5 Upcoming Movies Based on a Novel

Movie adaptationEvery bibliophile knows that the book is always better than the movie adaptation when Hollywood tries to cash in on the success. But luckily sometimes, the producers and screenwriters get it just right.

With only four months left to this year, there are still some notable movies that were based on novels. Here are the top 5 movies that I’m ecstatic to see (and pray won’t become a disaster).

1. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Following a family tragedy, Jacob travels to an island off the coast of Wales. He finds what seems to be the ruins of an orphanage. As he explores what is left of the building, he starts to feel that there must be a hidden story to the place, a reason why the children were placed in such a remote location. Though the island has been deserted for years, there is a presence as if the children were still there…and alive.

In theatres: September 30, 2016

2. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

The lives of three men and three women are intertwined through marriage and betrayal in this psychological thriller. Rachel travels by commuter train everyday where she fantasises about the perfect couple that she sees as it stops every morning by their cottage. They appear to be living a happy life that Rachel wished she had with her ex-husband until one day, the woman suddenly goes missing. As the police investigates, Rachel is drawn more and more into the couple’s lives and somehow becomes the prime suspect for the woman’s disappearance.

In theatres: October 7, 2016

3. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by J.K. Rowling

Newt Scamander attends the Magical Congress when dangerous creatures from his briefcase accidentally escape into our world. As he tries to correct the mistake, threats from the New Salem Philanthropic Society, whose mission is to eradicate the wizard-kind, is being felt as tension and violence rise between magical and non-magical peoples.

In theatres: November 18, 2016

4. Inferno by Dan Brown

Professor Robert Langdon is tangled in another mysterious adventure. He awakens in an Italian hospital, unable to remember the past thirsty-six hours. He discovers a macabre object hidden in his belongings while an assassin is on his trail. As he tries to escape, he also discovers that the myth of Dante’s Inferno is not just a story but a prophecy to something disastrous.

In theatres: October 28, 2016

5. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

Conor O’Malley, a young boy victim of bullying, has to face the terminal illness of his beloved mother. Unable to cope during her treatments at the hospital, he has nightmares of a monster every single night until the day it finally became real. The tree-like creature is different from his nightmares and becomes a friend helping him find happiness again.

In theatres: December 23, 2016

There are more movies based on novels but these ones are the ones I look most forward to. Which movie adaptation are you most excited about?


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Book Haul: August 2016

This month’s haul is a mix of school books and reading for pleasure. In preparation for a literature class I will be taking this fall, I went ahead and bought three of the required books that we will be covering (the first three below). The other two are to complete my collection.

I thought I’d change the format of my haul posts again to give you a better overview of the books I purchased during the month. Instead of making you fetch the synopsis from Goodreads or your favourite online bookstore, it will be directly here along with an image of the book cover.

So here are the books I got this month:

Bottle Rocket Hearts by Zoe Whittall

Bottle Rocket HeartsWelcome to Montreal in the months before the 1995 referendum. Riot Grrl gets bought out and mass marketed as the Spice Girls, and gays are gaining some legitimacy, but the queers are rioting against assimilation, cocktail AIDS drugs are starting to work, and the city walls on either side of the Main are spray-painted with the words YES or NO. It’s been five years since the OKA crisis and the sex garage riots; revolution seems possible, when you’re 18, like Eve. Eve is pining to get out of her parents’ house in Dorval and find a girl who wants to kiss her back. She meets Della — mysterious, defiantly non-monogamous, an avid separatist and ten years older. Initially taken in by a mutual other-worldly sense of rapture, they hole up in Della apartment, trying to navigate spaces of jealousy. On the night of the 1995 referendum, politics and romance come to a head and Even’s naiveté begins to fade. From naive teenager to hot shot rough girl, Even decides her own fate.

Lullabies for Little Criminals by Heather O’Neill

Lullabies for Little CriminalsBaby, all of thirteen years old, is lost in the gangly, coltish moment between childhood and the strange pulls and temptations of the adult world. Her mother is dead; her father, Jules, is scarcely more than a child himself and is always on the lookout for his next score. Baby knows that “chocolate milk” is Jules’ slang for heroin and sees a lot more of that in her house than the real article. But she takes vivid delight in the scrappy bits of happiness and beauty that find their way to her, and moves through the threat of the streets as if she’s been choreographed in a dance.

