September’s Book Of The Month.

Hello everyone. Here’s to the first of September. Here’s to autumn. This is my favourite time of year and I am so excited for all that is to come here on Katelovesliterature.com as we move into autumn and winter.

If you follow me on Instagram (@katelovesliterature), then you already know that September’s #bookofthemonth is The Great Gatsby, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

I am so excited to delve into this classic during the month of September so feel free to read along with me.

Those of you who are heading back to school or off to college, good luck with the new year. It is a new month, a new start, and as I like to say there is nowhere to go but onwards and upwards.

Let me know in the comments below if you have read The Great Gatsby. I love hearing from you all.

Happy September.

Kate xo.

City Of Bones.

Hello everyone and welcome to August’s #bookofthemonth discussion. 

If you’ve been following my blog and my Instagram (@katelovesliterature), then you’ll already know that today I am going to be discussing Michael Connelly’s City Of Bones. 

Let’s dive into August’s Book Of The Month. 

The plot of City Of Bones revolves around Detective Harry Bosch as he investigates a cold case after bones were discovered. As he investigates, he learns that the bones belonged to a twelve year old boy who was murdered twenty years ago, and as Bosch digs into the past and uncovers the horrific abuse this poor boy endured, he becomes more and more determined to find his killer so that justice can be done. 

As this investigation plays out, Bosch also faces demons from his own past while also balancing a new romance, but things are never easy. Bosch’s love affair with a female police officer causes gossip and raised eyebrows but nevertheless things seem to be going well, until a mission goes terribly amiss and Bosch is faced with questions and confusion and decisions that must be made. Bosch has always had a turbulent career and his penchant for trouble does not go away in this book. Bosch wants to do what is right, he’s got great gut instincts, and although he might be a pain at times, I found him to be a very moving character as in my opinion, he is motivated by grief. 

So let’s talk about Connelly’s writing style. I am a fan of Michael Connelly and I get my love of his books from my mother who has talked about Michael Connelly’s books ever since I was very young. Something that I love about Connelly’s writing style is the level of detail and insight into police work that he features in his books. There is a lot of what I am going to call “investigative jargon”. Bosch talks about procedure, he talks about warrants, he talks about securing the crime scene correctly, etc. There are some instances where I do really have to concentrate while reading, for instance when Bosch and the medical examiner are talking about the boy’s bones and his injuries, because the medical jargon is not something that I would ever encounter in my real life. It is quite complex and I would say if you are not used to that sort of language then this may be a challenging read however this level of detail is something that fans of Connelly will expect to see and I personally really enjoy the challenge. 

I love the level of detail that is found in Connelly’s books because in my opinion, the use of this detailed, insightful, serious language makes the seriousness of the crime feel more tangible. There are some detective or crime novels that you read and while the crime is there, it doesn’t always feel so serious or central because the detectives take over the plot and it almost becomes about the detective only. While Bosch is the main protagonist, it never feels as though Bosch overshadows the case. The level of detail that Connelly puts into the story makes the case the key focus of the plot because the case is Bosch’s main priority. It is what he is focusing on. This is a serious job and this is a serious case and the case’s magnitude is always highlighted. Bosch is a detective and he sees horrible crimes all the time. This case stands out. This is his job, but this case has taken hold of Bosch. It has become personal. He cannot accept the politics that are at play in the police department. If you know the character of Bosch in any way, either from the books or from the television show Bosch, then you will know that there is always a tension between Bosch and the department. Bosch’s view is that the department’s brass care more about the department’s image than achieving justice and he cannot understand that. He is thinking about that little boy, and the hellish life he endured, and he is thinking about how he was buried in a shallow grave and left to be forgotten about. Well Harry Bosch won’t forget. He can’t forget. He is determined to find the killer even if it’s not easy for the department. Bosch’s superiors make some incredibly shocking decisions which left me as a reader feeling frustrated and annoyed but also incredibly engrossed in the story. 

The plot is quite fast paced and Connelly is a master of plot twists. If you are a fan of his work then you’ll know that he has an amazing talent for taking his readers by surprise. As you approach the end of the book, the investigation races to a shocking conclusion and as always, there will be no spoilers here, but I was so impressed. I was making guesses and predictions as I was reading but I was still very taken aback by how the story ends and even if you have never read a Michael Connelly book before in your life, I would recommend this one. It was fantastic. I really like how the pace is fast however it is not frantic. There are some very somber, very poignant moments and Connelly allows them to settle. As a reader, I found myself absorbing the darker moments. They weren’t raced through or glossed over, nor were they rehashed or melodramatic. There are times that I feel that Connelly allows his characters to simply be. It is the silences and the rests within the fast paced plot that stick out, that stay in your memory and there are some beautiful lines that just have a way of hitting on a heartstring. 

As a character, Bosch grows personally and professionally and the events of his personal life leave him with so many questions. He is at a crossroads and I like that we do not know what way he will sway. Connelly’s supporting characters, even if they are very minor, are always very interesting and well fleshed out. Every character is relevant to the plot even if they are only present for a few pages. I don’t love every character, I’m not supposed to. They are not all likeable people, but they are relevant people and there are times when you think you’ve figured out who the killer is only for it to be one of Connelly’s brilliant placed red herrings. The plot, while always focused on the case, is layered and complex but despite some of the more challenging medical and police jargon, it never feels too complicated to the point where the reader feels lost. 

The only critique I would say that I have is that the ending feels a little abrupt but I think this is partially because I was so invested in the plot and in the case and I truly couldn’t put this book down so I was actually a bit disappointed when I came to the end and it was finished. Overall I think that the ending, while a bit abrupt, is fitting and very well written. Most importantly in my opinion, the ending is very fitting and inline with Bosch’s character. It doesn’t feel like it came out of nowhere, it is very much Bosch. I will never spoil a story on Katelovesliterature.com so if you want to see what I am talking about then you should definitely ready City Of Bones yourself. 

City Of Bones delves into some very heavy themes such as murder, missing children, abuse and abused children, suicide, shootings, death and grief. So I do understand that some people may find these topics too heavy or even triggering but I think that when you sit down to read a book like this, a book that is about the discovery of a child’s bones then you should open the book with the expectation of some more serious themes. It is a difficult read in the sense that it is a very emotional read. The case is a tragic one and as more evidence comes to light, the more your heart will ache for this poor boy. I would say that while Connelly is a detailed writer and the forensic elements are fascinating, I would also say he is a brilliant writer when it comes to capturing emotions. In this book in particular, I felt that Connelly really gave us an insight into Bosch’s head. I felt that I really began to understand him as a character because we were given insight into what makes him tick, and how he investigates, and the way he thinks and even with his new love interest, it feels for the first time that Bosch truly has connected with another person and I think that you would hope that there are people like Bosch in the world, people who will do what is right despite the political chess pieces that are always at play.  

The story was gripping and compelling. The characters were realistic and nuanced and very easy to become engrossed by. The pace was fast, this is a story that you will read quickly in my opinion because if you’re like me then you won’t want to put it down. I was moved by this book and by this case and I think that if you read it, it will become clear why so many people love Michael Connelly. I would highly recommend this book and I would also recommend watching the tv series because I think that the essence of the book was captured really well onscreen and I may talk about this in more detail at another time because I think looking at how things can be taken from pages and translated onto a tv screen to tell the story through a different medium can be really interesting, but that is a blog post for another day. 

