Thursday, May 28, 2009

Bella and Edward Reunite in Italy Pics

These pics are the best that have come out of New Moon. If you haven't read New Moon, then do not click on this link, because it gives away the ending of the book. If you have, enjoy!!!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Hunger Games Cast List - Effie Trinket

My friend, Ashlee, had a great suggestion for Effie. Melissa McCarthy is on the CW show, Gilmore Girls. She has the perfect voice and kooky personality that Effie should embody. Ashlee imagined Effie as bit more busty and heavy-set, and when I thought about it, I did, too. I think Melissa McCarthy would be a great Effie!
Want more casting suggestions? Click HERE!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

The Hunger Games Movie Cast List

This cool pic depicts a scene from the reaping. Click on the illustration to go to the artist's website.
If you've yet to read The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, you are definitely missing out on the best book of the year. Go pick it up today and read it (click on The Hunger Games book below and it will take you to the Barnes & Noble link to order it), because it will be a huge sensation by the end of this year, when casting for the movie begins.
Before you criticize my choices, I pose a challenge to you: create your own cast list and share them with Under each posting, give me the name of your recommendation, and I can create a poll for each character that we can vote on and try to decide who would be the best in each roll. I'm sure my pick of Kevin Costner is raising eyebrows, but what Hollywood actor in his mid-fifties would fit Haymitch? I had thought about Terry Bradshaw, who played Matthew McConaugay's dad in Failure to Launch. I wasn't sure if he could be sour enough, and I'm sure I'm totally forgetting of a guy who would do great playing a crotchety middle-aged man with a beer belly. The actor who plays Juno's dad also came to mind...any thoughts from you?
Want more casting suggestions? Click HERE for more!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Hunger Games Cast List - Katniss Everdeen

This is a picture of actress Lucy Hale who stars the TV Series Privileged on the CW network. Before you shake your head and think I have Katniss all wrong, go back to the text and analyze how Katniss is described by Collins. She and Gale are very similar in appearance and demeanor. Lean, athletic, dark hair, light eyes, and beautiful with out knowing it. The country song, "She Don't Know She's Beautiful" comes to mind when I think of Katniss. She is so no-nonsense and practical, she doesn't have time to obsess about her looks like most sixteen year olds. Her need to keep her family fed trumps all of that nonsense. Imagine Hale without the glamorous Hollywood makeup and tousled hair. Can you see Katniss?
She has potential to gain a bit of lean muscle for the part, doesn't she?


The Hunger Games Cast List- Peeta Mellark

Peeta Mellark has easily become my favorite character in the novel. Not only is he head-over-heels for Katniss, but he seems to have a genuine and sweet nature. Suzanne Collins describes Peeta as being of "medium height, stocky build, ashy blond hair that falls in waves over his forhead"...this picture of Lucas Till seemed to fit the bill effortlessly. Any thoughts???

This montage of Lucas was created by a fan of the Miley Cyrus movie he is currently starring in as her love interest. Pretty cute without being too much of a heart throb, huh? I think he has a very adorable boy-next-door kind of aura.

Click HERE for a full list of casting suggestions! A great compilation from Entertainment Weekly fans!

The Hunger Games Cast - Gale

Collins describes Gale as having dark hair and light eyes. He looks so similiar to Katniss that they could easily be related. She doesn't get the fact that she must be good looking if that is the case, because Gale is a hottie. The other girls in school talk about him, and he is obviously in love with Katniss. Who could encompass these qualities without being too "Hollywood"? I found an actor by the name of Adam Gregory, who is currently starring in the new 90210 series. Yes, he is attractive, well, okay, he's amazingly fine...but he seems so much like the Gale I pictured in my mind, I nearly screamed when I found his picture!

Want more cast picks? Go HERE for a full list of casting suggestions!

The Hunger Games Cast - Rue

Rue is described "as looking about ten" and has "bright dark eyes and satiny brown skin". She reminds Katniss of her little sister Prim, and Katniss immediately takes a liking to her. In the Games, Rue is what reminds Katniss of home. As a character, she is loveable, and unforgetable to the reader. I chose the actress Madison Pettis. You may remember her from the Disney movie, The Game Plan and the TV show, Cory in the House. She tiny, cute, and has dark hair and eyes. I'm sure she could darken her skin with a little bit of makeup, but her stature is very small for a 12 year old! Perfect match for Rue!
Want more casting suggestions? Click HERE!

