEATHCLIFF

Shao'ri Morris and Paul Eryk Atlas in a scene from Wuthering Heights






















Though he may apparently look quite the brooding Romantic hero, he shares very little with the protagonist of Wuthering Heights. He is no Heathcliff at all.  Paul Eryk Atlas loves smiling, is the least vengeful creature in the world and has such a joyful disposition that he had fun even answering my teacher-mode questions and made this interview such fun to read! 
I can't wait to see Paul on screen when the new Wuthering Heights will be out in 2018 to celebrate Emily Bronte 200th birthday anniversary!    

15/03/2017

SHANNON WINSLOW PRESENTS LEAP OF FAITH FROM HER NEW CROSSROADS COLLECTION



Leap of Faith: Write What You Know

Who hasn’t wondered at least once how life would have changed by making an alternate choice at some crucial moment in the past? Where would you be today if you’d turned right instead of left at an important crossroads or been able to sidestep a particular misfortune? Or perhaps you’ve daydreamed about a different life altogether, in a different place and time.
That’s what the stories of my new Crossroads Collection are all about: turning points, possibilities, and second chances. Each book features a new hero/heroine who’s given the extraordinary gift of a second chance at life, the chance to answer for themselves the intriguing question “what if?” The first two books feature Ben Lewis (a struggling minor-league baseball player) and Hope O’Neil (a Jane Austen-obsessed college student). Their unique personalities and choices take them on radically different adventures. 

Maria Grazia has graciously offered to host both these new novels on blog tour today – Leapof Faith here, and Leap of Hope over at My Jane Austen Book Club..

02/03/2017

BOOK UNDER THE SPOTLIGHT: KEEPING KINLEY BY ANNETTE K. LARSEN


Keeping Kinley by Annette K. Larsen 

  He's noble. She's common. It's complicated. Kinley is content with her common life until a chance meeting with an old friend—a noble—brings the possibility of love. Though Rylan pursues her with a charming carelessness, she doesn’t dare hope that their relationship will be accepted. When Kinley’s livelihood is threatened, she is thrust into his world as a servant, but the Rylan she encounters there isn’t the quirky friend she thought she knew. Can she trust him, or will she be forced to accept that her dreams are only that—dreams?  


01/03/2017

WUTHERING HEIGHTS 2018: THE TRAILER IS OUT! + INTERVIEW WITH DIRECTOR NINA ELISAVETA ABRAHALL



Last week I posted the first installment in my Wuthering Heights 2017 series: my interview with Shao'ri Morris, the actress starring as Catherine Earnshaw in the upcoming movie. Today I've got not one but two absolute exclusive features: the fist trailer and an interview with director and screenplay writer, Nina Elisaveta Abrahall. She kindly answered all my questions, even the most insidious ones, with generosity and open-mindedness. You know, I even dared ask whether we truly needed a new version of Emily Bronte's novel after so many had been already made. I think she has a point there! Discover more reading through the interview and enjoy the trailer at the end of the post! By the way, my next interview is with Heathcliff, that is Paul Eryk Atlas.  Stay tuned!

26/02/2017

I'VE SEEN MANCHESTER BY THE SEA


Lee Chandler is a brooding, irritable loner who works as a handyman for a Boston apartment block. One damp winter day he gets a call summoning him to his hometown, north of the city. His brother's heart has given out suddenly, and he's been named guardian to his 16-year-old nephew. As if losing his only sibling and his doubts about raising a teenager weren't enough, his return to the past re-opens an unspeakable tragedy . Throughout the movie Lee relives past memories  and the viewer discovers what caused him to leave Manchester and distance himself from everyone there (from imdb). 

With six Oscar nominations and several Baftas and Golden Globes received, Manchester by the sea has been acclaimed as one of the best 2016 movies. I agree, of course. Especially after being disappointed by pluri-awarded La la Land, I can't say the same for Kenneth Lonergan' s small-budget movie.

25/02/2017

BOOK BLAST & GIVEAWAY - RACHAEL ANDERSON, THE RISE OF MISS NOTLEY

  the-rise-of-miss-notley-gr 



The Rise of Miss Notley by Rachael Anderson 

 When Miss Coralynn Notley’s father barters her off to the first titled gentleman to come along, she realizes she must flee her home or be forced to wed a despicable man. Driven by desperation, she applies for the position of housekeeper at Tanglewood Manor, the home of the handsome Mr. Jonathan Ludlow. The moment Jonathan sees Miss Notley, he is intrigued. She is far too young and inexperienced, yet there is something about her that inspires a certain hope within him. Does he dare offer her the position of housekeeper or will doing so result in catastrophe?    

24/02/2017

WUTHERING HEIGHTS 2018 - BECOMING CATHERINE EARNSHAW: INTERVIEW WITH SHAO'RI MORRIS



Emily Bronte wrote the greatest , most terrifying love story of all time: Wuthering Heights.  It is a wild, passionate tale of the intense and  demonic love between Catherine Earnshaw and Heathcliff, allegedly a Gypsy foundling adopted by Catherine's father. After Mr Earnshaw's death, Heathcliff is degraded and humiliated by Catherine's brother Hindley and wrongly believing that his love for Catherine is not reciprocated, leaves Wuthering Heights, only to return years later as a wealthy and polished man to find he is too late and that Cathy has married Edgar Linton. He proceeds to exact a terrible revenge for his miseries.Unable to bear being parted from his love he curses her on her deathbed to never rest and always be with him and so begins 20 years of her haunting his every waking and sleeping hour. A tale of love, hate, horror, haunting, but most of all a story about human nature. 