This has been my discussion of Michael Connelly’s City Of Bones. This has been August’s Book Of The Month. I hope you enjoyed it. If you have read City Of Bones, then I would love to hear your thoughts on it so drop some comments below and keep an eye out because I will be announcing September’s #bookofthemonth very soon.

Here’s to September. I hope you all have a great month. We are moving into autumn and winter which are my favourite seasons so I am very excited for all that is to come. Stay tuned!

Kate xo. 

10 Things I Hate About You.

Hello everyone and welcome back to another Movie Monday. So if you follow my Instagram (@katelovesliterature) then you will know from my stories that I asked a few questions this week about what people prefer, action vs thrillers etc, etc. Thank you so much to everyone who voted. As I have already said, the polls on my stories will not impact the content that I choose to write about and there will always be a broad range of topics and genres covered on Katelovesliteraure.com because I want the website to be a place where there is something for everyone and I also love a very broad range of things myself but the polls were simply about my own curiosity.

I choose what to write about based on what I am enjoying so while there are so many brilliant movies coming out at the moment and I do plan on writing about current releases too, the movie that I watched over the weekend was 10 Things I Hate About You so let’s dive into #moviemonday.

10 Things I Hate About You staring Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles was released in 1999 and directed by Gil Junger. The movie is a modern adaptation of William Shakespeare’s play The Taming of the Shrew.

Plot.

The plot follows Cameron James as he starts a new school and immediately develops a crush on the beautiful but somewhat vain and selfish Bianca Stratford. Bianca wishes to date the equally vain and very selfish Joey Donner but her very overprotective father will not allow her or her older sister Kat date anyone until after they graduate from high school. Kat and Bianca could not be any more different. Bianca is popular and she cares about what everyone thinks of her. She wishes to take part in the social life at school. She wants to date, go to parties and most importantly, she wants to go to prom. Kat does not care about what anyone thinks of her. She does not care that she is unpopular. She does not care about social events. She is confident and not afraid to speak her mind.

Bianca pleads with her father to allow her to date, she argues that he is being entirely unfair (which he is but Larry Miller plays the character in such a funny way that you can’t help but like him despite his ridiculous overprotective rules). Walter Stratford finally gives in (somewhat). He relents and tells Bianca that she may do whatever she wants but only if Kat does it too. This ‘compromise’ does not make Bianca happy because Kat never dates or goes anywhere, a fact her father is well aware of.

This rule is the basis of the entire story. Cameron asks Bianca out on a date but she tells him about her father’s new rule. So Cameron sets out to find someone to date Kat, thinking that he will then finally get his chance to date Bianca however she is hoping to date Joey as soon as Kat has a date.

The question is who will date Kat? Cameron’s hopes turn to Patrick Verona. He’s a ‘bad boy’ shrouded in rumours and mystery. He’s actually just a good guy who like Kat, does what he wants without feeling the need to fit into the popular high school crowds.

A plan is cooked up and Patrick is bribed to ask Kat out on a date. At first it seems the pair will never get along and then sparks begin to fly.

Characters.

Kat Stratford is our main protagonist despite the entire scheme occurring because of Cameron’s crush. Kat is made out to be ‘other’ at school. She is mocked and somewhat feared because of her loud, straightforward, and at times, slightly abrasive personality. She is not afraid to express her opinions and it does not matter whether she is speaking to her sister, her father, a teacher, or a boy. Kat Stratford will say what is on her mind. Kat loves music, she dreams of starting a band but she knows her father won’t approve. She has been accepted to Sarah Lawrence College in New York and this causes some tension between her and her father as he does not want her to go. She despises the popular crowd, Joey Donner in particular, and she does not want him anywhere near her sister Bianca. There is tension between the sisters because Kat does not understand Bianca’s desire to be popular, and she is also sick and tired of people comparing her to her perkier younger sister. As the movie goes on, we learn more about Kat. As her and Patrick grow closer, she explains some of her reasoning behind her actions, and she explains why she despises Joey so much. I really enjoy Kat’s character arc but I will talk about this more when I am discussing themes.

Bianca Stratford is not a one dimensional character and this is something that I love because she so easily could have been. Bianca is young and naive and she is simply trying to survive high school. She does care about her social life and about her popularity. She does want to fit in at school. She does care about how she looks and about what people think of her however none of these are bad things. She is frustrated because she feels as though Kat can never see her point of view and she feels frustrated by her father’s stifling nature. She feels like Kat is being hypocritical because at one point in time she was very popular and then one day she decided she no longer wanted to be, but this revelation gives us more insight into Kat’s character. She did care about popularity at some point which is why Bianca is so frustrated with her now. She feels her father and her sister are stopping her from living her life, having experiences, making mistakes, and learning for herself and while yes, she starts off a little vapid and selfish when the movie begins, her frustrations and feelings are very valid. I really like her growth as a character in this movie which I will also talk about in themes.

Patrick Verona is a great guy. He’s cool. He’s his own person. He does not care what people think. People judge him because of how he dresses (combat boots are very edgy of course) and really as the movie plays out, we see that he is a very thoughtful guy. He really cares about Kat and by the end of the movie he has fallen hard for her. His one bad judgement call in this movie is the fact that he allows himself to get swept into Cameron and Joey’s plan and he accepts the bribes to ask Kat on a date. It is the typical plot where at first it is just about the money but then feelings become involved. Kat and Patrick make a really lovely couple and they bond and connect as the movie plays out but of course, we all know that at some point Kat will find out that he was paid to ask her out and she will be devastated and furious when she finds out and rightly so. I like Patrick. I don’t like the date scheme and it is disappointing that he went along with it but Ledger was brilliant in this movie. He was charming and funny and even though it does take a while to get there, his integrity does win in the end.

Cameron and Joey are Bianca’s two suitors and I am talking about them together because they are the absolute opposite of each other. I think that Bianca’s interest in Joey and then finally Cameron really represents her personal growth in the movie. In the beginning, she is interested in the wealthy and handsome Joey. Joey is overly confident, in fact he is cocky. He wants to act and he is always talking about himself and his good looks. He is self-absorbed and he only wants to date Bianca because it will stroke his own ego. Cameron is sweet, and shy and he is willing to do a lot for Bianca. He cares about her as a person. He learns french so he can tutor her. He thinks she is smarter than she gives herself credit for and even after he learns of her plan to ditch him for Joey, he makes sure she gets home safely when Joey leaves her with no ride home. He is not a doormat either though and I respect the fact that he confronts her about her behaviour. He tells her to her face how much he likes her, he lists out all he has done for her but he does not demand that she should automatically like him back. He tells her that if she was not interested then she should have told him instead of stringing him along and he tells her that she just cannot be so selfish. It is a really great scene and it is a turning point for them both. Bianca has to go through the naive infatuation with Joey before she can learn what an awful guy he really is, before she can see what is right in front of her. When she and Cameron do finally connect, it is clear that they are actually a very sweet couple.

Walter Stratford is an overbearing father. I think if Larry Miller wasn’t so funny I would really dislike this character. He loves his daughters and he does just want what is best for them and he means well but he is stifling and he does need to understand that he cannot bubble wrap his girls forever. His rules are unfair and over the top. They do need to live their own lives and make mistakes so that they can learn and grow and mature as human beings. He does have some really witty lines though and he does redeem himself with some very tender moments. The father/daughter relationship can be complex, especially when fathers must accept the fact that their little girls are growing up and becoming young women.