The Hunger Games Cast - Prim Everdeen

"Fresh as a rain drop, as lovely as the primrose for which she was named" is a beautiful picture Collins paints of Prim, Katniss only love and sister. You may know our next cast member from her sister's famous name, Dakota Fanning. Dakota is too old to play a 12 year old tribute, but her little sister is not! Elle Fanning is the perfect age and has the light hair, eyes, and rosebud mouth that Katniss describes. What do you think about this choice? Click HERE for more casting suggestions!

The Hunger Games Movie Cast - Haymitch

Haymitch is hard character to cast. Many picture him as an old man, but in reality, he's only in his early-fifties. I know this because when District 12 is having their reaping, Collins describes him as a "paunchy, middle aged man". I wanted to find a bald actor that had an appearance of being a formerly stout, athletic young tribute. (How else would he have won the Games years ago?) To me, Kevin Costner fits the bill for the role of Haymitch. With the right make up a bit more weight around the middle, I'm sure he could embrace the role of a drunk and crotchety mentor to Katniss and Peeta.

Want more casting suggestions? Click HERE!

The Hunger Games Cast - Effie Trinket

Effie is such a fun character in such an intense novel! Whoever plays her must be able to present a laughable, but very self-absorbed character. Emma Thompson, donned in a pink wig, of course, would be a perfect fit for Effie!

The Hunger Games Cast - Katniss's Father

Kyle Chandler (from the TV show, Friday Night Lights) should play in flashback scenes from Katniss's memory. When he sings, the birds stop and listen, and apparently he has enough charizma (and good looks, too) that Katniss's mother leaves a richer lifestyle to make a life with him.

The Hunger Games Cast - Katniss's Mother

I chose Naomi Watts as Katniss's mother because I feel like make up artists could give her the appearance of someone who used to be beautiful. Katniss and Prim's mother has been through so much in her short forty plus years. From the loss of her true love, Katniss's father, to leaving the richer part of District 12 to live a much harder life in The Seam.

Sneak Peak of New Moon on MTV Movie Rewards!

On Sunday, May 31st, be sure to set your Tivo for 9pm ET to record The MTV Movie Awards. Not only is Adam Samburg hosting, (besides Will Ferrell, he is one of my favorite funny men) but the NEW MOON cast will be presenting an award and introducing a sneak peak of the film. I'm not sure how long the clip will be, but anything at this point is enough! Click on Kristen to find out more about the MTV Movie Awards.

My New Crush

Chris Pine is the new Captain Kirk in the recently released Star Trek movie. How hot is this guy? Even though the book-version of Edward Cullen is my favorite fictional character, Pine just might be my new hot actor I covet. Beam me up, Scottie!!!!

Pot Calling the Kettle Black: Clay Aiken Bashes Adam Lambert

US Weekly is reporting today that Clay Aiken apologized to Adam Lambert on his fan site Saturday morning -- one day after he slammed the American Idol runner-up as "frightening" and said one of his performances made his "ears bleed." Ummm, newsflash Aiken...YOU ARE BOTH "FRIGHTENING" AND ANNOYING.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Entertainment Weekly: New Moon Pictures From the Set!

The Entertainment Weekly's article on New Moon is now online:

Thursday, May 21, 2009

If I Stay...the next big book craze!

I'm hearing rumors that Catherine Hardwick's (Twilight's director)next big project is turning the recently published book, If I Stay by Gayle Foreman, into a movie. Summit (the movie house that produced Twilight) released the following statment about this upcoming project:

"Catherine is the first and only filmmaker we considered to direct 'If I Stay,' a book we are as crazy about as we were about 'Twilight,' " he says. "Catherine has an amazing ability to capture the youth experience. She can make the fantastical relatable and the ordinary magical. We'd never try to re-create past history, but we are thrilled about trying to re-create the environment and passion that made our last success possible."