18/02/2017

BOOK UNDER THE SPOTLIGHT: THE SPLASH OF LADY HARRIET

 




Coming August 2017 from USA Today bestselling author Rachael Anderson

The Splash of Lady Harriett

When wills clash and hearts collide, who will come away victorious?



Author Rachael Anderson

 A USA Today bestselling author, Rachael Anderson is the mother of four and is pretty good at breaking up fights, or at least sending guilty parties to their rooms. She can't sing, doesn't dance, and despises tragedies. But she recently figured out how yeast works and can now make homemade bread, which she is really good at eating.

16/02/2017

10 BOOKS EVERY YOUNG ADULT SHOULD READ WITH FUTURE PROSPECTS IN MIND


We’re living in an era where books written for young adults are adored by readers of every generation. Reading books can make you cleverer and open-minded in grasping new ideas. Perhaps you have heard of the famous quote:

“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” ― Margaret Fuller

Every leader will tell you that they read a lot. Reading is fun to mental. With the likes of Harry Potter and Katniss Everdeen, there is a wide selection of books for any young adult who fancies reading. So, if you have got goals for your own successful future and you are wondering which books could give the knowledge you need to achieve your success, here is a quick list to choose from.

07/02/2017

MOVIE REVIEW - ARRIVAL


"There are days that define the story beyond your life. Like the day they arrived."

(from guest blogger Amber Armstrong)  Arrival is an American sci-fi movie of Canadian director Denis Villeneuve, which came out in the year 2016. American writer Ted Chiang published in 1998 bases the scenario on Story of Your Life. The play opened September 1, 2016. It was released on November 10, 2016. The movie paid off, have been receiving great reviews.

The movie is about huge objects, which appear on Earth all of a sudden. They are called coquilles and allegedly have extraterrestrial origin. Trying to figure out reasons and aims of their appearance, American security services contacted socialists involving a linguist Louise Banks and an astrophysicist. Louise is followed by memories about her daughter who died from a rare disease at a young age.

She does not speak their language but she is trying to and gradually she manages to understand what they are trying to say. She gets acquainted with them through communication however she can and she is amazed with new and unknown for her and others but how communication goes and how it gets easy.

16/01/2017

NEW YEAR, NEW THINGS TO LEARN! DARE YOURSELF!


(by guest blogger Vera Marie Reed)  Now that a new year is upon us, it is time for a new beginning.  There are plenty of ways to wipe the slate clean.  One of those ways is to organize your life.  Sure, you may think that you have everything organized.  But, do you?

If you don’t, then we have you covered.  The information below will keep you organized.  As a result, you can help make 2017 go more smoothly.  Get ready to reorganize your life.

Different Locations - Different Plans

If you are like most people, you probably have some sort of organization process for every location.  Regardless of where you are, you probably have some sort of way to organize things.  But, you need to ask yourself if it is working.

If you are still feeling unorganized, then chances are that your process needs to change.  So how do we fix it?  It depends on where you are.

11/01/2017

BOOK UNDER THE SPOTLIGHT: THE PHANTOM TREE BY NICOLA CORNICK. READ A CHAPTER FROM THE BOOK!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Thrilling time-slip historical fiction about the enigmatic Lady Mary Seymour, daughter of Henry VIII’s widow Katherine Parr.

“She had not told him a single thing about her family. She had never spoken of them. But they were all there on the pages of notes she had so painstakingly compiled. The Seymour family tree linked them together, tangled as the roots of the old oaks of Savernake Forest. They were all there: she, Edward, Mary, Arthur…”

Wiltshire, Autumn 2016. Deep in a small, unassuming art shop, Alison Bannister stumbles upon a newly discovered Tudor portrait, supposedly of Anne Boleyn. Except Alison knows better, the woman is Mary Seymour, the daughter of Katherine Parr who was taken to Wolf Hall in 1557 as an unwanted orphan and presumed dead after going missing as a child.

Alison is not from the modern world. She has travelled a long way, waited 500 years, to find a clue as valuable as this portrait. For the painting holds the key to Mary Seymour’s mysterious disappearance and Alison’s own unhappy quest.

Alison and Mary have made an agreement which transcends time. Alison will help Mary escape Wolf Hall and Mary will find Alison’s baby boy.

10/01/2017

BOOK BLAST & GIVEAWAY - FRIENDS FORNEVER BY MELISSA BALDWIN


friends-fornever



Friends ForNever by Melissa Baldwin 

Erin Taylor is a hard-working journalist with a serious TV addiction and lack of a social life. She's focused on her career and determined to leave her tiny cubicle behind for a fabulous corner office! But when a new co-worker, a friendship drama, and a hot workplace crush collide, Erin finds it harder and harder to focus. Especially when that crush on the oh-so-yummy Aiden Thomas starts to materialize into what feels like a magical relationship. Erin's life seems to finally be heading in the right direction...until suddenly friends aren't such great friends after all, her magical relationship hits a bumpy road, and her career could be derailed by it all. Erin learns a lesson the hard way: Sometimes people aren't who they seem to be. With her happiness on the line, can Erin rise above her disappointments and create the life she's always dreamed of or will she be stuck being Friends ForNever?