New season, new ideas!

Hello readers,

The countdown is on! This Sunday, we “spring forward” for Daylight Savings Time, which means we’re “adding” an hour of daylight – and this tells me that summer is on its way. I can’t wait! Not that I’m not enjoying myself at school, but here at the college we’re heading into crunch time with magazine projects, proposals, and trade fair planning, so I’m looking forward to a long break from homework. I’m also looking forward to not having to spend an extra five minutes bundling up before leaving the house – I’m already dreaming of flip flops and ‘pool-hair-don’t-care’ days.

Nobody cares about hair in the summer - it's all about having fun!
Nobody cares about hair in the summer – it’s all about having fun!

In light of this glorious change in season, I have decided to try out something new: I’m taking my booklovering and nerdiness to a whole new level and I am starting my very own book club. Chea!

I’m starting small – just a few girl friends, a good book, and a box of wine at the end of March. But I’m really excited to try it out. I think that getting into the practice of reading with intention and discussing novels in detail is a good idea – plus, it gives me a wonderful excuse to see my closest friends. We’re starting with the novel The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, which just topped Maclean’s fiction list last week. Pick up a copy yourself and follow along this month – I’ll post some of my favourite comments from our very first book club discussion and you can weigh in, too.

I'm really excited for this Book Club thing!
I’m really excited for this Book Club thing!

In other news, Disney has just released the who will be starring as the Beast in the upcoming live-action revamp of Beauty and the Beast. Co-starring opposite Emma Watson (who will be playing Belle) is Dan Stevens of Downton Abbey fame. You can read the full story here. Now, I’ve never watched an episode of Downton Abbey but it’s on my Netflix to-do list so I’m sure I’ll have a chance to watch Stevens in action before Beauty and the Beast comes out in theatres. I can’t wait to see who they cast as Gaston!

What’s on your shelf this month? Let me know if you have any book club recommendations!

Happy reading,
Katrina

There may be something there that wasn’t there before…

Hello readers,

Today is the joyous day that marks the beginning of Reading Week, a much-deserved week off for students. It’s been a gruelling past few weeks with assignments and runny noses and cars that won’t start so I am certainly looking forward to some time off! And what better way to spend Reading Week than reading and binge watching episodes on Netflix? Needless to say, I’m totally excited.

So I just finished watching every single episode of Once Upon a Time, one of the greatest shows ever – I swear, it was made with people like me in mind! – and while not every story in the series sticks to their traditional origins, every single story makes me super happy. I love fairytales, people. I grew up reading the classic Grimm fairytales (more gruesome than you might think) and watching Disney princess movies. I’m well-versed in my Hans Christian Andersen stories. BUT my all-time favourite fairytale was not written by Andersen or the Grimm brothers…

I have so much love for Beauty and the Beast. It’s my favourite Disney movie – I have it on both VHS and DVD, and I also have the soundtrack. I even have a Chip cup in my kitchen cupboard, which I acquired on my first trip to Walt Disney World (yes, I’ve been more than once). Every time I do a Disney quiz on Facebook (yes, I do those – no shame!), my result is always Belle. She loves books. She gets to live in a castle. She ends up with a prince. It’s kind of awesome, right?

Disney's Beauty and the Beast (giphy.com)
Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (giphy.com)

So who wrote this masterpiece, if not Andersen or the Grimms? Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve (born 1695 in Paris, France) is known as the author of La Belle et la Bête, the oldest known variant of the fairytale Beauty and the Beast. I wanted to track down the original story to see the difference between the Disney version and the Once Upon a Time version and so I did a little interweb sleuthing and found the story online. If you’re looking for some light reading this week, read this. I gotta say, the Disney version is still my favourite version.

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The other reason I wanted to bring Beauty and the Beast to your attention is because a few short weeks ago, it was announced that Emma Watson (a.k.a Hermione, another favourite literary character) will be playing Belle in Disney’s upcoming live-action reboot of Beauty and the Beast. STOKED. You can read all about that little piece of happy news here. Doesn’t this make you want to watch a good old Disney film? Yeah, me too.

Here’s to a grand week off!

Happy reading,
Katrina