Soon, though, a hazard emerges that is bigger than even her hard-won survival skills can handle. Alphonse, the local pimp, has his eye on her for his new girl; he wants her body and soul—and what the johns don’t take he covets for himself. At the same time, a tender and naively passionate friendship unfolds with a boy from her class at school, who has no notion of the dark claims on her—which even her father, lost on the nod, cannot totally ignore. Jules consigns her to a stint in juvie hall, and for the moment this perceived betrayal preserves Baby from terrible harm—but after that, her salvation has to be her own invention.

Standing Wave by Robert Allen

Standing WaveThe themes of Standing Wave will be familiar to readers of Robert Allen’s acclaimed poetry and novels: the slow rusts and wild incandescences of memory; the myths and delusions sustaining our lives; the uneasy duo of body and mind. In this book, he brings two different lenses to bear on these ideas: a wry, conversational formality in “Sonnets from Jimmie Walker Swamp”, and the long and complex syntaxes of the final section of his ongoing long poem, “The Encantadas”. Put together, these two sequences are the black and white photographs and the colour film of the same restless dream. More than any of Robert Allen’s other books, Standing Wave illustrates, through this two-fold structure, the range of language and cadences still possible in contemporary poetry.

Harry Potter & the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter & the Cursed ChildBased on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany, a new play by Jack Thorne, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage.  The play will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on July 30, 2016.

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted.  As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

Summer and the City by Candace Bushnell

Summer & the CityThe Sequel to the #1 New York Times Bestseller The Carrie Diaries

Summer and the City brings surprising revelations as Carrie learns to navigate her way around the Big Apple, going from being a country “sparrow”—as Samantha Jones dubs her—to the person she always wanted to be. But as it becomes increasingly difficult to reconcile her past with her future, Carrie realizes that making it in New York is much more complicated than she ever imagined.

The class I will be taking very soon is called Quebec/Montreal Writing in English given at Concordia University. It will be the first of many literature classes since I decided to pursue a degree in English Literature. What better excuse to read all day, everyday? ;)

If you prefer this format for my book haul or would like to know more about the class at ConU, feel free to comment in the section below.


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Kindle Oasis: My First Official E-Reader

Kindle Oasis“Welcome to the 21st century!” That’s how everyone responded when I told them I finally decided to get myself a Kindle Oasis. I think I resisted the idea of an e-reader for as long as I could because I just love the feeling of holding a book in my hands, the texture of its cover underneath my finger tips and the smell of the pages that swallow you whole in an unexpected and unforgettable journey. I felt like I would be betraying my love for hard copies if I went electronic.

So why the sudden change of heart? Why opt for an impersonal piece of technology instead? Aside from the lack of shelf space as I acquire more books day by day, I scream in terror (internally) when the corner of a book gets folded accidentally in my handbag or gets wet by sudden rain. An e-reader would solve most of my problems.

The Good
  1. It can contain thousands of books without taking more than 5.6″ x 4.8″ x 0.13-0.33″ of space.
  2. It easily fits in a purse.
  3. It weighs practically nothing at 131 g. Sure I can read on the Kindle app on my iPhone but it’s too small.
  4. Its light weight makes it comfortable to hold with one hand and to read for a longer period of time without a tired wrist.
  5. Definitions can be easily looked up when connected to Wi-Fi.
  6. E-books can be purchased instantly at a lower price compared to hard copies.
  7. It syncs with all devices with the Kindle app.
  8. Long battery life.
  9. Turning pages is made easy at a click of a button or gentle touch on the screen.
  10. NO MORE DAMAGED BOOKS! (Though scratches on the device can equally make me cringe.)
The Bad
  1. Monochrome. The artwork of the book covers can only be enjoyed in black and white on Kindle devices unlike its app for smartphones, tablets and PC/Mac.
  2. The highlighting feature is not as precise as on a smartphone or tablet.
  3. There is a small delay when the screen “wakes up.”
New Love?