I plan on reading the book next week (mainly because the copy I purchased today was bogarted by one of my 8th grade students who has been BEGGING me to buy it so she can read it! What can I say...I'm a softy for my students who love to read!) As soon as I know more about it, I'll post my own personal review, but for now, here is a bit more about the plot of the book. I'm very excited to read this novel, because I think it will have many elements of the novel The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold that I love so much!
Publisher's Weekly Review of If I Stay by Gayle Forman:
The last normal moment that Mia, a talented cellist, can remember is being in the car with her family. Then she is standing outside her body beside their mangled Buick and her parents' corpses, watching herself and her little brother being tended by paramedics. As she ponders her state ("Am I dead?I actually have to ask myself this"), Mia is whisked away to a hospital, where, her body in a coma, she reflects on the past and tries to decide whether to fight to live. Via Mia's thoughts and flashbacks, Forman (Sisters in Sanity) expertly explores the teenager's life, her passion for classical music and her strong relationships with her family, friends and boyfriend, Adam. Mia's singular perspective (which will recall Alice Sebold's adult novel, The Lovely Bones) also allows for powerful portraits of her friends and family as they cope: "Please don't die. If you die, there's going to be one of those cheesy Princess Diana memorials at school," prays Mia's friend Kim. "I know you'd hate that kind of thing." Intensely moving, the novel will force readers to take stock of their lives and the people and things that make them worth living. Ages 14-up. (Apr.)

Never Before Seen New Moon Photos!

OMG! This article will be in the upcoming issue of Entertainment Weekly, hitting news stands on Friday. I will definitely be picking up my copy to poor over these tasty New Moon movie pictures! Whoot-whoot!

And the New American Idol is...

I’m so pumped that Kris Allen is the new American Idol! I was never on the Adam Lambert band wagon. Just like with David Archuletta, the constant praise of Adam by the judges completely turned me off of their chosen front runner. Kris might not have the huge pipes that Adam has, but Adam sounds like a Broadway singer or someone who headlines on a cruise ship…not a true musician. America did a great job of keeping the American Idol a well-rounded musician!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

New Moon the Movie Filiming in Italy!

Alice Cullen's Porsche was spotted in the streets of Montepulciano, Italy. Do you remember this scene in New Moon when Alice and Bella are racing to stop Edward from revealing himself in the city square? AWESOME! I hope the dude in the scarf isn't her stunt driver, though. I mean, really? This is the best you could do? You found a 250 pound gorilla of a man to be a 5 foot, 90lb character's double?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

If you haven't noticed, I've been reading a lot lately! Maybe I need to be exercising more and reading less, but my laziness can be your gain! I've been running into some great reads lately, so here's another to add to your ever-growing reading list....Stephenie Meyer reccommends this trilogy if that's any consolation!

The first book is titled City of Bones. I finish the first in this trilogy today, but I'm too lazy to type up my own synopsis, so I'm stealing this summary from Demons, Nephellium, and romance...what more could you want in a book?:

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder — much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It's hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing — not even a smear of blood — to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?
This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It's also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace's world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know. . . .
Exotic and gritty, exhilarating and utterly gripping, Cassandra Clare's ferociously entertaining fantasy takes readers on a wild ride that they will never want to end.

Official New Moon Poster! Official New Moon Poster!


Sunday, May 17, 2009

Jon and really is SAD!

I have first-hand experience of what it feels like for people to judge the demise of your relationship; to pick it apart and label a scapegoat for its failure. I don't want to play that game with Jon and Kate Gosselin, the stars of the TLC reality show, Jon & Kat Plus Eight. Anytime a relationship fails and kids are involved, it's sad. They are the ultimate victims, no matter what went down between their parents. Click on the picture below to watch a video of how Jon & Kate met...I really hope they can work it out!

New Moon - Under Ground!

Ooooohh! Check out these pics from possible scenes from the Italian vampires underground tunnels. Creepy! I pictured it sort of like this, but maybe a bit more refined.

Teachable Stuff (For Such a "Bad" Writer)

I'm not sure if it's because she is insanely rich, or if it's because she came from a less than stellar writing background, but Stephenie Meyer is often raked over the coals for her work. Many critics have called her writing "shoddy", "juvenile", and "incoherent". As a Reading and English teacher, I'm wondering if I'm lacking some sort of basic structure in my education, since I find her work to be up to par. Trust me when I say that there are very few contemporary authors (especially in the teen fiction genre) that are as great and verbose as Stephenie. It is part of my job to read teen fiction and I might have a handful of titles that I think are well-written. I've read well over a hundred teen fiction books in the last couple of years, and I am shocked by how bad some of the published (and popular) novels are, and the Twilight Saga is leaps and bounds ahead of the competition.
Why Twilight and the rest of the saga are under the gun, I'll never begin to understand. I've broken down mulitiple chapters of Twilight and used it for teaching purposes in my classroom, and it is rich in vocabulary and has awesome examples of literary elements, such as personification, simile, metaphor, and repitition. Luckily, I'm not the first to notice the teaching potential of Twilight. Author Brian Leaf has created SAT vocabulary workbooks using TWILIGHT and NEW MOON to provide examples. Click on the pictures below for links to purchase at

