Reading Notes: Grimm Librivox (A)

  •  The princess from the princess and the frog is a spoiled brat. I cannot imagine anyone in their right mind wanting to marry her, even if she did break his curse
  • Pretty standard Rapunzel story. Even though it’s traditional, I think I prefer the Disney version.
  • Some of these stories seem to be very heavy on the “be happy with what you have and don’t ask for more” moral. I wonder if that’s because of the time period in which they were written
  • I didn’t know that the Brothers Grimm wrote lighthearted stories like the Traveling Musicians
  • What the heck is this Clever Elsie nonsense? I sure wouldn’t have married her
  • I love that it wasn’t the prince’s kiss that woke Briar Rose. The 100 years were up and the curse was already broken. I think it’s hilarious!

Bibliography: Fairy Tales by the Bothers Grimm. Web source.

Image: Rose Bush by Lynn Greyling. Source: PublicDomainPictures

Reading Notes: Europa’s Fairy Book (B)

  •  I am so not okay with the Swan Maidens. The hunter basically kidnapped the poor girl and then married her and she had two kids, all without him telling her that he had the means for her to go home. When she does find out (and leaves his ass) he steals from strangers to find her, and manages to get her back and they live happily ever after. There’s no way that would ever happen.
  • Honestly, the Visitor from Paradise makes no sense, but I love the ending: “It was and it was not.”
  • Inside again comes full circle in a sad way. I wish the fox had been a tab bit smarter
  • I’ve never read a Hansel and Gretel type story that ended like Johnnie and Grizzle, but I still question the idea of wanting to go back the the parents that abandoned you
  • Thumbkin is smart and savvy, but I can’t say that I condone his methods

Bibliography: Europa’s Fairy Book by Joseph Jacobs. Web source.

Image: 2008 Swan Lake Production. Source: Wikimedia

Reading Notes: Europa’s Fairy Book (A)

  •  At least this version of the Cinder-Maid includes a prince that remembers what the girl looks like. Instead he is trapped by the wording of his promise. But honestly the idea of falling in love with a girl’s face kind of freaks me out. I’d rather her fall in love with someone that she’d already known.
  • This version of Beauty and the Beast is kind of boring. I think it needs something to spice it up
  • I guess it makes sense for a holy man to forgive people, but I still think it’s a stretch that Jack would forgive his parents for trying to kill him and let them live with him
  • The princess in a Dozen at a Blow is such an airhead! She doesn’t like him because he’s a tailor, and then she changes her mind? There has to be more to it than that!
  • I love the cat from the Earl of Cattenborough, but Jack is kind of ungrateful. I wonder why the cat was so willing to help him.

Bibliography: Europa’s Fairy Book by Joseph Jacobs. Web source.

Image: Cat by cocoparisienne. Source: Pixabay

Reading Notes: Hans Christian Anderson (B)

This section of the Hans Christian Anderson reading is the Little Mermaid. I’ve never read this version before, but I’ve heard tell its pretty sad. Here goes!

  • It’s interesting that I can tell where Disney got inspiration for a lot of things, but some facts are so backwards. The main character is quite and thoughtful, and it’s all the sisters who are fascinated by ship wreckage
  • It’d be cool to write a traditional siren story from the mermaid’s point of view. What if they aren’t really wanting to kill people. They just want them to wreck their ships so the mer-people can get some cool stuff. Treasure hunting basically!
  • I think it would be pretty cool to have a story where the mermaid falls in love with humans in general, instead of the prince specifically, and she befriends the humans without trying to become one
  • I can’t tell what the grandmother is thinking. She has to know why the little mermaid is asking all these questions. Why doesn’t she stop her?
  • I did not know that she cut out the little mermaid’s tongue. How did this ever get adapted to Disney?
  • I’m pretty sure the little mermaid just got friend-zoned by the prince
  • Honestly the prince is a jerk. I wouldn’t want the little mermaid to end up with him, regardless of anything. I wonder what would have happened if she used her sister’s knife and killed him
  • I’m glad that the little mermaid became a child of the wind, but it seems like she still got the short end of the stick.

Bibliography: Fairy Tales and Stories by Hans Christian Anderson. Web source.

Image: Mermaid by Mysticartdesign. Source: Pixabay

Reading Notes: Hans Christian Andersen (A)

  • I’ve always thought that the Princess and the Pea was a silly story. Why would you want a princess as sensitive as all that? If I rewrote this the princess would be tested on her kindheartedness or bravery or wisdom, not how sensitive her skin is.
  • I have no plans to rewrite the Emperor’s New Suit because it is perfect just the way it is!
  • Honestly the Brave Tin Soldier is depressing. He wished for a wife and because of it, they both died. The dancer isn’t even a part of the story really. What if she didn’t like him? Why should she be punished for a wish she didn’t know anything about. It just isn’t fair.
  • I’d say the wicked prince got exactly what he deserved. The only thing that would make it better is if it was one of the people he wronged that ended him instead of a little gnat. Maybe a little kid who’s nickname was gnat, or a conquered citizen who was told he had less worth than a gnat?
  • So, I’ve read the story of the Little Match Girl before, but not like this. The one I read was very sad and hopeless but this one is kind of nice, in a weird way. The girl doesn’t realize that she’s dying. It might be nice to write it from the grandmother’s point of view, as if she knows that her granddaughter is going to die and sends her lovely images in the glow of the match. That way the girl isn’t scared and sees the wonderful things she can have in heaven.

