Film Review -The Making of a Lady (2012)

Frances Hodgson Burnett wrote stories familiar and beloved to many, including Little Lord Fauntleroy, A Little Princess and The Secret Garden. All of these have been adapted for the screen. Not nearly as many are familiar with Burnett’s novel The Making of a Marchioness and its’ sequel The Methods of Lady Walderhurst. The former was adapted as a television film by ITV under the name The Making of a Lady.

SUMMARY

The Making of a Lady stars Lydia Wilson as the impoverished but genteel Emily Fox-Seton. Orphaned at a young age, she has been forced to make her own way in the world. Gifted an education by her relatives, her options remain few. She has a difficult time maintaining steady employment to pay her rooming fare at a run-down but respectable boarding house. After being let go from her temporary job as a secretary to Lady Maria Byrne, she receives an unexpected offer from the Lady’s nephew, Lord Walderhurst.

In need of an heir, the older Marquess proposes a marriage of convenience. With very few options and despite wanting to marry for love, Emily accepts his proposal. Walderhurst soon introduces her as the mistress of his country home, where she is met by a less than hospitable staff.

Just as Emily and Walderhurst begin to grow closer, he decides to re-enlist in his old regiment and return to India. He instructs his dour but trusted butler, Mr Litton to look out for his new wife.

Shortly after his departure, Walderhurst’s cousin Alec Osborne and his Indian born wife Hester arrive with a letter from the Marquess requesting they also keep keep an eye on Emily. Despite prior inferences from both her husband and Lady Byrne about Alec’s character, Emily is thrilled to have some pleasant, young relatives around to keep her company and moves them into the house. But strange things begin occurring and Alec’s behavior becomes erratic. Is he a threat or is Emily imagining things?

To read my full review, please head over to The Silver Petticoat Review.

Top Ten Tuesday -Back to School with History

Well, it’s that time of year when all the children and educators head back to school. This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is a back to school freebie.

I will confess, I’m a bit of a nerd. I always enjoyed learning in the classroom. My favorite subject was history and I was often chided for reading ahead in my textbook. Many of my friends complained that history was dull, full of names and dates which meant very little to them. To counter that opinion I am sharing my favorite novels set during various times with stories that make make history come alive. For more information on the titles, clicking on each link will give you a description of the story. Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday -Back to School with History”

Behind the Persona -Three Books About the Man Named Cary Grant

I have been a faithful fan of Cary Grant the actor for over twenty years. In that time I have read every book I could find about him to learn more about the man behind one of the most famous personas in cinematic history.

I have always been interested in biographies. I have read  biographies about many of my favorite film  stars. Over time, I have realized that I prefer the ones that focus on the individual’s personal background. While it is always interesting to learn about an actor’s career, who he worked with, why he chose certain projects, etc. I prefer it when those facts don’t overwhelm their actual story.

So, having done all the work of reading numerous books about Cary Grant, I am now sharing with you my three of my favorites.

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Foreign Film Friday -My Love Eun-dong (2015)

SUMMARY

As young teenagers, reckless behavior on his part brings Hyun-soo and Eun Dong together. After Eun-dong’s lie spares him a criminal sentence, Hyun-soo determines to repay his debt by looking out for her. His debt of gratitude quickly turns into one of friendship, and Eun-dong challenges him to live a better life. Their strong connection is shattered when they are unexpectedly separated and lose touch for a decade.

Neither Eun-dong nor Hyun-soo forget each other and eventually another random meeting brings them back together. This time their friendship deepens into something much more. After falling in love they are once more accidentally separated. But Hyun-soo holds fast to his promise to wait for Eun-dong and never gives up hope they will be reunited.

Another ten years passes and Hyun-soo is now known as the famous actor Eun-ho. He decides to use his fame to search for his lost love by publishing their love story.  His manager hires young wife and mother Jung-eun to ghost-write the book. Jung-eun finds herself utterly charmed and moved by Eun-ho’s memories of Eun-dong, but also finds them strangely familiar.

Meanwhile, Eun-ho is being stalked by a powerful, beautiful woman who wants him for herself and will use any means to achieve her goal. Continue reading “Foreign Film Friday -My Love Eun-dong (2015)”

Film Review -Tommy’s Honour (2016)

History is a treasure trove full of inspirational stories of real life people and I love seeing these stories brought to wider attention on the screen.

SUMMARY

Tommy’ s Honour is the tale of the father and son who are considered the founders of modern golf and is based on a book by Kevin Cook. Old Tom Morris’ is a champion golfer whose glory days are passing but he’s still well respected as the greens keeper and professional at St. Andrews. He and his son Tommy Jr. act as caddies to the local gentlemen golfers of the St. Andrews club while also running their shop selling golf equipment.

