3

Eleanor & Park: Sweet as a rock candy with extra sugar

Hello Folks!

Ever since I heard about the book a while ago, I just HAD to read it. It sounded like everything I would adore. And now that I have read it, I do adore it.

Image

It has been a really long time since I read a book that put a constant smile on my face. I mean, while reading it I would suddenly realize that I was smiling and I wouldn’t even know how long I had been sitting there with that loony smile on my face.

The book was about how two very different people, Eleanor and Park, gradually fell in love and how their love developed into something so intense that it left you feeling like it was the only important thing in the world. Every moment that they spent together, every word they spoke to each other has been described in such magnificent detail that the characters practically jump out of the book. After every few minutes there would be something that’d make me go “Awwwww…” and I’d find myself smiling yet again.

The story wasn’t too complicated or long but it kept me hooked anyway. There wasn’t a boring moment and I could hardly put it down. Also, it was beautiful how Rainbow Rowell broke the cliché about guys going for hot, slim, popular girls. Eleanor could have looked much worse than she already did and Park would have loved her just as much. It is amazing how once you fall in love even the most bizarre of things about your love seem perfect to you. I literally swooned every time Park admired Eleanor’s freckles or her red hair or even her dressing sense by the end.

When the book ended, I felt pretty sad that I won’t be able to smile any longer. I wished that it had ended a little differently but then again, it ended just right.

Ugly Nikki’s Rating- 10/10

If you want to read the eBook, you have only to glance sideways since I’ve uploaded it for you.

0

ODD THOMAS: MORE DRAB THAN ODD

Hello Folks!

Let’s get straight to the point. I didn’t like this movie.

Let’s just say that I was expecting something way more interesting. And after all the good reviews, I thought I’d even get it. But no, I didn’t.

WARNING: Spoilers Ahead. Tread with caution

Image

First of all, even though the movie was all about action and suspense, there really wasn’t much of either. They tried to make the story all mysterious (Yeah, we really didn’t think the Bob who tried to blow up the church was a ghost. We are THAT dumb) but really there is only so much you can do with a movie. They tried to get us all mushy over the relationship between Stormy and Odd, which we even would have had they kept it what they initially promised it would be-weird and funny and cool. But it didn’t exactly stay that way. It turned into overly sentimental and protective in, like, the next scene. Stormy, tears trickling down her face after every two seconds, would be all “Don’t go there, Odd one. Cuz I love you” and Odd would be all “Fuck it. I’m still going. Love you too”.

And then there was the whole plot thing, which didn’t work out for me as there was not a single exciting moment.  When they said there was going to be a massive massacre, you’d think the world was going to get invaded by glassy-eyed aliens carrying guns filled with poop. What it turned out to be? A couple of guys not wearing bullet-proof jackets fooling around with guns in a mall. And yeah there was the bomb too, which was a pathetic attempt at mimicking ‘The Dark Knight Rises’.

Along with all that, the movie tried its hand at humor, which was again not that great. I mean, sure there were a few LOL moments, even though I can’t remember a single one right now. But a LMAO moment? No.

AND then there was the whole Stormy dying thing, which I’m pretty sure was one last attempt at making the movie something. It did work a little, in that if she hadn’t died the movie would have been a lot more disappointing. It made me a teeny tiny bit sad.

In short, I wouldn’t recommend it to my worst enemy.  Maybe to the worst one but definitely not the second-to-worst one.

Ugly Nikki’s Rating- 5/10

Don’t forget to tell me how you found it, if at all you saw it.

2

How the barter system would give me an early death

Hello Folks!

Today’s Daily Prompt on how I would fare on a barter system got me thinking.

If the world worked on barter…well, I think I would suck. I mean, what would I say? Let me give you a book review in exchange for a sandwich? Actually, that could work. Or no, it won’t. People can go buy their own books and review them. They don’t need to pay for the shitty opinion of a shitty girl. I’m actually pretty confused as to how a barter system would work. Will we exchange food for food? That doesn’t make sense. What if I really need a sandwich but the seller doesn’t need what I have to offer in return? I could so very easily starve. And what if someone does like what I have to sell but I don’t like the blanket they are offering in return?

