Mindy Kaling Book Review

Rochelle is great at convincing me to start watching a new TV show which leads to binge watching as I try to catch up to her. One of the TV shows that Rochelle has introduced me to is “The Mindy Project.” This hilarious yet empowering TV show has quickly grown to become my favourite and I cannot wait for the new episode on April 12th. Today however, I will be ranting about Mindy Kaling’s book, “Why Not Me?”

 
I find it pretty amazing that just by reading a book, I can get a taste of my favourite actor’s life. Reading Mindy’s showed me what she is like behind the scenes which actually turned out to be as epic and bold as on screen.

Mindy being a talented comedian amongst other amazing qualities makes you laugh out loud for real as you are flipping pages. It’s an easy going, enjoyable read, you will definitely be glued to the pages. She uses many analogies, making references to Hollywood’s most epic movies and actors.

The most shocking thing was reading about a day in Mindy’s life. With Hollywood’s best, I find myself coveting their lives especially during Oscar’s season for example. Seeing artists grace the halls in their Chanel gowns and perfect hair and makeup seems like a dream but rarely do I find myself thinking about what their lives outside of movies look like. Mindy gives a detailed hour by hour outline of her day and it is nothing like I ever expected. With days that start while the sun is still down until 2am, she is working. Although she loves her craft, her responsibilities are so demanding.

Learning about Mindy’s up and coming in the film industry was inspiring as well. I felt like I could conquer the world and run for my own TV show because if Mindy could do it, so can I. I felt empowered to pursue my passion and dedicate time to things I love like blogging.

Overall, this is a great read for when you are looking to add some humour to your day to day life and get a boost of confidence.

Share your thoughts with us in the comments,

What are you reading today?

~ Kisses Kvitka ~

 

 

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Revisiting the Classics

I’ve hit a bump recently in my motivation to read more. It seems the more I read, the more I keep revisiting my favourites which in turn slows down my discovery of new favourites. That’s why I thought why not share my go-to books that make me feel comforted, happy or just invigorated. They have brilliant prose or they’re really funny or they have fantastic plot lines, or maybe they have all three. See below for my (shortened) list of favourite books.

A Hat full of Sky: I distinctly remember finishing this book a few years ago on a very snowy day, cozy under my reading blanket on the couch. It was my first Terry Pratchett novel and I’ve been obsessed ever since. It is a YA novel but it doesn’t read like it because Sir TP doesn’t really change his writing to fit the reader. I remember finishing this book and feeling like there was a bubble of happiness inside of me because of how much his writing touched me and made me laugh. I give this book a 10/10 based on that memory alone (plus I’ve read it a million times since). Highly recommend!

Harry Potter: Do I need to say more? I didn’t think so.

Pride and Prejudice: Jane Austen would’ve been my bestie if she lived in the 21st century (there’s no way I’ve travelling back in time to terrible dental hygiene, slavery and high af mortality rates). P&P is simply amazing. Every time I read it it feels like I’ve discovered something new. There’s quite a few people who are turned off by the prose but seriously, if I could read the unabridged version in grade 4, you can do it now. Highly recommend!

Percy Jackson & The Olympians: Okay fine, Heroes of Olympus by Rick Riordan is not exactly a classic but it is an excellent adventure series. We all need a good adventure in our lives. For some reason I love reading YA books simply because they focus more on the tasks at hand instead of constant romantic drama or emotional turmoil. I really like this series and go to it whenever being an adult exhausts me. I give it an 8/10 overall but 10/10 for really good use of puns and sarcasm.

Song of Ice and Fire: I don’t think this needs an explanation. Read it and weep (literally because Jon Snow, amirite?).

There you have it! A really, really short list of my go-to favourites. Give at least one of them a try and let me know what you think!


Until next time,

Rochelle 

 

Being a feminist in the Workplace

Three days ago I picked my unopened copy of Lean In for Graduates by Sheryl Sandberg. Three days later I’ve finally managed to put it down. No, I’m not graduating right now but I thought it was finally time to read a truly feminist book with the new EW feminist book club happening this year. Sheryl Sandberg has officially joined my short list of women heroes which includes Tina Fey, Miranda Hart, Amy Poehler, Mindy Kaling and obviously, Emma Watson. 

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Usually feminism focuses on the external views on the rights of women in the workplace or at home. Sandberg instead turns the focus inward and analyses how internal forces are sometimes holding us back from achieving equality. It was a really eyeopening and unique read. As the COO of Facebook, Sandberg is a woman in power who can fully recognise the struggles of making it to the top in an industry that has a majority of males. She doesn’t blame women for inequality but instead she makes it more about what we can change in the world instead of asking others to change things for us.


LT Ratings: Overall rating: 9.5/10 |Writing: 9/10 | Research: 10/10 | Must read/ Average/ Pass: Must read!