Themes.

There are a few themes presented in this movie. Individuality vs society, love, familial relationships, personal growth and the idea of public perception vs personal reality. I think I would argue that the idea of public perception vs personal reality and personal growth are the two most important themes in this movie because every character is perceived a certain way when the movie begins and as it goes on, we learn what they are really like.

When the movie begins, Kat and Bianca are stereotypical opposites. One popular, one not. One cares about popularity, one doesn’t. One wants to date, one doesn’t. Perky vs blunt, etc. It would have been very easy to allow these two girls to remain stereotypical and one dimensional but instead the movie explores their personalities. Both sisters struggle to understand each other because of their differences but as time passes and the audience learns more about who they actually are as people, the sisters begin to connect because they understand each other more.

Kat finally opens up to her sister and explains why she dislikes Joey so much and why she does not want him anywhere near her younger sister. (No spoilers – go watch the movie!), and Bianca explains to Kat that she feels so frustrated because she feels like Kat and their father never let her experience anything for herself. There is a lovely moment towards the end of the movie where Bianca thanks Kat for everything that she has done for her. It is a lovely moment for two reasons. It shows Bianca’s growth – this once selfish girl is acknowledging that her sister has done a lot for her and she is saying thank you. It is also nice to see these two characters who began as such opposites find some common ground and move closer together. Their relationship will definitely improve now that they can both see where the other is coming from.

Something that I really like about this movie is that while the characters get fleshed out as the movie plays out, they don’t necessarily change. Kat realises that she can let people into her life and not always look for the worst in people however she does not at any point lose her fiery, blunt personality. She doesn’t change her look and she doesn’t stop expressing her opinions. At no point does Patrick tell her that she is too much, or too loud, or too anything. He falls for her as she is. The biggest change is that she finally accepts that she has to let her sister live and learn for herself.

At the end of the movie, she is still confident, she is still happy to express her thoughts, her opinions, and her feelings – As she does in the arguably most well-known scene from this movie where she stands up in English class and reads her poem expressing how hurt she is by Patricks’s actions. Kat becomes a more well-rounded person yes, but she never changes. Her straightforward personality is never a bad thing and I really like that she did not lose her spirit at the end of this movie and become a ‘nicer’ person – nicer in the sense that she would stop being blunt, loud, and confident enough to speak her mind just because the popular guys in high school find her intimidating. She’s true to herself and she learns about herself along the way and I really love her arc.

I feel the same way about Bianca. Bianca is never called selfish for caring about popularity, she is called selfish because of how she treats people. I really appreciate that her arc was about her understanding her sister more. I love how she took the time to be able to vocalise her frustrations. I really love that by the end of the movie, she has learned who she really likes and she learns that she can’t just think about herself but she does not suddenly not care about all the things she cared about at the beginning. She still cares about her friends, but she has learned who her true friends are. She still cares about being able to live her life and figure things out for herself, and she has maturely explained her point of view to her sister. She still cares about how she looks and what people think of her and that is fine because these are not bad things. It is okay to care about how you look. It is okay to want to fit in at high school – what is not okay is treating people badly and this is a lesson that Bianca learns.

I love that both sisters matured and developed while retaining their personalities. They grew as people but they did not become completely different people and that is one of the reasons I love this movie.

Structure.

This plot moves fairly quickly and while there are a lot of moving parts, it does not feel overwhelming.

This movie is an adaptation of a Shakespeare play and something that Shakespeare does in so many of his plays, The Taming of the Shrew, King Lear, etc., is weave his plot and sub-plot together seamlessly. This movie does this too.

If you study one of Shakespeare’s plays, you will see how his sub-plots mirror his main plot. A really good example of this can be found in King Lear – which I will most likely discuss in more detail in a future blog post.

Kat’s story is the main plot while Bianca’s is the sub-plot yet both are given the same amount of attention and both girls can grow and their stories are not separate. They are weaved together.

In my opinion there are three key scenes in this movie – The party, The bleachers, and The prom.

Let me explain.

I have spoken before about how I believe that a movie’s structure can match it’s plot and how the pace may seem slow if the character is struggling and then when our character gains confidence, the movie’s pace picks up.

In 10 Things I Hate About You, I feel that these three key scenes are where we see the story get developed the most.

Kat and Patrick bond at the party. She gets drunk and hits her head. He looks after her and brings her home. Despite his genuine feelings for her that have developed, he won’t kiss her while she is drunk. This upsets Kat and her being upset by this shows the audience that she wanted him to kiss her, meaning that she has grown to like him too.

It is at this party that Joey leaves Bianca to get home all by herself and she has to turn to Cameron even after she ignored him all night. He does give her a lift home and it is in the car that he gives her a piece of his mind. So this party is a turning point for all of our characters.

The scene where Patrick sings I Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You on the bleachers is one of my favourite scenes in any movie. It is cliché. It is a huge public gesture and I think if it was any other actor I would cringe but Heath Ledger manages to make it charming. It is a very endearing moment because the cool and mysterious Patrick makes a fool of himself for Kat, who is clearly smitten by the gesture as it gets them back on speaking terms. This moment is a turning point for them as a couple and it also sets up the big downfall when Kat inevitably learns about the bribes.

The prom is where all our storylines collide. Kat decides to go to the prom with Patrick. By doing so, she is opening up and allowing herself to be vulnerable. She is having a great time with him and the night starts off so nicely that we as the audience, know it is too good to be true. Bianca finally gets to go to prom, the event she has been dreaming of the entire movie – Would you like to guess who she goes with?

It is at prom that the painful truth finally comes out and Kat is rightfully devastated when she finds out that Patrick had been paid to ask her on dates. He tries to explain himself. He tries to tell her that he has genuinely fallen for her but she won’t hear of it. It is a hard scene to watch, especially since we know how big of a deal it was that Kat decided to open up and attend prom with Patrick because up until a certain point she was adamant that she was not going. She feels stupid and used and Julia Stiles plays her so well because every time I watch this movie I am always devastated for her when this happens.

Bianca has an amazing moment at prom. If you know then you know and if you don’t – watch the movie! In my opinion, Bianca’s amazing moment at prom shows how much she has grown as a character and she completely redeems herself for her behaviour in the beginning.

The prom is a really satisfying scene to watch and something that I really like about it is that it has a stage-like quality to it. If you are familiar with Shakespeare plays then you will know that there are often scenes near the end where all of the characters are onstage and all of the confusion gets cleared up when the truth finally spills out and gets revealed to all. It is a very theatrical moment and as I said, every time I watch it, I feel sorry for Kat.

Final Thoughts.

10 Things I Hate About You is a movie that I have seen many times and it is one that I know I will watch many times again. I love the cast and the soundtrack is great too. I really like the story and of course, being an English Literature student I do enjoy modern adaptations of classic plays – not always, but I enjoy them when they are done well and I do believe that this adaptation of The Taming of the Shrew is done very well. I would recommend watching this movie on a rainy day or on a day when you need a laugh. It is funny, it is touching, it is a little cheesy at times, but overall it is a very enjoyable movie to watch.

This has been Movie Monday. I hope you enjoyed it. Have you seen 10 Things I Hate About You? Let me know what you think in the comments below. I hope you all have a great week.