Image

I think I get it. I could always buy the blanket and sell it to someone who wants a blanket in exchange for a sandwich. But this could take years. How do I find someone who wants my stuff in exchange for what I want? For all I know, there could be a guy a few blocks away with a big, shiny, sandwich maker in his hands, pining for the blanket I acquired and then there would be me, looking all around the world for a sandwich. By the time the guy realizes that there’s someone a few blocks away who can sell him said blanket in return for said sandwich, I would have died of starvation and undernourishment.

Needless to say, I wouldn’t fare too well on the barter system.

Would you?

Picture from https://sites.google.com/site/paritaparekhcommece

11

THE WEIRDEST SHIT I STUMBLED UPON

Hello Folks!

How many of you are loyal stumblers on Stumble Upon? I know I am. And it was while stumbling through the site that I came across many things whose existence I couldn’t have known of in a million years. So I compiled a list of the weirdest of them. Here it goes (drum roll please)-

The weirdest shit I stumbled upon

1. Spiderweb cocooned trees, Pakistan       Image

If we didn’t know what that shiny silky thing draping the branches was, we might even have called these beautiful. But now that we know what it is (spiders! spiders! spiders!), there is no chance we’d be going anywhere near those trees. As if a corner of our room wasn’t a good enough home for THEM.

2. Star-nosed mole

Image

When I first saw it, it looked to me like a mixture of a miniature chimpanzee and…well, I don’t know, an alien?

3. The Sedlec Ossuary

Image

This is a mansion decorated with REAL skeletons. No, I’m not spending a single night there so don’t even try.

4. Trees of a forest in Poland

Image

Are these supposed to be dancing to Michael Jackson?

5. The Mantis Shrimp

Image

This friendly looking little creature is capable of striking its prey with a force of 1500 Newtons. In less than 1/3000 seconds. I don’t want to be that prey.

6. Shimmering Vaadhoo shores, Maldives

Image

Yes, they are definitely beautiful.

7. Saiga

Image

Goat? Elephant? What is this thing?

So which one did you find the weirdest?

Photos-

http://www.whitleyaward.org

http://www.themost10.com

http://www.nature-pictures.info

http://www.life-sea.blogspot.in

http://www.oddstuffmagazine.com

http://www.moolf.com

2

MY REVIEW OF ‘AND THE MOUNTAINS ECHOED’

Hello Folks! I hope everyone is ready for my first book review.

If you are a Khaled Hosseini fan like me, I’m assuming you have already read his latest book, And the Mountains Echoed. And what a book it was.

Image

Now I know there have been many reviews saying that it wasn’t as good as his previous books. But personally, I found it beautiful and incomparable to his other works. The characters were way too relatable, their feelings too real. The book started with a little story being told to two kids, Abdullah and Pari, by their father.  The moment that story ended, I knew this was going to be one hell of an emotional book. Full of pain, misery and loss. And as can be expected, Khaled Hosseini failed to disappoint.

The bond Hosseini portrayed between Abdullah and Pari was unique and beautiful. It was the kind that would remind you of all the good things in life. The kind that tells you that love will always be the most beautiful and powerful thing that life has to offer. These two young siblings completed each other.

And then they had to be separated (thanks a lot for that trauma, Mr. Author).  For a moment I thought it was some big joke. Some big, horrible joke. Because no way had we been introduced to such a beautiful relationship only to see it broken apart. But, alas, it had indeed happened. And then suddenly it even made sense-the story the father had told, Abdullah’s anxiety to follow his father and sister to Kabul and their father’s tensed demeanor throughout the visit to the home they were selling Pari to.

Now I know it was important to the plot and all but for this particular aspect of the story, I’d never forgive the author. Even if he grovels at my feet begging for forgiveness, he shall not get it. Sorry, Mr. Hosseini but it’s just the way I am.

Moving on, the book told the stories of many other characters, bound together in some distant way. Each story had something to convey. Loss was prominent in each of them, in one form or the other. Each told us undeniable truths about the human nature. How sometimes, we are unknowingly selfish. How sometimes we overestimate our ability to do good. How sometimes we underestimate it. How life plays out its cards in such a way that even someone who has never done anything but good becomes a victim of circumstance. How sometimes our hopes for the future turn out to be nothing but childish fantasies. How sometimes we drift apart from the people we love the most.

