Monday, August 31, 2015

The Princess Bride (vs. Eleanor & Park) (book review #3)

so, i try and fail valiantly to prohibit myself from reading more than one book at a time.
this time, it was indeed a war-zone in my bed as i attempted to throw Eleanor & Park out the window and focus on the paperback version of The Princess Bride that i got from the library three weeks ago.
i will bring your attention to three words: "and fail valiantly".
because that's what happened.

two books at a time can be a good thing though. you start to realize what exactly you like in books, and which ones you read because you somehow feel obligated to do so.

and for me, two books means i read them faster. (don't know why, but i do.)

we'll start with Eleanor and Park because honestly i liked it better.
it wasn't on the list, but let me tell you, it was beautiful in an ugly way.

Eleanor... Red hair, wrong clothes. Standing behind him until he turns his head. Lying beside him until he wakes up. Making everyone else seem drabber and flatter and never good enough...Eleanor.

Park... He knows she'll love a song before he plays it for her. He laughs at her jokes before she ever gets to the punch line. There's a place on his chest, just below his throat, that makes her want to keep promises...Park.
Set over the course of one school year, this is the story of two star-crossed sixteen-year-olds—smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try. 

GOOD: There are some books that restore your faith in humanity. Sometimes i think that everyone wears a mask; that being real isn't something that people strive for; that searching for yourself isn't something that is encouraged, but should be. This book made me think that maybe, just maybe, there were still people out there who know what it is like to live passionately, and with every intention of giving more to life than what we get out of it. Eleanor and Park were both themselves. They couldn't help it. If they tried to be someone else, bad things happened. So they just decided to be them. and it worked out beautifully, and painfully. which is life, i guess.

BAD: this was not what i would deem a "clean" book. there was a lot of cussing, which was disappointing. i have issues with this whole cussing issue. the "ouch doesn't cut it" phenomenon explains it best i think. sometimes "ouch" doesn't work. sometimes you need something a little stronger to figure out the pain. in this book, there were contrasting characters as far as the cussing went. both Eleanor and Park use language, but only when they don't know what else to say. other characters are a little more fluent with colorful language, and Eleanor and Park both feel uncomfortable using swear words frequently. so, read at your own discretion. it was a secular book. and some people would say that it's full of crap. (which is partially true) but it was beautiful. life is full of crap. but it's beautiful.

difficulty: not that hard as far as writing style went.  (personally i love books that switch back and forth between characters perspectives, especially if its in first person.) as far as content goes - it could be considered more difficult. Eleanor lives with a) a broken family, b) an abusive step-father, and c) her personally created isolation because she really has about ZERO people she can trust, until she meets Park. that can be difficult.

1-10 SCORE: (i hate this part.) How is it that whenever i read a clean book, its not interesting at all and then the second i read a book that should receive a lower rating because of its non-Christian content it pulls at my heartstrings like a child tugging at its mother's sleeve? oh my heart. this was one of those books that wormed its way onto my bookshelf and i really don't mind that its staying. so...7 stars, and don't read it if you get easily offended.

OVERVIEW: GAAAAH. this book was beautiful, and filthy. it was heart-wrenching, and gut-wrenching. i wanted to pull to my heart and then throw in the trash. sometimes we constrict our view of life to the small pinhole of light that we have been exposed to in our few years here on earth. and that if we pulled away our black bowl under which we hide, then we would see that there is much light around us. "To love is to risk."-Leo Buscaglia. to love is to open ourselves. E&P were "smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try."  somehow, i agree. that life will hurt us.  but we can either try to make our life beautiful, or we can hide from it and never live. 

that's what i got out of this one.


What happens when the most beautiful girl in the world marries the handsomest prince of all time and he turns out to be...well...a lot less than the man of her dreams?

As a boy, William Goldman claims, he loved to hear his father read the S. Morgenstern classic, The Princess Bride. But as a grown-up he discovered that the boring parts were left out of good old Dad's recitation, and only the "good parts" reached his ears.

Now Goldman does Dad one better. He's reconstructed the "Good Parts Version" to delight wise kids and wide-eyed grownups everywhere.

What's it about? Fencing. Fighting. True Love. Strong Hate. Harsh Revenge. A Few Giants. Lots of Bad Men. Lots of Good Men. Five or Six Beautiful Women. Beasties Monstrous and Gentle. Some Swell Escapes and Captures. Death, Lies, Truth, Miracles, and, short, it's about everything.

GOOD: its the original story from the movie. of course its good. i mean, you get POV's from both Inigo and Fezzik. You get a close up of the albino (because let's face it, the accent thingy he did in the movie the first time we see him in The Pit of Despair is AMAZING). you get to realizing that Buttercup is a spoiled brat.  oh, and Goldman's italicized monologues and reasons for cutting out parts of the old book were actually amusing. which surprised me because i've been told that they're rather annoying. basically, you get the depth that a book offers with all the good parts of the movie. 

BAD: its a 300 page book made into a 98 minute movie. its gotta be slow.  that depth that i was just talking about? that's what you get with this - in excess. whenever i do the unpardonable act of watching the movie before reading the book, i end up disappointed. it was good because i got to see where the idea for the beloved movie came from. it was boring because honestly, movie editors only take the very best parts. and writers leave in everything, good or not.

DIFFICULTY: it was hard because it was long. i kept reading it because it had a great page voice, but that was the only thing (as far as just reading it, all partiality aside) that it had going for it. simply, the plot line was a little slow.

1-10 SCORE: 3. *sigh*...honestly, watch the movie instead.

OVERVIEW: it could have been better. it was good to see the passion that the author had behind it. Goldman wrote it with the idea that his father read him this story when he was a kid, but Goldman himself never actually opened the pages. So when he gives his son a copy for his birthday and his son doesn't like it,  Goldman investigates and finds that the original version is extremely boring. So he edits out all the boring parts. he gets the "good parts" version. and its quite a feat. the idea was wonderful. the book itself was good, really. but it just wasn't something that sparked with me. 

that's what i got out of it. 


  1. Hi Sami! I'm Lexy's friend - and she introduced me to you at super 1 a couple weeks ago :) I've nominated you for the awesome food award :) You can check it out on my blog at:
    I've been really enjoying your blog too! I love the way you write! :)

    1. Hey Megan! Its great to hear from you! I'll check out your blog. Thanks for the tag! :D