The Zookeeper’s Wife ~ Movie Review

The Zookeeper’s Wife ~ Movie Review

4/5

Synopsis of the film supplied by Focus Features:

“The real-life story of one working wife and mother who became a hero to hundreds during World War II.

In 1939 Poland, Antonina Żabińska (portrayed by two-time Academy Award nominee Jessica Chastain) and her husband, Dr. Jan Żabiński (Johan Heldenbergh, a European Film Award nominee for the Academy Award-nominated The Broken Circle Breakdown), have the Warsaw Zoo flourishing under his stewardship and her care.

When their country is invaded by the Germans, Jan and Antonina are stunned and forced to report to the Reich’s newly appointed chief zoologist, Lutz Heck (Golden Globe Award nominee Daniel Brühl of Captain America: Civil War).

To fight back on their own terms, the Żabińskis covertly begin working with the Resistance and put into action plans to save lives out of what has become the Warsaw Ghetto, with Antonina putting herself and even her children at great risk.”

Review 

           I love history. I love to read about history, hear about history, learn about history, watch movies about history. Anything that has to do with some kind of history, I will eat it up! While some may find it a bore, I find it exhilarating. And what I find most interesting and important is how history is accurately portrayed and how well the story is retold. We are fortunate to live in a world that supplies a great wealth of knowledge at the touch of our finger tips, whether it be through the internet, a book, or a movie. And what I found most splendid about The Zookeeper’s Wife was how they were able to tell the story of these individuals, Antonina and Jan Żabińskis and the lives that they courageously saved, through the eyes of a lens. We were able to whitness their braverism and admire it wholeheartly by the way this film was done. I felt so much emotion throughout this movie. Saddness, laughter, love, fear, anger. If a movie can make you feel all that, then I count that as a very well done movie.

            This story of the Żabińskis’s is one that is missing from the history books and one that should have been there. It was a story of how a common family save so many lives during a horrible time history but there is so much more to it. The Żabińskis’s showed us, as the film portrayed, that no matter who you are, you have the ability to make a difference. I found that to be incredibily inspiring and gave me a great appreciation for what the Żabińskis’s did.

            Not only did this film have such incredible hidden meaning, it was very well done. I found the acting to be so utterly believable, I had so much love for the characters as well as hate for some others. What this film did was not shy away from fact and truth. They showed us in some way how the Warsaw ghetto truly was. What these people had to endure for so long, and not out of freewill. I have to admit some scenes were hard to watch, but if they had been taken out, I feel the movie would have lost its realness.

All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed this film and was so thankful to Focus Features for giving me the opportunity to see a prescreening of it. I plan on to continue reading the book as well. I’ve been telling almost everyone about this movie and how important I feel it is. I always have a great appreciation for movies made from real life events of history; they always teach you something, show you something, and make you think. Most importantly they tell someone’s story that would else have been forgotten.

The film hits theaters Friday March 31st!

Until next time,

Kiara

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ARC Review: The Jekyll Revelation by Robert Masello

The Jekyll Revelation by Robert Masello

4/5

*I received an ARC by  Little Bird Publicity in exchange for an honest review*

Initial thoughts: 1. Thank you to Little Bird Publicity for the ARC! 2. My oh my! This book completely blew my mind! The amount of twists and turns this book took left me turning each page to find out what happened next.

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

 While on routine patrol in the tinder-dry Topanga Canyon, environmental scientist Rafael Salazar expects to find animal poachers, not a dilapidated antique steamer trunk. Inside the peculiar case, he discovers a journal, written by the renowned Robert Louis Stevenson, which divulges ominous particulars about his creation of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. It also promises to reveal a terrible secret—the identity of Jack the Ripper.

Unfortunately, the journal—whose macabre tale unfolds in an alternating narrative with Rafe’s—isn’t the only relic in the trunk, and Rafe isn’t the only one to purloin a souvenir. A mysterious flask containing the last drops of the grisly potion that inspired Jekyll and Hyde and spawned London’s most infamous killer has gone missing. And it has definitely fallen into the wrong hands.

Review: 

First off, I have to admit, I went into this book without a shred of idea what was happening. I knew the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, but never saw the play or read the book. I just knew the basis, a guy is a doctor by day and completely changes into someone knew by night. However, The Jekyll Revelation took that basis and brought it to a whole new level, especially with adding the complex, mysterious aspect of Jack the Ripper. Masello was able to take a historical event, an author’s life, and turn it into this exhilarating thriller that left me jaw dropped and completely immersed into the story.

