Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Emerging from the Book Fog

Well, I haven't quite finished Mockingjay just yet, but I'm at the very end. The whole series is quite enjoyable, but I'm slowing down though, both to prolong this first-time-around enjoyment of it and because I'm a bit nervous about how it will end.

It might end well; it might not. I remember this feeling the first time I read Atlas Shrugged--I was convinced it would all end badly, that Rand wouldn't be able to finish it off the way she started. Thankfully I was wrong. :)

By the way, the whole world has seen the trailer by now. I thought it was meh-to-okay. I was not blown away by the trailer, but that's fine, really. Sometimes I'm blown away by a trailer and then the movie is a big letdown, and my life would have been better had I just seen the trailer. I'm not even all that worried about the movie the way many people seem to be. The movie will not be as good as the book. That is almost a universal truth!

I'm hardly ever disappointed in a Harry Potter movie, for example, because they are never as good as the books. I don't judge their value based on how true they are to the exact events of the books. I judge them according to how true they are to the themes and general plot progression (it's really okay if they make some changes to the plot as long as the movie plot furthers the theme in a logical way). So I won't know about AS until I see it. I'm skeptical that the themes will be treated the way I'd treat them, but that's what people get for not asking my opinion about such things.

So I'll just have to see. I'm going into it the same way I went into the HP or LOTR or Narnia movies.

And no matter how good or awful the movie turns out to be, it will only generate more interest/buzz/publicity for our local group and the ARI, too. I can only see that as a Good Thing. If the movie sucks, then ATLOS can promote our events with--Wow, did you see that awful adaptation of Atlas Shrugged? Well we (or some of us) thought it was awful, too! Come and meet us and we'll talk. :) I was no marketing major in grad school, but I believe this falls under "all publicity is good publicity" and I am utterly confident that we can exploit this to meet our own ends and grow our ranks.

Oh yeah, the Book Fog. I got a little sidetracked by this AS thing, which I hadn't even planned on writing about. But I HAD planned on writing about ATLOS's first Atlas Shrugged Reading Group which launched on Sunday! We've got an awesome moderator and the first discussion was fun and enjoyable! We're using the format designed by Diana and outlined here, and so thanks to her for her work on that project.

My in-laws were here this weekend and the weather was just gorgeous, the way the weather is supposed to be in February (finally!). We went hiking and met Brendan for lunch at PDK Airport and went to the Chattahoochee Nature Center (more hiking!) and everyone (and I mean EVERYONE) helped put Ryan's new loft bed together. A very enjoyable weekend marred only by some of us coming down with a cold yesterday.

So now that my Book Fog is (almost) gone and our visitors are gone, I'm getting back to work on my many projects. I have a ton of things I'd like to write about here on the blog, so I hope to churn out something new and interesting soon. How was your weekend?


C. August said...

You're not done? How can you stand it?

I bought the books last Monday and was finished with all three by Friday. I have to say, the ending didn't live up to how good the beginning was, but overall I really liked the books.

I did find myself frustrated at the Katniss character though. She was obviously strong and intelligent and interesting, but it got tiresome to see her continuously underestimate her own abilities and importance, and be surprised when others pointed it out. Also, the fact that she tortured herself over "all the people she killed" or who died "because of her" when in truth, her direct killings were fully justified, and others were dying because it was a freaking war. She was taking on needless guilt and it was frustrating. If it just came up once or twice, no big deal. But it kept coming up again and again. It seemed to stunt the growth of the character.

Still, overall I really enjoyed the books. I think it's great that such an anti-government, pro-freedom, pro-capitalism (all the focus on economic freedom) series is intended for teens.

Anthony said...

I seem to be in the minority as I thought the trailer was great and I'd personally love to see a modern day adaptation of Atlas Shrugged, even if it does inevitably fall short of the original.

On the other hand, it was unclear from the trailer whether or not the key people making the movie (especially the director) completely understood the original. So, in my opinion, great idea, but execution still unknown.

Hopefully there will be a large and prominent disclaimer that this movie is merely *based upon*, and not actually *the work of*, Ayn Rand, so that there's not another "Alan Greenspan" to deal with.

Anthony said...

Or, I guess I should say, to lessen the Alan Greenspan Effect.

Ansley said...

I'm in the middle of Mockingjay and my BOOK. HAS. DISAPPEARED. It has been drama in my house since yesterday evening when I realized that I couldn't find it. This isn't an oops-I'm-such-a-blond-and-oh-gosh-I'm-pregnant-too book misplacement...someone evil and sinister has stolen it.

I can't wait to discuss it with you after we've both finished!

Jenn Casey said...

C & Ansley--I finished Mockingjay yesterday afternoon! And wow. Overall, I enjoyed them immensely. I agree with you about Katniss. There were a few times when I had to remember that she is A.) a teenager and B.) the books span a short couple of years which isn't all that long to correct bad psychoepistemology, even for an adult who grew up in a better world than she. I wasn't expecting to like the very end either, and I did. I really did. I think she made a good choice.

Anthony--thanks for your comments. It's funny, because I felt like I was in the minority about the trailer, as everyone I'd seen remark on it thinks it's fabulous! I'm hopeful about the movie, and like I said, even if it's a disaster, I think it will help book sales and attendance at our Oist group meetings. :)

C. August said...

To clarify, I agree that Katniss made the right choice in her last shot. What I was disappointed in was the way the author wrote the very end of the book and tied everything together. It just seemed less well thought out than the rest of the series. Like there were too many loose ends to be tied and she threw them all together in a rush.