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Welcome to my blog!

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Friday, April 29, 2011

Fever of the Bone (Val McDermid)

Here you will meet Tony Hill's most twisted adversary - a killer unmoved by youth and innocence, a killer driven by the most perverted desires...
It all starts when a teenager's murdered and mutilated body is discovered, there is clearly a dangerous psychopath on the loose. But it is not long before Tony and DCI Carol Jordan realise that this is just the start of a brutal campaign targeting an apparently unconnected group of young people. The chameleon-like killer is chatting to them online, pretending to share their interests and beliefs - and then luring them to their deaths...

Quote: "We've all been there. On holiday, in some out of the way village or on a beach that isn't in the Lonely Planet guide or in some fabulous little seafood restaurant recommended by the locals. And we come face to face with somebody who plays football with our brother or catches our bus every morning or walks their dog in the same park as we do. And we're amazed. It's the thing we tell everybody when we get home - 'you'll never believe who I ran into...' But stop and think about it. Think of the myriad moments of each day on your holiday when you didn't run into anyone you recognised. Come to that, think of the myriad moments of every single day at home when you don't run into anyone you recognise. Mathematically, the chances are that you are going to run into someone you recognise eventually pretty much wherever you go. The world is a shrinking contact zone. Every year that passes, our chances of these apparently meaningful encounters grow. But they are not meaningful. Unless of course you do have a stalker, in which case you need to disregard everything I am saying and call the police."

Why this book speaks to me: I love suspense and horror fiction, but what I love the most in this story is that it warns you about the dangers which you may encounter online, so be careful who you talk to and what information you give out through the internet because not everyone speaks the truth, and most times they do not... But even more than that I love the relationships between the various characters and how they are there for each other without judging, with the single aim of making the world a better and easier place... How often does this really happen in real life?

Monday, April 25, 2011

R.I.P. Zé Leonel

[EN] I was away for Easter, so I have just found this out, but the former lead singer of Portuguese rock band, Xutos & Pontapés passed away last Thursday due to liver cancer, Zé Leonel was only 50... And gone too soon! May he rest in peace!

[PT] Morreu Zé Leonel, o antigo vocalista dos Xutos & Pontapés e fundador dos Ex-Votos. Tinha apenas 50 anos e foi vítima de cancro no fígado. A música portuguesa ficou mais pobre!

"Voa, borboleta,
Deixa-me acreditar,
Que a liberdade vale a vida,
Que ainda pode ser vivida,
Nas asas do teu voar!"

Onde quer que estejas a voar, Zé, deixaste muitas saudades cá em baixo, mas não serás esquecido! Descansa em paz!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Gun Seller (Hugh Laurie)


The star of the award-winning TV Series, House, makes a terrific debut as a writer with this very funny novel about soft-hearted Thomas Lang, who is hired to assassinate an American industrialist. He opts instead to warn the intended victim - a good deed that does not go unpunished. Within hours Lang is butting heads with a Buddha statue, competing with evil billionaires and putting his life, among other things, in the hands of a couple of femmes fatales, whilst trying to save a beautiful lady... And prevent an international bloodbath to top it up.

Quote: "'I don't know what he's told you about himself. I'm kind of guessing that he didn't tell you about the thirty-six tons of cocaine he's brought into Europe in the last four months. He tell you that?' I tried to shake my head. 'Nah, I figured he'd forget to mention that. But that's bad with a capital B, wouldn't you say, Tom? I'd say it was. The Devil's alive on earth, and he's selling crack cocaine. Yeah, sounds like a song. What rhymes with cocaine?'
'Pain,' I said.
'Yeah,' said Groomed. He enjoyed that. 'Pain.'... 'Ever noticed how bad guys mix with bad guys, Tom? I've noticed that. Happens all the time. I don't know, they like to feel at home, shared interests, same star sign, whatever. See it a thousand times. A thousand times.'"

Why this book speaks to me: This story is told in the first person, through Lang we are given the opportunity to live the same moments and experience his feelings, but we are also made aware of a man's perspective on life in general, love, women and sex.
A very funny and educational piece of literature. I must say that Hugh Laurie is a better writer than many who have been doing it for years!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Linda McCartney - Life in Photographs

A selection of photographs taken by late Linda McCartney has been made by Sir Paul McCartney and their children for a new book described as a "last testament" to Linda, who passed away from cancer in 1998.
The ex-Beatle is quoted in The Belfast Telegraph: "From the early days I have very much admired her photography and being able to experience it personally only added to my feelings of admiration. In those days, it was quite unusual for a woman photographer to be working on her own in photography and, in many ways, I know she has inspired a large number of female photographers who followed in her footsteps."
Linda made a name for herself by taking pictures of some of the biggest rock stars in the 1960's, becoming the first female photographer to take a cover shot for Rolling Stone magazine.
The book, entitled "Life in Photographs", is out in the UK and costs £44.99.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Rush Hour (Ross LaManna and Jim Kouf)