I'm not sure about you, but if I were a high school kid, I would much rather study using examples from books I love than some stale workbook. This publication notes SAT words used in each chapter, sites the page number, then has activities that requires the reader to exercise use of the SAT verbage. Maybe I should be writing a workbook that uses the literary terminology I've found in the Twilight Saga?????

Saturday, May 16, 2009

A Certain Slant of Light by Laura Whitcomb

Wow! This book stayed with me for days after reading it! I'm not even sure how to give you a synopsis because the plot line is so different from anything I've ever read! I'll give it a try, but trust me when I say that it is an orginal and amazing plot line:

Helen is a ghost, or "Light" as she calls it. She's been in this dimension for so long, she can't remember what her life was like before she was Light. Her anchor to the human world is through her "host", Mr. Brown, and modern-day English teacher at a midwestern high school. Helen is not sure how she selects her hosts, but she thinks it has to do with her love of literature, since each host has had a connection to the literary world. Helen enjoys her quiet, simple existence, reading novels over students' shoulders, doing her best to inspire Mr. Brown to write his own literary work, but everything changes when she feels the eyes of a student upon her; watching her. It has been hundreds of years since Helen has been seen, and this high school boy is not a normal boy. James, or Billy as he's known to his human friends, used to be Light, and Helen quickly learns that she does not have to stay in this realm of existance. James and Helen begin a love affair that transcends the realms of existance we never knew existed. This love story is one of triumph and despair, and takes the reader to a world beyond our comprehension.

The Sookie Stackhouse Series

I didn't start this book series until I became addicted to the HBO TV show: True Blood. Let me tell you, these books are not for the faint of heart! If you are embarassed by certain intimate scenes between characters or do not have much of an imagination pertaining to the supernatural world, you will not like these books. They really are my own guilty pleasure, and they can embarass even me!
Sookie Stackhouse, a blond, tan, and simple waitress from the small Louisiana town of Bon Temps, leads a normal life until Bill Compton strolls into Merlotte's, the bar she waitresses. Falling in love with a vampire can mean trouble, but when you are a good looking telepathic waitress, love is very hard to come by! (How would you like knowing what your date is thinking about you? She can't read vampire thoughts, so Bill is sweet relief to her brain and very easy on the eyes, too!). Bill introduces Sookie to a world she never knew existed, and a love-life she never thought she would experience.
Each book takes Sookie on new adventures and has so many twists and turns, it's a wonder Charlaine Harris (the series author), can think of so many amazing and unimaginable shennanigans for Sookie! The book series is so addictive and fascinating, it has even spawned a television series, True Blood on HBO. Again, it is VERY risque and raunchy...just warning my more innocent readers.
If you've ever watched the TV series that the books inspired, you will have a pretty good idea of what I'm talking about with the sex and violence. I blush as I type this review, because I usually don't enjoy reading stuff so "out there"! I'm not even sure why I've enjoyed reading a series that is so out of my comfort-zone of reading, but I will admit that I flew through the first nine books in two weeks. Two Weeks!
So if you are wanting a guilty pleasure for the summer, Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse novels are you best bet. I eagerly awaited the realease of the most recent book, Dead and Gone, and downloaded it at midnight on it's release date this past week. I read it in one stinkin' day, and can't wait until the next book, A Touch of Dead to be released on October 6th. This website, will give you a complete list and synopsis of each Sookie book if you are interested in learning more about Sookie Stackhouse's escapades in the vampire, fairy, and werewolf world! Not to be compared to Stephenie Meyer's Twilight Saga, because Sookie and her friends are more of an R-rated version of that vampire world...OH MY! Click on the picture of books below:

Check out the HBO website for True Blood. You can now rent the first season and catch up before the new episodes start in June. Click on the picture of Bill and Sookie below, then click on "watch" for a brief synopsis of the first episode, which follows the first two books:

Can't wait to see more of Bill and Eric!