A blog for young adult book lovers

Downton Abbey: The Complete Scripts-Season 1 by Julian Fellowes

Downton Abbey: The Complete Scripts, Season OneSynopsis: The full scripts of award-winning Downton Abbey, season one including previously unseen material

Downton Abbey has become an international phenomenon and the most successful British drama of our time. Created by Oscar-winning writer Julian Fellowes, the first season delighted viewers and critics alike with stellar performances, ravishing costumes, and a gripping plot. Set in a grand country house during the late Edwardian era, season one of Downton Abbey follows the lives of the Crawley family 
upstairs and their servants downstairs as they approach the announcement of the First World War. Fellowes succeeds in not only entertaining his audience with a combination of sustained storylines and sharp one-liners but also in delivering a social commentary of British life. The scripts from season one give readers the opportunity to read the work in more detail and to study the characters, pace, and themes in depth. With extended commentary from Fellowes, highlighting key historical or dramatic details, this book gives invaluable insight, particularly for would-be screenwriters, into how Fellowes researched and crafted the world of Downton Abbey.

Featuring full-color photographs!

Release Date: October 16th, 2012
Number of pages: 432

My review: As a lot of people may know (since I talk about it on Twitter a lot) I absolutely LOVE Downton Abbey so when I found out there was a couple books that had the complete scripts I just had to get my hands on them. 

While these books have the complete scripts, including parts that were cut out from the show, there's also tons of footnotes where Julian Fellowes talks about a variety of things like why certain parts were cut, his feelings on different scenes, and even research that was done for different scenes. I throughly enjoyed these footnotes because it gave you an even bigger and better back story to not only Downton Abbey but the filming and Julian Fellowes himself. You can clearly see he cares for his characters and how they are presented to the audiences. 

This definitely made me want to go back and watch the whole first season over again but I've got to finish the fourth season first and above all I don't have my Downton DVD's with me here at school. Maybe something I can do over Spring Break...

I'm so excited to pick up the season two version of the scripts and want the third and fourth seasons to come out in print soon so I can read those as well! If you love Downton Abbey then you HAVE to pick these up!

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The Hunger Games Companion by Lois H. Gresh

Hunger Games CompanionSynopsis: The ultimate companion guide to the blockbuster Hunger Games trilogy.

For all those who adore Katniss and Peeta, and can't get enough of The Hunger Games, this companion guide to the wildly popular Hunger Games series is a must-read and a terrific gift.

Go deeper into the post-apocalyptic world created by Suzanne Collins than you ever thought possible: an alternative future where boys and girls are chosen from twelve districts to compete in The Hunger Games, a televised fight-to-the-death. When sixteen-year-old Katniss learns that her little sister has been chosen, she steps up to fight in her place and the games begin.

The Hunger Games Companion takes readers behind the scenes and includes fascinating background facts about the action in all three books, a revealing biography of the author, and amazing insights into the series' main themes and features - from the nature of evil, to weaponry and rebellions, to surviving the end of the world. It's everything fans have been hungering for since the very first book!

This book is not authorized by Suzanne Collins, Scholastic Press or anyone involved in the Hunger Games movie.

Release Date: November 8th, 2011
Number of pages: 248

My review: Comparing this book to The Girl Who Was on Fire: Your Favorite Authors on Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games Trilogy, this book was far more scientific based while the other one was more of a collection of opinions and theories about characters and other elements of the story.

I liked that the two were very different. It allowed me to see two different sides of The Hunger Games series. While some of the scientific parts here did get me a little bored, I liked how the world of the Games was connected to our real life to show that maybe some elements weren't as far into the future as we think. I also liked how at the end of each chapter there were "Dooms Day Predictions," I thought those were really funny to read.

I also liked the use of graphs and charts throughout the book. It kind of broke up the more dull moments and gave you a break from some of the heavier stuff. I could really tell that the author did her research and this was a very thorough companion guide (Plus it's only like $5 on Amazon!)

Of course, if you love the Hunger Games series you should check this out. This is the second companion novel I've read for the series and I'm really appreciating the breadth of topics each one has conquered so far. I can't wait to pick up a few more!

