Stardust Movie Review

stardustmovieThe other day I watched the movie adaptation of Neil Gaiman‘s “Stardust,” and I have to say, it was pretty dang enjoyable. The movie, like the book, follows a young man named Tristan who is trying to win his true love’s heart. When they see a shooting star together he vows to bring back the fallen star to her in turn for her hand in marriage. She agrees and Tristan sets off on an epic journey through faerie to get the star.

When he sets off with a candle his mother (whom he’s never met) gave him in a letter, he soon finds out that the star is not actually a big hunk of rock, but rather a young woman with a bit of an attitude.

But the thing is, Tristan isn’t the only one looking for the star, Yvaine. A witch wishes to steal Yvaine’s heart so she can become young and beautiful again; and a son of a king needs to find the necklace that Yvaine now wears in order to claim the crown.

It’s an epic tale with lots of funny moments, romance, and a tale that you won’t soon forget.

It was definitely very reminiscent of the book. It started out a bit differently than what had happened in the book, but the same type of plot was still there: boy manages to sneak past the wall that separates the regular world from the magical, goes to festival, gets a woman pregnant. You know, the usual. But it’s a really fast scene and it felt kind of rushed to get to the main story. Let me talk about some of the difference I noticed as I was watching this book-to-movie adaptation:

  • The beginning, as stated above, was different and kind of rushed.
  • There was no little faerie man to help Tristan out at the beginning or to explain the Babylon candle.
  • Yvaine’s leg didn’t really seemed to be broken, but more like sprained because they never splinted it or anything in the movie.
  • The sequence of events happened differently, too, such as when the witch set up the inn and when they met the pirates in the sky. I believe these two things happened in reverse in the books (I could be mistaken, though).
  • We never got to see Tristan’s “mother” or sister at the beginning.
  • Saltwater Sal didn’t actually die in the book.
  • There was a whole fight at the witch’s manor, which I don’t recall at all from the book.

I mean, this was a pretty good adaptation, in my opinion. I think it was a bit more humorous from the book, but I really enjoyed it.

Now, as for my opinions on the film itself:

  • You could tell when there was CGI and when there wasn’t. Oh my, the CGI. Called it every time.
  • The actors all did a great job portraying their character, and I especially loved Captain Shakespeare. He was a hoot.
  • The added battle scene with the witches was needed, I think, in terms of how the movie flowed. It didn’t hinder it at all, in my opinion, but added to it.
  • The comedy was great and added a light and airy feeling to the movie where I felt the book was more serious.

Overall, I enjoyed the movie and thought it was a good adaptation. Of course there were some things that could have been added or changed around, but it was faithful through most of it.

I give this movie a rating of 8/10 stars and highly recommend it for anyone who’s read the novel.

Stardust Book Review

stardust

Title: Stardust
Author: Neil Gaiman
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks – an imprint of HarperCollins
Publication Date: This edition: August 29, 2006 (originally published in 1998)
Genres: Adult – Fantasy, Romance, Adventure
Pages: 250
Format: Purchased Paperback

“Stardust” by Neil Gaiman is a story about a young man, Tristran Thorn, who goes out into Faerie after seeing a falling star with the girl of his dreams and vows to get it and bring it back for her – and she would give him whatever he desires. On his journey to the star, he discovers that the star is a young girl and the two of them set off on a harrowing journey back to Wall, the town where Tristran is from. Along the way they encounter many friends and foes, and the tale which is spun is one that is in itself unique and inspiring.

This book was beautiful. The writing style that Gaiman presents in this short novel is lovely and unique, and it spins the tale of Tristran very wonderfully, while also weaving in tales of other characters within the story that all eventually come together in a great wrap-up of a conclusion.

When I first started reading the book, I was unsure of what to expect, but as I continued on, I felt that I was engrossed in the world and that the characters and everything around them came to life in my imagination. The story telling was fantastic and the plot itself was unique, but one of which could be told over and over again.