For example, one of my favourite things in the book is when she discusses how women often sit away from the table whereas men join the table. I love that because it is absolutely true. Because of societal, cultural and familial influences, women have been cast in the roles of meek, subservient, and lacking unintelligent opinions. When we internalise and unconsciously accept those pre-cast roles, we decide not to join the table and voice our opinions. Men on the other hands, having always been in power, have much more self-worth and confidence. They join the table and voice their opinions. This has a negative impact on equality because if more men are speaking up and women are keeping quiet, there’ll automatically be more men rising to power. Sandberg says the best thing to do is to be confident, know that you belong at the table and speak up. Throw away your pre-cast roles and create new ones.

Ultimately, the Sandberg’s message boils down to having more women in power. True equality is achieved when there are equal number of men and women in power which is currently not the case even in developed countries (definitely not in under-developed ones). Having more women in power ultimately has the effect of making the workplace more accessible to women. This book isn’t just directed to women and it certainly doesn’t hate on men. It just points out how many things are still wrong with the a world where highly educated women are still not breaking through the glass ceiling and the number of women steadily decrease as they rise to the top.


Give it a read. If you’ve already read it let me know what you think in the comments below!

Until next time,

Rochelle

Chapter 7: “The Circus arrives without warning”- The Night Circus

Have you ever read something so magical you could imagine yourself living in the story? And no, Harry Potter doesn’t count. Today let’s discuss the Night Circus written by Erin Morgenstern. The book revolves around so many people and the story lines, timelines and love triangles can get heavily tangled up especially so when the two central characters do not really interact until the middle of the book.


The cleverness and confusion is what is appealing from the first page onwards. I myself had no clue what was happening until at least the fifth chapter and I actually confused one character for another making me hate the novel until someone explained that Isobel was not Celia(they were two different characters).

The plot is situated in a circus that travels around the world. The circus itself is tied to two characters Marco and Celia who are engaged in game of sorts that use the circus as a showcase of their talents. Eventually each tent in the circus dissolves into what is essentially love letters to each other. While the love story was beautiful and the plot engaging, it is truly Morgenstern’s talents that shines through the depth of her descriptions and aptitude for immense detail. The flow of the novel was perfect because despite the initial confusion caused by the going back and forth in time, Morgenstern manages to tie it all together in the end.

NightCircus_Sweeps_4Overall the main themes were love, (dis)illusion, the quest for perfection and it also tackles abusive parents, emotional blackmail and the danger of being too competitive. All these these are rather subtle and you truly will be too focused on the story to even realize that the author managed to slip in a few lessons between all the drama.

I highly recommend this book. Try finishing it in one or two sittings or else you’ll be left wondering and dreaming about the Cirque des rêves throughout the day!


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Until next time,

Rochelle

All pictures taken from different sources. Click on picture 
to find out its source.

Chapter 6: The Martian; Movie and Book

I’m a big believer in reading the book before the movie. Last week, I spent an entire day devouring The Martian by Andy Weir and holy crap, I loved it so much! The adventure, the thrill, the intelligence, the sheer enormity of Mark Whatney’s situation had me engrossed from start to finish.


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The book is very well written and is chock full of detail. I am unsure about how much of the science can actually put into practice in the real world but wow, does Weir make it seem completely possible! The plot revolves around Mark Whatney getting left on Mars through a complete accident and the goodness in the cooperation of humanity to try to bring him back to planet Earth. The book is full of action and the humour is spot on. I hope it translates well through the movie.


LT Ratings: Overall rating: 10/10 | Comedy: 9.5/10 | Adventure: 10/10 | Awe Factor: 10/10 Must Read/Average/Pass: Must read!


Speaking of the movie, it’s going to premier at TIFF on Sept 11 and I am very excited to be attending the screening. However, I do have one problem with it. Venkat Kapoor is one of the main characters in both the book and the movie and is clearly depicted as a man of Indian descent. However, Chiwetel Ejiofor is the actor who will be playing Kapoor. Ejiofor is of British/Nigerian descent and is an amazing actor who is renowned for his acting in Twelve Years A Slave and many other films.

But in a world where we already have the issue of whitewashing in movies, I am distressed that this is yet another battle we need to fight. Whitewashing is a prevalent issue that made news yet again when Emma Stone was cast to play a character that was partially Hawaiian and Chinese and Rooney Mara as Tiger Lily, a Native American.  

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This issue is not whitewashing. Instead it is something else entirely. The message this casting choice sends is: ‘People of colour are interchangeable’. They are not. At a previous point in time I would have cheered that Hollywood decided to allow a man of colour to play a man of colour in the movie but in 2015, I do believe it is not irrational of me to expect an Indian person to play Kapoor in the film. This actually detracts my focus from the book’s overall message of the unity and goodness of humanity and instead makes me question the  progress the world has made.