Throughout the book, I kept waiting for Abdullah and Pari to be reunited. The book wouldn’t make sense without it. Now I have to admit that when I first read the book’s summary I was under the impression that the journey that the book promised (through San Francisco and Paris and what not) would be undertaken by the same set of characters, probably in some sort of adventurous drama (a foolish assumption on my part). However, I cannot say that I was disappointed by how the book actually turned out. Yes, the siblings did meet. But what will forever be a pain in my heart is that Abdullah would never know that. His disease made it impossible for him to accept that it was indeed his beloved Pari who was standing in front of him so many decades later. This poor lad spent his ENTIRE life pining for his sister in ways normal people like you and I cannot comprehend and yet, he would die not knowing that she travelled across continents to meet him. He would die not knowing that the little hands he used to hold in his own have raised three children.

That, my friends, is the pain I went through while reading this much-awaited book.

Would I recommend it? YES. In huge capital letters

Ugly Nikki’s Rating- I’m not significant enough to rate it. It would be insulting it.

Don’t forget to tell me your own opinion on the book.

2

Let’s exchange ears!

Hello Folks!

I hope you all are doing well.

OK so this will probably be my smallest post yet but I just HAVE to share this.

I’d be going back to college in a week. So today my little brother, anxious to see me go after spending the entire vacation with me, affectionately said “Why don’t you give me an ear of yours which I’ll stick on my face and in return I can give you one of mine which you can stick on YOUR face?”. His bright eyes looked up at me hopefully.

And he smiled sweetly. In the ‘Isn’t it the most amazing idea in the world?’ way.

Call me crazy, but I could literally picture him trying to pry off his ear with a knife and then attaching my pried-off ear there with a glue stick. Which, to be honest, I find gross. No matter how cute he is.

Because exchanging numbers is too mainstream. Let’s exchange ears!

0

10 ways to get yourself writing, right away!

Hello Folks! I hope, as always, that you all are in the PINK of health.

Now we are all here because writing is our life. Whether we want to be a published Pulitzer-winning author or a famous blogger or just someone sending spam emails to random people, writing completes us. But there is some place we got to start. Right? This post is for those budding writers who haven’t yet found their starting point. So here is a list of stuff that will get you writing right away.

1)      At the risk of sounding clichéd and unoriginal, I’d like to say that the first and foremost task for you is to write something in that journal of yours before it starts to rust. Yes, I know it’s hard and sometimes boring. But seriously, start. If writing is your passion then a couple of pages every night describing your feelings throughout the day shouldn’t be a big deal. Who knows? You might even weave a novel out of it.

2)      Write about everyday objects you see. No matter how mentally ill that sounds, just the simple task of describing a pen in front of you, or an empty glass, will do you a world of good whether you realize it or not. And starting a story with that description is even more interesting!

3)      Rome wasn’t built in a day. Keep that in mind before you commit suicide for not completing your novel by the New Year’s Eve. Start by writing short stories about ANYTHING. Even if it’s about a kid’s mom waking him up in the morning and his reaction to it. Here is a website that will give you tons of creative ideas. It has helped me a lot.

http://www.seventhsanctum.com/

4)       Sit down for a moment and think of a famous proverb. Any will do. Done? Now write a short story, or even a small paragraph around it.

5)      Have you ever truly felt happy? Like, cloud nine happy? Maybe the day that cute guy/girl said ‘hi’? Maybe the day you got your first paycheck? Yes? Write about it in detail.

6)      This is the opposite of the previous point. Have you ever felt like the life was sucked out of you? Maybe when you found out you didn’t win the lottery? Or when someone you loved left you? Write about it in detail.

7)      Do you have an enemy? Or someone you hate with all you have? Your boss? A teacher? Your sister? The cleaning lady? Write a story with him/her as the protagonist. You are free now, my child, to build on all those gory fantasies. Enjoy.

8)      Obviously you have a crush. Everyone has that one guilty pleasure crush they can’t seem to get rid of. I too, have one and god only knows (actually, I hope He doesn’t) what I’ve done with him in my fantasy world. So go on. Write a story where you two meet and go for a dinner and……your fantasies rule yet again!

9)      Make a list. It can be anything from “50 things I’ll do before I die” to “50 ways I’ll make my annoying brother weep tears of blood”.

10)   Take out your notepad and make a heading -“My goal for the next (insert number here) days”. Now write a page about what it is and what steps you are going to take to accomplish it. And don’t give me crap about not having a goal. Everyone has it. If you don’t, you still do.

So then guys. I hope my list was a nudge towards getting you writing SOMETHING. Now whatever it is, enjoy it 🙂

And don’t forget to share with me your own little tricks on picking the pen up, right away!