I finally read Little Women! The movie made me do it. So actually, I claimed a free trial of Masterpiece PBS through my Amazon account, which came with unlimited period dramas and was the BEST way to pass the shelter-in-place restrictions. I binged on Jane Austen (they had Sanditon & Northanger Abbey) and Wilkie Collins’ The Woman In White … AND THEN the 2018 Little Women series!! I loved it, and ran out to get the new movie from Redbox. And then I had to read the book. I devoured it, I can’t believe it has taken me so long to read! The characters are so genuinely good-hearted, and there are so many simple lessons that can be gleaned from the stories-within-the-story. This is definitely a new favorite for me, one I can see myself re-reading for years to come. Continue reading
I loved Sabrina The Teenage Witch and watched it for years! But I also love the new interpretation of the show, even though it is so completely different from the light-hearted original I once loved. The old show was very much a sitcom while the modern version is more of a drama, which is great for the spooky October vibes. But what I appreciate most about this remake is the attention to detail in regards to witchcraft. This show not only makes the occult approachable, but does it in an educational-yet-fun way. There are a ton of important topics Sabrina touches on—including gender issues, religion, and identity—but here I am going to talk about witchcraft.
There are actually two separate Sabrina comics that have inspired two very different shows: the 90’s sitcom Sabrina the Teenage Witch was based on the Archie comics from the 1960’s, while the newer Netflix show is based on the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina graphic novels, which were first published in 2014 under the Archie Horror imprint. Continue reading
Tarot cards have been used throughout the ages for gaming and fortune-telling, but their symbolism suggests their deeper purpose may be to gain insight into the human mind and enhance personal development. Some read fortunes to gain insight into the future, but I believe tarot provides much more insight into the reader. The cards provide us with excellent advice at any juncture and, if taken to heart, can help us to understand ourselves better and plan how to live better in the future.
“Tarot cards … can serve as an advisor and help in widening the users’ vision. Tarot cards are deemed as a map of life, or a signpost, to tell you how to lead a good and correct life.” –Royal Thai Tarot, Sungkom Horharin
I thought it would be fun to compare tarot cards to book covers, and I found some really great similarities! I tried to find titles that match in content and cover, and for some cards I found multiple books that would work. Leave a comment with the books you would choose for these cards!
0 – The Fool
Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
The Fool represents a youth setting out on a path of discovery. Like the Fool, Alice strides towards a precipice and skips into the unknown. Alice begins her adventures when she follows the frantically delayed White Rabbit down a hole into the magical world of Wonderland, where she meets a variety of wonderful creatures. Throughout her fantastic journeys, Alice retains her reason, humor, and sense of justice. She has become one of the great characters of imaginative literature, but the story and the card offer some advice: look before you leap.
I – The Magician
Harry Potter (series) by J. K. Rowling
I mean, obviously. Traditionally, The Magician is one who can demonstrate hands-on magic — as in healing, transformative rituals, alchemical transmutations, bringing the magical to every aspect of life. A modern Magician is any person who completes the circuit between heaven and Earth; one who seeks to reveal hidden knowledge and bring forth the divine light within themselves. With all of the drama that happens in the course of seven novels, The Harry Potter Saga is a perfect representation of the Magician’s confidence, action, and ability to change.
II – The High Priestess
Emma by Jane Austen
The High Priestess is a card of insight, wisdom, and integrity, all of the characteristics which Emma strives to embody. The open book in her lap is a symbol of learning while the pillars surrounding her stand for duality. The Empress herself is a wise counselor, much like Emma who seeks to guide with her matchmaking: people flock to her for guidance in making major decisions.
III – The Empress
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Marmee (or Margaret March) is the core of her family, managing the household by herself while her husband is away, helping war efforts, and teaching her daughters — by example — how to grow into smart, strong, and kind women. Even though Little Women rejects traditional feminine roles, Marmee is a perfect representation of The Empress, the maternal card of domestic comfort and security.
IV – The Emperor
A Game Of Thrones (series) by George R. R. Martin
The epic Game of Thrones books bring together adventure and fantasy as we follow the fight to be the King of the Seven Kingdoms. The Kingdoms need a strong, logical ruler like the Emperor card depicts. But this story is like getting a reversed reading of this card, and instead of strong leadership we see complete chaos. The show suggests that by the end we will see a strong leader in Bran, but until Winds of Winter, who knows!
Astrology is one of my long-time hobbies: I have been studying it for years and have countless books, workbooks and notebooks on the topic. It is the study of the influence of the planets and stars on our lives. You probably know your sun sign if you like to read your daily horoscope, but natal charts can be much more in-depth. Anyway, I was watching more Jane Austen movies the other day and started wondering which sign some of my favorite characters might be. There is little written evidence of characters birthday months, so here is what I imagine based on personalities!
Lydia Bennet ♈ Aries
Sweet and flirty Lydia might not seem like a headstrong Aries upon first acquaintance, but do not be fooled by her childlike innocence. Though confident and eager, she can be reckless, impatient, and irresponsible. Aries is a fire sign—red-hot, impulsive, and ready to go. What her sisters see as carelessness appears to suitors as fearlessness, and her desire for independence gets her into trouble.
Elizabeth Bennet ♉ Taurus
Earthy, practical and down-to-earth are perfect descriptors of Eliza Bennet. Although easy-going and respectful, the Taurus can be unbelievably stubborn and reluctant to compromise (as proved by her prejudice of Mr. Darcy). Like any Taurus she loves the beauty of nature but can be self-indulgent in reading and walking, sometimes to a fault. She is also incredibly determined, patient, and enduring—once she knows what she wants!
