I wrote saying that I'll post again after I come back from Chinese New Year break, but then I realized I'm only going back at the end of the month, which means I may not have enough time to really write. So here I am writing now.

Finished book 0 of the year. Why 0, because I started the book last year. It's last year Pulitzer Prize winner for Fiction, The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead. It tells the story of a slave trying to break free. In the novel the underground railroads were actual tunnels with train / carts going through them. I was amazed reading it and then I went to Wikipedia and found out that apparently in real life back then, it's not really an actual underground railroad but was more of a series of safe houses and secret routes. The novel's depiction of sympathizers who helped these slaves seemed to be accurate though. The main character in the novel is Cora, a girl who like many slaves before, especially the females, went through a lot. The novel is really heartbreaking, really heartbreaking, especially when it touched one of the other slave, Caesar. As much as the ending was hopeful, I still felt sad because of all the bad things that happened.

Though the main story of the book is about Cora, in between chapters they're interspersed with short stories about characters that appeared in Cora's life. I think it's a case of the writers know who their characters are even though they're not explained in the main story. I am curious about one of the character that he chose to add in, Dr. Stevens. I didn't think much of him as Cora talked about him, but he got his own chapter. Another character that I'm actually very curious and wanted to learn more is of the slavecatcher, Ridgeway. He's been explained quite thoroughly in the book, but I just wanted to know more. Though some may argue what else there is to know about a bad person? I don't know, maybe it's just me, maybe I need his evilness to be explained more, though nothing can shed light into it. So anyways, Cora is strong and it's always a wonderful thing to read about girls being strong. By the way, I'm always curious with male authors who choose a woman as the heroine. Like why Cora not Caesar as the main character? Is it because girls overcoming hardships is more interesting?

So anyways, finished that and I've been choosing previous winner or nominee for Pulitzer Prize for Fiction as my next books. Currently I'm reading Swamplandia! by Karen Russell. The premise is interesting, about a family running an alligator theme park in America. Now let's talk about movies. There are so many good movies around, but God damn it, the cinemas are not giving them proper showing :( Like I wanted to watch All the Money in the World and yet the nearest cinema to me stops showing it after like 2 weeks. The 2 weeks in which they didn't even have many time slots. Meanwhile Jumanji is still showing and it's been like 3 months now? I enjoyed Jumanji but I mean come on now. I feel like people are being made dumb and they may not even notice it or perhaps people actually accept that willingly :( So movies I watched recently was The Post which was okay I think. I also watched I, Tonya which I found to be heartbreaking and not funny at all. Abuse is not funny and watching the movie, the abuse is what sticking to me the most. I watched Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri and I thought that was really really good. The story is so rich, like reading a book and quite unlike many movies these days. I also watched Lady Bird which I think is okay. I'm not that enthused I guess because teenagers can be so irritating for me though I'm 100% sure I was also annoying when I was a teen.

The last movie I watched, I watched with much excitement because I really wanted to see it and it was The Shape of Water and it was so good. In the middle of it, I was thinking it's not just a movie, it's like an emotion. I'm trying to be poetic there, but I'm not making sense in the same time. I like Sally Hawkins in it and Michael Shannon was great too. His character is so bad and I really dislike the character, but he played it so well that I think he's so good in it :) The Shape of Water is made by Guillermo del Toro who did Pan's Labyrinth which was amazing and I need to watch that again. He also did the Hellboy movies which I don't care much, but did watch when they're on TV. In Hellyboy there's a really smart water creature and since I knew that, the similarity with the water creature in The Shape of Water kept floating up. I wouldn't say that The Shape of Water is as nice as Pan's Labyrinth, but perhaps it's just a matter of taste.

I wish I can watch all the nominees for best picture at this year Oscar Currently I'm missing Call Me by Your Name, Darkest Hour, Get Out, Phantom Thread. I'm not interested in watching Get Out though, sorry, but scary movie is just not my thing. These interesting movies are not getting a lot of showing in cinemas and I'm really frustrated. I really really want to watch Phantom Thread, but I don't know if I get to do that in a cinema *sigh* Of all that I watched so far, if I have to choose, I have difficulty choosing who to win between Dunkirk, The Shape of Water, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. In terms of making the movie and the interesting way of presenting the story, Dunkirk is exceptional. The Shape of Water as I said is like an emotion, it makes you feel on a higher level, but perhaps it's just me and my weirdness who feel that way. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri as is rich in its story and the cast is amazing, every single one of them who appeared on screen. So yeah I don't know, it's all a matter of taste.

On life news, do we even have to talk about it when life is just suckier and suckier and I'm still sad and angry :( I know I know that all these are in my head and I need to find a way to find peace, but I'm never good at that. I hold grudges like a dog with a bone. If there's a similar theme of escape between The Underground Railroad and The Shape of Water then it ties to me too. I want to escape. I don't want to do this life anymore. I wish I can just quit this life. Better not bring you down with my depression. Hope you have a good Chinese new year. Take care!

:) eKa @ 1:28:00 PM • 0 comments