Not only did the cover completely grab my interest, but Masello’s writing style was very unique and simplistic almost, but still held attention to it. I appreciated that his descriptions and imagery weren’t drawn out, but rather straight to the point and still allowed room for interpretation. I was able to visualize was what happening, how everything looked in my own way.

The story is told from multiple POV’s, which I think added to the story greatly. We were able to clearly see their side of the story even when we didn’t necessarily want to from certain characters…Which brings me to the Jack the Ripper history! Honestly, I gained a completely new interest for the story behind the Ripper as well as Robert Louis Stevenson. Both stories are completely different, but  Masello created a novel that brought them both together in a way that was thrilling and historical. While it was historical fiction, the research was clearly done.

My main issue I had while reading was there were a few parts that lagged excitement in the sense. Where I didn’t feel as connected with the story. Mainly these happened in Rafe’s chapters. I think it had something to do with a personality clash, his voice bored me almost in the sense I didn’t feel he was really pulling me into the story with his POV.

All in all, this story is one for the books. If anyone has the least bit interest in the history of Jekyll and Hyde, or Jack the Ripper, I highly recommend this. Even if you don’t know anything about what I just mentioned (like me), I think you’d still enjoy it. If you like anything with a mystery and love having know idea what is coming next, pick up The Jekyll Revelation! It hits shelves November 8th, 2016!

Until next time,

Kiara

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Book Review: A Time to Die by Nadine Brandes

 A Time to Die by Nadine Brandes

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* I received this book by the author in exchange for an honest review*

4.5/5

Synopsis (from Goodreads): How would you live if you knew the day you’d die?

Parvin Blackwater has wasted her life. At only seventeen, she has one year left according to the Clock by her bedside.

In a last-ditch effort to make a difference, she tries to rescue Radicals from the crooked justice system. But when the authorities find out about her illegal activity, they cast her through the Wall — her people’s death sentence.

What she finds on the other side about the world, about eternity, and about herself changes Parvin forever and might just save her people. But her Clock is running out.

Review: Dystopian is one of my favorite genres of all time, I could read them forever if I wanted. So when Nadine reached out to me, I knew I had to say yes! And I’m so glad I did. A Time to Die is a captivating tale filled with intense plots, complex characters, and so many hidden meanings. To say the least, I loved this book.

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Book Review: Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman

 Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman

5/5

*Quite frankly this book gets an infinite amount of stars*

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Summary (from Goodreads): When Kate Thompson’s father is killed by the notorious Rose Riders for a mysterious journal that reveals the secret location of a gold mine, the eighteen-year-old disguises herself as a boy and takes to the gritty plains looking for answers and justice. What she finds are devious strangers, dust storms, and a pair of brothers who refuse to quit riding in her shadow. But as Kate gets closer to the secrets about her family, she gets closer to the truth about herself and must decide if there’s room for love in a heart so full of hate.

In the spirit of True Grit, the cutthroat days of the Wild West come to life for a new generation.

Review: This book took me where no other book has. I was completely immersed into this world, this story, and fell in love with its characters. Lookin’ at you, Jesse. *wink* But really, I have never read any other book like it. Never. And I am writing this down so there is proof, Vengeance Road is one of my top five favorite books ever.  Continue reading

Book Review: Not Every Girl by Jane McGarry

Not Every Girl by Jane McGarry

4.5/5

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Summary: Olivia Davenport has always wanted to be knight, she trains with the squires and is just as good as any of them, but the one thing holding her back is that she is a girl. And when a major trip arises, she desperately wants to go, however, she cannot. So she formalizes a plan for her to go, disguised as a boy. But when her secret is revealed, she is sent home. However, on her way home, she and the Prince, Liam, discover upsetting news about a plot against the king and they quickly realize they are the kingdoms last hope.

Review: I had met Jane from Instagram, and knew she wrote a book. However, I did not know how excellent of a book it really was! Honestly, this book grabbed a hold of my attention and did not let go until the last page, and even then kept me in its world. Not Every Girl is a fast paced, intriguing, and wonderful read about courage, standing up for yourself, love, and loyalty.

What I think I love most about this book is the how real Olivia is. She doesn’t shy away from the reader, or anyone else for that matter. She is open and honest, and very relatable. I could relate to her  thought process, and could understand her feelings and emotions about what was happening. She’s a strong, independent female character that the world needs more of.