That being said, I will still be watching this film at TIFF because the book was just that amazing. Read it. I promise you’ll probably be done in two days.


Comment below with your opinions on the casting choice, the book or absolutely anything in the world. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest for more on our (mis)adventures and interests.

Until next time,

Rochelle

All photographs taken from The Martian (book cover 
*Andy Weir) and the film still shots.

Chapter 5: #RelationshipGoals Made Real

Following up on my August Inspiration Board promises, I have picked up a new read from the library, “Barbara The Slut and Other People” in order to familiarize myself with this new genre. This week, let’s talk books and start our adventure off with Lauren Holmes’ novel.

While anticipating the arrival of this e-novel (in my inbox) from the library, I did not know what to expect– would this be a cousin of Fifty Shades of Grey or will it become an inspirational read, unraveling a new truth.


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Holmes’ novel is a collection of short stories about REAL relationships. Kiss Hollywood fairy tales good bye because Holmes is striking accord with reality. She writes from perspectives of men, women, teens… even dogs and touches upon many relationship statuses. Discussing topics of sexuality, coming out, healthy relationships, cheating, ‘slut status,’ hook ups, breakups, marriage, and family life, everyone is bound to find something to relate to. The book adds sprinkles of humour to even painful situations and sobering you up during the #relatable stories.


LT Ratings: Overall rating: 7/10 | Comedic: 7.5/10 | Tear Jerker: 6/10 |  Relatable: 7.5/10 | Plot versatility: 10/10 | Must Read/Average/Pass: Average 


Barbara The Slut and Other People is an easy, quick. The writing style however, is was brought the book down a notch. Although this may be subject to short stories, the book lacked flow. For example, setting the stage read more like a bullet pointed to do list (a series of actions). I may be subject to bias though because of my love for conjunctions. Holmes also leaves you wanting more but this is the beauty of an epilogue which in this case you must create yourself.

If you ever asked yourself a question, “Am I the only one in the world who thinks/does this?” then this read is inching closer to the check out isle, waiting to be purchased.

Have you read this book? What are your thoughts? 


If you’ve already read or you’re going to read it, let us know how much you love it in the comments below. Follow us on Twitter, Instagram @lipstick_trilogy and Pinterest for more on our adventures and interests.

~ Kisses, Kvitka ~


Chapter 4: Dune

Dune was one of the most confusing books I’ve ever read and I loved it! Not understanding a word for the first five chapters might sound terrible, but it was such a well written, unique story, I just couldn’t put it down.

Frank Herbert has created a new world(s) thousands of years into the future of Earth. Humans live on different planets where they answer to Dukes, Lords and Emperors. While the main characters, Paul, Jessica and Chani were great, it wasn’t them that caught my interest. It was actually Herbert’s plot-line that revolved around the conservation and importance of water. This book written at least twenty years ago beautifully depicts a time when water will be so scarce and precious that humans will not only start to distill their body sweat but also distill the water from dead bodies.

Living in North America where one can get water by simply turning on the tap has de-sensitised me to people living in poverty, drought and starvation. Today water is readily available to some while it is denied to others and Herbert’s themes of the inequality of classes in the distribution of water has never been so obvious to me.

Dune made me reflect on all the ways I waste water without thinking about it. There are the common ways: leaving the tap on while brushing teeth, taking long showers etc. But there many other unconscious ways.  For example, drinking an iced coffee/tea but at the end of the drink, throwing out the ice cubes with the cup. Yes, that’s a waste of water!

A great book challenges you to think, to reflect, to re-evaluate. Dune, by virtue of doing all of the above, is a fantastic book. It’s a complicated book that isn’t easy to read but if you’re ready for the challenge, give it a try!


If you do read it or have already done so, please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. I would also love to hear of ways to save water and other ways in which we all unconsciously waste that precious H2O. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest for more on our (mis)adventures and interests.

Peace out bookworms!

Rochelle

Chapter Three: The Silver Star

Hello bookworms,

When it comes to choosing a new read, my hands cannot help but reach for the memoirs aisle. Think of the chills you get when a movie director mentions, “Based on a true story,” at the end of a horror film, making it that much more real and personal.  I like to think that memoirs do the same.


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The book we will be taking a look is Jeannette Walls’ novel, The Silver Star. Although not a memoir (ohh shucks), the author herself is well known for her previous successful memoirs The Glass Castle and Half Broke Horses. I figured that since I loved her second book, The Silver Star must be just another spectacular read but surprisingly it didn’t catch my fancy.


