Month: April 2015

Book Recommendation of the Week: Code Name Verity & Rose Under Fire

What It’s About: Code Name Verity follows the confessional writings of a young, female captured spy during World War II. Slowly, she weaves together the story of how she got to be in France and everything she knows about the British war effort. Her story starts with her best friend Maddie, a talented female pilot that flew them both into France. Rose Under Fire follows Rose Justice, an American pilot serving under the British. Rose is captured while flying from Paris to England and is sent to a female concentration camp called Ravensbrück. Forced to live with little hope and horrific circumstances, Rose relies on her friendships and her poetry to help her get by. Who Will Love It: People who love historical fiction, fans of books like Between Shades of Gray and anyone who enjoys books about female friendship.  What I Loved: Both books are thoroughly researched, well written and extremely poignant. Code Name Verity is one of my favourite books with two of my favourite characters. The ending is heart wrenching and impossible to forget. Rose Under Fire features poetry and lyrics that add a …

Inspiring Movies That Get Me Writing

Hitting up Netflix or putting on a DVD may seem like the ultimate form of procrastination, but sometimes movies can be a resource of inspiration as a writer. Here are my picks of movies about writing and stories, or just movies that are inspiring all the same. Little Women (1994) The only adaptation of the book I have seen, and I had a furious pre-teen crush on this whole movie. Wynona Ryder stars as Jo March, and maybe my love for this film is because Jo reminds me of young me. This story of four sisters growing up and apart in civil war era Massachusetts is also about Jo finding her voice as a writer. Amelie (2001) This movie has nothing to with writing in the least, but the story and characters are so original and whimsical. Shy dreamer Amelie finds her life changed when she finds a long lost trinket and returns it to its owner. The simple act leads her to doing anonymous acts of kindness to those around her. As she watches the world from …

Book Recommendation of the Week: Where Things Come Back

What It’s About: The way Cullen Witter sees it, everyone is looking for someone, at least in the small town of Lily, Arkansas, where he lives. That couldn’t be more true than during the summer Cullen is seventeen, when everyone in town is looking for the Lazarus Woodpecker, which was supposed to be extinct and has allegedly been spotted in Lily. Everyone is obsessed with the woodpecker, because in a town no one can seem to escape from, the Lazarus gives them hope. There are people who are always looking for their destiny and there are people who have lost someone and will always be looking for that person in everyone they meet. Cullen is looking for himself, and just wants to know why he does the hings he does. But everything changes when his younger brother Gabriel goes missing. Suddenly nothing makes sense and the bird that was just an annoyance and maybe the savior of his hometown is now distracting everyone from Gabriel’s disappearance. As the town searches for the woodpecker in a frenzy and …

The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness

For the last few days I’ve been slowly watching The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness, which is a Japanese documentary following the making of Studio Ghibli’s The Wind Rises. Now that I’m finished, I just wanted to do a little blog post about it, since I haven’t heard that much talk about the film (though it is on netflix!) Hayao Miyazaki is one of my favourite storytellers who has made some of my favourite movies. The documentary itself is best viewed after watching The Wind Rises, which is presumably Miyazaki’s last film. The Wind Rises is the fictionalized story of Jiro Horikoshi, designer of Japanese fighter aircraft. The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness is filled with beautiful cinematography, thoughtful interviews with Miyazaki and others, glimpses into Miyazaki’s daily life, and a look into Ghibli’s history and the company’s goings ons on a daily basis. Miyazaki is very candid and natural when interviewed, often speaking while he works and goes ahead with his daily life. The film centres around him, and, for me, one of the most interesting parts of the film was getting to look …