3/28/2014

The Blue Castle - A Review

 
Don't you just love the cover?
I know I'm posting too much, but I'm an enthusiastic beginner, and I have so much I want to talk about. Anyway... here I am... reviewing one of my favourite books... the Blue Castle!!!
This is Montgomery’s only adult book, and I think it’s her best. (I think it's very suitable for children too, although they might not understand a major part of it.)
Many of you might never have read this, and if you haven’t my first message for you is ‘GO NOW AND READ IT’ because, my dear readers, this books is deliciously lovely. (Do you hear me, Emma Jane and Nathalie? Read it!)
 
Lucy Maud Montgomery is (after Lynn Austin) my favourite writer. Her descriptions of views are filled with the loveliest words- it is a sheer delight to read!
 
And the plot is amazing too. There are many unexpected twists and turns and the ending made me amazed and practically speechless.
Before I start rambling on about the nice-ness and amazing setting of this book, I shall talk about the normal things one does when reviewing a book.
Another lovely cover. That dress is to die for!
The story-line. Of course. I don’t want to say TOO much- (because I don’t want to spoil it for you when you read it), but I’ll say some things.
Valancy, the main character, (by the way, don’t you just LOVE the name Valancy?) is a twenty-nine year-old lady. The book starts with her twenty-ninth birthday- and oh what a miserable day it is! Valancy has been teased and treated in an embarrassing and childish manner by her mother, cousin and a heap of annoying uncles and aunts for all her life. (ALL the books have annoying uncles and aunts. That’s what books DO. It’s like an ending- in almost all the books they end well.)
 
We read about Valancy’s miserable childhood and strict rules of her mother. Her life is boring and listless, and has always been so. And on top of that all, Valancy seems to be feeling pain in her heart.
So, without telling her mother, Valancy sneaks of to the doctor, who a few days later send her a most painful and unexpected letter. It tells her that she will soon die. Isn’t that terrible, readers? The poor girl/lady, who has never really lived her life now gets the news that she will die!
 
But, I’m telling you this, the doctor mixed her with another client. Really, her illness was nothing serious at all.
But Valancy didn’t know this, and she believed that she would be dead in a few months. So she decided to make the next month’s worthwhile and filled with things SHE wanted to do and NOT her uncles and aunts and selfish mother. (You tell ‘em, Valancy!)
 
So Valancy goes (everyone at home is in hysterics) to be a maid. She earns her own money and buys the first nice clothes she has ever owned in her whole life. A green evening dress with beads, a crinkled little hat to match and a foolish beribboned and belaced nightgown. (I just love the paragraph where Montgomery describes her clothes.)
I have always imagined that dress like this one: (but then in green of course)
I love this dress!
It’s set in the Downton Abbey time! (Emma Jane wants to read it now!)
 
Anyway- back to the story- Valancy wants to make it REALLY worthwhile and she asks a man called Barney Snaith (again, such a special name) who has a bad reputation in town (but Valancy knows he has a good heart) to marry her. Yes she asked him.
They marry- Valancy’s annoying uncles and aunts and mother are in over hysterics now. I love reading these parts- and live in a little house which Valancy calls her ‘Blue Castle’.
That’s all I can say… the rest you must read for yourself.
 
Someone should make a movie of this book! It’s would be so lovely! I think Laura Carmichael (Edith) would be suitable for Valancy. Valancy is not supposed to be a stunning beauty, but she’s supposed to be sweet-looking. And I think the make-up artists could make Laura look 29, don’t you? What do you think, fellow Blue Castle fans?
So… I just love this book and I highly recommend it! If you want to order a copy… click here.
 
