Throne of Glass – Review

Throne of Glass – Review

Hello dearies,

This is the second review I’m writing, and just like the previous I won’t be rating the book from 1 to 5 stars. I don’t believe in rating because I think it’s super subjective. What might be a five for me, may be a three for you and you might have enjoyed it the same way, though your critics might be towards something else.

Therefore, I will only write how the book made me feel and the things I liked about it, instead of just writing a synopsis of it.

Here we go:

Book: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Genre: Fantasy

I’ve been meaning to read this book for a while, since I’ve seen so many reviews and pictures of it (I love book instagrams). It was a fast read for me; I wouldn’t put the book down, and got really hooked in the story. We follow a young trained assassin, Celaena Sardothien,  through a life-death contest to become the King of Adarlan’s Champion, and with that winning her freedom (she’s been on a slave camp for a over year). I expected a lot more action from this book, since the real juice only started to appear on the second half of the story. I think the writer lost way too much time with love triangles that are poorly developed (I’m a little tired of love triangles) and frivolous conversations, instead of showing more of the assassins ability and strength (sometimes she came out a little too whiny making me wonder how did she became the best assassin of the Kingdom). For example, the contest is designed with many tests, but we only read a few of them, others are just skimmed through.

With that being said, I liked the character development, since we learn she is not just a cold hearted assassin, but more of a girl that was thrown into this world and had to do anything to survive. We see her starting to care for other people than herself, which shows that her soul is way more human than what people thought of her. The end leaves you wanting to understand more, since some important information lightly appears towards the final chapters. Who is she? Who is her family? How powerful is she? We start to learn that there is a big secret around her, and the author is pretty clever at giving bits and pieces of information throughout the story that the reader must connect. Instead of throwing everything at once, she kind of turns us into little detectives, trying to figure out what is actually going on, before the heroin does.

I definitely recommend reading it, it is a well-developed story, that catches your attention from beginning to end and definitely makes you want more. The author did a great job at creating this new universe, with different customs, religion and history. I loved the writing style and her POV choice. I’ve grow very accustomed to first person POV, so it was a nice break from it. The way she writes is smooth, simple, yet it fits the genre, setting, and atmosphere of the book perfectly. I’m already on my way to get the second book of the series, since I have to kill my curiosity.

Have you read Throne of Glass? What were your thoughts on it?

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My Top 5 80’s Movies

My Top 5 80’s Movies

Hello lovelies!

Recently I spent a really quiet weekend at home relaxing, and for my surprise The Princess Bride was on TV. I haven’t seen it in a while, so naturally I’ve stopped whatever else I was (not) doing and enjoyed the moment. The movie may be a few decades old, but it can still make me laugh. I love the romance, the sarcasm, the cinematography, and quick comebacks (I think the jokes are so clever!)

Then I started to make a mental list of all the 80’s movies I’ve seen that I would see again or recommend others to watch, even though I am a nineties’ baby.

Warning: Contain spoilers

So, without further ado, here are my top five 80’s movies of all time:

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1. Can’t Buy me Love

I’ve seen this movie for the first time a couple years ago, and boy, did I love it. It got me hooked from start to finish, and I thought that Patrick Dempsey’s acting, even though exaggerated at times, was extremely refreshing. I believed him to be that nerdy and bubbly character who just wants to be popular more than anything. I’ve seen a lot of movies with this actor, but overall (in my opinion) he plays the same type of character over and over again. So it was really nice to see how he started and how dynamic he was at a young age (when he wasn’t the sexy serious guy).

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2. Back to the Future

Oh Marty Mcfly, how much do I enjoy your adventures with time travel. But I must say, the first movie has always been my favorite. Him accidentally going back in the past, and almost ruining his parent’s entire relationship was so precious and fun to watch. The more he tried to make things right, the worse they got. But, thankfully everything turned out more than okay for him at the end. Go Marty! And I don’t even have to mention that one of my favorite’s band’s name comes from his last name Mcfly. That alone should make me love the movie (but honestly I liked way before I knew the band).

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3. The Breakfast Club

Well, not only the movie has an iconic ending that has been remade and celebrated through generations after it, but the depth and exploration of the angst of teenagers in High School was mind blowing. This entire movie happens during these five kids’ detention time (with only them and two school staff to support the story), and it is able to show you their distinct personalities and break cliches of people’s appearances. Who you seem to be in High School doesn’t necessarily is who you are. And sometimes someone who looks so different from you, may actually have more similarities than disparities. The movie makes you wonder whether these five kids will remain friends after this glorious and unique day. But who knows? Maybe they will go back to their daily lives. But for us, those hours were the truest and sincerest moments of these teenager’s High School years.

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4. The Princess Bride

But of course I wouldn’t miss the movie that started this whole post. The Princess Bride is one of those movies you must see. It’s light and quirky, and makes you laugh not only with the story, but about it (the movie constantly makes jokes about itself). You end up falling in love with Westley’s wit and his love for Buttercup (though I must admit, her character doesn’t agree with me much). Also, one of the most famous lines in movies’ history can’t be missed, when Inigo Montoya finally meets his father’s killer and says, “Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.” STRIKE ONE! Fun fact: Ben Barnes was inspired by Inigo’s accent to create his Prince Caspian character.

