събота, 26 февруари 2011 г.

My dream to build a blanket fort

Let me tell you about my Valentine's this year. I had this great idea of spending the special day not with a loved one or even girlfriends but alone. In a blanket fort.

You don't have to say it, I know it's awesome.

I had gotten the idea from the amazing ApartmentTherapy guys and thought it was something that was pretty fun. When I was a kid building a blanket fort was my favorite game in the world and it would have been so amazing to come back to that, be it for just one evening. So I started planning and researching how to make a "grown-up blanket fort", with lights and pillows and everything but it turned out that my little dorm room, which had no shelves or curtain rods to attach the blankets to was pretty unsuitable for my big dream. So I just ended up watching the second season of The Guild instead.

But the idea is still there. Making my own blanket fort and maybe letting one other person join me is still a dream that has yet to come true. It's just brilliant, really - doing this one thing for your evening that doesn't require that much effort - you could do it when you were 7, for God's sake - and spending the rest of it in total relaxation while having quite a great time. Someday, when my neighbors are so kind as to let me borrow some of their extra blankets, I too will make another attempt at returning to my childhood using nothing else but sheets, pillows and books.

What do you guys think? Would you like to make one yourselves or am I a minority on this? What would you use? Seriously, give me ideas, I could really use some in the near future.

сряда, 23 февруари 2011 г.

The Hunger Games is AWESOME! ...and I'm back

Okay, so I know that it's terrible - me promising to write more often in my blog and then totally forgetting it for the next two months or so. But you have to understand - our finals week here in Bulgaria doesn't last a week: it lasts for more than a month. And it's really hard to just sit down and start writing because I literally don't go out anywhere during that time, except for the store and the gym. It would all be fine if I was actually doing something useful with all this time but no, I just spend a whole day researching how The Human Torch died or what the best phones with Windows Phone 7 are. I did well on my exams but I kind of feel that I had luck and great friends to help me out, so I feel pretty embarassed nonetheless.

I wouldn't describe myself as a slacker but I'm pretty stupid with my time. For example, I had a test on a Monday that was pretty hard and important and I knew that I had to study a lot. But I made the mistake of telling my friend Vicky that I wanted to read The Hunger Games book series and she then made the mistake of overestimating my willpower by giving it to me a couple of days before the test. I spent an entire day reading the first book and only took an hour or so to learn something about the European Union. I don't usually give in to temptations that easily but when it comes to addictive books there's pretty much nothing that can stop me from reading it in one day. I remember when the fourth Harry Potter book came out I came back from school and, without evenhaving lunch first, I would just immerse myself in it and totally forget about homework.

I started reading knowing that the main character was a teenage girl and that there was a love triangle in the story so I couldn't help thinking "Oh, God, please don't let this be a Twilight knock-off". But damn, that Suzanne Collins does know how to write a good story and keep you hooked. After 2 hours of reading I would tell myself "Okay, Ren, this is quite enough dor today, just read this chapter and close this book". But then the chapter end on such a cliffhanger that you just have to know what happens next. And I usually hate love triangles but I think that this one was handled pretty well and even had me rooting for a couple, albeit without anyT-shirts and posters.

The second book of the series, "Catching Fire", was also very well written and introduced two of my favorite characters, Finnick and Johanna. It had the same addictive quality to it and kept me wondering how it was going to end. The third book did not. And I don't mean that I didn't like it, it just wasn't as good and the other two. It lacked its inherent fast pace and even a big chunk of the action, which I think Collins is really good at. But the worst thing about the third book was the overall feeling that I was left with when I finished reading. By the end so many people that I had grown to love had died that I went kind of numb for the more heartwarming moments. Especially after the death of two characters which I thought Collins was never going to kill off. On the one hand it shows the authors' courage to risk it and really go dark with her story but on the other hand, I thought it could do all that a little better and without necessarily killing those two people.

But there are many things in Mockingjay that I did like - here Collins reveals more about the characters and why they are the way they are - we learn more about Finnick, Annie, Johanna and Peeta, who became really interesting as a character in this book. We get to see his dark side and it makes us really appreciate him and his good-natured personality and charm.

Agh, I really could just keep on writing all day but I'm trying to not ruin the books for anyone and also to be kind of brief about them - something that I now see I failed at pretty hard. But if you do want me to share my thoughts on the characters or the stories, please comment in the section below and also tell me what you think!