Make sure to check out tomorrow’s Book of The Month discussion all about Michael Connelly’s City Of Bones and follow me on Instagram if you don’t already (@katelovesliterature) because I will be announcing September’s #bookofthemonth very soon.

Kate xo.

Virgin River.

Hello everyone and welcome back to another Friday’s Choice.

Last week I talked about Ten Crime Dramas That I Binged Watched, you should go and check that out if you haven’t already.

Today’s #fridayschoice is also tv related. If you follow me on Instagram (@katelovesliterature), then you will have seen from my stories that I started watching Virgin River on Netflix.

I have now finished all three seasons of this show and I am hoping that it will get picked up for a fourth season because there are too many questions that can’t remain unanswered.

This series follows Mel Monroe, a nurse practitioner from Los Angeles as she moves to the small town of Virgin River for a fresh start. As the series goes on, we learn from flashbacks about Mel’s past and what lead up to her needing a whole new start.

In Virgin River Mel meets an ensemble of great characters. There is Jack, the handsome barman who quickly becomes her closest friend. There is Doc, the gruff and stubborn doctor who Mel must learn to work with which is difficult until she begins to see the kind, caring man behind the gruff exterior. There is Hope, the self-appointed leader of Virgin River. Hope is funny, feisty, witty, independent, and stubborn. She has a habit of meddling in other people’s business but it is hard to be too annoyed with her when her heart is always in the right place.

There are many other brilliant characters. My favourite characters are Paige, Christopher and Preacher. I think their storyline is the most interesting and intense one in the show – no spoilers here though. If you want to see what I mean then you should check it out for yourself.

While there are a lot of characters, the core four are Mel, Jack, Doc, and Hope. There are a lot of storylines happening at once but even with so many moving pieces, the plot does not feel overwhelming.

There are some beautiful scenic shots because the setting of Virgin River is simply stunning and so it is a very visually pleasing show to watch. I also think the soundtrack is fantastic. There have been many times when I have been so impressed by the music choices because the songs feel tailor made to the scenes they are accompanying.

The cast is great. I think they really captured the small-town sense of community that a place like Virgin River is bound to have. The characters are imperfect but they are endearing. Everyone knows everyone and everyone looks after each other. It is quite an emotional show. I found myself tearing up on more than one occasion as the show covers some very emotional and poignant topics.

This series has been a nice change from my usual watches because while crime dramas are my favourite genre, this is the first series I have watched in a while that is not a crime drama. It is hard to say which genre Virgin River fits into. It is not a crime drama although season three has raised the stakes and there is some illegal activity going on which I imagine will continue if the show gets picked up for season four. As I said above, our main protagonist Mel is a nurse practitioner so I suppose I could call this show a lighthearted medical drama and I would say there are elements of a romantic comedy in it too.

It is a really good watch and I would recommend it.

Up until now I have been primarily writing about movies, books, and theory on Katelovesliterature.com and I have written quite a bit about theatre too in my theatre throwbacks but I also really do love getting invested in a good tv series and so going forward I will be writing more about different tv shows too.

I really love exploring different mediums of expression because I think it is fascinating to look at how many different ways a story can be told. I think that certain mediums work better for certain stories. When you are working with a tv format, the story and the characters can continuously grow and evolve but when you are watching a movie, the story and character arcs must fit into two hours and some stories simply need more time. Some stories need the cinematic scope while others will work better in serial format and so that is why as much as I am a movie lover, I also really do enjoy watching tv.

Going forward I will be talking about more tv shows, more poems, more plays, and more short stories. There is so much to come and I am looking forward to every moment.

We are approaching the end of August which means that August’s #bookofthemonth discussion all about Michael Connelly’s City Of Bones will be published soon. Keep an eye on my Instagram for updates.

We are also approaching my favourite time of the year, autumn and winter, and I am very excited for all that is to come.

Have you seen Virgin River? Let me know what you thought of it and if anyone has any tv suggestions for me, please drop them in the comments below. This has been Friday’s Choice. I hope you enjoyed it and I hope you all have a lovely weekend.

Kate xo.

Ten Crime Dramas That I Binge Watched.


Ten Crime Dramas That I Binge Watched. 

Hello everyone and welcome to Friday’s Choice. Even though thus far I have been focusing on movies and books, I do also love to get invested in a good tv series and I would have to say that crime dramas are by far my favourite genre of tv show. If you follow me on Instagram (@katelovesliterature), then you’ll already know that on Tuesday night I sat down to watch Annika, a brand new show starring Nicola Walker that premiered on Alibi. I really enjoyed the first episode and I’m already looking forward to seeing what happens but watching Annika got me thinking about all the other crime dramas that I have watched. 

After reflecting over how much I enjoy crime dramas,  I thought it would be fun for this week’s #fridayschoice to make a list of ten shows that I have binge watched and loved. 

Disclaimer – This is not an AD. This is not sponsored. This is not promotional content. I am not promoting these shows or any particular channel or streaming platform. I am simply talking about a genre that I love. I have created this list by myself. This is simply a list of shows that I have watched and loved and I am going to talk you through why I loved them. With that very important note made, I am now going to explain how I’ve put together my list of ten crime dramas that I binge watched. 

I don’t really like rating shows numerically, just because tv, and movies, and books are so subjective so I am going to list the ten shows however this is not a top ten rating system. I’m simply going to talk about ten shows I loved in alphabetical order so without further adieu let’s dive into Friday’s Choice. 

A is for Annika

This is a brand new series and the first episode just premiered on Alibi on Tuesday at 9.pm so I don’t have a whole lot to say about this show except that I really enjoyed the first episode and I am definitely going to be tuning in next week to see what happens. I really love Nicola Walker, I think she is a brilliant actress and so I look forward to see her leading this new series. 

This show struck me as different because Nicola Walker actually breaks the fourth wall and addresses the audience which is something that I haven’t seen done before in a crime drama. It’s new and it’s different and I do enjoy the moments where Walker talks to the camera. It feels like she’s talking to you personally and I feel as though this will be really interesting as the series plays out because we may get to hear her private thoughts on the cases she is investigating. If you’re looking for a new series to watch then I’d recommend starting Annika. If the first episode is anything to go by, this is going to be a great series. Great premise, great actors, great start. I can’t wait to see what happens. 

B is for Bosch.