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5. Just One of the Guys.

Ok, so I’ve seen She’s the Man with Amanda Bynes many times, where she pretends to be her brother in order to convince her ex-boyfriend, and her previous coach that girls are as good as guys on soccer. However, I didn’t know there was an 80’s movie with a similar plot (seems like they are both loosely based on the same play by Shakespeare). In Just One of The Guys, the main character pretends to be a guy just so she can prove that her article for the school newspaper was rejected because she was a girl. The plot twist is when she finds out that it actually was because it wasn’t good enough (even as a guy). She becomes friends with this loser guy and ta-da starts falling in love with him. The whole experience as a guy inspires her to write a new article that ends up being published. Oh, and the reveal scene (where people find out she is a girl) is very much like in She’s the Man. I quite liked the movie, it was amusing, smart, and ahead of its time.

 

Did your favorite 80’s movie made the cut? If not, leave a comment below sharing your top choices.

5 Things I learned from Acting School

5 Things I learned from Acting School

Hello everyone,

I went to acting school when I was only nineteen years old, in a completely different country, and had to re-start my life over there. It was a great experience, first time alone, in a country with different language, different culture, no parents, nor anyone to solve my problems. Let’s say it was a crucial time to shape me into the woman I am today. I have come to discover who I really am, because I had the time and permission to do so.

So here they are, the five things I learned in acting school that I will take with me for life: Ready? ACTION!

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  1. Engage with people, and learn to listen.

When someone (the cashier at the grocery store for example) asks you “How are you?” Really take time to answer. We usually say, “I’m fine, and you?” And thats it. Engage them on conversation. After one of my teacher told me that, I started doing this all the time. Eventually everyone knew me at my local Grocery Store because I always engaged them in conversation. It’s so automatic now that sometimes I don’t even realize I’m doing it. Take time to really know people, it will make a difference, and really LISTEN.

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     2. Fail, fail again, but fail better. 

I believe is one of the most important things for me to remember. One of my teachers used to say that if we felt like we failed at the scene, we should do it again, but do it better. If you failed the scene again, you should keep going, because each try would only be better than the last, and we would always learn something. This is so important to use in our daily lives, when applying for a new job, working out, or trying something you are afraid of. Just take a chance, and keep fighting. Failure is just one step away from success.

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  3. Write your experiences.

They always encouraged us to keep journals. We should write our experiences, write what we see, write about people we see in the street, write about anything, actually. When we write, we are doing a study of the Human psych, and in acting we need to understand humans. We need to know how different people feel, react, their objectives in life, etc… So, I’m really trying to work on writing more what I see.

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  4. Respect each other’s background.

In my class we had people from all over the world, with different ages, cultures, colors, languages, and background. We had to share some pretty personal things in order to learn how to trust each other (which could only make a scene better), and to be vulnerable. I got to learn great stories, as well as sad ones from so many people, and that taught me we shouldn’t judge someone based on what we think we know. We don’t know each other’s past and struggle. We can only be supportive of one another.

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      5. Do not compare yourself with others.

This one is a biggie for me, because I am terrible at it. We learned that we shouldn’t compare ourselves to others because everyone was different, with a different strength or talent. We could only compare ourselves with ourselves, because that was the only way we would see our true growth. If you compare where you are to where others are, you will end up frustrated. But if you stop to realize how much you improved, you will feel the fire to keep improving. That is a must for anything in life: health, body image, personal projects, work etc. Do not compare yourself with others. Only you can be the true measure of your growth. You will always be enough, because no one else can be a better you than you.

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What did you think of my 5 lessons from acting school? Make sure to leave a comment!

A Book is a Book: Literary Vs. Commercial

A Book is a Book: Literary Vs. Commercial

Hello everyone,

What do you see in the picture? Books, right? A book means someone (the author) is trying to give you a message. Trying to transport you to a different place, time, or simply to make you see your own world in a different point of view. The whole purpose of a book is simply to give you a message, to make you think critically, or to make you stop thinking about your daily life, and just drown within its pages. The same for a movie, play, music, painting, or any form of art that triggers something inside you.

But I was astonished to discover over the weekend, while I was taking a self-publishing course, that here in Brazil some books are not considered Literature, because they are more commercial or because their writing style isn’t as refined as others. I felt like these types of books were underestimated, as if they weren’t as good or valued as the others.

I always thought we had one Young-Adult genre, where all the sub-genres derived from, however, we have a Literary YA, and a commercial YA. (The names are different in Portuguese but won’t change the meaning of what I’m saying.) So where does this in-between commercial YA lies? Why Brazilians are not publishing Young-Adult novels that are not so refined (but still sends you a message clearly), and are more commercial? Most of the books we consume here are Young-Adult novels that come from english speaking countries, however, we ourselves are not writing them.