In this film, directed by Brett Ratner, when the consul's daughter is kidnapped in the US, Chinese Detective Lee is sent to help the FBI with the investigation. Not wishing for his help the FBI hire LAPD officer Carter to keep him out of trouble. However, with both Lee and Carter keen to be involved in the investigation, they set out on their own to find the girl, overcoming both bad guys and cultural differences.
This is yet another buddy cop movie where different partners must overcome their differences to solve a crime. Here the main differences being Black and Chinese cultures.
Starring: Jackie Chan, Chris Tucker, Ken Leung, Tom Wilkinson, Tzi Ma

Why I loved this film: I am not a big fan of fight scenes, however, this film is different, since it is mainly about two cultures clashing and what they can learn from each other. It also teaches us not to judge by country or looks, for each person is different.
We must, furthermore, consider the hilarious moments that bring both characters to their main goal at the end of the movie. Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker worked well together and made me laugh all the way from the beginning to the very end!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Happy Birthday Charlie Chaplin!

Sir Charles Spencer Chaplin was born in London 122 years ago. Charlie Chaplin was an English actor, director, producer, dancer, writer and musician, but above all, he was better known for his work during the silent film era. Chaplin became one of the most famous film stars before the end of WWI, by using mime and other visual comedy routines, in particularly his walk. He is still remembered after all these years...


Monday, April 11, 2011

A Good Woman (Danielle Steel)

Annabelle Worthington, born into a life of privilege, was raised amid the glamour of New York society. But everything changes on a cold April day in 1912, when the sinking of the Titanic alters her world forever.
Finding strength within her grief, Annabelle throws herself into volunteer work, nursing the poor and initiating a passion for medicine that will shape the course of her life. But a seemingly idyllic marriage brings more grief, and pursued by a scandal she does not deserve, Annabelle flees the country for war-ravaged France.
There she finds her true calling, working as an ambulance medic on the front lines. When the war ends, Annabelle begins a new life in Paris, where she becomes a doctor and a mother, the past almost forgotten... Until a fateful meeting opens her heart to the world left behind.

Quote: "Six days after she closed the house in New York, the Germans sank the Lusitania, killing 1.198 people, in a terrible tragedy at sea, which revived all her memories of the Titanic, and once again rocked the world and yet another of her mother's cousins died, Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt, who stayed back to help others into lifeboats as her father and brother had on the Titanic. And like them, Alfred lost his life, when the ship exploded and sank in less than twenty minutes. Two weeks later, Italy entered the war and joined the Allies. And there were terrible stories in the news of nerve gas being used at the front and untold damage to the men it affected. All of Europe was in a state of turmoil, which seemed to mirror the despair and anguish that Annabelle felt."

Why this book speaks to me: I love reading stories based on actual facts, and this is no exception... "A Good Woman" begins with the tragedy of the Titanic, leading us through WWI, as well as dealing with delicate subjects, such as homossexuality, adultery and ways to handle rumours and lies, particularly when they are just that... But it also teaches us how to be the better person, because in the end what everyone else thinks does not matter as long as we learn to love ourselves and the life we were given.

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Juliet, Naked (Nick Hornby)

Annie has put fifteen years into safe, slightly obsessive Duncan, and now she would like her money back, please. It is time to move on. But she lives in Gooleness, the North's answer to a question nobody asked. Is she really going to find real, proper, feel-it-deep-down-in-your-boots love on a damp and windy seafront? Or perhaps she should follow her heart and pursue Tucker, the reclusive American rock star, who keeps emailing her his smart advice.
But between Annie and her second chance lie a few obstacles. There is Malcolm, the world's most judgemental therapist, and Barnesy, the North's most extrovert dancer. There is what men and women will and will not do for love. And, of course, there is Tucker...
A hilarious and tender story that will surprise you in every possible way. It is Nick Hornby at his best.

Quote: "He sung along to the Chi-Lites softly, so as not to wake Jackson, and found himself thinking about the question that woman had asked him in her email: 'It isn't you really, is it?' Well, it was him, he was almost positive, but for some reason he'd started fretting about how he could prove it to her: as far as he could see, there was no good way of doing it. There was no detail in his music too trivial to have remained unnoticed by those people, so telling her who had contributed uncredited backing vocals to a couple of the songs wouldn't help. And just about every single scrap of the biographical trivia about him that floated around the internet like so much spacejunk was all untrue, as far as he could tell. Not a single one of those creeps was aware that he had five kids, by four different women, for example; but they all knew that he'd had a secret child with Julie Beatty, pretty much the only woman he'd avoided knocking up. And when would they stop banging on and on about something that happened in a toilet in Minneapolis?"

Why this book speaks to me: "Juliet, Naked" is not pornography, but rather the title of a rock album by former musician Tucker Crowe. It tells the story of a group of obsessive fans who think they know someone just because they hear what the media have to say; a girl who receives an e-mail from that same rock star and, as unbelievable as it may seem to everyone else, is given the chance to get to know him for who he really is; but most of all, it is a story about love and how far you would go for the right person... And how would you know that he is the one...?
This is a lesson to us all that you should not judge a book by its cover, that is, you should become acquainted with someone before judging them and, as far as love goes... The One could be on the other side of the world, but one day, when you least expect it, he will appear!