If you’ve been following my blog and my Instagram then you’ll know that August’s #bookofthemonth is City Of Bones by Michael Connelly. Bosch is the tv series based off of the books, starring Titus Welliver as Detective Harry Bosch. I’ve just rewatched all seven seasons of the series on the Amazon Fire Stick and I am eagerly awaiting the new series that will explore Bosch’s new journey as a private investigator. If you’re a fan of Michael Connelly’s books then I would highly recommend this show. You can tell that Connelly is involved behind-the-scenes because I feel that this tv show really captured the feel of the books. Welliver is the perfect Bosch and I believe that his name was suggested for the part by Connelly himself. This is a show that handles very sensitive crimes, it discusses family dynamics and police politics. The backdrop of Los Angeles is absolutely perfect and I love seeing the locations that are mentioned in the books brought to life onscreen. The soundtrack is incredible as Bosch loves jazz and so the show is set to some really wonderful music and every actor does a fantastic job. There are only ten episodes in each season except for the final season which has only eight. Each season feels complete but nothing feels rushed. This is a brilliant show. It’s perfectly paced, at times it’s fast moving but then it slows down sometimes too. It lets the heavy moments settle. It allows us to sit in the silence and absorb what has happened. There’s light and dark, and some really funny, sarcastic one liners. This is a great show and I would absolutely recommend it even if you haven’t read the books. Stay tuned for my #bookofthemonth discussion that will be published at the end of August. I’m really looking forward to sharing my thoughts on City Of Bones, but in the meantime, watch Bosch

B is also for Briarpatch

Based on Ross Thomas’s novel Briarpatch, this show follows Allegra Dill back to her hometown to search for the person responsible for her sister’s death. This hunt for her sister’s killer turns into a quest to bring the corrupt town to its knees. I enjoyed this show but I will say that is is an acquired taste. It is bizarre. It is odd. It feels surreal at times. The characters are eccentric and corrupt and it’s one of those shows that when the episode ends, even though you’re not entirely sure what you just watched, you’re compelled to watch the next episode to see what happens, to see if it will eventually make sense. The English literature student side of me loves that this show is so absurd. I do enjoy things that don’t really make sense because I do feel that’s the point. If you’re left wondering what just happened, the show has done it’s job. I equate this type of show to reading the poetry of someone like Berryman, the fact it doesn’t make sense is the point. You will struggle to make sense of a Berryman poem and that is intentional, and my interpretation of this show is that it functions almost the same way the Theatre of the Absurd does. It is eccentric and confusing and bizarre but that’s a good thing because it keeps you curious and it keeps you watching. 

I’m skipping down through the alphabet all the way to the letter H and H is for Hudson & Rex

This is probably the most lighthearted show on this list, if you can call a crime show lighthearted. Hudson & Rex is all about how Detective Charlie Hudson solves cases with the help of his faithful partner, the extremely intelligent and extremely adorable, fictional police canine Rex. Rex is possibly one of the most expressive dogs I’ve ever seen and this show highlights the bond that can exist between a dog and their human. It isn’t the most intense crime drama on television however the cases are interesting and it is charming and fun. It is somewhat formulaic as most of the episodes end with the case being solved however in my opinion this doesn’t dampen the viewing experience. Each case is interesting, the cast is great and watching this show makes me love my own dog even more. Fun fact, he sits and watches the tv very intently when Rex is on the screen, head tilts and everything. I think he’s a fan! If you want to venture into the crime drama genre but don’t want to start with anything too intense, Hudson & Rex is the perfect show for you. I love the premise and any time I sit down to watch this show I enjoy myself. You should check it out too on Alibi. 

L is for Law & Order SVU. 

This is one of my favourite shows. I even wrote about it in one of my final essays that counted heavily towards my degree. This is a show that is hard hitting. This series deals with inherently violent topics and portrays some of the most horrific crimes however there is always an undercurrent of justice and hope because the message of this show, in my opinion, is that rape, sexual assault, and abuse of any kind is unacceptable. This show states time and time again that it doesn’t matter what the victim was doing, wearing, drinking, etc, the attack they endured is never their fault. The fault lies with the perpetrators and only the perpetrators. This show gives survivors their voices back. It is at times hard to watch. It is at times very poignant and very emotional, and I would go as far as to say this show is educational. It covers so many important topics such as abuse, racism, homophobia, consent, victim blaming, harassment, and so much more. I could dedicate an entire post to this show alone and in the future I will. Mariska Hargitay leads this brilliant cast. She stars as Detective Olivia Benson and she is kind, caring, compassionate, and brave. There has been so many amazing guest stars on this show, and so many brilliant episodes, some that are even based on true events. It is definitely one of the more hard hitting shows on this list, purely because of the nature of the crimes that are being portrayed however I believe this is an important show to watch because it talks about the horrific things that sadly do happen in real life. They shouldn’t happen but sadly they do, and as Law & Order SVU makes clear, these horrific crimes are never acceptable. I watch all seasons of this show on the Amazon Fire Stick and I think it is a must watch show. 

L is also for Line Of Duty. 

Firstly, I have a question. Who hasn’t seen this show? I feel like everyone has seen this show because for a while it was talked about nonstop. It is on Netflix and I believe it airs on BBC One. This show follows DS Steve Arnott as he is moved to the Anti- Corruption Unit 12. In the unit he meets his new partner, the talented undercover officer DC Kate Fleming. Under the watchful eye of Superintendent Ted Hastings, they investigate corruption within the fictional police force and as the series goes on, it soon becomes clear that the seemingly unalike corruption cases are all linked to a long history of deep rooted corruption and organised crime. The show’s long- running arc revolves around the need to uncover who “H” is and it is believed that “H” is someone or multiple people of high rank within the police force who are instrumental to the operations of organised crime. This show is one of the most successful crime dramas there is. The viewing figures that this show has are incredible. Millions of people watched this show and it is easy to understand why. This show features gruesome crimes and gripping plot twists. The interrogations scenes in particular are my favourite. They are filled with suspense. The cast is brilliant. The characters are all believable and if you like a show with twists and turns then this is one you don’t want to miss.  

S is for Scott & Bailey. 

I’ll tell you all a fact about myself. Even though I have Netflix, the Amazon Fire Stick and Disney+, I still love collecting DVDs. Now you can watch this show on the Amazon Fire Stick and I believe the show aired on ITV but I actually own a box set of all five seasons and I love it. I collect box sets because as wonderful as streaming services are, they’re just not quite as impressive as a shelf of DVDs. This show is set in Manchester and it follows Detective Rachel Bailey and Detective Janet Scott as they investigate murders and series one starts off strong with this dynamic duo investigating murders that appear to be the work of a serial killer. This is a female driven cast. One of my favourite characters in any crime drama will always be DCI Gill Murray played by the brilliant Amelia Bullmore. Gill is no nonsense, sharp tongued, impressively intelligent and also very funny. All of these characters are layered and flawed and they are very believable, real people. The personal problems they face don’t feel melodramatic and their friendships they create at work are very realistic and endearing. The relationship between Scott & Bailey is the heart of the show. They’re a brilliant team. Each season has a main storyline and I really like that each season starts and ends with something new. It’s also really nice seeing the characters grow as each season progresses. This is a show that I go back and rewatch a lot because after a bit of time in between watches, it is so engaging that I can watch it all from the beginning despite seeing it more than once before, that is how much I enjoy it. The characters are believable, funny, compelling and relatable and the crimes are interesting. This is another series that has really suspenseful and dynamic interview and interrogation scenes so it is very high up on my favourites list. 

T is for The Fall. 

The Fall is perhaps the most intense and most violent show on this list. This is another show that I love from an analytical point of view. This is another show that I have written about academically. I think that when it comes to crime dramas, it is fair to say that most audience members have a bit of a morbid fascination with crime and violence and death. Something that I found really interesting when I was studying the portrayal of violence on television was just how popular crime dramas are. That isn’t a surprise. There are countless shows about detectives and murder and police and then there’s an entire category of true crime. It’s popular. I wouldn’t be making this list of shows if they weren’t popular and I think it’s fascinating that most people would be terrified if an actual crime happened in real life down the street from where they live. It wouldn’t be so entertaining or interesting then, and yet we love to watch crimes on tv. Now this isn’t a lecture, but I will say this, I think it can be argued that people enjoy watching violence from the safety of their own homes and there is a safety in knowing that the violence in crime dramas (unless it’s true crime) is fictional. No one actually got hurt and so therefore watching this fictional violence is a way to experience violence without actually having to experience it. 