Doesn’t a book still have the same value even if it’s simply entertaining, and not didactic or refined, or stylistic more polished? I believe that books, no matter what genre, should all have the same value, because they are all trying to teach you something, entertain you, or make you feel something. The more rules we put on how books should look like, the less people will read it, because they will stay within one category. A book is supposed to make you feel fun, silly, courageous, strong, vulnerable, and intelligent. Just like we have different moods and tastes, so should books. Yes, some people think that YA books are silly or for teenagers, but they still make me feel good. Isn’t that the whole point of reading something? Having a good time?

If we want to stop complaining that the new generation doesn’t read that many books, why don’t we stop discriminating books in the first place? If it makes you feel happy, whole, and overall satisfied that is all that matters.

Don’t give up reading,

Fefe.

Poem Moment

Poem Moment

I was going through my journal and found an old poem I wrote two years ago. It made me realize how some things might seem that will destroy you, as if you wouldn’t be able to pass through it. But then, time passes and you are okay, and whole again. We need to remember that we don’t need to put our faith or happiness on people. They should be part of it, and grow from it, but they shouldn’t be the source of it. We need to learn how to be complete on our own, so people will come and share their “complete” with you, and more and more will be added to who you are.

With that being said, I am sharing the poem I wrote, because even if it’s not a part of who I am anymore, it was a part of me for quite some time. Some people might see themselves in the poem, or recognize feelings they are having. So, for those who do I say, “It’s okay, you will get through whatever is haunting your soul, and it won’t kill you. It will make you stronger.”

Unnamed Poem:

To say okay, when you are not okay

To smile, when you want to cry

To pretend you don’t care, when you do

It’s all a mask, it’s all a lie

It’s a cry for help that you are failing to see

I’m hurting inside, how can it be?

That you neglect me when I’m near

Don’t try to find me when I disappear

But if I do, would you miss me?

Or shed a tear and move on quickly

When I would break if you ever left me. 

 

I didn’t break. I’m still here, and so are all of you.

Love,

Fefe

Taking a Risk

Taking a Risk

Okay, so have you ever had a project that you felt like it was your baby?

That was my book to me. I worked on it on the course of two years, writing it up till four AM, with my headphones on and the whole world off. The funny thing is, writing was the easiest part. After you write a book, you have to go back and edit it, fixing all grammar, spelling or story mistakes you can find. I probably read my book about ten times during the editing period, and after each person who read it gave me feedbacks, I would go back and fix it some more.

My final draft doesn’t look anything like the first. I’ve changed so many things, until I thought it was the best way I could tell that story. I was twenty-one years old when I started, and now at twenty-six I finally had the guts to self-publish it. You know what’s scarier than putting your work out there? Is having someone review it.

Let me tell you, I was terrified of receiving feedback, because as I said, this project was so close to my heart that I just wanted people to love it as much as I do. However, we have to let go of that fear and take a risk, because people should know about your work.

I’ve received my first review this week, and for me it was really helpful. I had some critiques, but they were well structured and clear, which will help me write my next book. When you know your weaknesses, you know where you need to pay more attention to. Even more so, I could see someone else–from outside my own social circle–read, enjoy, connect, and identify with my characters, and that for me is the most gratifying part of this job. All I ever wanted was to tell a story people wanted to hear (or read in this case).

For a girl who speaks english as a second language, to be able to write an entire book in english, and have it published, is something to be proud of. So, if you have a project you are passionate about, but you are not sure people will like it, you should take a risk, like I did, and show it to the world. Like I once heard on a TV show long time ago, if my art can touch at least one person, than I am happy enough.

Take a risk,

Fernanda.

If you want to check my review please visit this page: Book Review

If you want to check my book go to the Book tab on my home page.

Writer’s Block

Writer’s Block

Hello peeps,

Long time no see.

It’s funny how easily we can get caught in the rush of life and forget to work on our personal projects, isn’t it?

Every week I set for myself the goal of sitting and working on my blog, and every week something else came up, something that it would be more important or more urgent, or let’s be honest, I was just tired and didn’t want to think. Who hasn’t felt that way, right?

Also, lately I haven’t been in touch with my creative side. In other words, I’ve been feeling a massive writer’s block, and haven’t been able to shake that feeling off.

I keep saying to myself, “don’t worry, you will write when you feel creative again.” But that just doesn’t happen. You know why? Because writing is a craft. It’s like a muscle that you have to keep exercising to get stronger, even on those days that you feel lazy and not wanting to go to the gym. So the best way to push past this block is to get back at exercising my writing muscle, which is what brings me here today.

I just need to remember to be patient with myself, because the strength and ability won’t come right away. So, today I just wanted to tell you that it’s okay to sometimes feel blocked, or uninspired, or set you personal projects aside for a while. As long as you don’t get stuck in that loop and don’t put yourself together to pull you out of it.

Take a breath, accept that this things happen, but don’t get used to the feeling, work you way back to focusing on you and your goals. And don’t forget, be patient.

Much love,

Fefe