Monthly Archives: May 2009

Reading List: May “Bunnies and Broads”

May was a slow month for reading, but I am hoping things will pick up now that summer has arrived. In warm weather, I love to curl up on the deck with a good book and a glass of lemonade.

Mansfield Park by Jane Austen

mansfield parkI spent the better part of the month dragging my feet with this book: only reading at work or to fill the time when I could find nothing better to do. Of the Jane Austen novels I have read, this was the least appealing and most tedious of the bunch. Yes, this book has more characters than the majority of her other novels, but these characters are largely unlikeable and predictable. The novel itself is slow moving and I found only two or three instances when I could truly feel for the characters.

I am still not entirely sure how I feel about the main character, Fanny. There were points within the novel where I admired her and others where I wanted to jump into the pages of the book and strangle her. Fanny is very timid, shy, and eager to stay out of the way of the other characters within the novel. I guess all I can really say about her is that Austen does a splendid job of writing a main character that is weak, rather than the strong-willed characters of many novels.

Overall, there is not much I want to say about this novel. I did not enjoy it. 


Watership Down by Richard Adams

watershipdownMy reading took a turn for the better last week when I picked up Watership Down by Richard Adams. The story follows a group of rabbits who, after a vision of doom for their warren, strike out to find a safe place to make a new home. Along the way they face various dangers from predators, befriend a bird and mice, and encounter other rabbit societies. Watching the abundance of rabbits around my own neighborhood, I could not help but feel for these resolved, strong creatures that were forced to overcome their natural fears in order to create a new home for themselves. 

Admittedly, the sense that there was much more going on within this novel than the surface story did, at times, make me feel vaguely uneasy. Maybe part of that was my inner English major telling me to look out for things, and my inner reader telling me to just enjoy the story for what it is. Nevertheless, there is certainly a lot that can be said about this novel in terms of its themes and literary elements from the legend-like stories of El’ahrairah and the epic nature of the rabbits’ travels.

I enjoyed the novel. There were moments when Adams’ descriptions of the rabbits’ perceptions of the world, their fears, and their relationships to the world at large, that had me holding my breath. I only wish I had read this years ago and certainly encourage younger readers to pick this up.

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Review: Mercy Sparx

mercysparx

This cover image was the spawning point for my latest impulse buy: the first three issues of the four-part comic Mercy Sparx from Devil’s Due Publishing. I guess I am a sucker for colorful artwork of sexy, alternatively-styled women. All of this aside, I was looking forward to some light reading and interesting, colorful art.

The premise of the story is that Mercy, a devil-girl from a place called Sheol, is sent to the human world to hunt down rogue angels for Heaven. Mercy drinks, curses, and beats the hell out of equally sexy rogue angels who want to escape the travails of a life serving “the man upstairs.” Meanwhile, the comic is filled with entirely shameless references to the publisher– the devil logo is her “boss” and the pub is aptly-named “Devil’s Due Pub.” The story, happily, takes a dramatic turn in the third issue that makes the first two much more interesting in retrospect.

The art is a little on the simple side. The backgrounds much of the time are non-existent: instead of a setting the panels are left white or various other colors. The backgrounds that do make an appearance are very flat and sometimes downright sloppy. There are quite a few panels where the characters seem entirely out of place– like they were copied and pasted somewhere they were  not meant to be. I do, however, enjoy the character art. The lines are bold and so are the colors, so they almost manage to make up for what the backgrounds lack. 

Despite these shortcomings, however, I enjoyed the first three issues and will probably be picking up the fourth when it is released. If you are looking for a quick respite from the real world in the form of sexy-devils-versus-angels you should pick this up, definitely. If you are looking for something with real substance, this certainly isn’t it.

My Pokémon Help List

Go U-Boat!

Go U-Boat!

One of the hardest things for me to do when continuing my adventures in Sinnoh is to remember where everything is. I constantly find myself asking questions such as “Where is the girl who gives Pokemon massages?” or “Where is the MooMoo Milk shop?” So, in order to keep myself from having to constantly flip through my strategy guide I have compiled a list of information that includes my favorite destinations, apps, and characteristics. 

 

Thea’s PokeDestinations

Berry Master – Route 208 (Just west of Hearthome)

Berry Girl – Floaroma City Accessory Shop

Poffin House – Hearthome (Next to the Pokémart)

Massage Girl – Veilstone City (First house south of the gym)

Name Rater – Eterna City (Pokémon Condominiums next to Pokémart)

Move Deleter – Canalave City (First house south of the Pokécenter)

MooMoo Milk – Route 210 (North of Solaceon Town)

 

Thea’s Favorite Pokétch Apps

Berry Searcher – Berry Master’s House

Day Care Checker – Solaceon after retrieving Pokémon from Day Care Lady

Dowsing Machine – Lucas after arriving at Route 207

Friendship Checker – Eterna City Pokémon Center

 

Pokémon Characteristic Charts (Click for full-size)

Picture 2
Picture 3

Pkmn Trainer Thea

trainercard

Lately, I have been engrossed within the world of Pokemon Platinum. My team is finally assembled and I am ready to collect the rest of my badges! Look out elite four because Thea is on the way!

My Team: BunBun (Buneary), U-Boat (Floatzel), AK-47 (Luxray), Rorschach (Houndoom), Nite Owl (Noctowl), and Cpt Planet (Torterra) 

Alternates: F-16 (Staraptor), Luna (Alakazam) 

All I have left to do is to evolve my BunBun into a Lopunny and my Eevee into Glaceon. 

Haiku

 

Feathered messenger
Carried by the murmured breeze
Transcending towers.

Continue reading

Incubus “Love Hurts”

In keeping with the poetry theme and as the quote in my last post has always been a source of inspiration, I thought I would continue down this road. I find this song to be quite inspiring, so I hope you will, too. Enjoy! 

Dylan Thomas on Poetry

“I should say I wanted to write poetry because I had fallen in love with words. . . What the words stood for, symbolised, or meant, was of secondary importance; what mattered was the sound of them as I heard them for the first time on the lips of the remote and incomprehensible grown ups. . . I fell in love — that is the only expression I can think of– at once, and am still at the mercy of words, though sometimes now, knowing a little of their behaviour very well, I think I can influence them slightly and have even learned to beat them now and then, which they appear to enjoy.”

~Dylan Thomas from “Notes on the Art of Poetry”

The class I am subbing as a TA for this week is doing a unit on poetry and this immediately came to mind. It always reminds me that literature was and always will be my first love — whatever might come in the future.