I thought the character of Tristran was one definitely of a boy growing up in the world, one of which he started as naive and stubborn, but also he seemed very gentle-hearted and kind. As he journeyed through Faerie he learned more and more about the world and how each thing that is said or done in Faerie has a price that comes with it (rules, rules, rules!). He definitely has growth and development within the novel and toward the end I can see where he has finally learned all there was for him to learn as he made his way back to Wall.

Yvaine, the star, grew along with the story, as well. She played the part of loathing captive to gentle young woman as the story progressed. I believe she was part comic-relief a few times in the novel, but there wasn’t much humor in the book that was outright and in your face. It was more subtle and hidden within the pages.

The characters that dotted the story throughout, from the witch-queen to Septimus and Primus, to all the others in between, played integral and important roles throughout Tristran’s story, for sure. I thought that the way they were all introduced separately in their own story lines, and then brought together at the end for a clean ending, was well done and made the story that much better.

The plot, too, was one of which is unique and could be told a thousand different ways, but I enjoyed the story of a boy seeking to please his true love, only to find himself on a difficult journey and getting an outcome much different from what he expected. It was a fun, grand adventure, and this book is definitely one of my top five favorites for the year.

(Also, I read his name as Tristan, not Tristran. Very slight difference that I didn’t notice until halfway through the novel.)

I rate this book 5/5 stars and highly recommend it.

September 2014 Wrap-Up & October TBR

Hello fellow readers. Today I’m going to talk about the books I read in September and the books I hope to read in October.

First off, I only read two books this past month (technically 2.75), as I am still in the process of finishing the third book. As a slower reader, plus my busy schedule, it takes time for me to read larger books, so I have not been able to finish the third book in the “Throne of Glass” series yet.

The first book I finished in September was “Throne of Glass” by Sarah J Maas. I thought this book was a fantastic read and it definitely was outside of what has been being published lately (a lot of dystopians) and so I thought that it was a great concept, fun, engaging characters and plot, and it was definitely 5/5 stars. Here is my blog review and my video review with spoilers.

The second book I finished in September was “Crown of Midnight,” the second book in the series. This book was better than the last, and the characters continued to develop, the plot became darker, and the action was turned up. This is a great sequel considering many sequels tend to lose their zeal as the series goes on, and it definitely deserved the 5/5 stars, in my opinion. Here is my blog review and my video review with spoilers.

The third book I am still trying to finish, though September has come and gone, is “Heir of Fire,” and it is the third book in the series. This book has gotten even better than the last and includes new characters, which means more perspectives, and the storyline flows nicely. Though I don’t have a review on it yet, I do expect to finish it by the end of this week, if not the next, so expect the review to be up! (I’ll link my blog and video reviews here when they’re up.)

NEXT! My October TBR. These are the books I hope to get to reading this month:

  1. The Merciless” by Danielle Vega
  2. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer” by Michelle Hodkin
  3. Asylum” by Madeline Roux
  4. The Graveyard Book” by Neil Gaiman
  5. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” by Ransom Riggs

What I hope to do is read all of the Mara Dyer series because the third book will be coming out in the next couple of weeks and I’d rather read an entire series before moving onto the next book, so that also means I’m going to try to read the second books in the Asylum and Miss Peregrine series, but we’ll see how much I can get read this month.

If you have any suggestions as to what I should read first after I finish my current book, let me know in the comments below.

Accompanying video: September 2014 Wrap-Up & October TBR

August 2014 Wrap-Up

August has come and gone in a flash, just like every month this year, and I have concluded some books, as well as done some book hauls and tags. I haven’t listed all the tags I did, so I’m going to list them here (be prepared for a larger post).

So in the month of August I have read and reviewed “This Star Won’t Go Out” by Esther Earl and “Eleanor & Park” by Rainbow Rowell. These two books were fantastic reads and I highly recommend them to anyone looking for sentimental, down to earth reads. Here’s my reviews for each: TSWGO // E&P

Both books received high ratings for the types of books they were and how well they were represented by their respective authors.