 

 

3/27/2014

Rosamund Pike vs Susannah Harker

As you all know, I am a Pride and Prejudice 1995 fan (you're probably saying, 'Yeah... please don't mention that in EVERY post') and also a very not-P&P05 fan. If I would start comparing the two movies, I'd probably start to sound a little fierce... you know. It would also sound too black and white.
So... I have decided to compare the two Jane Bennets. Because, people, I thought 2005 Jane was really good. Perhaps almost as good as 1995 Jane. Perhaps even as good. But perhaps not... anyways, I shall compare the two.
My favourite 2005P&P character
I don't want to focus too much on looks, but we must admit that Rosamund Pike is prettier than Susannah Harker. For Jane is supposed to be five times prettier than the rest of the lot. Not that that is so in the 2005 version, but Rosamund is prettier than Susannah. She looks 'sweet' and I think that Jane should look sweet. 
Stop it, Lizzy (that's what she says in this scene)
 
But in the Regency time, the beauty was not merely focused in the face- it was in the hairstyle, the posture, the complexion and so on. It was extremely popular to have a Grecian, Roman- style look. Susannah Harker's portrayal captures the Grecian look perfectly. She has a Grecian hairstyle- with little curls framing her Grecian-shaped face and fancy braids in her blonde hair and so on. She had the sort of beauty people would have then admired. More about this on Miss Elizabeth's blog, here.
Jane is not supposed to look like a tomboy
 I must say I was disappointed with the Rosamund Pike Jane hair. It is almost always in disorder and out of place! She looks like a tomboy!
And Jane, my dear readers, is not supposed to look like a tomboy.
I know many people say that the Susannah Harker had a ridiculous hairstyle. I know it looks as if she had just come out of the hairdressers. But here too I must defend Susannah.
The Bennets weren't that poor (Was it not Jane who said, 'We are not very poor, Lizzy'?). They wouldn't have had pigs in their house... OK, yes that's another story. Well, it has been worked out that the Bennets would have been able to afford eleven servants. Eleven.
And Jane... Jane is a neat girl. She is neat and clean and always tries looks perfect.
So, now we come to the point... Jane would have been able to have a maid to curl her hair every morning. Because you see they had eleven servants and Jane wants her hair to look nice.
So I think Susannah Harker is better in looks.
I think she looks really lovely in this picture
But what about character?
Well... apart from Susannah being better in table manners and sitting up straight (Rosamund's Jane once had her ELBOWS ON THE TABLE!! *gasps at such vulgarity*)
But... well (it's so hard for me to say this) I think Susannah's Jane looks a but weird in some scenes. Take this scene for instance:
 
 
Don't you think she's weird in that scene. That's probably the only scene in the entire show that I think isn't done very well. I think it's so funny how she goes back and forth- from the door to Lizzy. Then back to the door and then back to Lizzy.
As for Rosamund, she did Jane more sweetly. She did it more youthfully and earnest.

So I think they both have good sides. I can't decide which one I prefer.
What about you?
Who's your favourite Jane?

 

3/25/2014

Favourite and Least Favourite Scenes in my Favourite Movies

So sweet!!!

Today I'm going to talk about my favourite and least favourite scenes in favourite movies of mine. So here goes...

Pride and Prejudice 1995
As you all know, this is my all-time-favourite-movie (and it will always be!) so it's very hard (very hard indeed!) to choose a least-favourite scene, because you see, I just love them all!
Choosing a favourite scene is easier...

And... er... is your family in good health?
The scene where Lizzy realises that Mr Darcy is a normal man. The scene where we all have to love Mr Darcy.
Or any ball scene...
Don't you wish we still had balls?
But to choose a least favourite scene? Well maybe the scenes with Caroline Bingley. Heehee, yes she's so annoying.
 
 
Emma 2009
I just love this move! There are so many lovely scenes and again it's so hard to choose! So I've picked two favourites...
Emma and Mr Knightley kiss

Their lovely dance
I basically like all the scenes with Mr Knightly :P My least favourite scene is the scene where Frank Churchill puts his head on Emma's lap. It really annoys me when he does that! What on EARTH does he think he's doing?
 
