Monday, January 22, 2018

The Disaster Artist by Greg Sestero

The Disaster Artist
My Life Inside The Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made
by Greg Sestero
narrated by author

Find out more about this book and author:

Published: 2013
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Humor, Movies, Memoir
Hardback: 288
Rating: 5

First sentence(s):
Imagine a movie so incomprehensible that you find yourself compelled to watch it over and over again.

The hilarious and inspiring story of how a mysterious misfit got past every roadblock in the Hollywood system to achieve success on his own terms: a $6 million cinematic catastrophe called The Room.

Nineteen-year-old Greg Sestero met Tommy Wiseau at an acting school in San Francisco. Wiseau’s scenes were rivetingly wrong, yet Sestero, hypnotized by such uninhibited acting, thought, “I have to do a scene with this guy.” That impulse changed both of their lives. Wiseau seemed never to have read the rule book on interpersonal relationships (or the instruc­tions on a bottle of black hair dye), yet he generously offered to put the aspiring actor up in his LA apart­ment. Sestero’s nascent acting career first sizzled, then fizzled, resulting in Wiseau’s last-second offer to Sestero of costarring with him in The Room, a movie Wiseau wrote and planned to finance, produce, and direct—in the parking lot of a Hollywood equipment-rental shop.

Wiseau spent $6 million of his own money on his film, but despite the efforts of the disbelieving (and frequently fired) crew and embarrassed (and fre­quently fired) actors, the movie made no sense. Nevertheless Wiseau rented a Hollywood billboard featuring his alarming headshot and staged a red carpet premiere. The Room made $1800 at the box office and closed after two weeks. One reviewer said that watching The Room was like “getting stabbed in the head.”

The Disaster Artist is Greg Sestero’s laugh-out-loud funny account of how Tommy Wiseau defied every law of artistry, business, and friendship to make “the Citizen Kane of bad movies” (Entertainment Weekly), which is now an international phenomenon, with Wiseau himself beloved as an oddball celebrity. Written with award-winning journalist Tom Bissell, The Disaster Artist is an inspiring tour de force that reads like a page-turning novel, an open-hearted portrait of an enigmatic man who will improbably capture your heart.

My two-bits:

I listened to this memoir in preparation for watching the movie version. Also, watched the film, The Room before the listen. And also, before the James Franco story release about his #Timesup pin at the Golden Globes ceremony.

I really enjoyed listening to the author read his story. Being an actor he did very well with capturing the essence of Tommy throughout the reading.

It was fascinating to follow this friendship and to learn about Greg's experience with the making of The Room.

Thoughts about art, passion and success come to mind.

Off to see the movie version...


* Listened to audiobook version.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Blog All About It Challenge

Blog All About It 2018
Blogging Prompt Challenge (details)
hosted by The Herd Presents
January to December 2018

Each month there's a different prompt that you can interpret as you'd like then create a blog post around it.

I like how this challenge is open to interpretation and flexible on timing.

The Prompts:

January-- Winter
February-- Red
March-- Favorite Scent
April-- Art
May-- Organize
June-- Growl
July-- Spirit
August-- Beginning
September-- Escape
October-- Trees
November-- Truth
December-- Shine/Sparkle

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Lovely Books and Things - 1.20.18

Lovely Books and Things
My Weekly Books and Films Update

Linking up with:
Stacking the Shelves (details)
Sunday Post (details)
Mailbox Monday (details)


Current happy things:

1. Watching commercials directed by Wes Anderson on YouTube
2. Road trip
3. Crab feed event



Booksmith in San Francisco hosted an event with Leni Zumas featuring her new book, Red Clocks. It is a dystopia that is in keeping with current women's issues, in particular, personhood amendment. Leni mentioned that Virginia Woolf's The Waves was a source of inspiration in regards to names selected for characters in the book.

Red Clocks
by Leni Zumas
-Dystopia, Feminism
Amazon | Goodreads

I also picked up the February book for Books, Inc. Foreign Intrigue Book Club (here), The Dry by Jane Harper. The Jane Austen Notes & Quotes has illustrations, quotes and blank lined pages for journaling. AND could not resist the book pins of Sense & Sensibility and The Handmaid's Tale created by Jane Mount.

Fire and Fury
Inside the Trump White House
by Michael Wolff
-Non-fiction, Politics
Amazon | Goodreads

YUP. Got on the hype train. It has trumped the tbr pile and is taking up my current reading time.

For Review:

A Different Kind of Evil
by Andrew Wilson
-Historical, Mystery, Agatha Christie
Release date: March 13, 2018
courtesy of publisher -Thanks!
Amazon | Goodreads

CURIOUS to see how Agatha Christie plays a role in this one.

AND watched: on DVD

Big Little Lies (2017)
tv series
Creator: David E. Kelley
Based on book by: Liane Moriarty
Stars: Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern
-Crime, Drama, Mystery | imdb | my rating: 5

The apparently perfect lives of three mothers of first graders unravel to the point of murder.

JUST as good as the book. Its various awards are well deserved.

Home Again (2017)
Director/Writer: Hallie Meyers-Shyer
Stars: Reese Witherspoon, Michael Sheen, Candice Bergen
-Comedy, Drama, Romance | imdb | my rating: 5

Life for a single mom in Los Angeles takes an unexpected turn when she allows three young guys to move in with her.