The Fall is violent. It is one of the most unsettling shows I’ve ever watched. Jamie Dornan is frightening as Paul Spector, the methodical and meticulously violent serial killer. This show was recently made available on Netflix and it is another show that I believe everyone was talking about at one point in time. Spector chooses his victims, he stalks them, he practices breaking into their homes, he gets a thrill out of getting in and out unnoticed and then after his practice run, he goes back and he kills them. I feel that this show treats violence as an art form. Spector takes pride in how he operates. He is arrogant, he is proud of the fact that he’s gotten away with murder more than once. He takes pleasure in hurting his victims. The violence is almost desirable. It is not a show for the faint hearted as it does contain some very violent sequences that last quite a long time but it is gripping. Gillian Anderson is fabulous as Stella Gibson, the detective who throws Spector off his game. She is just as intelligent as he is, and she knows how to play his game. It’s a brilliant one to watch. It’s gripping, it’s engaging, it’s unsettling and I have yet to find another series that unsettles me as much as The Fall did. It’s easy to get scared. Unsettled is a different sensation entirely and I would argue that it is more impressive if a show unsettles you than scares you. 

U is for Unforgettable

This is another lighthearted crime show that I watched on Alibi. The charming Poppy Montgomery stars as Detective Carrie Wells. Carrie has a very sophisticated and advanced photographic memory. She remembers absolutely everything except the day her sister was murdered. That is the one memory that she cannot bring to the surface and while she and her partner Al Burns put her unique skills to use while solving other cases, a long-running arc is Carrie’s wish to figure out who killed her sister. Again, I really enjoyed the premise of this show. I loved Montgomery’s portrayal of Carrie. She is is fun, she is flirty, she has great gut instincts. She’s a fiery redhead who breathes life into the investigation room. There is somewhat of a formulaic structure to each episode, some plot lines span over more than one episode but it’s fun, it’s interesting and it’s different. I sometimes wonder what my life would be like if I could remember every single thing that happens in extremely vivid detail but as covered in this show, I think that would be a blessing and a curse because there are things that Carrie wishes she could forget. If you want crime drama that’s not too heavy then this show is a great one to watch. 

U is also for Unforgotten

I started this list with a crime drama starring Nicola Walker and I am ending this list with a crime drama starring Nicola Walker. Unforgotten aired on ITV I believe but it is also on Netflix. This show follows DCI Cassie Stuart and DI Sunny Khan as they investigate cold cases. I really like shows that revolve around cold cases because I find the premise intriguing. I’m not a law student. I have no academic background regarding legal proceedings however my understanding is that a case goes cold when there is no more evidence and the leads that detectives did have lead to dead ends. So the case goes cold. I like the idea of taking a cold case and looking at all the evidence again. You review all the leads and you think okay, there is something missing here. Let’s figure out what is missing. What aren’t we seeing? It’s always interesting when old cases get reinvestigated especially when new evidence comes to light. Each season of this show features a new case, and the show doesn’t only reinvestigate but it also shows the emotional consequences that these cases have on those connected to the victim and on the detectives themselves. It’s not easy to dig through the past, especially when the past is painful or you’d rather it stayed buried. It’s a really engaging show. Fascinating cases, brilliant cast, interesting characters and a very moving premise because really the motivation behind solving a cold case is to provide the victim with justice and provide those who remain living with closure. It’s a brilliant show to watch. 

This has been my list of Ten Crime Dramas That I Binge Watched. Have you seen any of these shows? If so, which one is your favourite? Have you gotten any series inspiration from this list? Is there a show that you now feel you want to watch? If so, which one? Are crime dramas your thing? What’s your favourite show? I love hearing your opinions and reading your comments so if you have any thoughts about today’s Friday’s Choice then please do let me know. 

This has been Friday’s Choice. I hope you enjoyed it, I certainly did. I hope you all have a lovely weekend. I am looking forward to Movie Monday already. 

Kate xo

Structure in Poetry – Sonnets.

Hello everyone and welcome back to another Theory Thursday. Last week I broke down Rate & Pace so you should check that out if you haven’t already. My Rate & Pace breakdown will be the first of a few Theory Thursdays that I feel will be really helpful when it comes to helping readers get better at public speaking.

I ran a poll on my Instagram –@katelovesliterature, you should follow me there if you don’t already. I asked if people would find tips and advice about how to become a more confident speaker helpful and the response I got was very positive so going forward there will be more Theory Thursday breakdowns that are aimed towards anyone who may wish to become a more confident speaker whether it be for presentations, interviews or just day to day conversations. It won’t be every single week as I like to do something different and keep things fresh so there is something for everyone, but going forward I will be including more public speaking tips so if that is something you know you would find helpful then do stay tuned and do keep tabs on my Instagram because then you will see when a piece that you might find helpful is coming up.

Today though is all about poetry. Going forward I am going to be breaking down all aspects of poetry here on Theory Thursday, I’m going to discuss form, style, poetic techniques and much more and today I am starting off with structure and I am starting off with a sonnet.

There are many types of poems and a sonnet is one of them. So let’s dive in.

What is a sonnet?

A sonnet is a lyrical poem that consists of fourteen lines. The sonnet dates all the way back to the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. The sonnet was originated in Italy and it was perfected by Petrarch and Dante and it became popular in England in the sixteenth century as it was used by well known English poets such as William Wordsworth and William Shakespeare.

A sonnet is written in iambic pentameter. What does this mean?

Iambic pentameter refers to the rhythm that the words establish in a line. The rhythm is measured in small groups of syllables, these are referred to as ‘feet’. Iambic pentameter is extremely popular, in fact it is one of the most commonly used meters in English poetry.

Shakespeare famously used iambic pentameter in his plays and in his sonnets, and so now that we are more aware of what iambic pentameter is, we can now look at a sonnet and how it is constructed.

A sonnet is a very specific and disciplined style of poem because in a sonnet every word is important.

There are two kinds of sonnet – The Petrarchan Sonnet (also can be referred to as the Italian Sonnet) and the English Sonnet.

In the Petrarchan Sonnet, there is a clear break between the first eight lines and the following six lines. The first eight lines introduce the poem’s theme and the following six develop that theme or introduce something new. The rhyming scheme of a Petrarchan Sonnet is usually ABBA ABBA CDE CDE OR CD CD CD.

The first eight lines are called an octave and the following six are called a sestet.

In the English Sonnet, the theme is introduced in the first four lines and developed in the next eight. Sometimes each stanza can deal with a different aspect of the overall theme and it is usually summed up at the end. The rhyming scheme of an English Sonnet is usually ABAB CDCD EFEF GG. In each stanza, the mood may be different and so the speaker should reflect this if they are reading a poem aloud – that however will be a different Theory Thursday as how to go about reading a poem aloud is an entire blog post in itself.

Why is this important?

The sonnet as a poetic form has remained popular for five centuries so I feel that understanding how a sonnet is constructed allows readers of poetry to have a greater understanding of the poem itself. As I said before when I spoke about Form & Themes, having an understanding of form, of how a piece is written allows us to have a greater appreciation for that piece. Having an understanding of what a sonnet is will improve close reading skills and analytical skills. It will allow you to have a greater understanding and appreciation of poetry and when this happens, a poem becomes much more meaningful.