Emma Woodhouse ♊ Gemini
Gemini’s are witty, bright, and talkative, very much like the social butterfly Emma Woodhouse. Studious and clever, Emma is a great example of this airy sign. She is a thoughtful neighbor and is quick to help her friends. However, she can be gossipy and shallow. Thankfully, Mr. Knightly consistently keeps her in-check with his honesty. Continue reading
For years I have been out-of-the-loop. I never watched a single episode of Game of Thrones, nor picked up even one single copy of the books. I didn’t understand the obsession with The Known World of Westeros, didn’t join in the gossip, and definitely didn’t ‘get’ the memes. I was an outsider. I know, I am late to the party. But better late than never, right?
Before Christmas, a friend brought it up, and (again) recommended I watch the series. Later that week, I was gifted the password to the family HBO account. And thus my obsession began. I binged the series in three or four days, and went back again to re-watch everything more carefully. I loved the costumes, the mythology and house history, and of course, the plot twists. And once I was sucked in, I couldn’t pull away. Next, I had to read the books. And once I started reading them, I could not put them down! I couldn’t believe what I had been missing out on. Continue reading
It’s a truth universally acknowledged that Jane Austen is the best romance writer of all time. Don’t @ me.
Pride & Prejudice, Jane Austen’s now classic romance novel, has been beloved by readers for the last 200 years. The story charts the emotional development of Elizabeth Bennet, who learns the error of making hasty judgments and comes to appreciate the difference between the superficial and the essential. The comedy of the writing lies in the depiction of manners, education, marriage, and money during the British Regency period.
“Till this moment I never knew myself.”
Pride & Prejudice is one of the most loved and widely adapted of Austen’s works. Since it was first published in 1813, Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice has sold over 20 million copies, and is now one of the most recognizable names in British literature. Though it was written over 200 years ago, it remains relevant. Not only is it a beautifully written love story with a happy ending, but it contains timeless insights about human nature that reminds readers that first impressions can often be wrong. Continue reading
I read The Handmaid’s Tale in high school, and I didn’t ‘get’ it, TBH. I understood it, of course, but it didn’t resonate with me in the way my teacher had hoped it would. It wasn’t until watching the new Hulu adaptation that I was really interested in the story. But I couldn’t understand why my memories of the book were so far from what the show was saying, so I dug out my old copy, still covered in post-its and margin scribbles, and forced myself to give it a second chance.
With my first reading, for whatever reason, I had a very obscure picture of the world Atwood was writing about. I wasn’t able to imagine what it would be like. But, after watching the series, I was able to really picture the world of Gilead, and it made me want to understand it better. So I decided to revisit the book, and I re-read it while watching the show. It completely changed my opinion of the novel, and now I love a book that I once hated.
Although I loved both the book and the series, I can’t ignore their differences. Though both are important and relevant, they have different missions and different lessons. The ideal would be for audiences to read and watch both; they inform each other, each provides what the other lacks. Continue reading
The Great American Read is an eight-part series that explores and celebrates the power of reading, told through the prism of America’s 100 best-loved novels (as chosen in a national survey). All of the books that made the list are truly great, but only one can be named The Great American Read.
Read our last post to see which 40 Books are leading the race, and find a list of my favorites listed below. If you don’t see your book, there is still time to change that. You can vote for your favorites each day until Thursday, October 18, 2018 at midnight PT, when voting closes. Click here to vote now.
The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood
The 1984 book explores the issues of womens rights, religion, and individual liberties. Atwood conceived the novel as ‘speculative fiction,’ (similar to Louis Lowry’s The Giver), works that imagine a future that could conceivably happen without any advances in technology from the present. In other words, she said, “Science fiction has monsters and spaceships; speculative fiction could really happen.” Every aspect of the book was inspired by social and political events of the early 1980s, but remains poignant because we can imagine this happening today.
The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Great Gatsby is a classic choice for The Great American Read because it is an archetypal representation of The American Dream: if you work hard enough, you can succeed. The story primarily concerns the young and mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby and his passionate obsession with a married Daisy Buchanan. Considered to be Fitzgerald’s magnum opus, The Great Gatsby explores themes of decadence, idealism, resistance to change, social upheaval, and excess, creating a portrait of the Roaring Twenties that has been described as a cautionary tale regarding the American Dream.
The Help, Kathryn Stockett
People should read The Help because it is real. Though it is a work of fiction, it is based on true events. The story is about African Americans working in white households in Jackson, Mississippi, during the early 1960s. Kathryn was born in 1969 in Jackson and grew up in a household with a black housekeeper. The story was based on her experiences growing up and it was just adjusted to occur in the 1960s in the midst of the civil rights movement. A beautifully written but painful story steeped in American history. It tells the story of black household workers in the South in the early 1960s—domestic helpers who take great risks by sharing stories about what it’s like to walk a mile in their shoes. Their tales not only reveal the great sense of empowerment that comes from sharing and having your voice heard, but also remind us of the greatness of the real women who do this work today under sometimes terrible conditions. It is a novel about empowered, heroic women taking a stand for human rights during the civil rights era. It was also adapted into a movie in 2011.
Netflix is constantly changing – adding and removing – titles, based on licensing agreements, so it’s important to keep checking for new titles, and to make sure you watch them before they’re gone.
As of 2018, here is an updated list of everything bookish that you can stream on Netflix!