Category Archives: Books

“The Old Man and The Sea” Stop-Motion-Film

Today I stumbled upon a stop-motion film inspired by Ernest Hemingway’s “The Old Mand and The Sea”. This book was my first contact with Hemingway when I was about ten years old, and I remember that I loved it, I was obsessed with this story for some time.

I read it at the library of the school I studied at. But I had to read the book during the intervals between classes because the librarian did not let me loan the book, she said I was too young for it, and that I should read books for my age. Seriously, she actually told me that. If she only knew how many of her “forbidden” books I read right under her nose by lying down in the back of the library where she wouldn’t see me, or putting the book inside an encyclopedia and pretending to be making a research. I wonder what she would say if she knew this!

Anyway, that’s not what I was supposed to be talking about. What I really wanted was to show you this stop-motion-film that I really liked. It made me want to read “The Old Man and The Sea” again! I hope you enjoy!

 

the old man and the sea from Marcel Schindler on Vimeo.

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Quote of the Week (It’s Shakespeare’s birthday)

Today is William Shakespeare’s probable birthday and also his death anniversary, which I find very creepy to be honest. But, whether he was born on April 23rd or not is not what matters. What matters about Shakespeare is the fact that he introduced more than 3000 words to the English vocabulary that we now make daily use of. What matters is that he wrote 37 plays and 154 works that are known. And there are many other reasons why Shakespeare matters, I could sit here writing the entire night. So, there was no way I could select a Quote of the Week that wasn’t by The Bard. So here it goes, again from one of my favourite plays, Much Ado About Nothing (if you want to see the previous quote from this play click here).

 

Beatrice: I wonder that you will still be talking, Signior Benedick: nobody marks you. Much Ado About Nothing - William Shakespeare

Beatrice: I wonder that you will still be talking, Signior Benedick: nobody marks you.
Much Ado About Nothing – William Shakespeare

 

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Quote of the Week

Walden

Walden – Henry David Thoreau

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Krik? Krak! by Edwidge Danticat

krik krakSeparation and memory. These are the two things that, for me, define the lives of Edwidge Danticat’s characters in Krik? Krak!. The nine interconnected stories present us with the struggles of different women that have to deal with the political tension and the poverty in their country, Haiti, and how they affect their lives. Each story tells us about the pain and suffering that are the common trait of characters that have different backgrounds and varying expectations of life.

The opening short story, “Children of the Sea”, grabs the reader’s attention in such a way that it is impossible to put the book down. Two narrators, a young man and woman who love each other are writing letters that they will never exchange. Through their letters you learn of their haste and forced separation and the promise to write daily to one another so when they meet again they can read the letters and know what each of them went through. But the separation will not be temporary, as they hoped, and only the memory of that love will remain in the unread letters.

In these stories memory is the way that women find to stay alive forever. They keep in mind what the generations past lived, and they want to make sure to let their stories for posterity. Some of them are away from home, like Grace’s mother in “Caroline’s Wedding”, and try desperately to keep their culture alive by passing everything on to their daughters who live in a different world and cannot truly understand the traditions of their Haitian antecedents.

Danticat’s language is compelling; it urges us to feel the pain of those characters and to understand their nature and sympathise with them. All those characters have lost something or someone due to the political and economical instability of Haiti. By the end of the book you feel like you can really understand the narrator of the epilogue when she says:

“You have never been able to escape the pounding of a thousand other hearts that have outlived yours by thousands of years. And over the years when you have needed us, you have always cried ‘Krik?’ and we have answered ‘Krak!’ and it has shown us that you have not forgotten us.” (224)

This is the weigh of the memory of women’s lives. In this case it is that of Haitian women, but what it brought to my mind was the memory of all the women in the world that have suffered so much and fought for a better life for us. And it reminded me that we still have a long way to go.

The edition I read was:

Danticat, Edwidge. Krik? Krak!. Vintage Contemporaries: New York. 1996. Print.

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Library Dream

Hello everyone! I still don’t have a new computer. Yep, this is really sad. I hope the new one will be delivered tomorrow, but I’m not sure it will. The computer I’m using works, but not so well and many of the softwares I use wouldn’t work so I didn’t even bother to install them.This means that I don’t have Photoshop for the time being, or Fireworks, or my English grammar and dictionaries. Ok, let’s stop complaining, at least I can still access the internet, right?

Library Dream is a new section I’m starting today. If you have been reading my blog for some time now, you know that I’m a book lover and as such I want to have a home library. That isn’t a cheap thing, as you can probably imagine, especially living here in Brazil where books are very expensive. Nonetheless, I have been buying and collecting books for some years now. The biggest problem I have is space! I have literally no more space for books, not that I’ll let this stop me from buying them. I’ll find a way to keep them all.

So this is what Library Dream is about. If I had the money to have a proper home library, how would it be? To be honest, I’m not sure, but I’ll be showing you some ideas that I have found on the internet and that I liked. For today I’ve selected the library below:

What I really like about this one is the natural light and the view. I can imagine myself spending many lazy afternoons in that window seat with a good book and a cup of tea. What do you think? Would you be happy with this library?

See you all tomorrow (hopefully, if I can still use this computer!).

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Quote of the Week (and a bit of talk)

Hello internet! Have you been tricked by too many people today? I must confess that I did believe one e-mail I received about a company closing down, but that was the only one. And no, I did not make any April Fool’s Day joke (and this isn’t a joke, I swear!).

What I wish I could tell you was only a joke is that my computer died, like I told you on my last post. I have bought a new computer since there was really no other option for me, but it has not been delivered yet. In the meantime I’ll use an old one that is barely working so I’m not sure I’ll be able to post during the whole week. If I disappear you know that’s because I couldn’t manage with this computer.

And finally, let’s go for the quote of the week! This one is from one of my favourite Shakespeare plays, Much Ado About Nothing.

Loved of all ladies

Benedick: […] but it is certain I am loved of all ladies, only you excepted…
Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare

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Quote of the week

Why is love intensified by absense?

“Why is love intensified by absense?”
From “The Time Traveler’s Wife” by Audrey Niffenegger

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Quote of the week

“It’s dark, now, and I am very tired. I love you, always. Time is nothing.”

The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger

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