Friday, June 29, 2012

Book Club Friday: Gothic Fiction

This is potentially the shortest Book Club Friday I will ever write.

It is already 11:35pm, I'm exhausted after five days of working 10-13 hours a day, and I had a beer with dinner. But I haven't posted a book review in three weeks, despite having read... eight books since then? I think?

In a very poor attempt to compensate for my lack of book reviews, I'm once again going to discuss two books, both brilliant works of gothic fiction. Once again, these were both bargains for my kindle. (Hi, my name is Belle Vierge, and I'm addicted to bargain books...) The first I actually read back in May, but the second I just read earlier this week. But when doing book reviews thematically, well, that happens.

The Twin's Daughter, by Lauren Baratz Logstead, involves long-lost twin sisters, a grisly murder, and mistaken identity. A Kiss Before Dying, by Ira Levin, chronicles a serial killer and his romantic conquests. Already off to a brilliant and creepy start, right?

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Don't Trust the Big Screen: A Guest Post

Y'all. My first guest post from someone who isn't dating me!

A few weeks ago I received an email from a fellow writer, Mallory Hughes, asking if she could guest post for my blog. I get excited when people admit to reading (and liking my blog), so of course I said yes. She ended up becoming very busy (ah, student life, those were the days!), but passed on this gem from Lilly Star, the lead female writer at

Lilly is a professional advice-giver with experiences in dating men of all types, including the good ones that got away. Her passions include white wine, purple peonies and relaxing on the chaise lounge with her dachshund Samantha. Lilly's work can be read on dating blogs for both men and women.

So, dear readers, grab yourself a glass of white wine (Lilly would approve) and read what she has to say about one of my guilty pleasures: romcoms.

The moment comes in almost every romantic comedy when man and woman unite in a hug after a drawn out, overly dramatic sprint into each others arms. They embrace, they kiss, they sweep each other’s foreheads. Ultimately they forgive the previous two hours of indiscretion and heartache. The message: Despite everything, we are in love.

Love in the real world is a little different.

If you’re like me, then you understand that there is a lot of doubt in the dating world that movies creatively cover up. The indecision and lack of commitment from male counterparts* is only the tip of what can be an iceberg of confusion. It’s the gray area, the confusion, that most movies voluntarily skip. Why impart reality when fantasies are what you want?

The problem I’ve found is, that if I buy into the bogus perceptions, then I’m usually in for some major disappointments (even movies as “self-aware” as He’s Just Not That Into You have a nasty habit of ending on the sorts of upticks that make the realist woman grimace). I know that there is real optimism in the movies, and that is a powerful antacid for the trivialities of life, but taking lessons from these movies can be counterproductive. I’ve looked down on myself as the awful words, “Well, Samantha on Sex and the City ….” have left my mouth. I know better than to think Christian Louboutin heels are going to make me sexier to a man who has never looked at the underside of shoes in his life. Still, I make the mistake of following those pearls of advice from the Hollywood starlets, and end up as frustrated as before, but with a grand less to spend on groceries.
Note to self: Samantha is just a character, not my real life BFF (Photo Credit)
Maybe women shouldn’t buy into the movie-making mess at all. Maybe we should establish a firm line against taking dating advice from scripts...?


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