I don’t know anything about his personal life nor do I know, without Internet searching, what movies he’s made throughout his life, but when I saw Liam Neeson for the first time in Schindler’s List, I told myself he would be someone to watch over the years. Yesterday, my DH took me to see Taken 2, and I knew I had been right. The guy’s a great actor. I don’t care that it’s a sequel – because I hadn’t seen the first, I enjoyed the sequel all by itself. I didn’t recognize Neeson’s role, Bryan Mills, from any books I had read, even though the storyline seems to be culled from a myriad of other “clandestine-spy-operative-covert-war-mercenary” stories out there in novel-land. After all, that’s how James Bond got started 50 years ago in the movies. (Sean Connery – be still my heart – he still has the moves even now.) So, if anyone out there in bloggerland knows the books this movie was “taken” from, please let me know. I’m not gonna search for Bryan Mills through the bazillion novels with the title of Taken. I’ll just say I enjoyed the movie.
So. While we’re waiting for the feature to start, we get a glimpse of new movies rapidly approaching. My husband and I rate the trailers ourselves – “must-miss”, “must-watch”, “maybe”. Most of what we saw in the trailers were “must-miss”. Ouch. I know the trailers are usually themed along with the feature and in this case, most of them were of the “spy-vs-spy” category. I didn’t see anything that I wanted to put on my “looking-forward-to” list. At least not right now. But that doesn’t mean there’s not a good movie to watch. After dinner last night, we watched Brigadoon. That’s a wonderful musical love story with Cyd Charisse, Gene Kelly and Van Johnson. And yes, my husband watched it with me. Payback. I pick the Netflix movies, he picks the theatre runs.
Finally, one last actor – Tom Cruise. I have absolutely enjoyed Lee Child’s Jack Reacher novels. In my mind, Reacher is a rugged 6-5, 250 pounds, so it’s a stretch for me to see Cruise as Reacher, no matter how pretty he is. However, One Shot is one of Child’s best Reacher stories IMHO, so I’ll reserve judgment until I see the film. Trailers just don’t do enough except tease the imagination. And I do like Cruise as an actor. Enjoy the movies!
With all the reading I do, my husband wants to know if I have a book “inside of me”. Heck, no! I’m a reader, not a writer and I don’t aspire to be one. Bloggging is hard enough. So what’s a good reader to do when asked to review a book and comment on it? Hmmm. I need a good thesaurus, dictionary and synonym list. After all, how many ways can a gal say “I liked the book”?? I’ve been accused of giving away part of the plot without warning with a *spoiler alert* and that caused me untold grief. I hate to spoil anything for anyone. But, it’s a “catch 22” – darned if you do and darned if you don’t.
So what can I do? Well, I tried to read other reviews on the books I had read to see if there was a commonality amongst the reviewers. I love to read their reviews – but I run into the same problem – verbalizing the likes or dislikes of a particular book, and making it interesting enough to catch a potential reader/buyer’s attention. I didn’t like doing book reports or oral reviews in high school or college and it’s no different here. I could quote the flyleaf or publisher’s review, but those aren’t my words and paraphrasing is hard work for me. Why can’t I just say I like the style of writing, I like the characters, I like the storyline. Or, I didn’t like the style, characters or storyline. I’d rather say I liked or didn’t like the book, recommend it or not, and move on. Why is that not enough?
I make no apology when I state I LOVE to read. But being a non-political person, one thing I’ve not read with any consistency is op-ed pages of newspapers or news magazines such as Time or Newsweek. And because I didn’t, I’ve apparently missed out on the most delightful author Anna Quindlen. I was on an internet website that had a quote of hers at the end of the webpage. The quote: “Books are the plane, and the train, and the road. They are the destination, and the journey. They are home.” Twenty words, but oh, the stunning power.
Being so not a writer, I have no desire or compelling need to pen a tome or write a romance. There are plenty of those out there in readerland and thank goodness for them. But how I wish I could relay to you the emotional impact from just those twenty words. Finally, finally, someone had succinctly expressed in just twenty words the power of a book. I should make them my new mantra.
As soon as I had calmed down, I started googling Ms. Quindlen, went to her website, read about her on GoodReads, and put her book, “How Reading Changed My Life” on hold at my library. Except for those few words, I can’t remember if I’ve read any of her works, but I find myself looking for other quotes (I found them on Goodreads), googling her books, putting them on my wish list, and wondering about the kinship I feel with her. I have no idea if I’ll even like her works, and I may never meet Ms. Quindlen, but I do appreciate her singular understanding of books and their power.
All that from just twenty words.