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Beautiful Days by Anna Godbersen

Beautiful Days (Bright Young Things, #2)Synopsis: For the bright young things of 1929, the beautiful days seem endless, filled with romance and heartbreak, adventure and intrigue, friendship and rivalry.
After a month in New York, Cordelia Grey and Letty Larkspur are small-town girls no longer. Letty will at last chase her Broadway dreams no matter the cost. Cordelia, still reeling from the death of her father at the hands of the man she thought she loved, is set to honor Darius Grey's legacy? . . . ?and take her revenge. Promised to Cordelia's half brother, Charlie Grey, Astrid is caught up in a world of dazzling jewels and glittering nights and the sparkle is blinding.
A bitter rivalry will ensnare them all in a dangerous feud played out in the speakeasies of Manhattan and the great lawns of Long Island, and for Astrid, Cordelia, and Letty, the stakes could be deadly.
Release Date: July 31st, 2012
Number of pages: 368

My review: This was such a great sequel to Bright Young Things! I loved how the direction of this story is going. I felt more deeply connected to the characters in this novel and found myself rooting for them more and wanting to find out what was going to happen next.

I am still absolutely loving the setting of the 1920's in New York and all the descriptions of the glitz and glamour of all the descriptions, from the dresses to the buildings to the girls themselves. Everyone always seems so luxurious and their lives seem perfect but then you dive deeper beneath the surface and realize even the rich and slightly famous have their own problems as well. 

More characters were also introduced and we learned more about their backstory's which was interesting and added a completely new layer to the story. I like how the rivalry between the two bootlegger's family is playing out and can't wait to get my hands on the last book to see how everything ends!

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The Girl Who Was on Fire: Your Favorite Authors on Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games Trilogy Edited by Leah Wilson

The Girl Who Was on Fire: Your Favorite Authors on Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games TrilogySynopsis: Includes 3 brand new essays on Gale, the Games, andMockingjay!

**Already read the first edition of The Girl Who Was on Fire? Look forThe Girl Who Was on Fire - Booster Pack in the Kindle store to get just the three new essays and the extra movie content.**

Katniss Everdeen’s adventures may have come to an end, but her story continues to blaze in the hearts of millions worldwide.

In The Girl Who Was on Fire - Movie Edition, sixteen YA authors take you back to the world of the Hunger Games with moving, dark, and funny pieces on Katniss, the Games, Gale and Peeta, reality TV, survival, and more. From the trilogy's darker themes of violence and social control to fashion and weaponry, the collection's exploration of the Hunger Games reveals exactly how rich, and how perilous, Panem, and the series, really is.

• How does the way the Games affect the brain explain Haymitch’s drinking, Annie’s distraction, and Wiress’ speech problems?
• What does the rebellion have in common with the War on Terror?
• Why isn’t the answer to “Peeta or Gale?” as interesting as the question itself?
• What should Panem have learned from the fates of other hedonistic societies throughout history—and what can we?

CONTRIBUTORS: Jennifer Lynn Barnes, Mary Borsellino, Sarah Rees Brennan, Terri Clark, Bree Despain, Adrienne Kress, Sarah Darer Littman, Cara Lockwood, Elizabeth M. Rees, Carrie Ryan, Ned Vizzini, Lili Wilkinson, Blythe Woolston, Diana Peterfreund (NEW), Brent Hartinger (NEW), Jackson Pearce (NEW)

Release Date: January 17th, 2012
Number of pages: 253

My review: Upon completion of The Hunger Games series, I have become obsessed with finding different companion novels and philosophy books that discuss different aspects of The Hunger Games. This was the perfect starting point to delve deeper into the series and look at different hidden meanings and get a variety of viewpoints on the series.

Everything from Gale vs. Peeta, to the idea of the Games and how they connect to our society, to scifi mutations were discussed and it was incredibly interesting. I liked reading all the different authors opinions and ideas about different things in the series and I found myself either agreeing with them and seeing the series in a different light or disagreeing and coming up with my own arguments.

I definitely think this is one of those books you shouldn't read all at once though. There was a few times towards the middle of the book where I thought the essays were a little repetitive but towards the end they began to differ a bit more and the book got more interesting. This is something that you could pick up from time to time and read while you're in the middle of another book, to give yourself a breather. 

Overall, I thought it was extremely interesting and I can't wait to pick up a few more books like this because they really get you thinking about everything that is beneath the surface of The Hunger Games series. I completely recommend this for all the die-hard fans out there. 

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