CUTE single mom fantasy flick.

Director: Sarah Gavron
Writer: Abi Morgan
Starring: Carey Mulligan, Anne-Marie Duff, Helena Bonham Carter
-Biography, Drama, History | imdb | my rating: 5

The foot soldiers of the early feminist movement, women who were forced underground to pursue a dangerous game of cat and mouse with an increasingly brutal State.

THIS women's herstory film is reminder of how the vote is precious.

AND watched: in theatre

In The Fade (2017)
Aus dem Nichts (original title)
Director/Screenplay: Fatih Akin
Writers: Hark Bohm (author) (co-writer)
Stars: Diane Kruger, Denis Moschitto, Numan Acar
-Crime, Drama, Germany | imdb | my rating: 5

Katja's life collapses after the death of her husband and son in a bomb attack. After a time of mourning and injustice, Katja seeks revenge.

SAD but something to think about these days.

The Post (2017)
Director: Steven Spielberg
Writers: Liz Hannah, Josh Singer
Stars: Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks, Sarah Paulson
-Biography, Drama, History | imdb | my rating: 5

A cover-up that spanned four U.S. Presidents pushed the country's first female newspaper publisher and a hard-driving editor to join an unprecedented battle between the press and the government.

BIT of history learned with stellar actors.


* comment and TELL me what you have acquired for your shelves recently


Friday, January 19, 2018

The Scent of Rain by Anne Montgomery

The Scent of Rain
by Anne Montgomery

Find out more about this book and author:

Published: March 28, 2017
Publisher: Treehouse Publishing Group
Genre: Social & Family Issues, YA
Paperback: 386
Rating: 4

First sentence(s):
Rose Madsen couldn’t risk staying out much longer. She still felt the paddle blows—what her mother called “appropriate corrective measures”—from the last time she’d disappeared for too long.

Rose Madsen will do anything to keep from being married off to one of the men in her Fundamentalist Mormon (FLDS) community, even endure the continued beatings and abuse of her mother. But when her mentally handicapped baby sister is forced to strangle the bird she loves at the behest of the Prophet, Rose frees the bird and runs away.

Adan Reyes will do anything to escape the abusive foster care system in Phoenix, even leaving his good friends and successful high school athletic career behind him. Ill-prepared for surviving the desert, Adan hits the road only to suffer heat stroke. Found by a local handyman, he catches a glimpse of a mysterious girl--Rose--running through town, and follows her into the mountains where they are both tracked and discovered by the men of the FLDS community.

With their fates now intertwined, can Rose and Adan escape the systems locking them into lives of abuse? Will Rose be forced to marry the Prophet, a man her father's age, and be one of dozens of wives, perpetually pregnant, with no hope for an education? Will Adan be returned to the foster home where bullying and cruelty are common? Is everyone they meet determined to keep them right where they belong or are some adults worthy of their trust?

My two-bits:

This is a peek into a Fundamentalist Mormon community that exposes the unsavory side. Different perspectives are presented with its cast of characters. The two main young adult characters spark an eventual change with their youth and strength.

This story generates thoughts on cults and their leaders.


* review copy courtesy of author

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta

Mrs. Fletcher
by Tom Perrotta

Find out more about this book and author:

Published: 2017
Publisher: Scribner
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Hardback: 320
Rating: 4

First sentence(s):
It was a long drive and Eve cried most of the way home, because the big day hadn't gone the way she'd hoped, not that big days ever did.

From the bestselling author of The Leftovers and Little Children comes a penetrating and hilarious new novel about sex, love, and identity on the frontlines of America’s culture wars.

Eve Fletcher is trying to figure out what comes next. A forty-six-year-old divorcee whose beloved only child has just left for college, Eve is struggling to adjust to her empty nest when one night her phone lights up with a text message. Sent from an anonymous number, the mysterious sender tells Eve, “U R my MILF!” Over the months that follow, that message comes to obsess Eve. While leading her all-too-placid life—serving as Executive Director of the local senior center by day and taking a community college course on Gender and Society at night—Eve can’t curtail her own interest in a porn website called, which features the erotic exploits of ordinary, middle-aged women like herself. Before long, Eve’s online fixations begin to spill over into real life, revealing new romantic possibilities that threaten to upend her quiet suburban existence.

Meanwhile, miles away at the state college, Eve’s son Brendan—a jock and aspiring frat boy—discovers that his new campus isn’t nearly as welcoming to his hard-partying lifestyle as he had imagined. Only a few weeks into his freshman year, Brendan is floundering in a college environment that challenges his white-dude privilege and shames him for his outmoded, chauvinistic ideas of sex. As the New England autumn turns cold, both mother and son find themselves enmeshed in morally fraught situations that come to a head on one fateful November night.

Sharp, witty, and provocative, Mrs. Fletcher is a timeless examination of sexuality, identity, parenthood, and the big clarifying mistakes people can make when they’re no longer sure of who they are or where they belong.

My two-bits:

Interesting look at a single mother's empty nester experience.

A sort of coming of age story for both mother and son during the next phase in their lives.

Sex and sexuality are topics explored.


New York Times bestseller

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