Monkalong: Wrapping it UP

     My teenage love for The Lord of the Rings has been rekindled in a big way these past few months, and I find myself wishing that this readalong post could just be me talking about how much I love Boromir even though it has nothing to do with The Monk. And so: a Boromir gif, special for you.


   Another thing I would like to talk about more than I would like to talk about The Monk is this dance video, it is so dance-y, although somewhat excessive on some points. :

   If that video doesn't strike your fancy, here is another one and it comes with a Childhood Anecdote. My sister and I would sometimes sing this song with each other in the way that other people might sing The Confrontation from Les Mis, and she would always make me be Ramses but I always wanted to be Moses, but she HOGGED THE PART. p.s. how great is Prince of Egypt? Look at your life through heaven's eyes, AM I RIGHT?

    What else would I rather talk about rather than The Monk? So many things but here we are and I can't stall forever. I missed posting last week (to sum up: what the hell mob mentality, murder, rape, kidnapping, crypt baby, sinning in general). And in this section it is much the same, Ambrosio is determined to DO SOME MORE SINS. It is possible that in his monk-education he skipped over that bit of the Bible that says "shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means!"


   Let's get into it.

   Essentially, MLew is the worst, and after Ambro rapes Antonia MLew quickly replaces her with an equally charm-filled girl whose name literally means "virgin". My ire is somewhat softened by MLew portraying rape/Ambro as truly violent and evil, and not making Antonia secretly enjoy it or something. We all knew this was coming the whole time, and I still hated it.

   Matilda was a demon from the start, the devil told it like it is to Ambro ("virtuous from vanity, not principle" NICE ONE, SATAN), there was some nun-murder and some torture, but the plot point I'd rather focus on is Agnes.

   Agnes! I was genuinely sorrowful for her and her baby, and rather surprised when MLew didn't condemn her to a fate like Antonia's. Agnes had sex and got pregnant before she was married and still went on to live a long and happy life? What? Does this...happen? In books? Apparently it does, and it makes me glad. And she has a new pal in Virginia, and if there's one thing I love it's friendship.

   Even though Agnes escaped her miry pit, I still want to give MLew a resounding double-punch in the chest.

like so.

  Also: MLew can't make up his mind when it comes to suffering due to grief, and men seem to be much more susceptible to it than women. Agnes' baby was literally rotting in her arms, but she recovered way before Lorenzo. What's your deal, MLew?

   AND WE'RE DONE, well done, well done. A hundred thank-yous go to Alice, readalong organizing queen. Readalongs 4eva.


"Ship of Death!"

   Mooooviiiiies will give me a break from thinking about The Monk. In order of appearance in the previous post:
  1. The Godfather Part II (1974)
  2. Les Miserables (2012)
  3. Sahara (2005)
  4. Shining Through (1992)
  5. The Godfather (1972)
   Clearly everyone should watch The Godfather parts one AND two (and probably three buuuut, I haven't seen it. I've seen the other two MULTIPLE times), and Les Miserables is so great even though Russell Crowe as Javert is supremely disappointing; but don't bother watching Shinging Through it is very much made in the 90s by Americans about WWII. 

   Now that those are out of the way, let's talk about Sahara. SAHARA. Oh how I love you. Sahara is the best and I am sliiightly embarrassed by how much I enjoy it but FRIENDS this movie is great. It has so many jokes. The cinematography is genuinely good. Steve Zahn is a triumph. I probably watch this movie once a year. It is so stuffed full of ridiculous coincidences and at one point someone uses a camel to assist them in a spectacular kick and WOW, this movie has it all. 

   Sometimes you can love something even though it has problems and even though its primary quality is silliness. And such is Sahara


Monkalong Week 3: "'Tis not the crime which holds your hand, but the punishment"

   LATE AGAIN. I've got all kinds of school at the moment; a great deal of my reading time is clogged with boring as cultural policy documents. Hooray? I'm kind of drowning in papers but my semester is over at the end of the month so I am holding out hope.

   BORING, let's get to The Monk.

   OKAY SO, what happened in this section? In chapter three Ambrosio and Rosatilda continuously bang, Ambro gets real sick of her real fast and ogles other ladies, Rosatilda PRESUMABLY sells her soul (?) to the devil in a flashy crypt ceremony, Agnes is clearly being held prisoner in said crypt, there was some interesting talk about how some people are not meant to be monks and pride can be a poison (I wish English had more words for "pride," because there's bad pride and there's good pride and "arrogance" vs "satisfaction in a job well done" don't quite cut it. Know what I mean?), some nature vs nurture talk, Ambro has the hots for Antonia (HIS SISTER), Elvira is sick, Aunt L gets hitched, blah blah blah modesty, AND we learn that Matthew Lewis and has an external locus of control. I'm calling shenanigans on Ambro being "little acquainted with the depravity of the world" since he is the confessor for a zillion aristocrats who only have time for sinning. 

   In chapter four, I have hate for Ambro building up in my heart. Ugh. Ambrosio is awful and horrid and I don't want to write any more about this section. I like that Rosatilda is a full-blown witch but I despise in a major way her myrtle branch roofie plan. Ugh this book, ugh Ambrosio, ugh Rosatilda, ugh MLew. 

   If only this book was about Marguerite and Ghost Nun. It would be a gothic version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. 


