Sunday, April 29, 2012

So, maybe i have not been the best blogger....

I have been back all week, so I don't really have a good excuse for not blogging (especially my In the Kitchen required post)---except I have been reading the Hunger Games books all week. They are hard books to put down. However, I have been good mom and have only read them at night and during Elanor's naps after I finished all my "chores". I mostly really enjoying them. The writing it s not the best, but is significantly better than Stephanie Meyer. They also have a lot more social commentary and depth than the Twilight books (which I am not a big fan of--the 1st was ok), but are not as good as the Harry Potter books. The last Hunger Games book left me feeling a little depressed and horrified. If you have read it, I am sure you know what I mean. The books point out how horrible war and violence is no matter what side you think is the "better" side. I am not a fan of war and if I ever had to name the one thing that terrifies me it is: people who kill other people. I don't understand it or how people can kill another person. I understand that sometimes it is necessary, but it just horrifies me so much. There are quite a few things I would have done differently in the third book if I was the author, but I do think her anti-war message is a good one. Oh, and Tyler and I went and saw the Hunger Games movie last night which was really well done. 

Sorry for The Hunger Games rant... It has kind of been on my mind all week. What are your opinions on the books?

Anyways.... While we were in Oregon, we had a little time one of the mornings to go to the Oregon Zoo (which is quite good, by the way). Elanor loved it! She especially liked the elephants, crocodiles, and polar bears. 

 Wearing Grandpa's hat

 Looking at the polar bears

 This was pretty cool. There were two cheetahs up right near the glass, so it looked like Elanor was touching them!

 There was a porcupine out and then it went inside almost as soon as we got over there. This is Elanor asking where it went.

Elanor loved this crocodile (or is it an alligator?) so much. I have always been a bit scared of them, but she loved following it back and forth. 

We had fun, albeit quick and very busy trip to Oregon. I had rehearsal every night and almost all day Saturday for the choreography for Mulan. I loved it. I would really love to be a choreographer. Dream job--besides being a mom.

I promise I will be better at writing blog posts. 


  1. (LONG comment alert!) Oh, The Hunger Games. Haha. I was NOT a fan of them. I only read the first book and had no desire to finish the series. After forcing myself to finish out the Twilight series for the sole purpose of having ground to stand on when I publicly disparaged them and then hating myself for it, I was NOT going to put myself through that again. I didn't like the first book, so why should I keep reading? Who cares about the "But you didn't read all the books!" people?

    Anyway, I didn't think her writing was very good, I thought the use of first-person was a dumb idea (it took away from what otherwise could have been very suspenseful), and the amount of typos was really distracting. The movie, however, was SO good; I really enjoyed it.

    Here is my full review of the first book from Facebook a few years ago (with some new add-ins, haha):

    Thoughts on The Hunger Games so far (I'm about halfway through): the writing quality leaves a little something to be desired; though not terrible, the cheese factor is a tad high for me. However, I've definitely read worse. The story itself is relatively engaging, but not (yet, at least) in an I-CAN'T-PUT-THIS-DOWN way. One thing that really bugs me is Katniss' constant internal interrogation sessions. We don't need every single question spelled out! I think most of the time she's a relatable enough character that we understand what she's wondering and why she would be wondering that. I feel like the writer isn't giving her readers enough credit.
    Final thoughts on The Hunger Games (literally): "Are you serious?" The book was just becoming bearable and (dare I say it?) entertaining...and then Katniss and Peeta team up, and what little substance the plot had garnered completely falls apart (I mean really, deus ex machina much?).

    Honestly, I can't think of a single interaction between Peeta (what a stupid name, first of all) and Katniss that wasn't painful for me to read (or that I could take seriously), and the way the story ends renders the events in the earlier parts of the book irrelevant and pointless. The dystopian premise (complete with the Roman gladiator-esque Games) is a cool idea, but it ends with a poorly-crafted pseudo-romance between two characters about whom I couldn't care less...? Come on. (UPDATE: Though as I understand it now, crap gets real in the later books and is not so much about the romance...? Then the ending in the first book should have been different.)

    After the Games, when Katniss is supposed to be in all this terrible danger, I felt nothing. No sense of impending doom, no tension, nothing.

    Also, I thought the use of first-person narration was a pretty dumb idea. We know who's going to win the Games from the beginning because, well, she's kind of TELLING THE STORY. I think it would have been a far more gripping read had third-person been employed instead. The author COULD have gotten away with first-person if she'd had a different character narrating every few chapters or know?

    And I can't tell you how annoying her misuse of commas was. They were always either present where they shouldn't be or absent where they were needed. Also, there were quite a bit of typos. I don't know who the editor was, but he or she needs a drastic change of profession.

    So all in all, The Hunger Games gets two thumbs down from me. Immediately after reading the last line in the book, my first thought was "Well, that was dumb." The story had promise, I'll give it that, but the author ruins everything by making it predictable and unforgivably hokey. Better than Twilight, but only marginally.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. I agree with some of what you said, especially the 1st person thing. The 1st book does have a pretty lame ending, but I did really enjoy the 2nd book. The third is just lacking somewhat. I do think these books have more depth and discuss more serious topics that pertain to the world teenagers live in now (which is who these are written for). I also agree that the writing is no the best, but the the author did a good job with the screenplay for the movie.

  2. I don't know Lizzie, I've read the Hunger Games (not the other two yet) and I saw the movie and I thought they were great. Book was obviously written for a middle school audience, but the story line lent itself very well to a screen version, and whoever's hands it got put in did a great job with it. My only issue with the book was the overboard Peeta/Katniss relationship, but the whole time as my mind was thinking, "Okay, this is just the author making up all kinds of ludicrous plot rules to get them to kiss", I couldn't help thinking about how the entire Twilight series is one rule on top of another just to make some kind of forced plot that ultimately just sucks. So I loved Hunger Games in comparison. Working in a middle school, I get to see what crap kids read these days and I exaggerate not, almost every book has a shirtless teen guy with abs, a sparkling vampire, an angel (not the Biblical kind) etc. etc... People know what will sell, so that's what's being written: fairly plot-wanting romantic fantasies. The state of modern young adult literature is so bad, the Hunger Games is truly some fresh air. that breathes upon a bank of violets...

    1. AAAAAHHHH! I wrote out a comment and it somehow got deleted!!! Anyways, yes, Caitlin, I agree with you. I did enjoy the books and think they do discuss some important topics, but the last one just left me feeling rather depressed and I felt like there was something wanting about the ending. Let me know what you think about the third one. I did like the 2nd book and I liked a lot of the information I found out in the third, but I kept wanting something to happen and sometimes Katniss drove me crazy. My favorite characters are Peeta and Finnick. Peeta because he is so good and is so different from Gale (gentle, pondering, artistic, hopeful). Well, you have not read about Finnick yet, so I won't go ion that.

  3. I loved the books and totally agree on the writing, I couldn't put the books down, the ending was bitter sweet and sad though and the movie was well made I thought. I love the concept of the Twilight books but the writing was poor and the movies are okay....but I also rather read middle school stuff than grown up stuff, I like to keep my reading at a PG rating, lol, have a great week.

    1. I do agree that the Hunger Games are better that Twilight. :) Thanks for reading!