The whole story captivated me, kingdoms, princes, battles, everything! I mean, Liam is totally swoon worthy. The characters were real and honest. The plot was strong and never once slowed down. This is an excellent YA novel for anyone looking for a good read. 

All in all, I highly recommend this book. If you like good stories, good books, and fun characters this book is definitely for you! 

Until next time, 

Kiara 

Why You Need To Preorder Vengeance Road

Vengeance Road is Erin Bowman’s new novel about a badass girl, Kate, and her adventures in the west. I mean, cowboys, badass girls, gun fights, EVERYTHING! You should be excited for this book, I know I am.

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Here, I have combined a list of reasons as to why you NEED to preorder Vengeance Road…and why you should have already done it.

1. While supplies last, EVERY. SINGLE. PERSON. (who preorders Vengeance Road) will receive a swag pack. I REPEAT: A SWAG PACK!! You should be jumping up and down right now. IMG_3999

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And you should listen to Snape because it only gets better.

2. The Boss Lady, the amazing Erin, will randomly draw TEN names to receive a cover print!

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I know, I know. This is the best news you’ve heard all day! But wait, there’s more!

3.  ERIN WILL CHOOSE ONE GRAND PRIZE WINNER WHO WILL GET ALL THAT AND SOME WESTERN AWESOMENESS!!! AHHHHHHH!! This is all so exciting, right?! I mean, I’m like

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However, you may be the chosen one, but don’t be cocky like Harry here. Hermione will hit you.

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Lastly, you all just need to enter this preorder contest. Oh, you’re not going to enter?

IMG_3986 Basically, you need Vengeance Road in your life. Cowboys, badass girls, gun fights?! What’s not to love?! I mean, this is me when I hold Vengeance Road

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Still not going to preorder? Okay, I’m not judging. Hermione says it perfectly.

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  If you want more information on this FANTASTIC contest, go ahead and visit  Erin’s Blog

Well, that’s all for now. Go check out Erin’s blog for more info and be sure to enter the contest!!

Until next time,

Kiara

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Why I Want To Be A Witchlander

If you didn’t know, Truthwitch is an AWESOME new fantasy book coming out in 2016 by the AWESOME Susan Dennard. And there is a possibility to join the Witchlanders, an elite street team skilled in legendary awesomeness and all out badassery, so naturally, I’d fit right in *winks*

Here is why I want to join the Witchlanders, told through Avatar: The Last Airbender gifs.

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1. I have never been more excited for a book. Like ever. I don’t know why, but this entire storyline is probably the most intriguing thing to me. And to be able to help spread the word of this awesome book would be incredible!

IMG_7628Me when I hold Truthwitch

2. Truthwitch is about friendship, mainly, as well as some very attractive guys *smirks* And friendship is something that is very close to my heart. We all have a threadsister (or brother?) out there and all we need to do is go look. Good thing I already found mine, shout out to you, homie! So I want to be apart of a community built on friendship, on loyalty, on community, and on support.

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Yes, Toph, yes, they do. *cries*

3. I want to be a Witchlander because I want to met people who love books and Truthwitch as much as I do. Because whenever I try to tell people about Truthwitch they are always like this,

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WELL, IT SHOULD BE YOUR PROBLEM, PEOPLE!

So, my reaction is,

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Then the conversation just gets awkward from there…

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4. I want to be a Witchlander because Truthwitch is going to give us all the feels and I want to be a part of a community where we can all cry together and express all the feelings Empress Sooz is going to give us. Cause she’s just that good a writer. This is my prediction of how I’ll be when I read Truthwitch:

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5. Lastly, I want to be Witchlander because I want Truthwitch, but most importantly I want other people to know about Truthwitch and get just as excited as I am. As Witchlanders, we will spread to word of Truthwitch and its awesomeness.
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But until then, I will relish in my pain of not having Truthwitch

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Until next time, Water Tribe out
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-Kiara: Future Witchlander (hopefully)   

Book Haul: Ready Player One & Taken

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Taken by Erin Bowman
IMG_3172As you read in my latest post, (if you haven’t read it, read it here), you read that I successfully completed my book buying ban! Hurrah! *happy dance* So, when I complete something, a goal, or  something I do not want to do but have to, I like to reward myself afterwards. Usually with Chipotle. However, this time, I rewarded myself with NEW BOOKS! *super happy dance* Continue reading