That was pretty much it for my wrap-up, though I did include a small snippet about how I’m enjoying “These Broken Stars” by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner. Though I’m still in the process of reading this book, I just wanted to include it in my wrap-up to let you all know what I’m currently reading and that I am enjoying it. A review will be up on it, hopefully, by the beginning of next week, if not the end of this week.

Moving onto the haul of “creepy” books, here’s what I got:

  • The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer” by Michelle Hodkin. This book tells the story of a girl, Mara, and how she was the only survivor in a car crash with her friends. She starts seeing their ghosts and strange things keep on happening.
  • The Merciless” by Danielle Vega. This book includes a lot of blood, demons, possession, and scary things.
  • Asylum” by Madeleine Roux. Some kids with special gifts end up in a dorm that used to be an insane asylum and strange things start to happen. They learn they might have a connection with the asylum’s dark past.
  • The Graveyard Book” by Neil Gaiman. A boy is raised in a graveyard by ghosts and things that are dead – or not so dead.
  • Stardust” by Neil Gaiman. A guy would do anything for this girl, including going beyond the wall that separates their village from the rest of the world. What he finds beyond is something he didn’t expect: the world of Faerie.

Each of these books sound spooky and enchanting in their own way, and I’m intrigued to find out what happens in them. Great reads for October, in my opinion, but we’ll see when I read them (TBR box, you know).

Now, if you’re into doing fun “tags,” then these are the questions to the three that I did (videos and answers linked below):

Booktube Newbie Tag

1. Why did you start this channel? I wanted to share my own thoughts and opinions about books with others, plus it looks like a lot of fun!
2. What are some fun/unique things I can bring to YouTube? I think I can bring more discussion type videos to the table because I enjoy deep, engaging, thought-provoking conversations with others.
3. What are you most excited for about this new channel? I’m excited to just be part of the BookTube community and share with everyone else my love for reading.
4. Why do you love reading? I’ve always loved reading. It helps me to escape reality and enter new worlds – even if the books themselves take place on Earth.
5. What book or book series got you into reading? I’m not quite sure, but one of my favorites as a kid was Stellaluna by Janell Cannon,
6. What question would you ask your favorite Booktuber? What is the best experience you’ve had since becoming a BookTuber?
7. What challenge do you think starting a Booktube channel will be the hardest to overcome? Not getting wrapped up in how many views or subscribers I have or don’t have.

Summertime Madness Tag

1. Show a book with a summery cover. The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han
2. Pick one fictional place that would be the perfect summer vacation destination. Hogwarts. Do I even need to explain?
3. You’re about to go on a flight to your summer vacation, but you want to read a book that lasts the whole flight. What novella do you pick? Four by Veronica Roth
4. You have a case of the summer time sadness – what happy book do you pick to shine a smile on your face? Vampire Crush by A.M. Robinson
5. You’re sitting at the beach all alone – which fictional character is your beach babe/hunk? Tobias from the Divergent series. He’s just… yeah, he’s a hunk.
6. To match your ice cream, you want an icy cool sidekick! Which fictional sidekick do you pick? Alice from the Twilight saga by Stephanie Meyer. She’s fun, sassy, and can be a great bff.

Social Media Book Tag

Twitter: Your favorite short book. The Life of Saint Margaret, a thirteen page story of a woman martyred for her faith and the man she would not give herself to.
Facebook: A book everyone pressured you into reading. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Tumblr: A book you read before it was cool. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. Yeah, that’s right, I read it before all the hype went down.
Myspace: A book you don’t remember if you liked or not. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
Instagram: A book that was so beautiful you had to Instagram it. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews. I love the simplicity of it and how colorful it is.
Youtube: A book you wished would be turned into a movie. Firelight by Sophie Jordan. People turning into dragons? I mean, c’mon.
Goodreads: A book you recommend to everyone. The Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa. Faeries, fantasy, adventure, romance. So good.

So yup, that pretty much wraps up August. It’s been a productive, fun, busy, long month, but it was totally worth it.

Accompanying videos: August 2014 Wrap-Up + Creepy Haul // Social Media Book Tag // Summertime Madness Tag // Booktube Newbie Tag