Monkalong Week 2: "derogatory to her Ghost-ship"

   I am late! and gif-less :( But I am posting nonetheless. This delightful readalong is hosted by the equally delightful Alice.

   Hoo boy, can the marquis ever spin a yarn. Pages and pages and pages of yarn. Too much bandit yarn, too much. It was all pretty clear from the get-go that he had fallen in with a couple of guys who were up to no good. We didn't need 1000 pages of it, and what about the servants who were all killed? We just...don't care...about them???

   I have some QUESTIONS re: this crazy book:

  • At what point in history is all this meant to be taking place? Contemporary to MLew? 
  • Was the Mogul guy Cain? He was Cain, right? I'm pretty sure he's Cain, complete with the mark of Cain. 
  • Why are all the hot chicks 15 years old? 
  • How does Chistoval feel about Loz calling the marquis "my dearest and indeed my only Friend"? Tsk. You have more friends than that, Loz.
  • Why are all the nuns evil except Agnes who doesn't want to be a nun? 
  • Does MLew have ANY idea of how long the human gestation period is? He says that "several months" go by, and none of the nuns have been like "oh, Agnes, you have a tell-tale belly"??
  • Elvira is perceptive and cool, right? A surprisingly good mom? 
  • Don't Catholic nuns have to...obey the Pope? 
  • We all know that Agnes ain't dead, right? 

   I am definitely skimming the hell outta all the poetry, because I Cannot Be Bothered. Even if writing verses is the ONLY THING that could possibly keep someone awake until the wee hours of morning. But from Raymond's reaction to Theodore's I am assuming they are somewhat prophetic, as is MLew's M.O. ALSO wrapped up in Raymond's reaction to the poetry is what I assume is a dig at any future critics of his MASTERWORK: "An Author, whether good or bad, or between both, is an Animal whom everybody is privileged to attack; For though All are not able to write books, all conceive themselves able to judge them" and so on. WE GET IT, MATTHEW, YOU'RE THE BEST. 

   What will the next chapters hold?? Don't get too excited, you might break a blood vessel and die in the course of a a few hours, or you might be "seized with a poetical paroxysm" and we can't have that.


September Reading

   Oh! Hey! It's October??? Not sure how that happened but okay. Here is what I read in September: 
  • The Four Loves / C. S. Lewis: I listened to a recording of the man himself reading this, and it was great.
  • Revival, v. 2 / Tim Seeley: uuuugh I love it. When will my library get more??!!???
  • The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up / Marie Kondo: I like to fold now? 
  • The Weight of Blood / Laura McHugh: surprisingly good! 
  • Saga, v. 4 / Brian K. Vaughan: I juuuust about cried some real tears while reading this. So good. Why don't I own volume five. 
  • South / Ernest Shackleton: I have so many feelings about this book, and I love Antarctic exploration so much, and when the Endurance started to sink I had to take a break from reading this book because I was OVERWHELMED. 
  • Crocodile on the Sandbank / Elizabeth Peters: I don't know why I waited so long to read this because it was SO DELIGHTFUL, in so many senses of the word. Funny! Clever! Historically believable! It has so many things going for it and I have the second one on hold. 
   With South I passed my yearly goal of reading at least 52 books, which isn't really a difficult goal to reach. I never really know how to count comics towards my final count, so I group them by title instead of volume (because they are SO SHORT) but Goodreads counts every volume toward my yearly count and so everything is all confused. REGARDLESS, I'm happy with my reading amount this month. October is likely to be reading-light, I'm in major school crunch time. Thank goodness for the Monkalong. 


Monkalong, Post the First: "vanquishing the impetuous ebullitions of Youth"

   Can we all just agree upfront that Matthew Lewis is The Worst at foreshadowing and suspense? There I was, planning to reveal my mental acuity by saying "Rosario: totes a lady" when bam: ML decides that one chapter is plenty of time to build Rosario's story and OMGOSH, Matilda of the Beauteous Orb?  Also, I am sure we are all aware that DUH, Ambrosio, tool of the century, is the presumed-dead baby of yore, and ergo Antonia's big bro, to which I say: why are so many ladies falling in insta-love with a self-righteous monk? And it's also pretty clear that Rosatilda sucked the snake venom from Ambrosio's wound? Oh wait, I typed that before finishing the chapter and it has already been revealed that YES, she did indeed do some poison transference, and then her and Ambrosio made out a whole bunch, and then she presumably died. It was a full chapter.

You really lay it on thick, M.Lew
   Here is a thing which will drive me to distraction: so much Capitalization of whatever Nouns and other Words Matty Lew sees fit. WHY.

   How much do we love the sassy Aunt? So much? I mean, she swears! Speaking of which: this book is racy for 179whatever. Taking the Lord's name in vain! A lady with beauteous orbs! Make-outs which are probably code for sexy times! A nun pregnant out of wedlock! SO MANY THINGS.

   All ridiculousness aside, M.Lew does make a few good points in chapters one and two, namely: can someone really say they are immune to temptation and evil if they have simply never been tempted? And isn't self-righteous pride a sneaky and harmful tendency? And this: Vice is ever most dangerous when lurking behind the Mask of Virtue"? You are bonkers, M.Lew, and your book is bonkers, but you make a couple good points. 

   Readalonging! Once more into the breach, dear friends.

ready 4 teh Monk