I am aware that not everyone is an English student, but if you are studying English in school or in college then analysing a poem is something you will have to do at some point and knowing about form will be part of that analysis. When one is studying Shakespeare in school or college, analysing form will come up again and since Shakespeare famously uses sonnets in his plays, having an understanding of how a sonnet is structured will help you especially in the Leaving Cert or in your college essay.

I feel that sonnets are really useful poetic devices because they allow a poet to explore the tensions that may exist in the theme they are exploring. Sonnets tend to feature two contrasting emotions or beliefs, love and hate, winning and losing, life and death etc. and the structure of a sonnet – the introducing of a theme and then either expanding on it or arguing against it – really lends itself to the themes and emotions that a poet is expressing in a sonnet and of course I spoke about how form & theme can compliment each other already in my Theory Thursday entitled Form & Themes, which you should check out if you haven’t already but another example of form and theme working together can be found when one is analysing sonnets.

Something to note is that aspects from previous Theory Thursdays may pop up again and again in future breakdowns and this is because all aspects of literary theory are entwined with each other and once you begin to understand each aspect, it will become easier to recognise them in all works and of course that is the goal. I want English Literature to be accessible to anyone who wishes to access it and my Theory Thursday breakdowns are aimed at anyone who wishes to read about English Literature in more detail but they are also aimed at anyone who is struggling with their English classes because they may find my breakdowns really helpful and once you begin to understand the many aspects of literary theory, they become easier to recognise and then learning becomes much more enjoyable and much more layered because with each aspect, we are opening the door to English Literature more and more, and the more we understand these aspects, the more we can appreciate literature and the more meaningful literature becomes and so that is why I consider it very important to learn about literary theory and why I chose to discuss the sonnet today.

This has been my Theory Thursday. I hope you enjoyed it and found it insightful. Do you enjoy poetry? Do you have a favourite poem? If you are a student, is poetry something you struggle with? Let me know and if you do have any questions then please do comment below, ask away because I would be delighted to get back to you.

Kate xo.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

Hello everyone and welcome to the first book review/discussion in my Book of the Month series. As you’ll know if you follow me on Instagram @katelovesliterature, July’s book of the month is Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s. So let’s dive right in.

I would imagine that when most people think of Breakfast at Tiffany’s, they think of the movie and they think of the stunning Audrey Hepburn because she made the little black dress and the character of Holly Golightly iconic in the beautiful 1961 movie directed by Blake Edwards. I will talk about the movie at some point in time on a Movie Monday however today is all about the novella which is notably very different to the movie.

Let’s talk about Capote’s writing style. If you have read In Cold Blood, if you haven’t it is well worth the read, but if you have then you will note that Capote’s writing style shifts in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. I think it is fair to suggest that Capote could be described as a gothic writer however his worldly city girl Holly Golightly showcased his range. Capote is a blunt writer and something that I really took note of when I was rereading this novella was just how blunt and downright offensive Capote’s language is in this novella. There are many passages that the reader may find very uncomfortable because of the outdated, and offensive language that Capote uses however I do believe it ties into Holly’s very blunt and jarring character. Holly is described as ‘top banana in the shock department’ and I do think that the very jarring language used was a deliberate choice made by Capote but it doesn’t change the fact that some parts were very uncomfortable to read and now that I am older I was more aware of the offensive language in this novella that I perhaps didn’t fully understand when I was younger.

Capote is not only blunt, but he is excellent at employing storytelling techniques such as symbolism, imagery and allegory and there are many physical things in this novella that represent Holly’s feelings and fears, the main three things being her cat, her sunglasses, and the antique birdcage.

Holly Golightly is a walking riddle. She is an enigma. She is a free spirit who goes with the flow and at times she seems impossible to understand however she has a very charming and magnetic energy about her. You should want nothing to do with her because her riddle-like personality is at times very frustrating and trying to understand her will drive you mad but at the same time when she is gone, you feel as though something is missing. Her energy is so captivating that when she is gone, you wonder what she is doing, when will she be back, you hope to see her again because confusing as she is there is just something about her that keeps bringing people back. I think that Holly Golightly is perhaps one of the best fictional characters there is because there is no one quite like her. She is imperfect, she is very flawed, she is complex and yet she is sincere and that sincerity grounds her and makes her earnest. The description ‘she’s a phoney but she’s a real phoney’ sums her up quite well.

Holly Golightly is a young girl who is trying to figure out her place in the world, she is trying to figure out where she belongs but at the same time she is terrified of being caged in, of being trapped, of settling and so she runs. Her cat with no name represents her fear of commitment. She won’t name him because naming him implies he is hers, that he belongs to her and so she keeps him at a distance. She does the same thing with the novella’s narrator. Her neighbour whom she calls Fred because he reminds her of her brother Fred and although the two strike up a friendship, she always keeps him at that distance, she never lets anyone get too close. Her dark glasses serve the same purpose. Holly is very rarely without her glasses and this means that her eyes are always covered, I think this is another way that Holly hides herself from the world and prevents others from getting too close. There is nothing quite so personal as eye contact and while it is a cliché saying, the eyes really can be the window to the soul and to look into someone’s eyes can tell us so much about how they are truly feeling and Holly does not give the world that option. She presents to the world what she wants them to see and there are many occasions when masks, both literal and metaphorical come up in this story.

Lastly there is the birdcage. Our narrator sees it and falls in love with it and Holly buys it for him but the gift comes with a condition – he must never put a living thing inside it. Holly can appreciate that the cage is a beautiful antique but she cannot bear the thought of anything being put in a cage and the physical cage represents the confinement that she fears, that she continuously runs from.

Tiffany’s is Holly’s escape. Whenever she is feeling caged in (the mean reds) she goes to Tiffany’s because ‘nothing bad can happen at a place like Tiffany’s’. Holly is searching for the place that makes her feel like Tiffany’s, that makes her feel calm and safe. If she could find that place she says she would even give the cat a name so she is not opposed to finding a home, she just does not know where that home is and she scared to find it because finding it means belonging.

The novella, in my opinion, can shed a light on how those who suffer from anxiety may be feeling. The idea of suddenly being afraid but not knowing what you’re afraid of is a very moving part of this novella and one that has always stood out to me. Another line that I will never forget is ‘Anyone who ever gave you confidence, you owe them a lot.’ I truly believe this and it is one of my favourite lines from any book because feeling confident and sure of yourself is a wonderful feeling and one that can take a while to feel. Feeling confident and comfortable in your own skin brings such a peace of mind that is truly extraordinary and if someone helps you find that confidence then they are truly giving you a gift.

Our novella’s narrator wants to be a writer, a ‘real’ writer with published work and I believe that Capote’s writing style really captures the eye of the aspiring writer. We are reading the story through ‘Fred’s’ point of view and so the descriptions in this novella, of Holly, of places, of other people and of New York itself are really vivid and beautiful. There is one snippet of ‘Fred’ describing Holly dancing and he mentions how she floats around like a scarf in the wind and so I think if you are a writer, or you enjoy vivid imagery then you will enjoy Capote’s use of the writer’s imagination in this novella.

