Sunday, September 29, 2013

Harry Potter and the Philosopher/Sorcerers Stone By J. K. Rowling


When I was little, I was introduced to Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone, or the Philosophers Stone. Ever since I was eight, I've loved Harry, Hermione and Ron. Every time I moved schools, I would worry about making new friends, but then I would realize that I already had some. They've stuck by my side since the beginning. 

Any ways. The Harry Potter series, to me, are about finding light in even the darkest of times, finding friends when you thought you had none, and conquering the largest fear there is. Fear. 

I remember getting so sucked into these books, that I would feel like I was experiencing the Quiddich Matches, The Detentions, conquering the Troll, learning about Harry speaking Parsletongue. The list goes on and on. 

Anyways, on with the description!

Harry was an orphan since he was one, and had gone to live with his Muggle Aunt, Uncle and Cousin. He lived under the stairs in a closet, with no idea who he was. He was convinced that his parents had died in a terrible car crash, and that was how he had received his famous lightning bolt scar. 

Nearing his eleventh birthday, July 31st, he kept reviving letters, but his Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon knew what these letters where and would burn every one of them. Then it came to the point where they had to move from place to place, until finally they were in the middle of a lake. Then his fist year at the Hogwarts  adventure started. 

When sorting comes, the first years are nerve wracked. Draco Malfoy, whose family is very stuck up, thinks that he can bring himself some school fame by befriending the 'Famous Harry Potter'. Harry, being very smart, declines, and two enemies are formed.

J K Rowling started a new generation, and a whole world. She activated many imaginations, including mine, and for all of those things, I am so grateful to the wonderful author. 

'We are the Potter generation" ~Daniel Radcliffe 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Fiction: A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick

This book cracked me up, which was possibly not the author's intention. As a resident of rural Wisconsin reading a book set in that same state in the early 1900s,  I found the author's use of a snowy frozen winter to illustrate madness and despair to be highly, well, entertaining.
I was so intrigued by this Virginia native author's descriptions of WI winter craziness that I read the epilogue (which I normally do not) and discovered that Mr. Goolrick had been greatly influenced by Wisconsin death trip by Michael Lesy, a peculiar little piece of WI literature composed of of photographs and clippings of local insanity from late 19th century newpapers in the Black River Falls area.
A Reliable Wife was alright as a story, but for me the descriptions of insanity and madness in rural Wisconsin were it's greatest retaining value. I was glad NOT to be reading this book in the winter,  which might have made me cry instead of laugh.
For a more detailed description, below is the summary from MORE:

1907: Abandoning her worldly life, traveling to a remote Wisconsin town in the dead of winter, trusting her future to a man she had never met--such was Catherine Land's new beginning. But there was an ending in sight as well, an ending that would redeem the treachery ahead, justify the sacrifice, and allow her to start over yet again. That was her plan. For Ralph Tritt, the wealthy business man who had advertised for "a reliable wife," this was also to be a new beginning. Years of solitude, denial, and remorse would be erased, and Catherine Land, whoever she might be, would be the vessel of his desires, the keeper of his secrets, the means to recover what was lost. That was his plan.--Publisher description.