As a teenager, Tommy soon begins to surpass his father’s fame with his own advanced skills earning him respect. This leads to Tommy being chosen in place of his father in challenger games. These games are set up by the titled and wealthy who put up the money to stake the game, betting their choice of a player against a challenger from another course. The winner receives whatever profits the organizers decide to share with him.

Of course, Tommy wins many of these matches and then begins winning professional golf tournaments. But Tommy’s modern ideas both in how to play the game and also his belief in his own equality with the upper class who sponsor him, clash with his father’s more traditional views. And when he falls in love with an older woman with a tainted past, he alienates his mother.

To read my full review of this underrated film, please follow me over to The Silver Petticoat Review.

Top Ten Tuesday -Book Recommendations for Arm Chair Travelers

Aside from reading one of my grand passions in life is travel. I love exploring other countries and cultures. However, in the last several years I haven’t been able to travel as much as I would like for various reasons. Luckily for me, I can still experience the world through my arm chair travels and so can you.

For today’s theme from The Broke and The Bookish  I’ve chosen books which feature settings from around the world. I’ve tried to feature more contemporary than historical books, to mimic what the current geography and culture of these countries would be if you were physically there. But since historical fiction is my jam, some of those titles have slipped in. Click on the title for more information on each story.

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Book Review -The Bridge

SUMMARY

In The Bridge when Meredith Sullivan wins the Beckett Scholarship and is finally able to fulfill her dream of studying in Paris, she is thrilled. But she is less thrilled to discover her class nemesis Pete Russell has also won a place and will be around to torment her all year. She is also sad to leave behind her best friend and secret crush Drew Sutton.

Pete is not content with their status quo. He quickly begins to challenge Meredith’s perceptions of him as they discover Paris together. Slowly Sully (as Pete calls her) realizes she may have misjudged this guy who shares her love for the City of Light.

But just as she begins to consider something more than friendship, Drew finally confesses his feelings for her. Now she is torn between the man she has always wanted and the one who seems to understand her better than anyone else.

You’ve read the summary, now read my review over at The Silver Petticoat.

The Alfred Hitchcock Blogathon -My Favorite Hitchcock Films

Alfred Hitchcock is one of the most famous directors in film history. His name is synonymous with the suspense genre and very few people would not recognize it. HIs artistry and mastery are legendary. I’m not here to discuss the finer details or technical aspects of his films. I will leave that to those more knowledgable. But I am a fan. While I’m still working my way through his filmography, I would like to share with you my personal favorites. Continue reading “The Alfred Hitchcock Blogathon -My Favorite Hitchcock Films”

Television Series -Father Brown (2013 -)

Loosely based on the book series written by G.K. Chesterton, this newest television reincarnation updates the setting to the village of Kembleford in the Cotswolds district during the 1950’s. One of the few thing that remains true to the books is the character of Father Brown himself.

SUMMARY

The Father is a rather unassuming character with a keenly intuitive mind. Although he is dedicated to his religious calling, he can’t help but be snagged by his sharp attention to detail along with his exceptional insights into human nature. This compels him into a secondary vocation as a self-appointed investigator whenever a crime, usually a murder, is committed in Kembleford.

In some ways, he resembles his counterpart Sydney Chambers in another period mystery series, Grantchester. Both Sydney and the Father feel a loving responsibility to those in their parish, while their curious minds and sharp observations compel them to solve the deviant actions of human nature. However, unlike Sydney, Father Brown is no friend of the local police investigator(s) who find his meddling outside of the church as a nuisance and potential threat. And while Sydney tends to use deductive reasoning, Father Brown usually discovers his perpetrators through intuition.

He is possibly the least judgmental character I have seen on the small screen, while still encouraging parishioners and criminals alike to live according to religious principles. And although he is always invested in finding the perpetrator of crime, it is not so that he can bring them to justice, but so that he can urge them to make it right themselves.

For the rest of my review, please follow me over to The Silver Petticoat Review.

Book Review -The Mark of the King

SUMMARY

The year is 1720. In Mark of the King French midwife Julianne finds herself unjustly convicted of murder. Branded and married off to a fellow convict, she is shipped off to the primitive French outpost of New Orleans, where a delicate balance exists between the natives and the settlers.

One ray of hope in her exile is Julianne’s hope of finding her brother, a soldier who had been sent with the army to New Orleans. Another silver lining is the French military officer Marc-Paul who takes a special interest in making sure she is protected in a colony where she is marked as a criminal.

But conditions in New Orleans are difficult at best. Tensions run high with the threat of starvation and war ever present.  Will Julianne find the answers she seek? Will she ever overcome the king’s brand marking her as a criminal?

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