Image: Match Smoke by Andrew Magill. Source: Flickr

Learning Challenge: Reading out Loud

This seemed like a good challenge to try for the week because I was taking notes over different ballads of Robin Hood. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to read a ballad silently, but it’s hard. They’re meant to be sung and, while I wasn’t about to try and sing them, I could at least read them aloud to get a feel for the rhythm and meter. I think it helped a lot! I was far less likely to zone out or start skimming if I was reading out loud.

I actually do this in a lot of classes if I don’t really want to do the reading, but I know that I need to. Reading out loud doesn’t just ensure that I’m paying attention. It also increases retention of information and just makes it more fun! The only drawbacks are, if I forget to make sure I’m alone, people might stare at me funny, and I have to drink a lot of water since I’m talking so much!

Image: Index by Negative Space. Source: Pexels

Wikipedia Trail: From Maid Marian to my Favorite Book!

Maid Marian or Marian Fitzwater is such an iconic part of any Robin Hood retelling. She is also super inspiring and I love that the “old fashioned” tales have a strong feminist character. I read about Robin Hood and Maid Marian for the reading this week, so I started here for my Wikipedia trail!

Among all the cool information about the legends of Robin Hood and Marian, there was a list of literary adaptions, including one by Robin McKinley. I followed that link, because she is the author of some of my favorite books! My personal favorite book that she wrote is called The Blue Sword. It’s set in a fictional world called Damar (McKinley has written several stories and books set here) and about a girl named Harry who has to learn to be a soldier and help save her home. It’s kind of awesome! So I obviously had to follow that link on McKinley’s Wiki page.

Honestly there really weren’t that many links on The Blue Sword’s Wiki page (whoops), but there was a link to The Hero and the Crown, which was the sequel to The Blue Sword and the first Robin McKinley book I ever read – although the book itself is technically a prequel to the events that happen in the Blue Sword. Researching these books makes me want to read them, and other classic books like them, all over again. Maybe I’ll find time to do that over winter break!

Image: The Blue Sword book cover. Source: Wikimedia



Famous Last Words: Are We There Yet?

Happy Thanksgiving!

I’m currently relaxing at my parents house for Thanksgiving break and I can’t help but thinking, are we there yet? I get to this point every semester, where it seems like I’ve been taking the same classes for much longer than the three-ish months it has actually been. I’m ready for finals and I’m ready for a longer break with no homework! But I also know myself pretty well, and I know that about 5 minutes into Christmas break I’m going to get very bored and want the spring semester to begin.

I’ve enjoyed the classes I’ve taken this semester – Geography of Wine was particularly fun. But I’m also looking forward to getting back into my Chemical Engineering coursework in the spring. I feel like this semester, and last spring to an extent, were almost a vacation. I wasn’t taking any engineering or hard science classes and was instead working on my International Studies degree. But, since I want to go into medical research, it felt like I was taking a lot of classes for no reason. As difficult as they might be, I am happy to throw myself back into the Engineering grind.

But first I do have to finish this semester. I’ve already finished my Geography of Wine class, and I’m pretty close to ta king care of Mythology and Folklore. I think that all I have left in Model UN is one paper, and then the finals for Microeconomics and Microbiology. My microbiology lab also has two more assignments and and exam and lab practical. It’s not a ton, but it will sure keep me busy for the next couple weeks. I’m still aiming for that 4.0 GPA and as long as I study hard for my finals, I think I can do it! And then I’ll be that much closer to next semester!


Image: Legs by Greyerbaby. Source: Pixabay

Reading Notes: Robin Hood (B)

  •  I’ve read plenty of stories about Robin Hood pretending to be a beggar or sheppard or anything under the sun. I’d like to see one where he pretends to be himself, but no one believes him. Or one where he pretends to be someone rich and powerful instead of impoverished, just for variety.
  • Little John going begging makes no sense. How could he have gotten 300 pounds from beggars?
  • I like the story of Robin switching places with the old woman. It seems the most similar to the Robin Hood stories I’m familiar with.
  • I like this version of Maid Marion! She didn’t wait around and fret about Robin Hood, she disguised herself as a man and went searching for him! If I write a story, it’ll probably be about Marion and what she was doing as she looked for Robin
  • The trickster is tricked! I like the king and how he was able to fool Robin Hood. I feel like Robin and the Sheriff wouldn’t be able to make up though.
  • I find it interesting that there is several different versions of Robin Hood’s death, but I prefer the one where he dies fighting, even though him shooting an arrow to mark his grave is nice imagery

Bibliography: Bibliography: The English and Scottish Popular Ballads collected by Francis James Child.

Image: Lucy Griffiths as Maid Marion. Source: Fanpop

Growth Mindset: Lesesucht

I love reading. I’ve been a bookworm for as long as I can remember – my whole life, if you ask my family. Today I found out that the German word “Lesesucht” means a reading addiction. Sounds about right to me!

I’m the type of person that doesn’t go anywhere without a good book. If you catch me staring at my phone for a while, then I’m reading. I even have a countdown until the release of few novels I’ve been waiting for! I have a reading list longer than my arm and, if I could, I’d sit at home all day everyday working my way through that list, one by one. I’m not antisocial, I just love reading!

When I was working on making growth mindset motto for an assignment, I was wandering through the internet, waiting for something to jump out at me, and this quote definitely did. It’s something that Oscar Wilde once said. It may not be overtly related to growth mindset, but I think that it speaks to someone who is always wanting to know more. That’s what reading is, right? Every book you read can teach you something; that’s why I love books so much.

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