 
Downton Abbey
Choosing a favourite was the easiest thing in the world!
A proposal in the snow... could it be more romantic?
I just adoooore that scene *dreamy sigh* I do feel sorry for Mary with her bare shoulders in the snow. Must be cold. But of course, Matthew's presence made that problem nothing. Oh Matthew! Why did you have to die!!!
A least favourite scene?
Any scene with Thomas. :-) Or the scene where Matthew dies. Oh I hate that scene!
Oh yes... here's another lovely Mary and Matthew scene... their wedding!
Here comes the bride...
 
Wives and Daughters
Ah it is easy to pick a favourite scene. The proposal in the rain. Normally I'm not for over romanticising scenes (*thinks of P&P05 rain scene*) but here it's just sweet.
I'm singin' in the rain!
And my least favourite scene is the one where Mrs Hamely or Osborne dies. That's just too sad.
 
Cranford
I love the Sophie Hutton and Dr Harrison scenes and I also love the cow scene. It's just so funny.


 
And my least favourite scene is the amputation scene *closes eyes firmly till scene is over*
 
 
North and South
I am sorry to say that I have quite a lot of 'least favourite' scenes in this movie. You see there are seven deaths in this movie and I don't like scenes with deaths in them. My least favourite scene of all is the Boucher death scene. Not that I have ever seen it. I always close my eyes firmly when that part comes (or my dad stands in front of screen).
But I like the scene where Mr Thornton and Margaret finally shake hands:
Learning manners
You're probably surprised that I have not chosen the last scene as my favourite scene. Well I haven't, because it isn't. I think the kiss is a bit- well, it is a bit over the top, isn't it?
 
 
Sense and Sensibility
Again, my favourite scene isn't the one people expect. That is, Edward's proposal scene in this case. I like that scene a lot, but what annoys me is Eleanor's crying. To me, it doesn't sound very realistic.
My favourite scene is the 'I wish YOU would stop' scene :)
I wish Miss Pole wouldn't crumple my newsletter!
And my least favourite scene is the scene where Colonel Brandon talks to Elinor about his past and so on. That scene is just a tad boring and joke-less.
 
 
The Sound of Music
The hills are alive! (No they aren't)
My least favourite scene is the 'Climb every Mountain' scene. You know, where the Reverend Mother sings. That scene just bores me to death. Sorry.
But as for my favourite scenes.... (there are lots!)
Did you know that Gretl nearly sank in this scene?



Don't we all?

Cuckoo!

I want Liesl's dress!
So you see, I have lots!
 
Anne of Green Gables
Well I LOVE that slate scene. Well I do- I can't help it- I think it's funny. Oh and I love it how she writes an E after Ann, which her teacher wrote on the board.

 
And my least favourite scene... the scene where Matthew dies (I believe I have said that earlier on in this post:) *thinks of all the lovely Matthew's dying in movies*
 
What is/are your favourite and least favourite scene(s) from your favourite movie?
I hope you enjoyed this post!
 
 



3/24/2014

First post

Hello my dear readers!!
There is something awkward about writing your first post. You want to write about everything at once, but then you know you can't. Eeek! I'm so nervous about writing my first post!!


A randomly nice picture

Anyway, I do know I should start by introducing myself briefly. My name is Naomi Bennet, I am fifteen years of age, a Christian in a big home-schooling family. I have started this blog in order to talk about my hobbies- that is Period Drama. I hope you shall visit often and leave a comment!


I like random pictures- hadn't you noticed?
My favourite movie is Pride and Prejudice 1995.  You should know this if you want to know me. Not surprisingly, Elizabeth Bennet is my favourite literary heroine. I also love the movies Emma, Wives and Daughters, Downton Abbey (I'm in the middle of watching series four now!), Cranford, Sense and Sensibility, Anne of Green Gables and so many more!

Here ends my first post. I'm sorry for the poor length of it, but - as I said- I think writing one's first post is so awkward. But ye need not fret, for I shall come back and write again soon!

Were you nervous in writing your first post?