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Postertext Giveaway

Postertext Giveaway

December 17, 2014 – 8:46 pm | 12 Comments

Since many of us here are readers and have book lovers in our lives, we’re probably all scrambling for unique bookish gift ideas. This is why I’m excited to host this giveaway from Postertext. According …

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Gift Book Reviews: THE MAKING OF GONE WITH THE WIND and STYLING THE STARS

December 11, 2014 – 8:24 pm | One Comment

Every year for Shelf Awareness for Readers, I review a couple of coffee-table books for the holidays. I received two beautiful ones this year that I think movie lovers on your gift list would appreciate. I really did watch Gone with the Wind again after reading all the behind-the-scenes stories.

These reviews originally appeared in Shelf Awareness and are republished here with permission.

The Making of Gone with the Wind by Steve Wilson

making of gone with the windCommemorating the 75th anniversary of the film adaptation of Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind, this gorgeous treasure trove by Steve Wilson showcases more than 600 items from producer David O. Selznick’s archives.

These items, also on exhibit at the Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin (where Wilson is curator of the film collection), include storyboards, costume sketches, stills from the screen tests of the top contenders for Scarlett O’Hara, on-set photos, and confidential memos from the creative minds behind the movie.

Among the most fascinating artifacts is the seven-page edict from the Hays Office (Hollywood’s censors), with notes about which elements were objectionable (e.g., painful childbirth, use of the N word by “white people”) and needed to be toned down or eliminated. Fans of the classic film will see it again with new eyes after reading this book, and those who haven’t experienced it will want to settle in for a viewing.

Amazon | IndieBound

Styling the Stars: Lost Treasures from the Twentieth Century Fox Archive by Angela Cartwright and Tom McLaren

styling the starsAngela Cartwright, who played Brigitta von Trapp in The Sound of Music, grew up on movie sets and was fascinated by the way actors transformed into their characters. She and coauthor Tom McLaren delved into the Twentieth Century Fox archives and found negatives of long-forgotten continuity photos from movies made from the late 1920s to the early 1970s.

Continuity photos are taken on sets to document the makeup, hairstyle and wardrobe of every actor in every scene so that the looks can be recreated at a later time. Because the shots in Styling the Stars: Lost Treasures from the Twentieth Century Fox Archive are not publicity stills, the actors are more unguarded than carefully posed. Marlon Brando smiles with sand and fake blood on his face, and Doris Day pretends to be grumpy in a robe and pajamas. The book also covers little-known facts (Olivia de Havilland had to wear her own clothes in Hush…Hush, Sweet Charlotte). Classic-movie lovers will enjoy these glimpses of stars in the process of creating some of their iconic roles.

Amazon | IndieBound

Book Review: DEADLINE by John Sandford

October 23, 2014 – 4:36 pm | 5 Comments
Book Review: DEADLINE by John Sandford

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.
As a favor for a friend, Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agent Virgil Flowers looks into multiple dognappings that have occurred …

Nerdy Special List October 2014

October 8, 2014 – 9:44 pm | 4 Comments
Nerdy Special List October 2014

We have books to recommend this month! So, just sit back with your cider and throw blanket and…oh, who am I kidding? I’m running the A/C right now because it’s hotter than Colin Firth in …

Movie Review: LAST DAYS IN VIETNAM

October 4, 2014 – 4:25 pm | 6 Comments
Movie Review: LAST DAYS IN VIETNAM

As I headed out to see Rory Kennedy’s latest documentary, I stuffed a few tissues in my pocket, preparing for a “sit and sob,” my term for moving cinematic experiences. I was correct about the …

Fall 2014 TV Shows I’ve Seen So Far, Pt. 1

September 22, 2014 – 11:36 pm | 2 Comments
Fall 2014 TV Shows I’ve Seen So Far, Pt. 1

Fall is officially here and so’s the fall network TV season. I enjoy sampling all the new shows, even if I end up faithfully watching only two of them. Below are my first impressions of …

Book Review: THE DISTANCE by Helen Giltrow

September 16, 2014 – 10:39 pm | One Comment
Book Review: THE DISTANCE by Helen Giltrow

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.
Charlotte Alton may seem like a well-bred London socialite, but her alter ego, Karla, operates in the shadows, gathering information that …

Book Giveaway: WE ARE NOT OURSELVES by Matthew Thomas

September 8, 2014 – 8:43 pm | 7 Comments
Book Giveaway: WE ARE NOT OURSELVES by Matthew Thomas

If you’re a big reader and frequent a lot of bookish sites, you may not have been able to avoid hearing about one of the buzziest books this year—Matthew Thomas’s debut novel, We Are Not …

Book Review: THE FURIES by Natalie Haynes

September 3, 2014 – 10:08 pm | One Comment
Book Review: THE FURIES by Natalie Haynes

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.

Grieving after the violent death of her fiancé, theater director Alex Morris leaves London for Edinburgh to take a job …

Movie Review: THE GIVER

August 14, 2014 – 8:38 pm |
Movie Review: THE GIVER

The Giver, adapted from Lois Lowry’s Newbery Medal-winning novel, opens in black and white, with best friends Jonas (Brenton Thwaites), Fiona (Odeya Rush), and Asher (Cameron Monaghan) living in a dystopian community free of strife. Every …

Movie Review: GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY

July 31, 2014 – 10:42 pm | 2 Comments
Movie Review: GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY

Disclosure one: I went into the Guardians of the Galaxy screening a few weeks ago knowing nothing about it, other than that it has a weird group of characters at its center and a bunch …

Book Review: BIG LITTLE LIES by Liane Moriarty

July 28, 2014 – 10:01 pm | 4 Comments
Book Review: BIG LITTLE LIES by Liane Moriarty

When you’ve loved doing something your whole life and that thing stops giving you pleasure, you can be thrown into an existential crisis. This is what happened to me with reading.
For 2-3 months recently, I …

Book Review & Giveaway: ONE PLUS ONE by Jojo Moyes

July 16, 2014 – 7:55 pm | 4 Comments
Book Review & Giveaway: ONE PLUS ONE by Jojo Moyes

This review originally appeared in Shelf Awareness for Readers and is reprinted here with permission.
British novelist Jojo Moyes (Me Before You) examines the different shapes of families and the widening gap between rich people and those who …

Book Review: LANDLINE by Rainbow Rowell

July 13, 2014 – 8:31 pm |
Book Review: LANDLINE by Rainbow Rowell

TV writer Georgie McCool finally gets a shot at writing her dream show. The problem: She needs to stay in L.A. and work on it over Christmas. Georgie’s husband Neal decides to take their young …

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