The Avengers Movie

I don't remember ever going to a Midnight showing of a movie before. As a child, I was too busy swimming to actually think about doing things that took me off my schedule. As an adult, it just never seemed important enough. I always knew I could go to the movie later in the week and without all those people. However, we put together a small group to go see Avengers. I still almost backed out. I am just not a late night person and I have been exhausted this week. Truly squeezed dry.

Got there almost two hours before the movie started. Two hours! And the line was already wrapped a few times around the movie theater. We were lucky though because one of the people in our group had cousins who had been there since 4pm. FOUR! That's six hours waiting in line.

We gathered together hanging out in this enormous crowd of people. The occasional eruption of screams due to costumed people and recognition of friends arriving. And there were a lot of costumes. Grown men and women wearing The Hulk makeup, Iron Man masks, free flowing super hero capes and dyed hair. It was great. The crowd was so energized and so happy. A great crowd to be around. It put excitement through the air. It felt like everyone knew each other. We were all a bunch of kids for just a short time. (Or maybe it was just that I live in a college town and the crowd was mainly college students. )

About an hour before the movie starts, we were let in the theater. Which was shocking because I had no idea the would let us in so early. However, once we saw the amount of people streaming towards the food counter, I got it. A business move. I can't even begin to imagine the amount of money the theater made last night in that one hour.

It was incredibly easy to entertain ourselves before the movie. We talked continuously. We craned our necks to check out the people. We took pictures of ourselves. We met new people. We laughed hard. I really enjoyed the people I went with. We were lucky too because two in our party didn't know show up right away. One I had to pull through the front doors after we had funneled through the side door. The other we held his seat til about thirty minutes before the movie started. And I made the woman in front of us take a few pics of us. As the other peeps didn't authorize this pic so I'm using the dark one.

As the lights went down, the level of cheering was heart stopping. I wasn't sure about the noise that would be attributed to the packed theater, but I felt it made the movie that much better. We were lucky. We didn't have any idiots in our theater. No one too loud, laughing like a hyena, phone users, etc. It was hilarious to hear all the comments after the trailers. Each person had their own opinion, but the moment the movie began it grew quiet. There were a few moments the theater erupted in applause, but it was appropriate and in the moment. It made the good parts even better.

The movie was AWESOME!! It was so good. My least favorite character was Nick Fury (Samuel Jackson) because he was so boring and predictable.  My favorite character had to The Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) she was frickin' incredible. The moves she makes are amazing and her sense of humor was awesome. The opening act with her was just hilarious and left my jaw hanging open. You could not see her and not be in awe. Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr) played a huge role in this movie. He was great too! For all the jokes, arrogant tactics, I really was surprised how much I loved Downey's character. He did such a great job. The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) has never been a movie I liked, but this movie really brought out the heart of the character. He was so filled with humanity that I couldn't help, but feel for him. It was obvious the actors had serious chemistry off the set as it was so well done.

I didn't fall asleep once, though there was a lot of yawning going on. And I am so happy I went. It was a fun and exciting experience. I would actually like to see the movie again in the theaters. The special effects were so good, if I was a fan of 3D I would say this would be a good movie to see that way.

Review - The Flight of Gemma Hardy by Margot Livesey

Title: The Flight of Gemma Hardy
Publisher: Harper Collins
Publish Date:Jan 24, 2012
Hardcover, 447 pages

Reading this book I found myself wanting to put the book down. I kept thinking, I'll read a little more and then see if I still like it. I really debated the entire way through this book. It wasn't that I didn't like this book, but I wasn't completely involved in this either. Or maybe it was just a really tough book to read. Margot writes this book like poetry. It was beautiful and in depth. It was much more intrinsic that I usually read. There is nothing light and airy about this book.

Gemma has a really tough life, but she has this wonderful spirit that just keeps ticking. I found myself rooting for her, but the circumstances seemed to get worse and worse til I felt bad. She is just destroyed at the boarding school and no one wants to help her. I can't imagine being that alone and still feeling the hope she pushes.

I want to tell you about her wonderful love story she finally has with this man who makes her feel alive and wants her to be more than she has ever had someone believe in her. She finds her true worth when she learns she can be a good teacher with her au pair. She has a few people who really do want the best for her, but life is not dishing Gemma much luck. 

I hate to tell too much about this book as the journeys she has intertwine each other. It is so worth the read, but it felt like I was trying too hard to read it too.

Summary -
 Acclaimed, award-winning author Margot Livesey delivers her breakout novel: a captivating tale, set in Scotland in the early 1960s, that is both an homage and a modern variation on the enduring classic, Jane Eyre

Fate has not been kind to Gemma Hardy. Orphaned by the age of ten, neglected by a bitter and cruel aunt, sent to a boarding school where she is both servant and student, young Gemma seems destined for a life of hardship and loneliness. Yet her bright spirit burns strong. Fiercely intelligent, singularly determined, Gemma overcomes each challenge and setback, growing stronger and more certain of her path. Now an independent young woman with dreams of the future, she accepts a position as an au pair on the remote and beautiful Orkney Islands.

But Gemma's biggest trial is about to begin . . . a journey of passion and betrayal, secrets and lies, redemption and discovery that will lead her to a life she's never dreamed.


Review - Rurally Screwed by Jessie Knadler

Title: Rurally Screwed
My Life Off the Grid with the Cowboy I Love
Author: Jessie Knadler
Publisher: Berkley
Publish Date: Apr 3, 2012
Hardcover, 336 pages

Barnes and Noble

I went in to this book thinking it would be very similar to Pioneer Woman's book Black Heels to Tractor Wheels about meeting her husband, but I was surprised that it was really different. It had a similar feel, but otherwise it was it's own book.

Jessie is a woman living in New York striving to find out who she is and what she can do in the magazine world, but things just don't seem to be working out. In fact, they go horribly wrong and she is fired which leads her on a journey to being a freelance writer in cowboy town - ironically her home town. She grew up on the farm and did everything she could to get away and have a more city-fied life. Then she meets a man she falls in love with, but he has designs on staying a cowboy, living on a ranch and doing the things you do in a small rural town. He is religious and hard working. Though Jessie tries her hardest to fit in, it may not be the fit for her.

I really enjoyed though Jessie was going through many things that could have made her bitter, she still kept her chin up and didn't go into a huge spiral depression.

 Summary -
Jessie Knadler was a New York City girl, through and through. An editor for a splashy women's magazine, she splurged on Miu Miu, partied hard, lived for Kundalini yoga, and dated a man-boy whose complexion was creamier than her own. Circling the drain both personally and professionally, Jessie definitely wouldn't have described herself as "happy"; more like caustically content. Then one day, she was assigned a story about an annual rodeo in the badlands of Eastern Montana.

There, she met a twenty-five-year-old bull rider named Jake. He voted Republican and read Truck Trader. He listened to Garth Brooks. He owned guns. And Jessie suddenly found herself blindsided by something with which she was painfully unfamiliar: a genuinely lovable disposition. In fact, Jake radiated such optimism and old-school gentlemanliness that Jessie impulsively ditched Manhattan for an authentic existence, and an authentic man. Almost overnight, she was canning and sewing, making jerky, chopping firewood, and raising chickens. And all the while one question was ringing in the back of her head: "What the !#*$ have I done with my life?"

A hilarious true-life love story, Rurally Screwed reveals what happens to a woman who gives up everything she's ever known and wanted-job security, money, her professional network, access to decent Thai food-to live off the grid with her one true love (and dogs and horses and chickens), and asks, is it worth it? The answer comes amid war, Bible clubs, and moonshine.