After a month of reading on my Kindle Oasis everyday, I can positively say that I do not regret this investment. I still struggle when trying to highlight certain passages; either I’m unable to select all the text I want or too much is selected. However, it doesn’t ruin my whole experience. It’s so much more practical to carry it around. It’s light and doesn’t take too much space in my handbag. Sometimes, I even forget that I have it with me. On top of everything great about this gadget, the Kindle Oasis in particular comes with a charging cover which makes the battery life last even longer.

So far, I reserve e-book reading time when I’m not home and the good ol’ hard copy for before bedtime. I will still buy hard copies but only when they are worth it. That way, I won’t look too much like a book hoarder with piles of books everywhere. :P

Do you prefer reading an actual book or did e-readers steal your heart?


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Book Haul: July 2016

This month’s haul turned out to be surprising. I don’t think I was ever able to limit myself to only one book but I did it.

After finishing the 4th season of Orange is the New Black, it reminded me to get my hands on Diane Guerrero’s memoir. She had appeared in a heartfelt interview last year telling her story. When she was only 14 years old, her parents and older brother were deported back to Colombia. Being the only person in her family to be a US citizen, she was left behind.

In the Country We Love

I love Guerrero’s character in OITNB. On the show, Maritza Ramos is cute and sassy. I would have never guessed that both the actress and the character shared a painful past though different from one another.

In the Country We Love: My Family Divided received very good reviews on Goodreads which makes me even more excited to read more about this brilliant and talented actress.

Do you have a favourite memoir? Do share in the comment section below. :)


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RECO, Indigo’s New Recommendation App

Indigo, the largest bookstore chain in Canada, launched a recommendation app last week called RECO. Similar to the beloved Goodreads, this new app allows its users to “share, discover, capture and discuss the books you love with friends and trusted experts.” Is it an app worth downloading to your smartphone?


Since Indigo is my favourite book retailer and I love everything that they do, I obviously had to try RECO. After only a week of playing with it, I think I’ve made up my mind whether it’s an app I’ll be keeping on my phone or not.

The Good

First of all, the app looks great. It’s clean and simple. The white background helps highlight the content superbly. The images used are large and of excellent quality. The size of the font and spacing between each line that is slightly wider than in most apps make it easier on the eyes. I really appreciate the amount of white space between the different elements.

A feature that I think is great to have in an app like this one is the “Buy” button. When viewing books, you can simply click on the button at the top and the app will redirect you to Indigo’s webpage to purchase it. There is also a barcode scanner to make searches a lot simpler whether you want to add a book to your reading list or to view it in the app.

You can easily browse the different book categories and genres. When signing up, you are able to personalize your profile as a reader by selecting different criteria according to your personal interests like Fiction, 19th century British Literature, French Cuisine, etc. The app will then be able to suggest you books in line with what you like. I think it’s an essential feature to have with an app aimed at book lovers.

The Bad

Since RECO has been available only for a little over a week, there are not a lot of users to connect with. The app also gives you the option to follow public figures and publishers. Again because the app is so new, there are only a few interesting people to follow.

Compared to Goodreads where it contains a great amount of reviews from other readers, RECO doesn’t seem to have that many. Different editions of the same book are not consolidated and each contains its own reviews. In addition, the app has its own rating system from 0 to 100. I’m not sure how that is determined though the higher the RECO rating, the better the book.

Worth It?

I think it’s a great looking app and I absolutely love that it included the “Buy” button. My only suggestion is to make it possible to pair RECO with Indigo’s actual store app. It would be a lot simpler for current online customers to buy their books directly from the Indigo app rather than being redirected to the website and having to enter their credentials from the small screen of their mobile phone.

As improvement, the book reviews from different editions should be consolidated into one single place, it will be a lot more efficient for readers to get all the different opinions they need before buying the book.

I think RECO is a good addition to have on any bibliophile’s smartphone if you want to connect with others. It’s more of a social app to share your reading list and have discussions about books. I will still predominantly use Goodreads as a reference tool simply because of the extensive amount of reviews. It helps me decide to buy or not to buy a book.

It’s currently available on the AppStore if you want to give it a try. For Android devices, the app will be available later this year.

Make sure to share your experience with the app below in the comment section. Let me know what you liked and didn’t like about the app.


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