LT Ratings: Overall rating: 6/10 | Tear Jerker: 4/10 | Witty: 7/10 | Adventure: 6/10 | Must Read/Average/Pass: Average


Let’s start on a positive note, when I read Walls’ novel I was immediately empowered through the female protagonists’ adventures. In this novel, the main heroine Bean (12) encompasses traits of bravery when she stands up to a business man in court and independence when Bean and her sister travel across the country to live with their uncle Tinsley. At 12, I was happily riding my bike and drawing pictures of ponies, definitely not challenging society’s standards.

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Overall, the novel was very predictable, with many sections of the book that I did not find interest in reading such as the episode with the emus. I must admit, there were times when I was at the edge of my seat fearing for the well being of the characters like when Liz was gone for hours after a confrontation with her short tempered and manipulative employer. Some of the adventures the ladies had were borderline risky; however, there were occurrences where I considered putting the book away altogether because of its predictable development and uninteresting parts of the novel which felt like space fillers with no clear relevance to the plot.

Jeannette Walls has became one of my favourite authors after I read her previous memoir; however, The Silver Star is not become another favourite by her. Perhaps someone who can relate more to its plot line will find it a must read pick. Till next time!


If you’ve already read or you’re going to read it, let us know how much you love it in the comments below. Follow us on Twitter, Instagram @lipstick_trilogy and Pinterest for more on our adventures and interests.

Chapter Four:  Dune by Frank Herbert

– Kisses, Kvitka –

Chapter Two: The Silkworm

It’s no mystery why J.K.Rowling is considered an amazing author. One has to only look at her Harry Potter series to understand why she has rightly become a billionaire. And now, she has branched out into the adult mystery realm. I must say that I completely understand why she penned The Cuckoo’s Calling and The Silkworm as Robert Galbraith. Writing as Galbraith allowed Rowling to explore newer territory within the writing world. The anonymity would make sure that this series would not be judged and compared to the success of Harry Potter.

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Honestly speaking, the Cormoran Strike Novels are sheer genius. Being a massive fan of Agatha Christie might give me permission to say that the series is intricate, beautiful, shocking, thrilling and an excellent mystery series. Rowling has a ‘flowy’ and descriptive writing style that drew me in from the start of The Silkworm. The plot follows Cormoran Strike and his partner Robin as they search for the novelist Owen Quine.

Perhaps it’s Rowling’s own experience in the writing business that makes this mystery that much more detailed as we traverse the world of editors, writers, mistress, publicists and publishers. I’ll admit that I guessed the murderer when Strike discovers the crime scene and then, quickly flipped to the end to see if I was right (I know, I’m the worst kind of reader). But even then, Rowling threw me for a loop at the end with a perfect twist that made me second guess everything. The motive is key in any good mystery and that is where Rowling creativity shines. The motive and murder is scary and gory. Frankly, after staying up till four in the morning, the whole thing made me a little queasy the next day. But I still loved every moment of it.

I cannot recommend this book and the whole series highly enough. The series is set completely apart from the Harry Potter series and it is absolutely brilliant in its own right.


LT Ratings: Overall rating: 9.5/10 | Tear Jerker: 6/10 | Mystery: 10/10 | Witty: 9.5/10 | Must Read/Average/Pass: Must Read!


If you’ve already read or you’re going to read it, let us know how much you love it in the comments below. Follow us on Twitter, Instagram @lipstick_trilogy and Pinterest for more on our adventures and interests.

Chapter Three:  The Silver Star by Jeannette Walls

Have your cups of tea, bowls of wine or shots of whatever, ready at hand for next week’s discussion! 

Peace out bookworms ✌

~Rochelle~

Chapter One: Down the Rabbit Hole

Alice in Wonderland

“Curiouser and curiouser” are the exact words that pop into my head every time I read Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carrol. Tbh, my only problem with the books is that Alice is one weird little girl. I don’t know a lot of little girls that go through the same thinking processes as she does and even as a child I was unable to relate to her. For example,  her journey through Wonderland begins with her evaluating herself and asking the very mature question: ‘Who am I?’.

To be fair though, the premise is fantastical and unbelievable (in the best way possible) and one can argue that Alice’s identity crisis while she shrinks and grows can be a metaphor for ageing in the real world. Therefore, Carrol is excused in my eyes for making his primary character so very odd. Apart form that minor distracting flaw, I can say that Alice is Queen! She stands up to Kings and Queens, absolutely slays at chess, literally gets crowned a Queen and ultimately, figures out the meaning of life. Wtf? I can’t even type this paragraph without editing it a million times!

Anyhoo, that’s my short review! If you haven’t already, read Alice’s Adventures. It’s a classic must read.

Chapter Two:  The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith, aka J. K. Rowling   

Have your cups of tea, bowls of wine or shots of whatever, ready at hand for next week’s discussion! 

Peace out bookworms ✌

Rochelle 💋