I also think that the city of New York plays a very important role in this novella and the city is as much a character as Holly is. There is something wonderfully cinematic about New York. It is a bustling city and I think is makes sense that the always moving Holly Golightly would love a place like New York. The city matches her energy. Although I am not from New York, I imagine that there is something nice about reading a book and seeing a place you know so well talked about in such intimate ways. James Joyce is one of Ireland’s most known writers and he does something similar in his work Dubliners. He writes about Dublin in a very exact and intricate way, and being from Dublin, one of the things I loved so much about Dubliners was seeing places I knew so well and streets I’d walked down be described so perfectly on paper and I imagine that someone from New York would experience that same thing when reading Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

This novella is much grittier than the film. It shows the struggles of finding oneself and how terrifying it can be to not know where you belong. It is ironic that Holly hates cages yet she always builds herself one because until she feels comfortable in herself, she will never feel comfortable in any place. The novella also is more upfront about how Holly earns her money, a fact that the movie elegantly smooths over. Holly is an escort who unbeknownst to her, has gotten herself entangled with the mafia and although she always looks glamorous and throws fancy cocktail parties where she sips martinis, she is always one bad day away from falling apart. It is a compelling read and while I sometimes wish it was a longer novel, I do think the novella style suits Holly’s story perfectly. We get a snippet of her, all from the point of view of someone she has mesmerised and when the novella ends, we are left wondering and while I won’t ruin the ending, I do prefer the novella’s ending to the movie’s ending. I feel the final line of this novella, which again I will not mention because I won’t spoil it, is an extremely poignant line and I think it does end the novella perfectly.

So overall I really enjoyed rereading this novella again. I had not read it in a few years and as I said, the very offensive language did take me by surprise, and while I was uncomfortable at times, I do like the story that Capote is telling. I love the character that he has created. I like that he captures a writer’s spirit and I do love the complexity and nuanced characters that are explored in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. I would recommend this novella to anyone who is a fan of the movie, and I would recommend it as a novella regardless of whether someone has seen the movie or not because it is not too long and I think it is a novella that many people could read and we could all come away with a different feeling. It is a classic for a reason and Holly Golightly is iconic for a reason. She is the novella. She is confusing and captivating all at once, which is actually how I would describe this novella in short – confusing yet captivating. It is a wonderful riddle that I enjoy reading and I know that after a while I will likely pick it up again on a rainy day and enjoy it once more.

This has been July’s Book of the Month. I hope you enjoyed my discussion of Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s. I have seen the play that was adapted from the novella and I will do a Movie Monday about the movie at some point in the future and I will likely discuss the play in a Theatre Throwback post at some point in the future too. Have you read Breakfast at Tiffany’s? What did you think? Have you seen the movie? Do you prefer the novella or the movie? Have you seen it onstage? I would love to hear all your thoughts about Breakfast at Tiffany’s so let me know.

I will be announcing August’s Book of the Month soon so make sure to stay tuned for that and for information about all that is to come on Katelovesliterature.com you should follow me on Instagram @katelovesliterature. July has been a fantastic launch month, thank you so much everyone for all of the lovely support that I have received. It is much appreciated. It is onwards and upwards from here on out and there is so much more to come.

Kate xo.

Theatre Throwback: The Addams Family.

Hello everyone and happy Tuesday. I thought I would do another theatre throwback today and talk about a wonderful night I had at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre in 2017 (how has it been that long?) when I went to see The Addams Family Musical.

I have always been a fan of the Addams Family, and so when the musical was coming to Dublin, I just had to go and see it. It was a fantastic night, if you love the Addams Family then this is a must see show, but I would even recommend it as a stand alone. It’s funny, it’s quirky, it’s heartfelt and there are some really fantastic musical numbers in this show.

I had the pleasure of seeing an absolutely brilliant cast, Cameron Blakely and Samantha Womack were a delightful Gomez and Morticia, and they were my stand outs of the night.
I don’t think anything beats the buzz of opening night, and I was lucky enough to see the first show so the atmosphere in the theatre was great. Everyone was excited, and probably slightly nervous, and I know as an audience member I was thinking hmm I wonder how this will translate on stage? Very well is the answer to that and the cast received an extremely long and well deserved standing ovation.

I hope that The Addams Family musical returns to the Bord Gáis. I would see this show again in a heartbeat and I would tell anyone who is on the fence about it to buy the ticket, a fantastic night at the theatre will follow.

Hope you enjoyed this little theatre throwback. I’m enjoying looking through my collection of programs, a collection that I hope to keep expanding. Have you seen the Addams Family musical? What did you think? Is it on your to see list? What musicals are on your to see list? I’d love to hear so let me know.

Kate xo.

A little snap of my program xo.
A little snap of the stage (pictures were permitted at this time, don’t worry) xo.

Welcome to the blog.

Hi everyone and welcome to Katelovesliterature.com. I cannot wait to start posting content here for readers to enjoy, there is so much to come. I am going to be putting my love for literature to use and hopefully finding readers who share my passion for the arts. I will be posting three times a week on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays. You can follow me on Instagram @katelovesliterature and there you will see a rundown of the content to come.

What should you expect to see from me? Let me tell you, coming up is Movie Monday – Every Monday I will be posting a review/discussion of a movie that I’ve watched ranging from old classics to new releases, childhood favourites to gripping thrillers, and of course I’ll be having lots of fun at Halloween and Christmas so there is bound to be something for everyone to enjoy. Love chatting about movies? This is the place for you. Need a movie recommendation? This is the place for you. Stay tuned for Movie Monday.

Coming up next is Theory Thursday. Firstly, here is a little disclaimer. I am not a teacher or a tutor, nor am I claiming to be one but I do have a BA in English Literature so I understand some of the more complex aspects of books, plays and films. On Theory Thursday, I am going to discuss an aspect of theory so for example I might talk about form, theme, imagery, etc. So if you like to discuss literature in more depth, tune in to Theory Thursday, you might find something you’re interested in and if you are a student whose struggling to wrap their head around Shakespeare for the leaving cert, have a browse because I’m going to break things down simply every Theory Thursday and you just might find it helpful. Stay Tuned!

I’m going to be ending the week with Friday’s Choice. Every Friday will be different, I might talk about a series I’m loving, I might review/discuss a play, a poem or a short story. I might even discuss a specific scene in a play. Every week there will be something new so keep an eye out for Friday’s Choice.

At the end of every month, I will be posting a review/discussion of a book. Follow me on Instagram because I will always post what the #bookofthemonth is incase anyone would like to read along with me. The first Book of the Month post will go up at the end of July and the first book I am going to be discussing is Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s. There’s still three weeks left in July so plenty of time to read along and enjoy my July pick for Book of the Month.

I could not be more excited to be starting this new journey, so if you’re reading this first blog post, thank you. I appreciate it and please do stay tuned because there is so much more to come.

Sincerely,

Kate.

Introducing Myself.

Kate O’Brien

Blogger, Writer, Reviewer.

About me.

Welcome to my blog Katelovesliterature.com My name is Kate and I am a literature lover. I love to read, I adore going to the theatre and I am an avid movie watcher. I have a BA in English Literature and Media Studies and I have decided to put my passion to use and create a blog dedicated to literature and entertainment.

GET IN TOUCH

If you want to get in touch, I can be reached by email here – katelovesliterature@gmail.com or you can follow me on Instagram and Twitter @katelovesliterature